Dear Sophomore Honors Student,

Honors English courses are designed to challenge students to think critically and to sharpen writing skills and style in order to prepare students for advanced level course work as juniors and seniors in high school and college as well.

Reading practice is an essential component of intellectual development. According to Stephen Krashen, University of Southern California Professor of Linguistics and Education, the more you read, the better and quicker you get at it; the more you read, the better writer you become; people who read have a greater cultural competency, empathy, and also a greater understanding of science and social studies. All in all, reading is good for you!

In addition to all the other books you plan to read this summer, please read and annotate The Curious Incident of the Dog in the Night-Time by Mark Haddon and complete the following assignments:

1) As you read, annotate the novel by making note of: 

Annotations can be done directly on the page if the book is your own or on sticky notes placed on the pages if you are using a library copy.

2) Complete the attached study guide questions by using:

Due: The assignment will be due on your first day of school this fall. Due to technological changeover during the summer break, we do NOT ADVISE that you use your school Google Drive or rely on its accessibility. Late work will not be excused due to technological issues.

The novel will be a part of our initial discussions and lessons related to literature. You will find the rubrics for the assignment on the back of this handout. Your work on this project will determine the first grade of the semester in your Sophomore English class.  Haddon’s novel is available at your local library and from major bookstores.

If you need assistance with any of the literary texts or analysis activities, contact our department chair, Melissa Lewis (

Have a lovely summer!  We’ll see you in August.

-10 Honors English Teachers

Characterize (Appearance, Actions, Beliefs, Flaws, Goals, Key Relationships, Change over Time) the following people from the novel:

Write a 3-sentence summary of the central conflict of the story. (Hint: the central conflict has to involve the story’s protagonist.)

What event triggers the conflict?

Identify two other conflicts: one internal and one external. For each, explain how they connect to the central conflict.

Explain the moral ambiguity of at least three characters’ roles in the conflicts of the story.

What themes (abstract, general truths about humanity) are commented upon by having these people and their beliefs come into conflict in the way they do? Consider characters’ beliefs and values, their relationships to one another, and the resolution of that conflict. List at least 3.


Connects inferences to draw conclusions about the novel as a whole.


Uses evidence from the novel to support inferences.


Answers all questions in complete sentences.