This is just quickly cut out of paper and taped to the wall. The size is about 3 feet by 3 feet. It is the Aleut ship with red sails coming into Coral Cove.
We also played the sound machine's track of birds calling and the ocean waves rolling in. To simulate ocean breezes we ran a fan. It was cold today, a high of 62 degrees, so we turned it off to keep from freezing. I suppose we could have pretended it was winter on the island but some of the kids had goosebumps.
I was unable to find discussion questions for older kids so just made up my own. It took about an hour to discuss them all. The ice breaker question, since not all the girls know each other well, was: If your name had to be kept a secret what would you tell people your name was?
The rest were:
- How would you describe Karana as a person? In the beginning of the book? The end?
- What do you think she thought when she broke the rule that women can't make weapons or they would break when they used them but when she used them nothing happened?
- What do you think happened in her trip out to sea that made her happier with the island than before?
- What do you think made Karana not kill Rontu?
- She wanted to kill Rontu because he killed her brother and then didn't. Then she hated the Aleut girl because the Aleuts killed her father and many others. She had a change of heart about both of them. Both of these former enemies made her solitary life more bearable. Do you think that is why she changed her mind about them? Or was she merciful and forgiving? Was that part of her people's culture?
- Ramo is attacked and killed by the wild dogs with Rontu as the leader and then later Rontu is attacked by the dogs. Was the author able to make you feel the same emotions in both scenes? If the dogs had killed Rontu do you think Karana feelings would have been the same as for her brother's death?
- Why do you think the Aleut girl did not ask Karana to come with her? Do you think the girl told the Aleut men about Karana? Why?
- When the men came to rescue her she didn't run down to the cove but waited for them to come to her. Why did she do that?
- Karana tells us a few times that her sister was more vain than she was. She seemed proud that she wasn't that way. How is her pride a form of vanity? In secret she wore her cape, skirt, jewelry and then at the end of the book she put on airs for the men rescuing her. How vain do you really think she was? Was there a difference between her and her sister? Or was there a cultural reason she may have dressed for the men who rescued her?
- Life on the island was alone was difficult and dangerous. What do you think kept her from giving up?
- The dolphins are mentioned in the story twice, once going back to the island and then when she leaves. What did they symbolize for her?
- Would you have stayed or left the island? Why?
It was a lot of fun going through these questions and the girls, and moms, had really great in depth answers. Dancer was still talking about the questions and how people answered them way into the evening.