YAL - Young Adult Literature Presenter Unit 2010/2011



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Shipwreck at the Bottom of the World:
the Extraordinary True Story of Shackleton
and the Endurance

by Jennifer Armstrong


YAL Presenter Unit 2010/2011 & 2001/2002

Subjects: English
Grade Level: 6th, 7th, 8th, 9th, 10th, 11th, 12th
Posted: 2010
Unit Created by: Mary Massie

What makes this a good YAL choice...

Shipwreck at the Bottom of the World: The Extraordinary True Story of Shackleton and the Endurance by Jennifer Armstrong is the beautifully crafted true story of what has often been called the most amazing survival tale of all time. Although the voyage, shipwreck, and astonishing survival are full of fearsome hardships from 1914-1917, the humanity and courage of the leaders and crew are awe-inspiring. The National Geographic Society funded Shackleton’s voyage to Antarctica to support his purpose of leading the first expedition to ever cross the continent from sea to sea. Unfortunately, the ship was caught in an early freeze of the sea ice, which began a cascade of disasters and narrow escapes. Armstrong’s account is aimed at young adult readers, but it stands up well as an adult text, too. Filled with intriguing details and stunning photographs taken by the brilliant ship’s photographer, Armstrong’s clear and dramatic account brings this amazing historical journey vividly to life, making good use of dialogue pulled from various first-person accounts written by crew members and Shackleton himself. This text can be connected to many content areas, including history, English, science, math, art, and more — Mary Massie


YAL Conference Workshop Description
Shipwrecked with Sir Ernest and the Common Core: Will You Survive?
Karen Boran and Mary Massie, Presenters

Men wanted for hazardous journey. Small wages. Bitter cold. Long months of complete darkness. Constant danger. Safe return doubtful. Honour and recognition in case of success.” — Sir Ernest Shackleton

In 1914, twenty-six men eagerly joined Shackleton on that hazardous journey to Antarctica, becoming heroes of one of history’s most legendary survival stories. In this highly interactive session, participants will explore an extraordinary historical saga through learning activities that illustrate the Common Core 6-12 English/Language Arts Standards. Armstrong’s beautiful young adult text will support our journey through challenging primary source documents and scientific concepts. Participants will leave with a sample unit, differentiated methods across multiple grades, and memories of what has been called the greatest survival story of all time. — Workshop Description for YAL 2010