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Reading for pleasure

If you are fascinated by the setting of our novel The Explorer, why not find out more about the intriguing world of the rainforest? Read facts about this beautiful and extreme environment - could you survive there? Do you believe you could manage better or not as well as the children in our story?

We are thoroughly enjoying the adventure story the Explorer in our Guided Reading lessons, another adventure story to love is The Stormkeeper's Island. This beautifully written book combines magic with adventure, explores the themes of friendship and loyalty and fires up imaginations. It is told through the eyes of a young boy who goes to live with his grandad on a remote island, little realising he holds its future in his hands.

As you read, ask yourself, why does the character do that?

Do you recognise the squabbling between the siblings? Do you argue like this with your brother or sister? 

How would you feel the first time you realise there is magic in the island? Would you react in the same way as Fionn?

Try diving into a wonderfully imaginative world as the characters trek across Icelands and come face to face with pygmy dinosaurs and carniverous cabbages... The book is titled The Polar Bear Explorers' Club by Alex Bell. 


Alex Bell has written many other books, including Jasmyn and The Ninth Circle, so if you enjoy this one try the other stories. This website gives more information about the author and includes a blog - http://www.alex-bell.co.uk/.


Fiction books on a similar theme include Sky Song by Abi Elphinstone and Race to the Frozen North by Catherine Johnson, available on Amazon.

Non-fiction books about the Poles include You Wouldn't Want to be on Shackleton's Polar Expedition! by Jen Green.


How well are you following the story? Here are some VIPERS questions to test yourself!

V - Vocabulary

What does the word expedition mean?

What does a navigator's job involve?


I - Inference (what the text says + what you know!)

Why doesn't Stella want the present Felix has brought her?

"Stella continued to look out the window, preferring to stare at the snow than meet Felix's eye."

Why doesn't she want to look at Felix? What does it tell us about how she feels?


P - Prediction

Predict what will happen at the end of the book - will that be an end to Stella's adventures?


E - Explain

Explain why Stella is not allowed to go on the expedition.


R - Retrieval

What is Gruff?

Find two words that mean the same as begging.

What is the name of Stella's adoptive father?


S - Summarise

Summarise the first chapter. Remember in a summary only the key points are included, no detail!