Saint John Academy Summer Reading

For Rising 4th Graders 2019

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Greetings Parents and Students

Dear Parents,

The books, stories and poems have been carefully selected to foster an enjoyable and thoughtful reading experience. Enjoy this special time with your child. These assignments are meant to be enriching and meaningful.

Be sure to balance the assignments with lots of fun, enjoyable time outside with family and friends.

Best to you and your family,

Mr. Jeffrey P. Presberg


Mrs. Karen Tessier

Assistant Headmaster

Saint John Academy

Core Elements for Rising 4th Graders

Journal & Books
  • You will need a writing journal
  • Choose 3 books to read from the list below.
  • Draw a picture of something interesting from each book. First sketch the picture in pencil and then color.
  • Write 1-2 paragraphs in your journal describing each picture (pictures may be drawn and placed inside your journal if you would like).

The Black Stallion - Walter Farley
Farmer Boy - Laura Ingalls Wilder
Peter Pan - James Barrie
Viking Adventure - Clyde Robert Bulla
The Enormous Egg - Oliver Butterworth
The Singing Hill - Meindert DeJong
Ginger Pye or The Moffats - Eleanor Estes
The Whipping Boy or By the Great Horn Spoon! - Sid Fleischman
The Boy Knight - G.A. Henty
The Box of Delights - John Masefield
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Peter Pan illustration by Robert Ingpen

  • Read all four recommended poems, copy one in your journal and memorize, reciting it at home (at the dinner table or some other spontaneous moment). This will also be recited at school.

"Be Strong" by M.D. Babcock

"George Washington" by Stephen and Rosemary Benet

"Jim" by Hilaire Belloc

"The Arrow and the Song" by Henry Wadsworth Longfellow

  • Read the Nativity scene from the Gospel: Luke 2: 1-20 (Nativity)

  • Imagine you are a shepherd at the scene of Christ’s birth in a cave in Bethlehem. Describe the scene and tell it like a story, beginning with first seeing and hearing the angels and then traveling to find the baby.

Please examine N.C. Wyeth’s illustrations “On Christmas Night in Bethlehem Town” and Henry Ossawa Tanner’s “Annunciation to the Shepherds” (below) to help you enter the scene of those moments.

  • Suggestion, pray this joyful mystery of the rosary at least once a week. Before you pray it, pause for a few moments, be still and imagine the scene of the nativity as if you were there, perhaps also imagining how Mary or Joseph felt at that moment.
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Be sure to read what is required but also read books that you love!


YOU CAN DONATE TO THE ANNUAL FUND BY USING PAYPAL HERE or send your check to St John Academy, 6422 Linway Terrace, McLean, VA 22101

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Top painting: The Bridle Path by Winslow Homer