book report example high school pdf

Book reports may be a staple of elementary and middle school education, but they are far less frequently assigned in the higher grades. High school ELA teacher Nancy Barile thinks that should change. Students in 6th grade and above can learn a lot when they are challenged to use higher order thinking skills to understand and interpret the literature they read via a good old-fashioned high school book report template. 

To start, Barile recommends that students choose the books they want to write about themselves—with teacher approval, of course. See the book list at the end of this article for engaging young adult titles and book report ideas, including books with thematic elements that are particularly appealing to older readers. 

Writing the Report

To structure the book reports, Barile recommends eight sections of analysis that will “require students to provide evidence of their choices and reasoning, which helps them think more deeply about what they have read.” For each section, students should give examples from the book to back up their analysis. The below book report template can help. 

If your students need to review the elements of fiction before beginning this assignment, Teaching Powerful Writing is a great resource. This collection of personal narratives and writing activities highlights different writing techniques and covers literary elements such as voice, using flashback, and point of view.

Book Report Breakdown

Students should identify the setting of the novel and explain why the setting is important.

  • How are the time and place significant to the events of the story?
  • How does the setting contribute to the overall meaning of the novel? 


Beginning with the protagonist and then moving on to the supporting characters, students should discuss the characterizations in their novel. 

  • Is the character well-developed, or are they a stock or stereotypical character? 
  • Is the character static (unchanging throughout the story) or dynamic (changes by the end of the novel)? 
  • What personality traits does the character possess, and how does this affect the outcome of the novel? 
  • Do the character's inner thoughts and feelings reflect their outward actions? Explain. 


Students should identify the novel’s point of view and why it is significant.

  • What advantages does telling the story in (first person/second person/third person) have? Why?
  • Why do you think the author chose this point of view? 


What is the primary conflict in the novel? Is it human vs. human, human vs. nature, human vs. society, or human vs. themselves? Your students should delve into conflict much more deeply than they may have in the past. If their story has more than one major conflict, they should detail the additional conflicts as well.

  • Explain the conflict and how the protagonist deals with it. 
  • Does the protagonist overcome the conflict? Or do they succumb to it?

Students should identify the theme of the novel and the specific meaning of the book they chose. They should avoid stock themes such as “Don’t judge a book by its cover” and think more critically on their author’s message.

  • What was the author’s purpose in writing the book?

What are the symbols in the novel and how are they significant?

  • How do the symbols help develop the story and contribute to the overall meaning of the book?


Students should identify the foreshadowing in their novel and give examples from the text.

  • Did you know what was going to come? Why? 
  • Were there any hints as to what might occur? 
  • Why do you think the author chose to use or not use foreshadowing? 

Finally, students should evaluate the ending of the book.

  • Was the ending justified? (Was the ending viable and believable?) 
  • Was it a satisfactory ending that fit the rest of the novel? 
  • Was there a catharsis of some kind? Explain.

If your students follow this structure in their book report, it will help them explore each of the elements of fiction in a very specific way. As Barile discovered in her decades of teaching: “Students who explain, interpret, and synthesize what they have read gain a deeper understanding and appreciation of literature.”

Shop great classroom titles for book reports below! You can find all books and activities at The Teacher Store .

book report example high school pdf

How to Write a Book Report

Use the links below to jump directly to any section of this guide:

Book Report Fundamentals

Preparing to write, an overview of the book report format, how to write the main body of a book report, how to write a conclusion to a book report, reading comprehension and book reports, book report resources for teachers .

Book reports remain a key educational assessment tool from elementary school through college. Sitting down to close read and critique texts for their content and form is a lifelong skill, one that benefits all of us well beyond our school years. With the help of this guide, you’ll develop your reading comprehension and note-taking skills. You’ll also find resources to guide you through the process of writing a book report, step-by-step, from choosing a book and reading actively to revising your work. Resources for teachers are also included, from creative assignment ideas to sample rubrics.

Book reports follow general rules for composition, yet are distinct from other types of writing assignments. Central to book reports are plot summaries, analyses of characters and themes, and concluding opinions. This format differs from an argumentative essay or critical research paper, in which impartiality and objectivity is encouraged. Differences also exist between book reports and book reviews, who do not share the same intent and audience. Here, you’ll learn the basics of what a book report is and is not.

What Is a Book Report?

"Book Report" ( ThoughtCo )

This article, written by a professor emeritus of rhetoric and English, describes the defining characteristics of book reports and offers observations on how they are composed.

"Writing a Book Report" (Purdue OWL)

Purdue’s Online Writing Lab outlines the steps in writing a book report, from keeping track of major characters as you read to providing adequate summary material.

"How to Write a Book Report" ( Your Dictionary )

This article provides another helpful guide to writing a book report, offering suggestions on taking notes and writing an outline before drafting. 

"How to Write a Successful Book Report" ( ThoughtCo )

Another post from ThoughtCo., this article highlights the ten steps for book report success. It was written by an academic advisor and college enrollment counselor.

What’s the Difference Between a Book Report and an Essay?

"Differences Between a Book Report & Essay Writing" ( Classroom)

In this article from the education resource Classroom,  you'll learn the differences and similarities between book reports and essay writing.

"Differences Between a Book Report and Essay Writing" (

In this post from a Seattle newspaper's website, memoirist Christopher Cascio highlights how book report and essay writing differ.

"The Difference Between Essays and Reports" (Solent Online Learning)

This PDF from Southampton Solent University includes a chart demonstrating the differences between essays and reports. Though it is geared toward university students, it will help students of all levels understand the differing purposes of reports and analytical essays.

What’s the Difference Between a Book Report and a Book Review?

"How to Write a Book Review and a Book Report" (Concordia Univ.)

The library at Concordia University offers this helpful guide to writing book report and book reviews. It defines differences between the two, then presents components that both forms share.

"Book Reviews" (Univ. of North Carolina)

The University of North Carolina at Chapel Hill’s writing guide shows the step-by-step process of writing book reviews, offering a contrast to the composition of book reports.

Active reading and thoughtful preparation before you begin your book report are necessary components of crafting a successful piece of writing. Here, you’ll find tips and resources to help you learn how to select the right book, decide which format is best for your report, and outline your main points.

Selecting and Finding a Book

"30 Best Books for Elementary Readers" (

This article from lists 30 engaging books for students from kindergarten through fifth grade. It was written by Esme Raji Codell, a teacher, author, and children's literature specialist.

"How to Choose a Good Book for a Report (Middle School)" (WikiHow)

This WikiHow article offers suggestions for middle schoolers on how to choose the right book for a report, from getting started early on the search process to making sure you understand the assignment's requirements.

"Best Book-Report Books for Middle Schoolers" (Common Sense Media)

Common Sense Media has compiled this list of 25 of the best books for middle school book reports. For younger students, the article suggests you check out the site's "50 Books All Kids Should Read Before They're 12."

"50 Books to Read in High School" (Lexington Public Library)

The Lexington, Kentucky Public Library has prepared this list to inspire high school students to choose the right book. It includes both classics and more modern favorites.

The Online Computer Library Center's catalogue helps you locate books in libraries near you, having itemized the collections of 72,000 libraries in 170 countries.

Formats of Book Reports

"Format for Writing a Book Report" ( Your Dictionary )

Here, Your Dictionary supplies guidelines for the basic book report format. It describes what you'll want to include in the heading, and what information to include in the introductory paragraph. Be sure to check these guidelines against your teacher's requirements.

"The Good Old Book Report" (Scholastic)

Nancy Barile’s blog post for Scholastic lists the questions students from middle through high school should address in their book reports.

How to Write an Outline

"Writer’s Web: Creating Outlines" (Univ. of Richmond)

The University of Richmond’s Writing Center shows how you can make use of micro and macro outlines to organize your argument.

"Why and How to Create a Useful Outline" (Purdue OWL)

Purdue’s Online Writing Lab demonstrates how outlines can help you organize your report, then teaches you how to create outlines.

"Creating an Outline" (EasyBib)

EasyBib, a website that generates bibliographies, offers sample outlines and tips for creating your own. The article encourages you to think about transitions and grouping your notes.

"How to Write an Outline: 4 Ways to Organize Your Thoughts" (Grammarly)

This blog post from a professional writer explains the advantages of using an outline, and presents different ways to gather your thoughts before writing.

In this section, you’ll find resources that offer an overview of how to write a book report, including first steps in preparing the introduction. A good book report's introduction hooks the reader with strong opening sentences and provides a preview of where the report is going.

