If I Touched an Eagle

Author: Stamm, Joan

Subjects: Environmental Science; Birds; Eagles; Native Americans; Animal Story

Age: 8, 9, 10, 11, 12

Grade: 3, 4, 5, 6

Order code: 0645

Price: $14.99
Website price: $10.00

Class sets: 10 or more: $7.00 each.
Order code: 0645S

If I Touched an Eagle Cover

Kodiak Island, Alaska. Fifth graders Emily and David have become best friends. Emily, born on Kodiak, is a Native American. David’s family has recently come from Detroit to the purity of the Alaskan wilderness, fleeing the pollution they believe caused David’s leukemia, which is now in remission. Emily wants to be a marine wildlife biologist and is a hands-on animal lover. David is a student of books and a birdwatcher. He wants to be an ornithologist. Together they explore the Kodiak beaches and find a dead eagle, which they bring to school for an autopsy in science class. Later they discover an eagle’s nest on the side of a cliff. With cliff-climbing bravery and a hope that the parent eagles will accept them if they remain calm and courteous, Emily and David visit the nest.

When Emily’s mother, a scientist, makes a business trip to Valdez, Emily accompanies her. They are caught in rough weather that later puts an oil tanker off course and onto the reefs. It spills 138,000 barrels of oil into the sea. As part of the Coast Guard scout team, Emily becomes aware that an entire generation of fish will be lost, that the fishing industry is in peril, and that nature’s food chain is now poisoned. Who is to blame? The oil company? The consumers who buy oil for traveling, heating, and cooking? One solution seems to be to develop solar energy while conserving what we currently use.

As the oil slick spreads, Emily’s grandmother is evacuated to Kodiak. She tells Emily the lore of creation and the place of the eagle as the soul of man. Grandmother is sensitive to all animals and intuitively knows the nature of David’s illness. Not until he collapses does Emily realize that he really is sick. She gives him a wishing stone and a “secret” eagle feather to take with him to the hospital.

Emily resolves to bring the eagles from the nest on the cilff untainted salmon from the cannery—even if she has to steal it—until the eaglets leave the nest and the parents follow. In a dramatic closing scene, David has just returned from the hospital. The two children are off to feed the eagles, but the oil slick has hit the beach. Emily and David struggle in the goo, fearing the worst. Happily, the young eagles have gone, and the parents are ready to follow. With a swoop to retrieve a final cannery salmon from their friends, the eagles fly off.

If I Touched an Eagle includes beautiful, almost poetic passages from the point of view of the eagle.

Kodiak Island, Alaska. Fifth graders Emily and David have become best friends. Emily, born on Kodiak, is a Native American. David’s family has recently come from Detroit to the purity of the Alaskan wilderness, fleeing the pollution they believe caused David’s leukemia, which is now in remission. Emily wants to be a marine wildlife biologist and is a hands-on animal lover. David is a student of books and a birdwatcher. He wants to be an ornithologist. Together they explore the Kodiak beaches and find a dead eagle, which they bring to school for an autopsy in science class. Later they discover an eagle’s nest on the side of a cliff. With cliff-climbing bravery and a hope that the parent eagles will accept them if they remain calm and courteous, Emily and David visit the nest.

When Emily’s mother, a scientist, makes a business trip to Valdez, Emily accompanies her. They are caught in rough weather that later puts an oil tanker off course and onto the reefs. It spills 138,000 barrels of oil into the sea. As part of the Coast Guard scout team, Emily becomes aware that an entire generation of fish will be lost, that the fishing industry is in peril, and that nature’s food chain is now poisoned. Who is to blame? The oil company? The consumers who buy oil for traveling, heating, and cooking? One solution seems to be to develop solar energy while conserving what we currently use.

As the oil slick spreads, Emily’s grandmother is evacuated to Kodiak. She tells Emily the lore of creation and the place of the eagle as the soul of man. Grandmother is sensitive to all animals and intuitively knows the nature of David’s illness. Not until he collapses does Emily realize that he really is sick. She gives him a wishing stone and a “secret” eagle feather to take with him to the hospital.

Emily resolves to bring the eagles from the nest on the cilff untainted salmon from the cannery—even if she has to steal it—until the eaglets leave the nest and the parents follow. In a dramatic closing scene, David has just returned from the hospital. The two children are off to feed the eagles, but the oil slick has hit the beach. Emily and David struggle in the goo, fearing the worst. Happily, the young eagles have gone, and the parents are ready to follow. With a swoop to retrieve a final cannery salmon from their friends, the eagles fly off.

If I Touched an Eagle includes beautiful, almost poetic passages from the point of view of the eagle.

If I Touched an Eagle Cover

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