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Island of the Blue Dolphin
Scott O'Dell
Medal - 1961




Animals, California, courage, friends, Indians of North America,islands, isolation, loneliness, San Nicolas Island, survival, world culture


Based on real events, this is the story of Karana, a young Indian girl who lives on the Island of the Blue Dolphins, which is actually San Nicolas. She and her brother are left marooned on this island when all the villagers leave to live on another island. Time passes as Karana struggles to survive on her own.

Classroom Connections:

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4th Grade-Murrieta Elementary

Author and Book Connections
Author Connections. Other books by Scott O'Dell Bibliography
Book Connections. 
WebQuests & Lesson Plans.
Further Book Connecting
Read Zia, the story of Karana's niece. Read other survival books. List the many things the characters had to learn to survive. Would you have been able to survive alone for years? Create a timeline of the inportant events in Karana's life. Do the same for other survivors.
Cool Classroom Connections
San Nicolas Island.The island is named for its shape. Draw a picture of the island. Locate San Nicolas Island,the Channel Islands, and the Mission Santa Barbara on a Map.
Native People.Read the story of Karana. Learn more about the native people like the Chumash and the Aleut and their lives in the 1800s.
Marine Life. Learn more about the marine life near San Nicolas Island. Create a wall poster showing all the life near the Island.
Missions.In the end, Karana was taken to a mission. Learn more about the history of missions in California.
Words to Learn
San Nicolas Island
Channel Islands
Mission Santa Barbara
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Created by Annette Lamb & Nancy Smith, 3/02. Updated by Nancy Smith,11/02.
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