This is our catalog of courses. We will occasionally adjust the course listing to reflect the addition of new courses and the retirement of others. 

Recorded MS
Thomas Finds a Treasure: A Saint John Neumann Story: Living History Through Literature

Sign up for Thomas Finds a Treasure to learn history in an engaging, enjoyable study of this novel. You will learn about America circa 1836 through the protagonist of our story and share that knowledge with a fun project of your choice.

Total classes: 4

Duration per class: 30 minutes

Prerequisite: No class prerequisite. Powerpoint or Google Slides is necessary for the Final Project.

Suggested Grade Level: 3rd through 6th grade

Suggested Credit: 1/2 semester History or Literature


Living History Through Literature is a project-based course series. These courses weave the study of literature into a meaningful and engaging encounter with a specific era of history. In Thomas Finds a Treasure, we meet Thomas and Fr. John Neumann of Williamsville, New York. It’s 1836, and Catholic persecution is rampant. The Erie Canal has just been completed, and Thomas’ Bohemian immigrant father helped to build the Canal. This is a story of bravery, friendship, family, and dignity. Students will study the historical context of the novel and participate in engaging literature discussions. In this project-based course, students will engage in short quizzes and in projects of their choice. Project options will include fiction writing, preparing period-specific food and/or costumes, creating lapbooks, recreating scenes from the novel (Legos, clay, K’nex, digital drawing, hand-drawing, etc.), building a timeline, mapping, and more.


Class 1: Overview of Historical Context and Novel Introduction

Class 2: Literature Discussion; Project Introduction; Literary Devices; Analysis

Class 3: Literature Discussion; Cultural Overview; Project Ideas; Analysis

Class 4: Literature Discussion; Fiction Writing Tips; Analysis

Materials and Homework

Course materials: Thomas Finds a Treasure, A St. John Neumann Story by Joan Stromberg, 


Homework: Regular quizzes and reading assignments. Each module, students will work on one project-based assignment that will culminate in a final novel project submission (due at the end of week 4). Homework (including novel reading) will take 1.5-3 hours per class. Parents are encouraged to support younger students by reading texts aloud and helping with project planning and execution. 

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