A reading response is not a summary of the reading. It is an opportunity for you to engage in a dialogue with its ideas, by writing about what you think and feel about the reading. For example, you could do this by some combination of the following:
1. Question: What questions are brought to your mind by this reading? Can you go one step further and attempt to answer these questions, even if only hypothetically?
2. Connect: Can you connect any ideas or arguments in this reading to your own academic or life experience?
3. Extend: Can you extend or expand upon any of the ideas or arguments in the reading? Maybe you agree with a certain argument, and can provide some additional evidence that explains why you agree. Or maybe you disagree with a certain argument, in which case you should explain why you disagree.
4. Reflect: Did the reading affirm or challenge your own values and assumptions, and how so?
A reading response is not a formal paper, but it should be well thought-out and carefully written so that you are communicating your thoughts clearly. It should be written in complete sentences, with well-structured paragraphs. A good reading response will demonstrate that you have done the reading thoroughly and have spent some time thinking about its implications. A good reading response will also provide some thought-provoking questions or talking points for the class discussion.
Even though you are not writing a summary, you may need to include some details from the text in order to back up your assertions. You are permitted to quote directly from the text, but do not quote more than a few sentences in total.