Snow Treasure.Marie McSwigan.

New York: Scholastic Books. 1958.

Grade Levels: 3 through 5

Objectives: Students should be able to:

Sunshine State Standards:

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Story Summary:

Set in Norway at the beginning of World War II, it is the story of the people of the small town of Riswyk near the Arctic Circle who awaken on the morning of April 8, 1940, to find their country occupied by German troops. Their main concern is to keep Norwegian gold from falling into the hands of the German invaders. Peter Lundstrom, the main character, is a twelve-year-old boy whose father is the president of the bank. Peter's uncle Victor is a daring sea captain who invents a plan to slip the gold past the Germans and onto his fishing boat for transport to America. The children of Riswyk are divided into "teams". Each team carries the gold on their sleds, a few bars at a time, to the bay where Uncle Victor's boat is hidden. There the children bury the gold in the snow. They build snowmen over the gold so that Victor and his mate Rolls can find the gold and transfer it to their ship. One afternoon, Peter and his team are burying gold when the soldier appears. Uncle Victor and Rolls are close by and capture the soldier immediately. He claims to be Jan Lasek, a Polish conscript who hates the Germans. Uncle Victor locks the soldier in the hold of his ship while he decides what to do next. When the Germans discover that Lasek has disappeared, a house-to-house search begins. The novel ends as Peter hears Jan Lasek in the ship's galley practicing "The Star Spangled Banner" on a borrowed trumpet.

Concept Summary:

An understanding of what it means to be a rescuer and what it means to be capable of taking risks to help those in need.


1) Pre-Reading Activities and Discussion Questions:

2) Suggested Topics for Discussion and Responding:

3) Literary Devices:

4) Suggested Activities:

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