Jason's Gold

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"Gold!" Jason shouted at the top of his lungs. "Read all about it! Gold discovered in Alaska!"

Within hours of hearing the thrilling news, fifteen-year-old Jason Hawthorn jumps a train for Seattle, stow away on a ship bound for the goldfields, and joins thousands of fellow prospectors attempting the difficult journey to the Klondike. The Dead Horse Trail, the infamous Chilkott Pass, and a five-hundred-mile trip by canoe down the Yukon River lie ahead. With help from a young writer named Jack London, Jason and his dog face moose, bears, and the terrors of a subartic winter in this bone-chilling survival story.

00-01 Tayshas High School Reading List, 01-02 Young Hoosier Book Award Masterlist (Gr 4-6), 01-02 Young Hoosier Book Award Masterlist (Gr 6-8), 01-02 William Allen White Children's Book Award Masterlist, and 01 Heartland Award for Excellence in YA Lit Finalist

Notable Children's Trade Books in the Field of Social Studies 2000, National Council for SS & Child. Book Council, 2000 Best Books for Young Adults (ALA), and 2000 Quick Picks for Young Adults (Recomm. Books for Reluctant Young Readers)

Curriculet Details
42 Questions
45 Annotations
3 Quizzes

This free digital curriculum for middle school students contains interactive videos exploring the history and geography of the Klondike gold rush, as well as annotations describing irony, figurative language, and point of view. Students will explore the themes of determination and friendship. The Common Core aligned questions, answers and quizzes in this free online unit will increase student engagement in the book while supporting reading comprehension.

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Homework #6

Newsboys used to sell newspapers by standing on a street corner and calling out the most important headlines to try and sell newspapers. They were paid by paper, so the more they sold -- the more money they made. The better the headlines, the more likely they would make money. (This annotation contains an image)
An author can use four different types of point of view to tell a story. Please watch the video below and think about which point of view is being used in the novel. (This annotation contains a video)
Jason is the only character we have really met so far, but the author has already established a point of view. Which point of view do you think the author is using? 

Homework #7

Below is a map showing where Dawson City is located in Canada. Jason is still in New York City, which is at the very bottom of the right pink shaded area of the map. So you can see how far he has to go to get to the gold rush.  (This annotation contains an image)
An idiom is a phrase that has special meaning. This meaning is NOT the actual meaning of the words of the sentence. "You're going to see the elephant" is an idiom. What is the special meaning of that phrase to Jason? 

Homework #8

Below is a picture of a gold prospector with all of the supplies he needs. This is a display from the Klondike National Historical Museum. That is a lot of supplies to carry! (This annotation contains an image)
If you were Jason's brothers, would you see giving him $250 as an investment or a gamble? Please explain. 
The highlighted sentence contains a literary device called a simile. Please watch the video below to learn how to tell a simile from a metaphor. Are halibuts stubborn?  (This annotation contains a video)
When a character does something unexpected, the author wants you to pay attention. What did his brother Abraham do that both shocked and upset Jason? 

Homework #9

Pedal-powered boats were called cycloscaphes. Men would turn the pedals attached to a chain which would turn the boat repeller. Below is an image of a cycloscaphe. Looks pretty dangerous doesn't it? (This annotation contains an image)
How does the behavior of the horses mirror the situation of the Klondikers? 

Homework #10

Derby hats were hats worn by men in the West. It was also called a bowler hat. Below is an example of the hat worn by the men in the 1800's.  (This annotation contains an image)
What details about the men in the Rainier Suite suggest that they are the "future business leaders of Skagway?" 
Foreshadowing is a technique an author uses to give hints as to what is to come in the story. While you don't know it yet, this paragraph is foreshadowing what Jason will be expected to do while in Skagway. Watch the video below to get a little more information on the technique and then as you read the rest of the page, think about what the paragraph is foreshadowing. (This annotation contains a video)

Homework #11

Who do you think tipped off the crewmen that Jason was a stowaway? 
"Origin of Species" by Charles Darwin is a book that emphasizes the idea of "survival of the fittest." This idea means that only the strongest will survive. Can you think of why this would be a good book for the young man to be reading when Jason comes upon him? (This annotation contains an image)
Jason and Jack seem to have "clicked" in terms of friendship. Which statement below most accurately explains why this has occurred. 

Homework #12

This is a map of the Chilkoot Pass. Notice the elevation map in the left hand corner. Imagine having to carry all those supplies up and over a mountain.  (This annotation contains an image)
Which way would you choose? The Dyea and the Chilkoot Pass which is ten miles less, but steeper OR the Skagway and White Pass which is longer or less steep? Please explain. 
Captain William Moore was a real person. He founded Skagway and owned many pieces of property and was almost overrun by the Klondikers. Below is a picture of his cabin, now the oldest structure in Klondike. (This annotation contains an image)

Homework #13

A metaphor is figure of speech in an author uses a term or a phrase to make a comparison to something. The only thing is that you have to be imaginative to see the comparison. The author uses "meal ticket" as a metaphor for working with horses. What does the metaphor "meal ticket" actually mean? 
Horses were pushed to their limits and sometimes beyond on the trail. Below is a picture of some packed horses making their way up the White Trail pass.  (This annotation contains an image)
Why was Jason suddenly ready to change course and take the Chilkoot trail? 

