Young Sam Gribley has always heard "The land is no place for a Gribley." He knows his great-grandfather built a farmstead in the Catskill Mountains and then left to become a sailor, so he sets off (with his Dad's permission) on his own to find the remains of his great-grandfather's farm with just $40, a ball of cord, a penknife, an ax, and some flint and steel.
Arriving at the old Gribley farmstead, Sam hollows out a tree for his home and learns to hunt, fish, trap, and forage for edible plants. When he captures a young falcon, Frightful, and trains her to hunt, she becomes a good friend and great help in supplying food. After months of carving out a life for himself on the side of a Catskill Mountain, Sam is sure that the land is the perfect place for a Gribley!
Through Jean Craighead George’s classic about wilderness survival and coming-of-age students will learn:
Author Biography: Learn about Jean Craighead George.
Vocabulary words used throughout the novel, utilizing a variety of activities to stimulate retention and growth.
Literary Techniques: Point of view, verbs, anthropomorphism, irony, flashback, in context, adjectives, similes, recap, paraphrase, fact vs. opinion, onomatopoeia, comic relief, mood, metaphors, allusion, alphabetical order, idioms, oxymoron, alliteration, assonance, consonance, extended metaphors, willing suspension of disbelief, conflict, quest, dramatic structure, full-circle ending, coming of age, bildungsroman, compare & contrast.
Moral Lessons and Character Values: Understanding God, being alone, superstitions, fear & worry, patience, provision, acceptance, hospitality, bullying, God’s care, honoring parents, lying, daily life.
Activities and Writing Assignments: field trips, plant research, creative writing, safety discussion, letter writing, math connections, superstitions, legends, poster project, cooking centers, research writing, drama projects, journal writing, rock climbing, wooden toys, science connections, crossword puzzle, Christmas wreath project, peregrine falcons, health & nutrition, maple syrup, parody, essay choices, power point project, art & design, class party, journalism newspaper.
Suggestions for Further Reading: We include an in-depth reading list of more plays by the same author(s) and other books that tie in with, or are similar to, My Side of the Mountain.
All of the unit lessons are written from a Christian perspective!