“The highest use of the great masters of literature is not literary.”  GK Chesterton

While reading comprehension skills, strategies, and literary devices are all included in the requirements for a diocesan school, and we certainly strive for mastery in these standardized skills, St. William of York Catholic School is primarily committed to the higher-value approach to reading good literature, especially through children’s classics.

We select good literature in a variety of genre on the basis of its strength in teaching Christian principles of human formation, understanding human nature, its ability to build wholesome images and aspirations in children, and for its capacity to provide edifying and rich language patterns for children to digest and imitate.

Wisdom and virtue are best taught by pouring Goodness, Truth, and Beauty into the souls of children and every biography of every great leader shows the influence of great literature in his/her life.  St. William of York Catholic School is keenly aware of the power of literature in this noble task of formation and we happily imitate this approach in forming our future leaders.

Novels and Saint Books Used in Grades 2-8

Second Grade

The Courage of Sarah Noble / Alice Dalgliesh
Little House in the Big Woods / Laura Ingalls Wilder
Tales from Beatrix Potter / Beatrix Potter
Mr. Poppers Penguins / Richard Atwater
Multiple Saint Stories from Pauline Press

Third Grade

Charlotte’s Web / E.B. White
The Moffats / Eleanor Estes
Farmer Boy / Laura Ingalls Wilder
Homer Price / Robert McCloskey
Miniature Stories of Saints / Rev. Daniel S. Lord
Daily Lives of the Saints

Fourth Grade

Heidi / Johanna Spyri
Lassie Come Home / Eric Knight
The Lion, the Witch and the Wardrobe / C.S. Lewis
The Trumpet of the Swan  / E.B. White
Saint Elizabeth Ann Seton / Vision series
Saint Isaac Jogues / Vision Series

Fifth Grade

The Sign of the Beaver / Elizabeth George Speare
Adam of the Road / Elizabeth Gray Vining
Robin Hood / Howard Pyle
The Door in the Wall / Marguerite de Angeli
King Arthur / Thomas Malory
Mother Cabrini / Vision Series
Saint Francis and Saint Clare / Vision Series

Sixth Grade

Anne of Green Gables
The Bronze Bow / Elizabeth George Speare
The Hobbit / J.R.R. Tolkein
Mara, Daughter of the Nile  / Eloise Jarvis McGraw
Where the Red Fern Grows / Wilson Rawls
Saint Phillip Neri / Vision Series
Saint Bernadette / Vision Series

Seventh Grade

The Wind in the Willows / Kenneth Graham
Treasure Island / Robert Louis Stevenson
The Adventures of Tom Sawyer / Mark Twain
The Scarlet Pimpernal / Baroness Emmuska
Calico Captive / Elizabeth George Speare
The Fellowship of the Ring / J.R.R. Tolkein
Johnny Tremaine / Esther Forbes
Saint Katherine Drexel / Vision Series
Saint Jean Vianney / Vision Series

Eighth Grade

Henry V / Shakespeare
As You Like It / Shakespeare
Huck Finn / Mark Twain
Oliver Twist / Charles Dickens
The Return of the King /J.R.R. Tolkein
Saint Dominic Savio / Vision Series
Saint Therese of Lisieux / Vision Series

St. William of York Catholic School

3130 Jefferson Davis Highway, Stafford, VA 22554

Phone: 540-659-5207

Fax: 540-659-9863

Academic Excellence ♦ Personalized Attention ♦ Authentic Catholic Culture