Homework #14

This was the hastily built downtown of Skagway, Alaska. Notice the planks laid down in the mud.  (This annotation contains an image)
Based on this highlighted chapter, what theme is emerging in the novel? 
Dogs are considered man's best friend. And huskies are known for their fierce loyalty. It looks like Jason's new dog is already loyal to him. Below is a short video about a type of husky called a Siberian Husky. Learn more about the type of dog Jason has in the book. (This annotation contains a video)
Chapters 1 -9 Quiz 

Homework #15

When authors have characters flashback to a memory or another time in their life, they do it for a reason. Why do you think the author has Jason have a dream about his puppy King? 
Here is a short video about the importance about the Northwest Mounted Police in the Klondike. (This annotation contains a video)
"...a bright new star in the sky" is an example of what type of literary device in the sentence? Hint...there was a question about it a few chapters back. 
In the image below, people swarm the ships filled with Klondikers in Alaska. It looks like complete chaos! (This annotation contains an image)

Homework #16

Tlingit men were Native Americans in that area. They occupied most of the Alaskan area. They took advantage of the gold rush and offered their services to the prospectors.  (This annotation contains an image)
Here is an image of the Chilkoot pass and the prospectors attempting to climb it.  (This annotation contains an image)
Do you think everything is going to go well when Jason meets back up with his brothers? Please explain what you think the meeting will be like. 
Please watch the video below on situational irony. What is the situational irony that happens to Jason?  (This annotation contains a video)
What was the main reason Jason had gone "bust" on his journey to the Klondike? 

Homework #17

Jack London is a real person. He was an American author who wrote of the Klondike gold rush in his books "Call of the Wild" and "White Fang." Below is picture of Jack during the gold rush time period. He is the one in the front without a beard.  (This annotation contains an image)
Why can't Jason tag along with Jack towards the Klondike? 
It's funny that Jack London is looking for more books for "mind fodder" which means something to entertain the mind. We know that Jack eventually becomes a famous author. Perhaps Kipling's book "The Seven Seas" inspired him... (This annotation contains an image)

Homework #18

Both the old man with the grindstone and the man with the goats and the camera are headed to the Klondike, but they aren't there to pan for gold. What are they going for? 
Below is one of the ONLY videos to show actual footage from the Klondike gold rush. Watch for the building of boats and footage of a boat traveling through the rapids. (This annotation contains a video)
What is the dominant literary device created in this section of the text? 
The rapids are a treacherous obstacle for all the prospectors who want gold. Below is a picture of what the rapids looked like. Do you think Jason will make it through?  (This annotation contains an image)

Homework #20

Caribou have hollow hairs that allow them to float while swimming. Below is a picture of caribou swimming across a river. (This annotation contains an image)
Chance or luck has been with Jason since the beginning of his journey. Theme is the underlying message the author is trying to get across. Based on what you have read so far, which of the following is another theme the author is trying to impart to the reader? 
Below is a video showcasing the Northern lights or Aurora Borealis. Have you ever had the chance to see them? (This annotation contains a video)

Homework #21

The highlighted sentence is an example of a literary allusion. Watch the video below to learn about allusions in literature. Can you find out what piece of literature the "boat-eating Charybdis" is referencing?  (This annotation contains a video)
Which of the following would best describe Jason troubleshooting how he would continue his journey? 
This is a video looking at the beginning part of the rapids in Miles Canyon. Don't be mislead. The water is very powerful and churning under the surface. Now there is a bridge for tourists to get a better look at the area. (This annotation contains a video)

Homework #22

Please list and summarize all the "help" Jason has received to get him to this point on the river. Note some things may not appear to be "help" but the event(s) were helpful. 
Every good story contains conflict and this one is no exception. Please watch the video below on the different types of conflict. Afterwards, think about which one has been the most dominant conflict in the story so far. (This annotation contains a video)
What conflict is Jason facing in this section of the novel? 
While moose look very gentle, in fact, they are extremely dangerous. Jason finds this out the hard way. Below is a video of a charging moose in Vermont. If you see a moose, stay away! (This annotation contains a video)

Homework #23

Jason is lucky again. How he did he survive the moose attack? 
Below is a video of an almost-frozen Yukon river. While it is flowing, at any time if the temperature drops a few degrees - the river will totally freeze up. (This annotation contains a video)
Henderson called himself a "ghost." What do you think his story is? He tells Jason he is headed in the opposite direction of Dawson City and that it is a "fool's paradise." Create a backstory for Henderson. Who is he and what has he done to end up there with Jason? 

