Laurie Lawlor:  Curriculum Connections

    Curriculum Connections:
    A Titanic Journey Across the Sea, 1912

    Set the stage before reading this book.

  • Ask students to brainstorm things they "know" about the Titanic. Make no evaluative comments about the list -- simply list the "facts" on a large sheet of butcher paper (an overhead works as well but paper allows the list to remain visible throughout the activity/focus). You may have wanted to ask the children to discuss the Titanic with their parents or older siblings to see what "facts" they could have uncovered BEFORE you begin this listing exercise.

  • After the list has been made go back through the list and star all of those facts that all children will agree with. Circle those that are questionable. And those that all think might be wrong; put a check in front.

  • Now spend a few days reading widely to discover which of the questionable comments should be starred, etc. Each student should come to the scheduled cumulative discussion ready to defend their position with information from reliable and credible sources. (This might be a good time to involve your school's media specialist in a research focus on determining when a source [in print, non-print, and the WWW] is a credible and quotable source.

  • Selected Resources


  • Deady, Kathleen. The Titanic: The Tragedy at Sea. (Disaster! (Capstone High-Interest Books). Capstone Press, 2002. ISBN: 0736813233.

  • Hughes, Susan. Science and Story of the Titanic. Somerville House, 2002. ISBN: 1581840918.

  • Noon, Steve, and Dr. Kentley Eric. Story of the Titanic.DK Publishing, 2001. ISBN: 0789479435.

  • Sherrow, Victoria. Titanic (Scholastic History Readers). Scholastic, 2002. ISBN: 0439267064.

  • Check your library's catalog for addition titles.

Questions to Consider and Discuss


  • How do you think the experiences during the journey strengthened or weakened the relationship between Alfreda and Erna?

  • How do you think the six year age difference affected the relationship between Alfreda and Erna, before and during the journey? Do some events make the age difference less relevant?

  • Describe the outcome of the journey as it relates to Alfreda and Eran? Describe other outcomes that might have been. Why do you think the author made the book end as it did?


    A Titanic Journey Across the Sea, 1912. (1998) Minstrel® Pocket Books. American Sisters Series. ISBN: 0671027182. 201 pg. Historical Fiction.

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