Sabrina Vircillo-Franke

IB Literature at City Honors School

Summer Reading List

City Honors School
Summer Reading 2018
Entering Grade 12

Required Text #1          
Beloved                          Toni Morrison                 ISBN# 978-1-4000-3341-6

The novel Beloved (1987) is the first of two works used for the discussion portion of the IB Part 2 Oral Assessment, the Individual Oral Commentary (IOC), so please read carefully and annotate with this in mind.

ASSIGNMENT:  Motif study

Definition of a motif: “In a literary work, a motif can be seen as an image, sound, action, or other figure that has a symbolic significance, and contributes toward the development of a theme” (

Choose ONE of the following motifs to trace throughout Beloved, beginning with Part One:

Motifs: Water    Milk     Metal    Colors   Food     Clothing

  • In your journal notebook: Each time the motif appears, note it, list it (with page number).
  • At the end of your exploration of this work, answer the following prompt: How does the motif highlight a particular literary aspect (theme, characterization, etc.)? Be sure to include specific textual references from your list. Your response should be one typed page—double spaced, 12-point font—and will be due the first week of school.

Required Text #2     Choose one of the titles below:

No Exit                              Sartre
A Thousand Splendid Suns  Hosseini
The Glass Castle                Wall   
Woman at Point Zero          El Saadawi

Assignment:       As you read, mark and annotate passages you deem significant. Be prepared to share your findings and insights through both class discussion and written responses.

How we will make use of the reading when we return to school

Text # 1:

  • We will work with Beloved in great detail in September as part of our preparation for the IOC (Individual Oral Commentary).
  • The IOC—worth 15% of the two-year IB Language A: Literature grade—is administered at the end of the first semester.

Text # 2:

Class work dealing with required text #2 will be assigned in September.

Why we expect you to complete this reading

Our IB Language A: Literature classes aid students in the development of their ability to engage in close, detailed analysis of literary works, as well as build understanding of the techniques involved in literary criticism. 

What you should do before you read these texts

Take some time to acquaint yourself with salient (relevant) information regarding the author and the contextual aspects of the work.

Additional things you need to succeed in English Language Arts for the upcoming school year

A list of the remaining required texts for the school year will be sent home by the end of September—all will be available to order through Chiron’s Corner.

Whom to contact for questions

Ms. Sabrina Vircillo-Franke                                  


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