"Step-by-Step Outline for a Book Report" ( Classroom )

This article from Classroom furnishes students with a guide to the stages of writing a book report, from writing the rough draft to revising.

"Your Roadmap to a Better Book Report" ( Time4Writing )

Time4Writing offers tips for outlining your book report, and describes all of the information that the introduction, body, and conclusion should include.

"How to Start a Book Report" ( ThoughtCo)

This ThoughtCo. post, another by academic advisor and college enrollment counselor Grace Fleming, demonstrates how to write a pithy introduction to your book report.

"How to Write an Introduction for a Book Report" ( Classroom )

This brief but helpful post from Classroom  details what makes a good book report introduction, down to the level of individual sentences.

The body paragraphs of your book report accomplish several goals: they describe the plot, delve more deeply into the characters and themes that make the book unique, and include quotations and examples from the book. Below are some resources to help you succeed in summarizing and analyzing your chosen text.

Plot Summary and Description

"How Do You Write a Plot Summary?" ( Reference )

This short article presents the goals of writing a plot summary, and suggests a word limit. It emphasizes that you should stick to the main points and avoid including too many specific details, such as what a particular character wears.

"How to Write a Plot for a Book Report" ( The Pen & The Pad )

In this article from a resource website for writers, Patricia Harrelson outlines what information to include in a plot summary for a book report. 

"How to Write a Book Summary" (WikiHow)

Using Harry Potter and the Sorcerer’s Stone as an example, this WikiHow article demonstrates how to write a plot summary one step at a time.

Analyzing Characters and Themes

"How to Write a Character Analysis Book Report" ( The Pen & The Pad )

Kristine Tucker shows how to write a book report focusing on character. You can take her suggestions as they are, or consider  incorporating them into the more traditional book report format.

"How to Write a Character Analysis" (YouTube)

The SixMinuteScholar Channel utilizes analysis of the film  Finding Nemo to show you how to delve deeply into character, prioritizing inference over judgment.

"How to Define Theme" ( The Editor's Blog )

Fiction editor Beth Hill contributes an extended definition of theme. She also provides examples of common themes, such as "life is fragile."

"How to Find the Theme of a Book or Short Story" ( ThoughtCo )

This blog post from ThoughtCo. clarifies the definition of theme in relation to symbolism, plot, and moral. It also offers examples of themes in literature, such as love, death, and good vs. evil.

Selecting and Integrating Quotations

"How to Choose and Use Quotations" (Santa Barbara City College)

This guide from a college writing center will help you choose which quotations to use in your book report, and how to blend quotations with your own words.

"Guidelines for Incorporating Quotes" (Ashford Univ.)

This PDF from Ashford University's Writing Center introduces the ICE method for incorporating quotations: introduce, cite, explain.

"Quote Integration" (YouTube)

This video from The Write Way YouTube channel illustrates how to integrate quotations into writing, and also explains how to cite those quotations.

"Using Literary Quotations" (Univ. of Wisconsin-Madison)

This guide from the University of Wisconsin-Madison’s Writing Center helps you emphasize your analysis of a quotation, and explains how to incorporate quotations into your text.

Conclusions to any type of paper are notoriously tricky to write. Here, you’ll learn some creative ways to tie up loose ends in your report and express your own opinion of the book you read. This open space for sharing opinions that are not grounded in critical research is an element that often distinguishes book reports from other types of writing.

"How to Write a Conclusion for a Book Report" ( Classroom )

This brief article from the education resource  Classroom illustrates the essential points you should make in a book report conclusion.

"Conclusions" (Univ. of North Carolina)

The University of North Carolina at Chapel Hill’s Writing Center lays out strategies for writing effective conclusions. Though the article is geared toward analytical essay conclusions, the tips offered here will also help you write a strong book report.

"Ending the Essay: Conclusions" (Harvard College Writing Center)

Pat Bellanca’s article for Harvard University’s Writing Center presents ways to conclude essays, along with tips. Again, these are suggestions for concluding analytical essays that can also be used to tie up a book report's loose ends.

Reading closely and in an engaged manner is the strong foundation upon which all good book reports are built. The resources below will give you a picture of what active reading looks like, and offer strategies to assess and improve your reading comprehension. Further, you’ll learn how to take notes—or “annotate” your text—making it easier to find important information as you write.

How to Be an Active Reader

"Active Reading Strategies: Remember and Analyze What You Read" (Princeton Univ.)

Princeton University’s McGraw Center for Teaching and Learning recommends ten strategies for active reading, and includes sample diagrams.

"Active Reading" (Open Univ.)

The Open University offers these techniques for reading actively alongside video examples. The author emphasizes that you should read for comprehension—not simply to finish the book as quickly as possible.

"7 Active Reading Strategies for Students" ( ThoughtCo )

In this post, Grace Fleming outlines seven methods for active reading. Her suggestions include identifying unfamiliar words and finding the main idea. 

"5 Active Reading Strategies for Textbook Assignments" (YouTube)

Thomas Frank’s seven-minute video demonstrates how you can retain the most important information from long and dense reading material.

Assessing Your Reading Comprehension

"Macmillan Readers Level Test" (MacMillan)

Take this online, interactive test from a publishing company to find out your reading level. You'll be asked a number of questions related to grammar and vocabulary.

"Reading Comprehension Practice Test" (ACCUPLACER)

ACCUPLACER is a placement test from The College Board. This 20-question practice test will help you see what information you retain after reading short passages.

"Reading Comprehension" ( English Maven )

The English Maven site has aggregated exercises and tests at various reading levels so you can quiz your reading comprehension skills.

How to Improve Your Reading Comprehension

"5 Tips for Improving Reading Comprehension" ( ThoughtCo )

ThoughtCo. recommends five tips to increase your reading comprehension ability, including reading with tools such as highlighters, and developing new vocabulary.

"How to Improve Reading Comprehension: 8 Expert Tips" (PrepScholar)

This blog post from PrepScholar provides ideas for improving your reading comprehension, from expanding your vocabulary to discussing texts with friends.

CrashCourse video: "Reading Assignments" (YouTube)

This CrashCourse video equips you with tools to read more effectively. It will help you determine how much material you need to read, and what strategies you can use to absorb what you read.

"Improving Reading Comprehension" ( Education Corner )

From a pre-reading survey through post-reading review, Education Corner  walks you through steps to improve reading comprehension.

Methods of In-text Annotation

"The Writing Process: Annotating a Text" (Hunter College)

This article from Hunter College’s Rockowitz Writing Center outlines how to take notes on a text and provides samples of annotation.

"How To Annotate Text While Reading" (YouTube)

This video from the SchoolHabits YouTube channel presents eleven annotation techniques you can use for better reading comprehension.

"5 Ways To Annotate Your Books" ( Book Riot )

This article from the Book Riot  blog highlights five efficient annotation methods that will save you time and protect your books from becoming cluttered with unnecessary markings.

"How Do You Annotate Your Books?" ( Epic Reads )

This post from Epic Reads highlights how different annotation methods work for different people, and showcases classic methods from sticky notes to keeping a reading notebook.

Students at every grade level can benefit from writing book reports, which sharpen critical reading skills. Here, we've aggregated sources to help you plan book report assignments and develop rubrics for written and oral book reports. You’ll also find alternative book report assessment ideas that move beyond the traditional formats.

Teaching Elementary School Students How to Write Book Reports

"Book Reports" ( Unique Teaching Resources )

These reading templates courtesy of Unique Teaching Resources make great visual aids for elementary school students writing their first book reports.

"Elementary Level Book Report Template" ( Teach Beside Me )

This   printable book report template from a teacher-turned-homeschooler is simple, classic, and effective. It asks basic questions, such as "who are the main characters?" and "how did you feel about the main characters?"

"Book Reports" ( ABC Teach )

ABC Teach ’s resource directory includes printables for book reports on various subjects at different grade levels, such as a middle school biography book report form and a "retelling a story" elementary book report template.

"Reading Worksheets" ( Busy Teacher's Cafe )

This page from Busy Teachers’ Cafe contains book report templates alongside reading comprehension and other language arts worksheets.

Teaching Middle School and High School Students How to Write Book Reports

"How to Write a Book Report: Middle and High School Level" ( Fact Monster)

Fact Monster ’s Homework Center discusses each section of a book report, and explains how to evaluate and analyze books based on genre for students in middle and high school.

"Middle School Outline Template for Book Report" (Trinity Catholic School)

This PDF outline template breaks the book report down into manageable sections for seventh and eighth graders by asking for specific information in each paragraph.

"Forms for Writing a Book Report for High School" ( Classroom )

In this article for Classroom,  Elizabeth Thomas describes what content high schoolers should focus on when writing their book reports.

