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Proverbs 22:6 – Train up a child in the way he should go, even when he is old, he will not depart from it.

Roanoke: A Mystery From History

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Roanoke: The Lost Colony book by Jane Yolen

Roanoke: The Lost Colony by Jane Yolen

We really enjoyed the book Roanoke: The Lost Colony (An Unsolved Mystery From History) by Jane Yolen. Designed with a detective story format, it offers a creative story of the famed lost early English colony in American history. Yolen’s approach blends storytelling, dictionary skills, colorful illustrations, timelines, notes, theories and critical thinking elements. It works as a great picture story book on its own but it can also easily be used to discuss general themes, such as explorers of the New World, natives of the Americas, early English colonies, mysteries in history, and how theories are developed.

I chose to use clues within the text to prompt questions, such as: Who originally built the fort where the English soldiers in Roanoke were at as they waited for the colonists to arrive? and How did Manteo get to England in order to be on the ship with John White? It made for interesting brain storming as we considered and challenged exploration timelines and the history of America’s colonization by the Europeans as it is generally taught. I highly recommend the book, which is well suited for ages 6-10.

Target Vocabulary: abandoned, border, captured, charter, clues, coastline, colony, community, flagship, flyboat, Indian, inland, lost, mystery, native, pinnace, Roanoke, survivor, theory, tribe, unsolved

Related Geography: Chesapeake Bay, Croatoan Island, England, Europe, Ireland, New World (Americas), North Carolina, Portsmouth (England), Santa Cruz, Spain, Roanoke, Virginia

Who’s Who:

  • The native people who lived closest to Roanoke were the Croatoans, part of an Algonquin tribe
  • English soldiers manned the fort at Roanoke, one of many scattered along the east coast, and were awaiting colonists
  • Sir Walter Raleigh was given a charter to the land in Roanoke by Queen Elizabeth of England. Raleigh gave the charter to John White, the Englishman chosen to lead the colony going to Roanoke to establish a community
  • Manteo was one of the natives chosen to travel with White and his men in hopes that he might help the English and keep them safe; was later renamed Lord of Roanoke by the English
  • Simon Fernandez was the flagship’s pilot
  • George Howe was one of the English men working on the community buildings at the Roanoke colony
  • Eleanor White was John White’s pregnant daughter who sailed to Roanoke with her father and crew
  • Virginia Dare was Eleanor’s baby, said to be the first English child born in America
  • The Lumbee people are a tribe who live primarily in and around the area once known as the Roanoke colony

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This entry was posted on February 20, 2015 by in Geography, History, Resource Material, Social Studies and tagged , , , .
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