Survival Themed Books and FREE Unit Studies for Tweens and Teens

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My older children have always enjoyed reading survival and outdoor adventure books!

Survival Themed Books and FREE Unit Studies
Our family loves nature. We go camping and hiking at least once a month. It’s just natural for us to be drawn towards good books and stories that teach about surviving in the great outdoors! Some of our favorite books tell great stories of adventure and survival which takes some quick thinking and survival skills to get these kids through some pretty scary situations! If you have a tween or teen that is looking for different types of books to read you should definitely check these out. Some of these also make for great read alouds for all ages!

Here are some of our favorite survival themed books with free unit studies and resources to accompany them:

Hatchet by Gary Paulsen
Book description – Thirteen-year-old Brian Robeson is on his way to visit his father when the single-engine plane in which he is flying crashes. Suddenly, Brian finds himself alone in the Canadian wilderness with nothing but a tattered Windbreaker and the hatchet his mother gave him as a present—and the dreadful secret that has been tearing him apart since his parent’s divorce. But now Brian has no time for anger, self pity, or despair—it will take all his know-how and determination, and more courage than he knew he possessed, to survive.
Hatchet (Brian's Saga Book 1) by [Paulsen, Gary]
FREE Hatchet Book Unit Study Samples from Book Units Teacher
Free Activities for the Novel Hatchet from Bright Hub Education

Julie of the Wolves by Jean Craighead George
Book Description – To her small Eskimo village, she is known as Miyax; to her friend in San Francisco, she is Julie. When her life in the village becomes dangerous, Miyax runs away, only to find herself lost in the Alaskan wilderness. Miyax tries to survive by copying the ways of a pack of wolves and soon grows to love her new wolf family. Life in the wilderness is a struggle, but when she finds her way back to civilization, Miyax is torn between her old and new lives. Is she Miyax of the Eskimos—or Julie of the wolves?
Julie of the Wolves by [George, Jean Craighead]
Julie of the Wolves free discussion guide and lesson plans from Scholastic
Julie of the Wolves extension activities from Scholastic

There are also two other books in the Julie trilogy:
Julie’s Wolf Pack

My Side of the Mountain by Jean Craighead George
Book Description – Terribly unhappy in his family’s crowded New York City apartment, Sam Gribley runs away to the solitude-and danger-of the mountains, where he finds a side of himself he never knew.

My Side of the Mountain Discussion Guide and Lesson Plans from Scholastic
My Side of the Mountain Life Skills Worksheet from Teacher Vision

There are also two other books in the My Side of the Mountain trilogy:
On the Far Side of the Mountain
Frightful’s Mountain

Survival Themed Books and FREE Unit Studies FB
Island of the Blue Dolphins by Scott O’Dell
Book Description – Far off the coast of California looms a harsh rock known as the island of San Nicholas. Dolphins flash in the blue waters around it, sea otter play in the vast kep beds, and sea elephants loll on the stony beaches.

Here, in the early 1800s, according to history, an Indian girl spent eighteen years alone, and this beautifully written novel is her story. It is a romantic adventure filled with drama and heartache, for not only was mere subsistence on so desolate a spot a near miracle, but Karana had to contend with the ferocious pack of wild dogs that had killed her younger brother, constantly guard against the Aleutian sea otter hunters, and maintain a precarious food supply.

Island of the Blue Dolphins FREE Study Guide from Brandi Rae
FREE Island of the Blue Dolphins Lapbook and Notebooking Pages from Notebooking Nook

The Swiss Family Robinson; or Adventures on a Desert Island by Johann David Weiss
Book Description – Swiss Family Robinson” is the classic tale of a Swiss pastor, his wife and their four sons who find themselves shipwrecked on an isolated tropical island. Along with a couple of dogs, some livestock, pigeons and geese, “Swiss Family Robinson,” is the story of a family’s struggle to survive in a foreign land isolated from society. Everyday brings a new adventure and a new obstacle to overcome. Above all, “Swiss Family Robinson” is a classic tale of adventure that can be enjoyed by readers both young and old.
The Swiss Family Robinson or, Adventures on a Desert Island by [Wyss, Jean Rudolph]
FREE Swiss Family Robinson Literature Unit Study from Homeschool Helper Online

Written by Sarah


Sarah is a wife, daughter of the King and Granola Mama to 4 children ages 16-5. She is a Charlotte Mason style homeschooler and has been homeschooling for 13 years now. She is still trying to find the balance between work and keeping a home and says she can only do it by the Grace of God, Coffee and Green Smoothies!

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