"Forms for Writing a Book Report for High School" ( The Pen & The Pad )

Kori Morgan outlines techniques for adapting the book report assignment to the high school level in this post for The Pen & The Pad .

"High School Book Lists and Report Guidelines" (Highland Hall Waldorf School)

These sample report formats, grading paradigms, and tips are collected by Highland Hall Waldorf School. Attached are book lists by high school grade level.

Sample Rubrics

"Book Review Rubric Editable" (Teachers Pay Teachers)

This free resource from Teachers Pay Teachers allows you to edit your book report rubric to the specifications of your assignment and the grade level you teach.

"Book Review Rubric" (Winton Woods)

This PDF rubric from a city school district includes directions to take the assignment long-term, with follow-up exercises through school quarters.

"Multimedia Book Report Rubric" ( Midlink Magazine )

Perfect for oral book reports, this PDF rubric from North Carolina State University's Midlink Magazine  will help you evaluate your students’ spoken presentations.

Creative Book Report Assignments

"25 Book Report Alternatives" (Scholastic)

This article from the Scholastic website lists creative alternatives to the standard book report for pre-kindergarteners through high schoolers.

"Fresh Ideas for Creative Book Reports" ( Education World )

Education World offers nearly 50 alternative book report ideas in this article, from a book report sandwich to a character trait diagram.

"A Dozen Ways to Make Amazingly Creative Book Reports" ( We Are Teachers )

This post from We Are Teachers puts the spotlight on integrating visual arts into literary study through multimedia book report ideas.

"More Ideas Than You’ll Ever Use for Book Reports" (

This list from includes over 300 ideas for book report assignments, from "interviewing" a character to preparing a travel brochure to the location in which the book is set.

"Fifty Alternatives to the Book Report" (National Council of Teachers of English)

In this PDF resource from the NCTE's  English Journal,  Diana Mitchell offers assignment ideas ranging from character astrology signs to a character alphabet.

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High School Book Report: What Is It?

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How to Write a High School Book Report?

High school book report template.

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All high school students will be familiar with a High School Book Report . Although there may not be many smiles around when this is set as a homework task, there are certainly ways of making this not only less daunting but in fact, making it quite fun.

In order to write the best High School Book Report it is important to understand the purpose of such a report. The purpose is actually very simple; it details a condensed summary of the book with a focus on the main events and ideas that the author has conveyed. This will be particularly useful to any potential individuals interested in reading the book as this information should be enough for them to make a decision on whether or not this book would interest them.

A High School Book Report template can be downloaded by clicking the link below .

If you are considering writing a High School Book Report, before you start writing you need a brief plan in your head even before you begin reading the book itself. It may be worth trying to keep in mind the following ideas when reading any book that you need to report on:

  • Take your time with reading, avoid rushing . This can be tempting, particularly if the book is big but you need to explore the finer details;
  • Annotate anything interesting as you go along . A phrase, a sentence, a character, settings and events - anything that could provide you with ideas on what to write about;
  • Highlight any quotations that can be used to back up your arguments.

Once you have done this and have decided on which areas you want to focus on, we would suggest using the structure below to form your report:

  • Create a title page with the name of your book, your own name, and your class;
  • Write a short introduction about the book . Note, this does not mean the description of the text - it refers to facts about the book, when it was written, along with any useful political or historical context;
  • Analyze the characters and their relationships - do not forget to write their names . Talk about their personal traits and you can find some quotes to back up your point of view;
  • Summarize the plot but only very briefly with a focus on the major incidents;
  • The main bulk of the text will come next - the analysis . Here you need to analyze the main ideas, themes, and relate this to the significance of the book. What was the author trying to say when conveying this? Why did they choose to do this? Link all of your points to the main themes throughout;
  • Finish by concluding . In this section, you can provide a short summary of the themes and plot of the book. You can also outline how the book ended and what mark this left on you as a reader which will tie up the end of your report quite nicely.

Haven't found the template you're looking for? Take a look at the related templates below:

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  • Class Evaluation Form ;
  • Student Feedback Form .

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A Beginner's Guide to Writing a Book Report (with Examples)

Last Updated: March 13, 2024 Fact Checked

  • Researching
  • Drafting the Report
  • Reviewing & Revising

Sample Book Reports & Summaries

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This article was co-authored by Jake Adams and by wikiHow staff writer, Raven Minyard, BA . Jake Adams is an academic tutor and the owner of Simplifi EDU, a Santa Monica, California based online tutoring business offering learning resources and online tutors for academic subjects K-College, SAT & ACT prep, and college admissions applications. With over 14 years of professional tutoring experience, Jake is dedicated to providing his clients the very best online tutoring experience and access to a network of excellent undergraduate and graduate-level tutors from top colleges all over the nation. Jake holds a BS in International Business and Marketing from Pepperdine University. There are 9 references cited in this article, which can be found at the bottom of the page. This article has been fact-checked, ensuring the accuracy of any cited facts and confirming the authority of its sources. This article has been viewed 1,414,403 times.

A book report is a short essay that summarizes and analyzes a work of fiction or nonfiction. Writing a book report may not seem fun at first, but it gives you a great chance to fully understand a work and its author. In this article, we’ll teach you everything you need to know about how to write a book report, from choosing a book and outlining to drafting and editing your final paper.

Things You Should Know

  • Read the entire book and take notes on important themes, characters, and events. Use your notes to create an outline with evidence that supports your analysis.
  • Include the title and author in your intro, then summarize the plot, main characters, and setting of the book.
  • Analyze the author’s writing style, as well as the main themes and arguments of the book. Include quotes and examples to support your statements.

Researching Your Book Report

Step 1 Follow the requirements of your assignment.

  • For example, find out if your teacher wants you to include citations, such as page numbers from the book, in your report.
  • Ask your teacher how much of your paper to devote to summary versus analysis. Most book reports are direct summaries with objective analysis rather than your personal opinions. In contrast, a book review or commentary is more opinion-driven.

Jake Adams

  • Some popular books for book reports include To Kill a Mockingbird by Harper Lee, Animal Farm by George Orwell, and The Hunger Games by Suzanne Collins. Choose a book at your grade level.

Step 3 Write down the key elements of the book.

  • Author: Who wrote the book? Do you know any other works by this author?
  • Genre: Is the book fiction or nonfiction? If it’s fiction, is it historical, fantasy, horror, etc.? If it’s nonfiction, is it a biography, memoir, science, etc.?
  • Audience: Who would find this book appealing? Is it intended for a specific age range or gender? Do you typically enjoy books like this?
  • Title: Does the title catch your interest? Does it fit well with the book’s content?
  • Book Cover/Illustrations: What does the book cover convey and does it accurately represent the book? How do you feel when you look at it? If the book has illustrations, what are they and do they hold your interest?

Step 4 Read the entire book.

  • Take breaks while reading to keep your attention sharp. Try to find a pace that is comfortable for you. If you get distracted after 15 minutes, read in 15-minute intervals. If you can go an hour, read for an hour at a time.
  • Give yourself enough time to read the entire book. It’s very difficult to write a book report if you’ve just skimmed over everything. Don’t procrastinate!
  • Don’t trust online book summaries. You can’t guarantee that they are accurate or true to the text.

Step 5 Take careful notes when reading.

  • For example, look for a sentence that clearly describes a main setting in the book, such as “The castle was gloomy and made out of large black stones.”

Outlining Your Book Report

Step 1 Create an outline.

  • Introduction: Introduce the title, author, and publication information. Include a brief overview of the book’s genre and main theme, and state your purpose for writing the report.
  • Summary: Concisely summarize the plot or central idea, highlighting main events, characters, and conflicts. Focus on important aspects while avoiding spoilers.
  • Analysis and Evaluation: Evaluate the author’s writing style and use of literary devices, like foreshadowing, metaphors, imagery, etc. Discuss the strengths and weaknesses of the book and use quotes and examples from the text.
  • Themes and Messages: Identify the book’s main themes or messages and how they develop through the course of the book. Provide specific quotes and examples.
  • Character Analysis: Analyze the main characters in the book, their development, and their relationships. Explain their motivations, personalities, and significance to the story. Provide examples and quotes to support your analysis.
  • Personal Reflection: Depending on your teacher’s instructions, you might share your personal opinions and discuss what you liked and disliked about the book. Reflect on how the book relates to broader themes or issues.
  • Conclusion: Summarize your main points and conclude with your final thoughts or reflections on the book.
  • Bibliography: If required, include a works cited page or bibliography listing all the sources you used to write your book report.
  • Outlining takes time, but it saves you more time once you reach the editing stage.
  • Some people prefer to outline with pen and paper, while others just type up a list on the computer. Choose the method that works best for you.

