Encounterby Jane Yolen, David Shannon
When Christopher Columbus landed on the island of San Salvador in 1492, what he discovered were the Taino Indians. Told from a young Taino boy’s point of view, this is a story of how the boy tried to warn his people against welcoming the strangers, who seemed more interested in golden ornaments than friendship. Years later the boy, now an old man, looks back at… See more details below
When Christopher Columbus landed on the island of San Salvador in 1492, what he discovered were the Taino Indians. Told from a young Taino boy’s point of view, this is a story of how the boy tried to warn his people against welcoming the strangers, who seemed more interested in golden ornaments than friendship. Years later the boy, now an old man, looks back at the destruction of his people and their culture by the colonizers.
- Houghton Mifflin Harcourt
- Publication date:
- Sales rank:
- Product dimensions:
- 8.50(w) x 10.50(h) x 0.40(d)
- Age Range:
- 7 - 10 Years
and post it to your social network
Most Helpful Customer Reviews
See all customer reviews >
The story is great for teaching point of view and the coming of explorers to North America. I use this book every year in my social studies unit. The illustrations are beautiful.
I am appalled at the review that said children under 4th grade should not read this book because they wouldn't understand the meaning and the pictures are dark and disturbing. It's that mentality that prevents children from experiencing good literature. I find this book a wonderful way to discuss with children different perspectives of who Christopher Columbus is. I am all about educating my children, I don't withhold information or "sugar coat" things. Maybe that is why my second grade son is an advanced thinker for his age. He understands that the world isn't always so nice and you know what? He accepts it and thinks of ways to solve society's problems, instead of covering his ears and hiding from them. We need children to be aware of issues like this, because it happens all over the world and hopefully they will make a difference when they become adults.
A Taino Indian boy on the island of San Salvador wakes up from a very frightening dream. In it he sees three enormous, sharp-toothed, seabirds. Once awake the boy goes down to the beach and there, just offshore are three enormous sailing ships disgorging boats and men onto the beach. The chief of the people is ready to welcome the strangers with gifts and food. The boy tries to convince him not to welcome the strange-looking men. He is sure they mean him and his people harm. The boy is dismissed as a child who has bad dreams and the people welcome and feast the strange bird-people. For a short time during the feast the boy forgets his fears, but then he watches the strangers closely and notices their interest in his people's gold jewelry. The greed he sees in their eyes reminds him of his dream and he returns to trying to warn his people. No one will listen to the boy. The adults are fascinated by the stranger's fine clothes and weapons. When the bird-people leave they take gold and a few young men, including the boy, with them. After some days aboard their ship he slips into the water and returns to his people where he continues to warn against the bird-people. Finally, we see the boy as an old man still sitting on the beach, but his people are dying and their land has been taken from them.
As a literature teacher, I highly recommmend this book to students fourth-seventh grade. The illustrations are are a feast for thought, showing how sea travel affected the sailors emotionally and physically, as well as the loss felt by the Taino boy. Very well done! Refreshingly unique, as it is written from the boy's point of view. Jane Yolen's thought provoking book is definitely a must read aloud book.
I was required to read this book for my emergent literacy class. I think as far as enlightening people to some things that actually happned when Columbus arrives it is a great book. However, I don't think that children under 4th grade should be reading this book. Most children will not be able to understand the meaning the the words and the pictures are very dark and at times may be disturbing.