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Partners In the Wilderness: Travis's…
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Partners In the Wilderness: Travis's Choice

by Ed Kienzle

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Andrea Tuttle
EDCI 4120/5120

Keinzle, E. (2002). Partners in the Wilderness Travis’s Choice. Wyoming: Jetback Publishing

Grade Levels: 6th – 8th graders
Category: Realistic Fiction
Read-Alouds: Entire book to meet balanced literacy requirements

Summary:
Travis Driskoll has been daydreaming of a hunting trip with his father for as long as he can remember. His older siblings have all had the chance to go into the Wyoming wilderness for a week long campout and hunting trip. Travis has always felt a strong connection to John Colter. While getting prepared for the trip his father has entrusted him with more responsibilities than he thought he was ready for. They get to their camping site for the hunting trip and start to scout for elk. While they have their sites set on a large bull elk, they are attacked by a grizzly bear. Travis takes on a huge responsibility of taking care of his father after being mauled by the bear. Will they make it out of the wilderness in time for his father to survive?

Themes:
The main theme of this book is survival. Travis and his father face big obstacles in the Wyoming wilderness, and Travis is faced with being the care-taker. While trying to keep his father warm and comfortable, the snow begins to fall. Travis thinks he sees his idol John Colter. Is John Colter’s spirit helping Travis to survive in this wilderness? Another theme of this book is to trust and believe in yourself to help others in need, especially when it is helping your family members to survive.

Discussion Questions:
What images stand out for you from the book?
How would you feel if you were faced with Travis’s dilemma?
What are three connections you made to this book?
What do you imagine the camping area looks like?

Reader Response:
I absolutely loved this book. Not only is the author a former teacher from Casper, but he has set the book in the Bighorn Mountains. Students in Wyoming should be able to connect with this book and be able to visualize the setting better. This book would make a great read aloud book for students. Having a historical figure in the book as a spirit that helps out Travis gives teachers an opportunity to have students research him further.
  AndreaTuttle | Jun 21, 2008 |
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Amazon.com Product Description (ISBN 0971368317, Hardcover)

Travis Driskoll is dreaming of the perfect outdoor experience. The twelve year old Wyoming boy fantasizes about his idol John Colter, the famous mountain man who discovered Yellowstone National Park. When Travis's father Matt, announces it's time for his son to go on his first hunting trip, Travis can hardly contain his excitement, not knowing what adventures and tragedy lie ahead.

Travis is forced to confront his deepest fears when his father is brutally attacked by a bear. He finds unusual helpers as he struggles to save his father's life in the remote wilderness of Wyoming.

(retrieved from Amazon Thu, 12 Mar 2015 18:01:06 -0400)

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