Step 2 Intermix examples and quotations from the text.

  • Be careful not to overuse quotes. If it seems like every other line is a quote, try to dial back. Aim to include a maximum of one quotation per paragraph. Quotes and examples should still take a backseat to your summary.

Step 3 Don’t try to cover everything.

  • For example, you’ll likely need to focus primarily on discussing the most important characters or the characters that appear most frequently in the text.
  • When you are finished with your outline, go back through it to see if it makes sense. If the paragraphs don’t flow into one another, move them around or add/delete new ones until they do.
  • Also, check to see if your outline covers all of the major elements of the book, such as the plot, characters, and setting.

Writing Your Book Report

Step 1 Open with an informative intro paragraph.

  • For example, a sentence summary might state, “This book is about the main character’s journey to Africa and what she learns on her travels.”
  • Don’t take up too much space with your introduction. In general, an introduction should be 3-6 sentences long, though in rare cases, they may be longer or shorter.

Step 2 Describe the book’s setting.

  • Use vivid language when you can and include plenty of details. For example, you might write, “The farm was surrounded by rolling hills.”

Step 3 Include a general plot summary.

  • For instance, if the main character moves to Africa, you might describe what happens before the move, how the move goes, and how they settle in once they arrive.

Step 4 Introduce the main characters.

  • For example, you might write that the main character is “a middle-aged woman who enjoys the finer things in life, such as designer clothes.” Then, connect this description to the plot summary by describing how her views change after her travels, if they do.
  • Expect to introduce the characters in the same sentences and paragraphs as the plot introduction.

Step 5 Examine main themes and/or arguments in your body paragraphs.

  • You might write, “The author argues that travel gives you a new perspective. That is why her main characters all seem happier and more grounded after visiting new places.”
  • For fiction, determine if the author is using the story to pass along a certain moral or lesson. For example, a book about an underdog athlete could encourage readers to take chances to pursue their dreams.

Step 6 Comment on the writing style and tone.

  • For example, an author who uses lots of slang terms is probably going for a hip, approachable style.

Step 7 Write a concise conclusion.

  • Some teachers require, or strongly suggest, that you include the author’s name and the book title in your concluding paragraph.
  • When writing a conclusion , don’t introduce any new thoughts. Any important points should be made in your body paragraphs. Save the space for your recap.

Step 8 Include a bibliography, if required.

Reviewing and Revising Your Book Report

Step 1 Edit your paper.

  • Before you submit your paper, make sure that you’ve spelled the author’s name and any character names correctly.
  • Don’t trust your computer’s spell check to catch all the errors for you. Spell check can be helpful, but it isn’t perfect and can make mistakes.

Step 2 Ask someone else to read it.

  • If you’re nervous about asking, try saying something like “It would be great if you could go over my book report and make sure that it reads smoothly.”
  • Remember, no one’s first draft is perfect, so don’t get upset if someone suggests you do something differently. They want to help make your report the best it can be, so don’t take constructive criticism personally.

Step 3 Polish your final draft.

  • For example, double-check that you are using the correct font, font size, and margins.
  • Once you've finished proofreading, revising, and checking that you've addressed all the requirements, you're ready to submit your book report!

book report example high school pdf

  • Even though your book report is your own work, avoid using “I” too much. It can make your writing feel choppy. Thanks Helpful 1 Not Helpful 0
  • It might be tempting to watch the movie or read the online notes instead of reading the book. Resist this urge! Your teacher will be able to tell the difference. Thanks Helpful 1 Not Helpful 0

Tips from our Readers

  • Calm down and walk around if you get too frustrated while writing. If you write a book report while angry, you're more likely to misspell things!
  • Choose a unique book. Harry Potter or Percy Jackson is an absolute no. Everyone chooses those. Try something different!
  • Write when anything comes to mind! You don't want to lose your ideas!

book report example high school pdf

  • Give yourself plenty of time to write your report. Don’t wait until the last minute or you may feel rushed. Thanks Helpful 2 Not Helpful 0
  • Stealing or using another person’s work is considered plagiarism and academic dishonesty. Make sure that the work you submit is all your own. Thanks Helpful 1 Not Helpful 0

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About This Article

Jake Adams

To write a book report, start by introducing the author and the name of the book and then briefly summarizing the story. Next, discuss the main themes and point out what you think the author is trying to suggest to the reader. Finally, write about the author’s style of writing, paying particular attention to word choice and the overall tone of the book. For tips on editing and polishing your paper before turning it in, keep reading! Did this summary help you? Yes No

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Printable Book Report Outlines and Examples

writing a book report - with examples

Assigning a book report as part of your reading or writing curriculum? Print and share this quick reference for how to write a book report - including all of the necessary elements, plus examples and outlines.

Looking for fiction and nonfiction titles to assign for book study, reader's theater, or literature circles? Visit our Literature Teaching Guides Hub to find thousands of book guides for all grades.

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High School Book Report: Template, Format, & Tips

  • 📒 The Basics
  • 🔰 Book Report Format
  • 📑 Book Report Template
  • ✍️ Writing Tips
  • 📖 Book Report Examples

🔗 References

How can a teacher check if students have read the book? They ask to write a book report. The assignment is an extended summary of the book. However, high school book reports are usually more complicated. They require you to evaluate the piece of writing, reflect on it, or answer some questions.

The picture lists the three types of a book report.

📒 High School Book Report: The Key Features

  • A high school book report is a standard high school assignment. Unfortunately, it is not a real-world writing task because you will never write anything similar outside your school.
  • There are three types of writing, depending on the book genre: nonfiction, biography, and fiction book reports.
  • It is a combination of facts and your feelings about them.
  • It is NOT a research paper , as it deals with one book individually, not a specific genre or author’s legacy. Neither should you dig into the author’s personality or lifeline.
  • It is NOT a book review, as it does not compare the writing with other books. Moreover, you are not supposed to recommend it expressly to other people.
  • It is NOT a critical essay because its purpose is not to evaluate but to report the key features (although you may include some evaluation).

🔰 High School Book Report Format

If you write a high school book report on a work of fiction, choose one of the following summarizing strategies:

  • In an action summary , list the most critical events in their sequence. This approach is the simplest. You can choose the events that you consider the most important.
  • To write a story pyramid , use the central plotline elements as a plan: exposition, rising action, climax, and falling action. You will require some knowledge of these literary elements.

To accelerate the writing of this section, you can use our Summarizer Tool . It will condense any lengthy text into a summary in a couple of seconds.

Theme and Character Analysis

A theme of a fictional book is its central topic or message . To know if you understood the theme correctly, check if it fits into one or two words: love, freedom, betrayal, social stereotypes, etc. A book can have several themes, but one is usually central. Highlight it, also mentioning the secondary themes.

The picture lists structural components of a book report.

A character analysis focuses on the principal traits of the main characters. Get the clues from what they say and do to other protagonists.

Tone & Setting

The tone of a book is the author’s feelings about something. Is it sarcastic, depressive, or optimistic? Try not to mix it with the mood, which means the book’s atmosphere.

To differentiate, here is the rule.

The tone equals how the author feels about the events. The mood equals how the reader feels about the same.

Time and place setting are the easiest things to define if you were attentive while reading the book. When did the events happen (a year or historical period), and where did they occur? Note that sometimes the time and setting can be fictional, i.e., not existing in reality.

Author & Publication Date

Specify the author’s full name and the book’s first publication date here. You can add the first publisher’s name.

The best strategy in this section is to select the quotes supporting the central theme you specified above. They will explain and illustrate the author’s key message. If you need to add some indirect quotes to your text, you might want to use our paraphrase generator .

📑 High School Book Report Template

To illustrate the slightly tricky format described above, we have prepared a high school book report template in PDF format. Feel free to download it and use it as a reference.

✍️ Book Report Writing Tips

📖 high school book report examples.

Below you’ll find the links to a number of high school book report examples.

