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Sign of the Beaver

Summarizing through Diary Writing


Submitted by: J. Griest  

I use this book each year integrating it with Soc. Studies. I enlist a parent's help for this project.  Each student makes a "birchbark" diary out of brown paper grocery bags that have been cut to approximately 8" x 11" pieces( this takes mucho bags, so start saving them).  We bind them together by first using a paper punch to punch holes down the left side, then sew them together with twine.

Students then decorate the cover using Indian symbols or whatever. A journal entry is completed after each chapter is read.  I begin by modeling the first 4-5 chapters and writing an entry to Ma and Pa from the main character's perspective.

The next 4-5 chapter entries are done in small groups; then for the latter part of the book students complete their own individual entries.  By the end of this book students have a good "handle" on writing a summary.  I assess the last few chapter's entries for a grade.         



Submitted by: Karen Ehman

Hi--In case anyone can use a test on The Sign of the Beaver, here's one I wrote. The questions could be use for discussion if one preferred not to read a lot of papers! 


Write complete sentence answers to these questions on binder paper.

1. How are Matt and Attean alike?

2. How are they different?

3. Consider Matt's age and the situations he finds himself in. What might have been some of his feelings and concerns?

4. What did the boys teach each other?

5. What are some differences in what Matt and Attean consider "women's work"? Why do they have such different attitudes?

6. Did you like the way the book ended? Why or why not?

7. Why did the author title the book THE SIGN OF THE BEAVER?

8. What was the sign of the beaver?