Homework #24

The setting in this book is almost like another character - it plays such a huge part in the plot of the novel. If Jason is considered the protagonist, the setting could be considered the antagonist. Watch the video below for more information about the protagonist and antagonist. (This annotation contains a video)
We all know what is going to happen to the young boy's leg. The author does not once mention the word amputation, but continues the frantic actions leading up to it. What literary device is created by this strategy? 
Chapters 10 -18 

Homework #25

Jason is unable to put the boy out in the cold like the boy's uncle had directed him to do. Keeping him alive and caring for him shows that Jason has  _____________. 
Birch trees are a hardwood type of tree making it extremely durable for a variety of uses. Below is a picture of some birch trees during the winter.  (This annotation contains an image)
Charlie has told Jason some distressing news about Dawson City. Given that there is little to no gold and food is scarce, what would you do if you were Jason? Would you continue on to Dawson City or would you go back to Seattle? Please explain. 
"Cheechako" is a Chinook slang term spoken primarily in Alaska. It means newcomer to Alaska that does not know much about the area or the terrain. 

Homework #26

When Jason thinks about the problem of Charlie what emotion does he feel? 
Personification is when an author gives an inanimate object human characteristics. Watch the video below about personification and reread the highlighted paragraph looking for the example of personification. (This annotation contains a video)
What was the owner of the cabin, George Washington Carmack, famous for? 
Henderson, Carmack and the others are all real people credited with founding the Alaska gold rush. Below is a picture of them with Carmack's Indian friends. (This annotation contains an image)

Homework #27

What would you have done if you were Jason -- stay and try and shoot a moose or risk your life and leave to try and buy some fish and meat in the next village? Please explain. 
Mount Rainier is located just outside Seattle and lies as a dormant volcano. Many people attempt to climb the mountain during the winter. Some successful; some not so successful. Regardless, it is one of the most beautiful mountains on the west coast. (This annotation contains an image)
His endless pursuit of a village and then the moose tracks illustrates what quality about Jason? 

Homework #28

This section shows a change in the narration in the story. Up until now, the author has used third-person limited point of view - telling the story through the eyes of Jason. Now, we are seeing a third-person omniscient. Why do you think the author is doing this? 
Dramatic irony is a literary technique when the audience knows something that the characters don't. What do we know about Dawson City that the characters in the book do not yet know? 
Please watch the video about the Discovery Channel making the T.V. series Klondike and the challenge of the natural elements. Jason faces the conflict of man v. nature. Do you think that the T.V. production faced some of the same challenges Jason did? (This annotation contains a video)

Homework #29

Bears make dens in rock crevices, caves or dug into hillsides. The picture below shows how one might look in the winter. (This annotation contains an image)
Jason is poking a sleeping bear in its den. What are the possible things that could go wrong?  
What did Jason decide to do in order to get the bear to come out of its den? 
Jason is heartbroken over King's death. Do you feel the same?  (This annotation contains an image)

Homework #31

What evidence does the author give that tells the reader that the book has shifted to another time period? 
Ice jams happen every year during the ice breakup on the Yukon river. The photo below shows how when the ice jams, the water level rises and can swallow up cabins on the riverbanks. This photo was taken in 2013. Not much has changed in over a hundred years on the Yukon river. (This annotation contains an image)
Again, the author shifts the point of view narration in the book. Which one is being used in the highlighted section of the story? 

Homework #32

When the author uses third-person limited point of view from Jason's perspective, the reader experiences all that Jason was experiencing. Do you feel like you crossed Chilkoot pass and conquered the Yukon river with him? A good author will make you feel like you were on the ride with the character. 
Jason has finally found his brothers and he is a new majority stakeholder a sawmill. How do the brothers feel about Jason and what do they notice about him? 
Even the horses had a hard time with the muck. Below is a picture of Dawson City with all the muck from the river that spilled over its banks. (This annotation contains an image)
Do you think the poem, in the link below, captures the spirit and tone of the Klondike gold rush experience as seen through Jason's eyes? Please explain.http://www.myhiddenvoice.com/klondikegoldrush.html 
While Jason did not strike "gold" after he reaches Dawson City, he does find a satisfaction with his situation. What is that satisfaction? 

Homework #33

Jack's eyes light up watching the poet write on his notepad. This foreshadows the future real-life career of Jack London. He writes about his experiences in the Klondike and the gold rush and becomes a very important American author. Would you like to read one of Jack London's books next?  (This annotation contains an image)
How does Jason feel after Jamie Dunavant refused to see him after the show? 
Similes are literary devices that authors use to help make pictures of what they are describing. They use a term or a phrase with a comparison of like or as to help create imagery. A "steamboat fixed up fancy as a wedding cake" is a simile. Do you have a picture of the steamboat in your head with that simile to help you? Sounds like a pretty special steamboat! 
Why didn't Jamie want to see Jason after her show a few months before? 

Homework #34

Chapters 19 - 27 Quiz