  • “Comfort Women” by Nora Keller
  • “The Great Gatsby” by F. Scott Fitzgerald
  • “Black Like Me”: book by John Griffin
  • “Everyday Use” by Alice Walker
  • “Careless Lovers” by Edward Ravenscroft
  • “Hills Like White Elephants” by Ernest Hemingway
  • The Crucible by Arthur Miller
  • “The Man Who Was Almost a Man” by Richard Wright
  • “The Making of a Quagmire” by David Halberstam
  • “Oliver Twist” by Charles Dickens
  • “The Tale of Kieu” by Nguyen Du
  • Franz Kafka’s “Metamorphosis”
  • ‘Gulliver’s Travels’ by Jonathan Swift
  • “Oedipus the King” by Sophocles
  • “A Rose for Emily” Short Story by William Faulkner
  • The Play “Hamlet” by Shakespeare
  • “Daddy” by Sylvia Plath
  • “Cathedral” by Raymond Carver

We hope that with the help of this article, your book report will take much less time. If you have already written the text and would like to listen to how it sounds, use our Text-to-Speech tool . It is always easier to “hear” your mistakes being read by another person.

❓ High School Book Report: FAQ

How to write a nonfiction book report.

  • Skip secondary details and irrelevant information.
  • Write all the book’s ideas in your own words.
  • Do not repeat yourself.
  • Structure your report according to the chronological order or the order of importance.
  • What would the author like you to remember after reading the book? It is exactly what you should include in the book report.

How to Write a Book Report on a Biography?

  • Are you supposed to focus on the protagonist’s character traits or their life story? Choose either option, depending on the assignment.
  • Divide the life of the protagonist into periods.
  • Characterize each period and mention the critical events.
  • Explain how the biography explains the actual person’s worldview and accurately depicts the past.

How to Write a Book Report Without Reading the Book?

  • You’ll have to read the book’s beginning and end to get the central message.
  • Flip through the pages in search of some quotes evidencing the idea.
  • Keep your tone general, but include some specific details.
  • Use a summarizing tool.
  • Request academic assistance.

What are the 5 Parts of a Book Report?

Any book report should comprise:

  • theme and character analysis;
  • tone, time, and setting;
  • author’s full name and publication date;
  • best quotes.

Some assignments will require you to make a deeper analysis of the text, but this is a compulsory minimum.

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  • What is a Book Review? – Definition & Examples –

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25+ Free Printable Book Report Templates [Word | PDF]

Home / Education Templates / 25+ Free Printable Book Report Templates [Word | PDF]

free book report template 8

Teachers and students use book report template to cut down some of the workloads. Teachers assign a lot of book reports to the students to make sure that students read a lot of books. These well-designed book report templates help the students to enjoy the act of reading and can become lifelong learners.

Table of Contents

  • 1 What is a book report?
  • 2.1 Simple or short book report:
  • 2.2 Multi-page book report:
  • 3 Parts of a simple and multi-page book report:
  • 4 Tips for the teacher to assign the book reports to the students:
  • 5 Tips for students to fill out book reports:
  • 6 How to write book reports in different ways?
  • 7.1 Read and mark the report
  • 7.2 Make changes to the report
  • 7.3 Review the report
  • 8 Why should provide a book report form?
  • 9 Conclusion:
  • 10 Faqs (Frequently Asked Questions)

What is a book report?

In elementary and middle school, book reports are given to the students as an assignment. It contains basic questions about the book that is assigned to the students to read. When students answer these questions, it acts as evidence to the teacher that they read the book. Moreover, a comprehensive book report contains the following elements;

  • The detail what the book was about
  • The names of the main characters
  • What the theme of the book is
  • Where the events are set

Some book reports also ask critical viewpoints about events and characters to make sure that the students read the book completely. Also, by asking such questions students can understand the book better.

book report template

Types of book reports:

Generally, there are two types of book reports;

Simple or short book report:

A simple or short book report is given by the teachers to the students and can be completed in one night like a homework assignment. They just have a few questions that students answer in a few short sentences.

Multi-page book report:

This type of book report takes more than one night to complete. For middle school students, this report consists of two pages . While for high school students, students have to submit five-page reports.

Parts of a simple and multi-page book report:

A simple book report contains a few sections. This report asks students to answer questions in paragraph format. However, all types of book reports ask for the title, author name, and the illustrator’s name (if it is a picture book). The other components are;

  • Setting: the place where book events happen.
  • Characters: names of the main characters
  • Plot: an overview of the main events of the book.
  • Comment section: whether the reader likes the book or not.

A simple report book also just asks three questions from the students the beginning, the middle, and end events. Sometimes the climax of the book where the main character’s problems are solved or made complicated also expected to determine by the students.

Teachers also demand from the students to write a multi-page book report. This report can be written by using software like MS Word. Additionally, this report is written out in paragraph form. The best way to write this multi-page report is to divide it into three basic sections;

  • Introduction: it contains the title, author, genre, and the reason why you choose the book.
  • Main Body: The main body or middle part of the report contains the summary, theme, setting, and characters.
  • Conclusion: in the end, provide a short summary of the book and your opinion about the book.

Tips for the teacher to assign the book reports to the students:

During assigning the book reports to the students, teachers have to keep the following tips in mind;

  • At first, the teacher should assign one book to read to the whole class. It can cut down the efforts of teachers to understand the submitted reports of the whole class.
  • Always use a short book report template and there is no need to create one from scratch.
  • You must print out more copies of the book report template than needed because sometimes students lose theirs.
  • Before a book report due date, reminds the students at least twice.
  • When reading activity includes a lot of book reports then it should be turned in a drawing, diorama, or another project.

Tips for students to fill out book reports:

  • Before a book report due date, make up a reading schedule to complete the book. You can also use a calendar to remind yourself.
  • Next, make a schedule and assign yourself to complete different steps every day .
  • You can also ask for some help from your teacher to get started. Moreover, you can also use completed reports as a reference.

free book report template 5

How to write book reports in different ways?

Both students and teachers can use creative ideas to write book reports instead of straightforward reports.

  • You can write a book report in the form of a newspaper or blog review. Write the summary of the book without using the plot or the ending headings. State the reasons why you like it or not. Also, provide an up or down rating at the end.
  • A book report can be written in the form of a diary. Use journal templates to create a diary. It should be written by one of the main characters. According to the character’s point of view, discuss the different events of the book.
  • Choose one of the characters in the book and create an imaginary interview. Then, ask questions; Where they come from Why the character did something important to the plot What the character thinks about the consequences of the events in the book.
  • The book report can also be written in the form of a newspaper article detailing one of the major events in the book. Answer 5Ws such as who, what, where, when, and why of these events in the article.

What to do after writing the report?

Consider the following steps to finish up the reports;

Read and mark the report

Read the report from start to end to make sure it contains all details. If you find any spelling or punctuation errors then mark them with a brightly colored pen. Young students may ask their parents or students to read through their reports. The teacher should ask their students to submit rough drafts of their reports before the final report is due. This way, they can review their drafts and give them suggestions to change the report before final submission.

Make changes to the report

Any grammatical or spelling that you highlight, fix them. Consider your teacher’s suggestions or the ideas that you wrote down to edit in the report. After making changes to the report, save your file as a separate document.

Review the report

When you are done making changes to the report, it’s time to print out a fresh copy of the report. Once again go through it for spelling errors and grammar mistakes. If you find any sentence that doesn’t make sense fix them in the document file and review them one more time. When you assure that there are no mistakes left, print out it.

Why should provide a book report form?

For elementary school classes, a book report is a popular choice of assignment. With the help of this form, students simply complete the report by filling out the worksheet. It depends on the teachers whether they include standard questions in the sheet or they make a unique sheet containing questions specific to each different book that is assigned.

Furthermore, you can introduce students to an idea of a book report format by using these forms. You also show them what kind of information they have to include in the multi-page reports in higher grades. For teachers who have a large classroom and more assignments to check, a form is also easier to grade.


In conclusion, a book report template is helpful for the teachers and students because it cuts down some of the workloads. These templates are formatted academically. Moreover, the book report should be comprehensive and includes the author’s background, a summary of the book, and well-reasoned arguments made by the writer of the report.

Faqs (Frequently Asked Questions)

A book report consists of a page count of 3-4 pages if it falls between 800-1,000 words and has Times New Roman font.

There are 5 parts of a book report; 1- Book’s author 2- Title 3- Characters 4- Setting 5- Plot

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Book Report Writing for Students

book report example high school pdf

Writing a report is normal for students in elementary, high school and even for college. Although there are many different kinds of reports that will be asked by the teachers to be submitted by the students, there will always be that one kind of report that is common all throughout your entire school life, and that is a book report.

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In elementary, you are typically given a specific format to follow so that it will be easier for the teacher to track as to whether the student is following the instructions or not. This format is also useful in helping the students with how they should organize the structure of their book report, from beginning till end. There are many ways of preparing your report. But, it is best if you follow these steps listed below as it may make your life a lot easier. You may also see the  report writing examples to give you a better idea.

