One School/One Book committee gets early start on summer reading

Jordan Hoover, Watertown Splash staff

If you are a sixth- or seventh-grader or a teacher at Watertown Middle School who loves reading, join the One School/One Book committee! Come on! Get an early start on summer reading and make an impact on the school.

The One School/One Book committee is a group of students and teachers who try to read 10 books over the course of the year. After each book they read, they fill out surveys and come together to talk about each book. Eventually they choose three of their favorite books from the 10 for the whole school to vote on to become the summer reading book.

Since last year, the One School/One Book committee has opened up to the entire sixth and seventh grade. When Leah Maroni-Wagner, the WMS librarian, was asked to describe the committee in one word, she said, “A celebration because the summer reading is a time when the whole school gets to celebrate one book in many ways.”

How fun does that sound?

This year, the summer reading is leveling up and there’s going to be more choices to choose from.

“I am excited to offer more different summer activities. We are going to make it bigger this year,” said Ms. Maroni-Wagner. “Last year, we had the builders challenge, filmmakers challenge, and the writing challenge. This year we might have an artist challenge, science challenge, and maybe even a math challenge.”

For those who don’t know, the challenges are part of the summer reading. After reading the One School/One Book selection, you must choose one of the challenges to do related to the book.

Being on the One School/One Book committee is not all a piece of cake. Ms. Maroni-Wagner said, “The most challenging part is that it’s a lot of work for the committee to promote the finalist at the end of the year. It’s a lot of pressure to have the whole school to vote on books that they haven’t even read.”

The books on the lists are “Return to Sender” by Julia Alvarez, “Transferral” by Kate Blair, ”The Fourteenth Goldfish” by Jennifer L. Holm, “Every Soul a Star” by Wendy Mass, “Bread and Roses, Too” by Katherine Paterson, “All of the Above” by Shelley Pearsall, “The Trap” by John Smelcer, “ First Light” by Rebecca Stead, “I am Malala” by Malala Yousafzai, and “Chains” by Laurie Halse-Anderson.

When Ms. Maroni-Wagner was asked what was her favorite book on the list so far she answered, “I really liked ‘Transferral’ by Kate Blair. I also really liked ‘First Light’ by Rebecca Stead. ‘Transferral” was really thought-producing and ‘First Light’ was set in Greenland and had dogs in it, which I really liked.”

If you want to join the One School/One Book committee, you have to contact Ms. Maroni Wagner. If you join, you will also already be reading the summer reading book, so you won’t have to read the book during summer.

Not only that it is super fun, it is also a great way to help choose the summer reading book. For some, it is a great way to find new books to read, too, so, don’t be afraid to join!

–March 30, 2017–