Report Writing

How to Write a Book Report

how to write a book report 1 638

Size: 77 KB

Researching and Outlining Your Report

1. follow the requirements of your assignment..

Even though you will be exercising your own creativity in this book report, keep in mind that there are still instructions that should still have to be followed. If there are any clarifications or questions that you would like to raise to your teacher before beginning the assignment, it would be the perfect time to do so. You may also see free report examples .

  • One of the things that you would need to clarify with your instructor is whether citations and page numbers are necessary items to be added in the book report.
  • Try to ask your instructor on how much of the book report should be dedicated to the summary of the story. After all, most book reports are direct summaries with only a few opinions mixed in. You may also see incident reports .

2. Read the Entire Book.

What’s the point of writing a book report if you know nothing about the book itself? If you are more visual than imaginative, I would suggest you watch an adapted screenplay of the said book in order to cut down the “boringness” you might feel when you read it. But, keep in mind that movies (no matter how well-told) will always leave out some details or scenes that are found in the novelization. But then again, it is entirely up to your discretion. You may also see monthly reports .

  • If you have the ability to read without getting bored, then I would suggest you read the whole thing in one go to keep the momentum going. If you need a break or need to eat, then do so while reading if it is something impossible to put down even for a second.
  • Do not even think about skimming the book. Capture the moment of the scenes being offered to you. Read about every detail and allow your imagination to take flight. You may also see activity reports .
  • Last but never the least, allow yourself to never read book summaries online. They can never be trusted. You will never know what they might have left out. It is better if you commit time to reading the whole thing than being a killjoy.

3. Take Careful Notes when Reading.

If there is a specific plot twist that gets to you, write it down. If there is a scene that created a huge impact, write it down. If there is a character that you can relate to, write it down. Write down what you like. Write down what you hate. Take notes while you read them. If you do not want your momentum to be ruined, you can always go back to it when you are done. You may also see formal reports .

  • When you are finished with your outline, go back through it to see if it makes sense. Reorganize and restructure the whole outline if you have to. Do not forget that this is just a guide for you, and it can be changed.
  • Outlining does take a bit of time, but it will save you time in the proofreading stage. You may also see book reports .

4. Create an Outline.

An outline does not have to be too complicated. It can even only be a couple of one-liners from the story so as to give you the gist of what you need to include in that certain area. Indicate what each paragraph will discuss and the details from the work that you’ll include. Outlines can change from time to time. You may also see short reports .

Intermix Examples and Quotations from the Text.

As you construct your outline, try to pair any general points of the summary with specific details from the book. This will show your teacher that not only have you read the book, you understand it. Vary your examples and keep your quotations brief. You may also see expense reports .

Don’t Try to Cover Everything.

This is probably both impossible and improbable for two reasons. First, if you attempt to cover everything in the story, people might as well just read your book report instead of buying the book itself since the plot and everything else is already explained. And second, there is a tendency that you might leave out some important details in the process, even if you have covered everything. This is just a summary. You may also see service reports .

For example, you’ll likely need to focus primarily on discussing the most important characters or the characters that appear most frequently in the text.

My Book Report Sample 1

book report form

Size: 76 KB Download

 Writing the Body of Your Report

1. open with an informative intro paragraph.

Start strong and end strong. First impression matters, so make it count. If you are still in elementary, then it is best not to try too hard at making an attention-grabbing sentence. But, if you are in college or high school, you might be able to think of something. But it is important to include the author’s name and the book title in the first paragraph. You may also see management reports .

  • Try not to take up too much space with your introduction. It should be more than two and generally less than ten sentences long.

2. Describe the Book’s Setting

This is a great way to start the body of your paper because it will set the stage for everything else that you’ll discuss in your report. Describe the locations mentioned in the book so that your teacher will know exactly what you are referring to. You may also see status reports .

  • Add color and life to the summary. If the place was smelled like the stench of death and decay, by all means, add it there.

3. Include a General Plot Summary

This is where you need to describe the exact outcome of the book in less than two paragraphs. The plot summary should mention all major events that took place and how each event impacted the characters. You may also see performance reports .

4. Introduce Any Main Characters

The book revolves around its characters (both protagonists and antagonists). Make sure when you are describing your characters, give every detail on how they look like, their actions and the skills they possess. You may also see investigation reports .

5. Examine Any Main Themes or Arguments in Your Body Paragraphs

Look for the ‘big ideas’ as you are reading. In a fiction work, pay attention to the character’s actions and how they follow certain patterns if they do. In a nonfiction work, look for the author’s primary thesis statement or argument. What are they trying to prove or suggest?

  • For example, you might write, “The author argues that travel gives you a new perspective. That is why her main characters all seem happier and more grounded after visiting new places.”You may also see recruitment reports .
  • For a fiction work, watch to see if the author is using the story to pass along a certain moral or lesson. For example, a book about a fictional underdog athlete could be used to encourage readers to take chances to pursue their dreams. You may also see medical reports .

6. Comment on the Writing Style and Tone.

Different writers and authors have different personalities and have different writing styles. If you think that the author was sort of informal or too casual when he wrote the book, note that down. Language is considered a vital aspect of writing a book, depending on who your audience is as well. You may also see consulting reports .

Book Report Sample Format 3

Book Report 001

Size: 147 KB Download

Finishing Up Your Report

1. write a concise conclusion.

Start strong and end strong. When everything else is forgotten, at least the readers have something they can remember from your summary. Include a few quick sentences summarizing the entire book. You can also make a final statement about whether you’d suggest the book to other readers and why. You may also see visit reports .

  • Don’t introduce any new thoughts in this final paragraph. Save the space for your recap.

2. Proofread Your Paper.

Double check the content of your paper to make sure everything is intact. Typos, grammatical errors, punctuation marks. You can also try to read your paper out loud so that you may be able to identify some points that you are missing. You may also see sales reports .

3. Polish Your Final Report.

Once you’ve made the necessary corrections, print out a clean version of your report. Read through it slowly and carefully. Look for any typos or minor errors. Compare your report to the guide sheet to make sure that you’ve followed all of your teacher’s directions. You may also see project reports .

Writing a book report does not have to be too complicated. It can even be as simple as the ones found above. Keep in mind that the simpler and more colorful your book report is, the better it is. You may also see employee reports .


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33 Free Book Report Forms and Templates for Kids

Published: April 11, 2019

Annette Breedlove

Contributor: Annette Breedlove

Disclosure: This post may contain affiliate links, meaning if you decide to make a purchase via my links, I may earn a commission at no additional cost to you. See my disclosure for more info.

I loved writing book reports growing up. My kids, however, do not share the same sentiment. They love to read books and retell the stories to me, but they have a disconnect when it comes to putting it down on paper. That’s why I love using a free book report template to give them a little extra help. 

free book report templates and forms

Fun Book Report Ideas

There are many different ways children can share about a book they read other than writing about it. Check out all of these fun ideas:

  • Act it out. Young students and even older students may enjoy acting out a story that they read in lieu of writing about it. 
  • Make a 3D diorama . This is a great way for students who like to work with their hands and create visuals.
  • Draw it out on a poster . For young kids who don’t have strong writing skills yet, drawing out what they read is a great option.
  • Make a comic book with a free comic book template we have included below. 
  • Oral narration . Narrating back a brief summary of the book  they read is another alternative to writing a book report. You can see if your children comprehended what they read or at least got the main points of the story by asking them basic questions about the book.

Types of Book Reports

If you prefer using book reports, they come in a variety of types and styles. You can write plain-Jane ones or get a little more creative, like the comic strip option below for a different way to format a book report. Whichever you choose, having the option to use a book report template can be helpful for kids. 

While I enjoy book reports and see their value, I much prefer my kids enjoy reading a lot of books and sharing, over the finer points of proper form. So if we can use a simple book report template to keep them excited about reading and not dread the reports, I call that a win-win.

Mix it up with the different types of book reports that you assign to your children. Keep it fun and engaging and they will want to read more books and tell everyone about what they have read. 

Using Book Report Templates

As with anything we print out for school, I like to find cute printables with book report designs and age-appropriate graphics. This is especially for my middle school-aged daughter, who thinks some of the free worksheets I find are too childish.

Using a book report template for 3rd grade might look a little different than what I’d want to use for 7th grade. A pdf book report template for high school students definitely needs to be less kid-friendly and more informative.

There are simple book report templates for beginning writers and more advanced ones. The options are endless when it comes to choosing a book report template for your homeschool children.

Printable Book Report Forms

Whether you are looking for a short book report template or one for high school, book report templates will help students get their thoughts on paper. They will learn to organize their thoughts so that their finished book report project is a success!

Book report templates can encourage all the readers in your homeschool to crank out an organized, thorough book report that they are proud of! Once you select a free template, you can get started. Let your children choose one of their favorite books for their first report as it will help to keep them engaged.

How to Use a Book Report Template

When you are looking for the perfect book report template, keep in mind the age of your child. Some one-page forms are perfect for young children and beginning readers with boxes to draw, lines to write down main characters, setting, the plot, etc.

When you have a high school student needing to write a paper or a book report, you obviously need something more in-depth. A book report template can help them get their ideas on paper well enough to organize thoughts and personal opinions for an essay, or even a research paper. 

The key point of using worksheets for book reports is to have an easy way to get thoughts on paper. A book report template can help your student stay organized so they are able to draft a well-written paper. These types of graphic organizers make book reports a breeze!

What’s included in a book report?

  • A good book report will consist of the book title, author’s name, main idea, main theme, plot points and important details.
  • It will explain the narrative and setting, and cover the main elements of the story as well as describe important characters of the book.
  • You’ll also want to include details on the time period, major conflicts and the book details, or rather a plot summary of the book.
  • Don’t forget to include unusual facts and key elements that stand out. 

Character Description

Besides adding basic details about the key characters in the book, it’s a good idea to include character details. You will want to include details such as; appearance, interests, and list out some adjectives that describe characters on the book report form . 

Analyze what your character looks like so the reader of the book report gets a vivid description of the character. What color is their hair and skin? What is their clothing style like? Do they have a best friend or an animal that is constantly with them?

Is the character an animal? If so, what type of animal are they and what do they look like?

Character Development

Characters develop on in the story as you read about them. Make sure to make note of positive and negative character traits and how those change throughout the plot. Is there a hidden message or reason why the character is behaving the way that they are?

Make notes of how your character has changed and why you think they changed and the reasons for the actions that they took. You can take it a step further and explain how their actions either harmed or helped the story to move along.

Printable Book Report Templates and Forms

If you want a book report template quickly, simply scroll to the bottom of this post to download ours FREE.

DIY Book Report Kit {works with ANY book} This printable book report template is more like a graphic organizer , in my opinion. You can print several different template pages to organize different aspects of the book so you can create a great book report. 

Free Book Report Template for Elementary Students Get your 1st -4th graders writing book reports with ease with these pdf book report pages.

Book Review Templates This cute pack of 5 different book report template pages would be perfect for early learners who know how to write . 

Printable Book Report Form I like this simple book report template that’s perfect for a new reader. The free printable book report template is organized and will prompt your kids to be creative. 

Elementary Book Reports Made Easy An easy one-page pdf download of a book report worksheet that would be good for elementary students.

Printable Book Report Forms (Non-Fiction, Fiction, Biography, Mystery & Fable) You have lots of different options for book report templates. Whether or not you need a book report form for a biography, non-fiction resource , or even a fable, there are several  different pdf templates to choose from. There are also multiple book report poster forms for those kids who prefer to draw.

7 Different Versions of Book Report – If you are looking for different versions for different age levels or grades then these reports are worth reviewing.

Easy Book Report – This features an easy form for younger students as well as outline form for older students.

Book Report Templates for Younger Students

There are different styles of book report templates that you will want to focus on for younger students. A book report template that you use with your middle school aged child will be too difficult for beginning writers.

You will want to look for a book report format with dashed lines, boxes to draw a picture in, and more. 

My Book Report Worksheets These book report worksheets are suitable for children in kindergarten or first grade. 

Comic Strip Book Reports If you have a reluctant writer , or a comic book lover, these free printable comic strip book report templates will likely make a book report less dreaded!

Reading Logs and Bookmarks

Reading Log and Book Report Templates If you are on the hunt for cute reading log printables, these are perfect for elementary students. There are a few different templates that offer options to rate the book and write a review. Using a creative book report template like this might take the sting out of writing book reports for reluctant writers. 

Free Reading Log and Book Report Forms   My Joy-Filled Life has a 2-page book report template and a printable reading log that you can slip into your homeschool binder . 

Free Reading Logs, Bookmarks and Charts – Encourage your readers with fun and colorful bookmarks and charts that they can use to track their reading time as well as the books they have read. Free Instant Download included!

Book Report Template

Book reports don’t have to be boring or something that your children dread. They may be overwhelmed because it is a new thing that they have never done before and may need just a little guidance to get started.

Our FREE DIY Book Report template pack includes four pages of graphic organizers, question prompts, illustration boxes, and more. It is a great start to guiding your children on how to write a book report in a non-threatening way. 

You can download it for free in our subscriber library . 

free DIY book report

In Conclusion

The body of the book report should include the title, the author of the book, characters, setting, major conflicts, direct quotes, and plot. The conclusion can include a personal opinion. Book reports are a fun way to develop critical thinking skills and teach students how to gather information to format into a writing assignment.

Annette Breedlove

Annette has been married to her husband and best friend since 2003. Together they are raising their six children to follow the Lord’s will, no matter what. Annette longs for the day when she will meet her angel babies who have entered heaven before her. She enjoys creating UNIT STUDIES and FREE PRINTABLES for homeschool families. You can follow her crazy life at In All You Do where she blogs about homeschooling, homemaking and marriage while trying to maintain her sanity. She is also the owner of Thrifty Homeschoolers where she shares her tips on homeschooling without breaking the bank.

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book report example high school pdf

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42 Creative Book Report Ideas for Students

Inspire your students to share their love of books.

book report example high school pdf

Responding to what you read is an important literacy skill. Reading about other people’s experiences and perspectives helps kids learn about the world. And although students don’t need to dive deeply into every single book they read, occasionally digging into characters, settings, and themes can help them learn to look beyond the prose. Here are 42 creative book report ideas designed to make reading more meaningful.

1. Concrete Found Poem

A student sample of a concrete found poem

This clever activity is basically a shape poem made up of words, phrases, and whole sentences found in the books students read. The words come together to create an image that represents something from the story.

2. Graphic Novel

Have students rewrite the book they are reading, or a chapter of their book, as a graphic novel. Set parameters for the assignment such as including six scenes from the story, three characters, details about the setting, etc. And, of course, include detailed illustrations to accompany the story.

3. Book Snaps

A picture of a piece of text with comments and visuals added as commentary as an example of creative book report ideas

Book Snaps are a way for students to visually show how they are reacting to, processing, and/or connecting with a text. First, students snap a picture of a page in the book they are reading. Then, they add comments, images, highlights, and more.

4. Diary Entry

Have your students place themselves in the shoes of one of the characters from their book and write a first-person diary entry of a critical moment from the story. Ask them to choose a moment in the story where the character has plenty of interaction and emotion to share in a diary entry.

5. Character To-Do List

A hand written character to do list

This fun activity is an off-the-beaten-path way to dive deep into character analysis. Get inside the head of the main character in a book and write a to-do list that they might write. Use actual information from the text, but also make inferences into what that character may wish to accomplish.

6. Mint Tin Book Report

A mint tin is converted to a book report with an illustration on the inside lid and cards telling about different parts of the book inside as an example of creative book report ideas

There are so many super-creative, open-ended projects you can use mint tins for. This teacher blogger describes the process of creating book reports using them. There’s even a free template for cards that fit inside.

7. Fictional Yearbook Entries

Ask your students to create a yearbook based on the characters and setting in the book. What do they look like? Cut out magazine pictures to give a good visual image for their school picture. What kind of superlative might they get? Best looking? Class clown? What clubs would they be in or lead? Did they win any awards? It should be obvious from their small yearbooks whether your students dug deep into the characters in their books. They may also learn that who we are as individuals is reflected in what we choose to do with our lives.

8. Book Report Cake

A purple cake made from paper cut into slices

This project would be perfect for a book tasting in your classroom! Each student presents their book report in the shape of food. See the sandwich and pizza options above and check out this blog for more delicious ideas.

9. Current Events Comparison

Have students locate three to five current events articles a character in their book might be interested in. After they’ve found the articles, have them explain why the character would find them interesting and how they relate to the book. Learning about how current events affect time, place, and people is critical to helping develop opinions about what we read and experience in life.

10. Sandwich Book Report

A book report made from different sheets of paper assembled to look like a sandwich as an example of creative book report ideas

Yum! You’ll notice a lot of our creative book report ideas revolve around food. In this oldie but goodie, each layer of this book report sandwich covers a different element of the book—characters, setting, conflict, etc. A fun adaptation of this project is the book report cheeseburger.

11. Book Alphabet

Choose 15 to 20 alphabet books to help give your students examples of how they work around themes. Then ask your students to create their own Book Alphabet based on the book they read. What artifacts, vocabulary words, and names reflect the important parts of the book? After they find a word to represent each letter, have them write one sentence that explains where the word fits in.

12. Peekaboo Book Report

A tri-fold science board decorated with a paper head and hands peeking over the top with different pages about the book affixed

Using cardboard lap books (or small science report boards), students include details about their book’s main characters, plot, setting, conflict, resolution, etc. Then they draw a head and arms on card stock and attach them to the board from behind to make it look like the main character is peeking over the report.

13. T-Shirt Book Report

A child wears a t-shirt decorated as a book report as an example of creative book report ideas

Another fun and creative idea: Create a wearable book report with a plain white tee. Come up with your own using Sharpie pens and acrylic paint. Get step-by-step directions .

14. Book Jacket

Have students create a new book jacket for their story. Include an attractive illustrated cover, a summary, a short biography of the author, and a few reviews from readers.

15. Watercolor Rainbow Book Report

This is great for biography research projects. Students cut out a photocopied image of their subject and glue it in the middle. Then, they draw lines from the image to the edges of the paper, like rays of sunshine, and fill in each section with information about the person. As a book report template, the center image could be a copy of the book cover, and each section expands on key information such as character names, theme(s), conflict, resolution, etc.

16. Act the Part

Have students dress up as their favorite character from the book and present an oral book report. If their favorite character is not the main character, retell the story from their point of view.

17. Pizza Box Book Report

A pizza box decorated with a book cover and a paper pizza with book report details as an example of creative book report ideas

If you’re looking for creative book report ideas that use upcycled materials, try this one using a pizza box. It works well for both nonfiction and fiction book reports. The top lid provides a picture of the book cover. Each wedge of the pizza pie tells part of the story.

18. Bookmark

Have students create a custom illustrated bookmark that includes drawings and words from either their favorite chapter or the entire book.

19. Book Reports in a Bag

A group of students pose with their paper bag book reports

Looking for book report ideas that really encourage creative thinking? With book reports in a bag, students read a book and write a summary. Then, they decorate a paper grocery bag with a scene from the book, place five items that represent something from the book inside the bag, and present the bag to the class.

20. Reading Lists for Characters

Ask your students to think about a character in their book. What kinds of books might that character like to read? Take them to the library to choose five books the character might have on their to-be-read list. Have them list the books and explain what each book might mean to the character. Post the to-be-read lists for others to see and choose from—there’s nothing like trying out a book character’s style when developing your own identity.

21. File Folder Book Report

A manilla file folder decorated with elements of a book report as an example of creative book report ideas

Also called a lap book, this easy-to-make book report hits on all the major elements of a book study and gives students a chance to show what they know in a colorful way.

22. Collage

Create a collage using pictures and words that represent different parts of the book. Use old magazines or print pictures from the Internet.

23. Book Report Triorama

A pyradimal shaped 3D book report with illustrations and words written on all sides

Who doesn’t love a multidimensional book report? This image shows a 3D model, but Elisha Ann provides a lesson to show students how to glue four triangles together to make a 4D model.

24. Timeline

Have students create a timeline of the main events from their book. Be sure to include character names and details for each event. Use 8 x 11 sheets of paper taped together or a long portion of bulletin board paper.

25. Clothes Hanger Book Report Mobile

A girl stands next to a book report mobile made from a wire hanger and index cards as an example of creative book report ideas

This creative project doesn’t require a fancy or expensive supply list. Students just need an ordinary clothes hanger, strings, and paper. The body of the hanger is used to identify the book, and the cards on the strings dangling below are filled with key elements of the book, like characters, setting, and a summary.

26. Public Service Announcement

If a student has read a book about a cause that affects people, animals, or the environment, teach them about public service announcements . Once they understand what a PSA is, have them research the issue or cause that stood out in the book. Then give them a template for a storyboard so they can create their own PSA. Some students might want to take it a step further and create a video based on their storyboard. Consider sharing their storyboard or video with an organization that supports the cause or issue.

27. Dodecahedron Book Report

A dodecahedrom 3D sphere made into a book report

Creative book report ideas think outside the box. In this case, it’s a ball! SO much information can be covered on the 12 panels , and it allows students to take a deep dive in a creative way.

28. Character Cards

Make trading cards (like baseball cards) for a few characters from the book. On the front side, draw the character. On the back side, make a list of their character traits and include a quote or two.

29. Book Report Booklets

A book made from folded grocery bags is the template for a student book report as an example of creative book report ideas

This clever book report is made from ordinary paper bags. Stack the paper bags on top of each other, fold them in half, and staple the closed-off ends of the bags together. Students can write, draw, and decorate on the paper bag pages. They can also record information on writing or drawing paper and glue the paper onto the pages. The open ends of the bags can be used as pockets to insert photos, cut-outs, postcards, or other flat items that help them tell their story.

30. Letter to the Author

Write a letter to the author of the book. Tell them three things you really liked about the story. Ask three questions about the plot, characters, or anything else you’re curious about.

31. Book Report Charm Bracelet

A decorated paper hand with paper charms hanging off of it

What a “charming” way to write a book report! Each illustrated bracelet charm captures a character, an event in the plot, setting, or other detail.

32. Fact Sheet

Have students create a list of 10 facts that they learned from reading the book. Have them write the facts in complete sentences, and be sure that each fact is something that they didn’t know before they read the book.

33. Cereal Box TV Book Report

A book report made from cardboard made to resemble a tv set as an example of creative book report ideas

This book report project is a low-tech version of a television made from a cereal box and two paper towel rolls. Students create the viewing screen cut-out at the top, then insert a scroll of paper with writing and illustrations inside the box. When the cardboard roll is rotated, the story unfolds.

34. Be a Character Therapist

Therapists work to uncover their clients’ fears based on their words and actions. When we read books, we must learn to use a character’s actions and dialogue to infer their fears. Many plots revolve around a character’s fear and the work it takes to overcome that fear. Ask students to identify a character’s fear and find 8 to 10 scenes that prove this fear exists. Then have them write about ways the character overcame the fear (or didn’t) in the story. What might the character have done differently?

35. Mind Maps

Mind maps can be a great way to synthesize what students have learned from reading a book. Plus, there are so many ways to approach them. Begin by writing a central idea in the middle of the page. For example, general information, characters, plot, etc. Then branch out from the center with ideas, thoughts, and connections to material from the book.

36. Foldables

A book report made from a paper background and attached flaps as an example of creative book report ideas

From Rainbows Within Reach , this clever idea would be a great introduction to writing book reports. Adapt the flap categories for students at different levels. Adjust the number of categories (or flaps) per the needs of your students.

37. Board games

This is a great project if you want your students to develop a little more insight into what they’re reading. Have them think about the elements of their favorite board games and how they can be adapted to fit this assignment. For more, here are step-by-step directions .

38. Comic strips

A girl stands holding a comic strip book report as an example of creative book report ideas

If you’re looking for creative book report ideas for students who like graphic novels, try comic strips. Include an illustrated cover with the title and author. The pages of the book should retell the story using dialogue and descriptions of the setting and characters. Of course, no comic book would be complete without copious illustrations and thought bubbles.

39. Timeline

Create a timeline using a long roll of butcher paper, a poster board, or index cards taped together. For each event on the timeline, write a brief description of what happens. Add pictures, clip art, word art, and symbols to make the timeline more lively and colorful.

40. Cereal Box

Recycle a cereal box and create a book report Wheaties-style. Decorate all sides of the box with information about the book’s characters, setting, plot, summary, etc.

41. Wanted Poster

book report example high school pdf

Make a “wanted” poster for one of the book’s main characters. Indicate whether they are wanted dead or alive. Include a picture of the character and a description of what the character is “wanted” for, three examples of the character showing this trait, and a detailed account of where the character was last seen.

42. Movie Version

If the book your students have read has been made into a movie, have them write a report about how the versions are alike and different. If the book has not been made into a movie, have them write a report telling how they would make it into a movie, using specific details from the book.

What creative book report ideas did we miss? Come share in our We Are Teachers HELPLINE group on Facebook.

Plus, check out the most popular kids’ books in every grade..

Book reports don't have to be boring. Help your students make the books come alive with these 42 creative book report ideas.

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    You'll notice a lot of our creative book report ideas revolve around food. In this oldie but goodie, each layer of this book report sandwich covers a different element of the book—characters, setting, conflict, etc. A fun adaptation of this project is the book report cheeseburger. 11. Book Alphabet.