Survival scenario

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Stranded on a Desert Island
You find yourself on a deserted island, in the middle of nowhere, stuck and alone in the tropical heat. Maybe you were navigating the arctic, where the water is ice filled and the temperatures are well below zero. Perhaps you are victim of a plane crash and you wash ashore, or you went sailing and your boat got tossed up on shore, leaving you with no escape. Maybe you were marooned here as punishment for crimes at sea. Whatever the case, you are on this island, alone, and you must survive.

In this essay you need to detail some key and essential facts about your stay on this island. Introduce the scenario: how did you end up here? Then provide information about some of your survival techniques, and the tools you have and need to survive. What items do you have, how did you get them, and what are they used for; how are they beneficial to your survival? Finally, you will conclude your essay, restating briefly some of the information you detailed, and hypothesizing what you feel your chance of survival in this situation would be.


  • Tropical Settings – temperature throughout the year, weather patterns, wildlife. Use internet research and/or Google Earth so you can select a location and give some accurate details. Survival on a subarctic island near Antarctica will be much different from survival in a tropical location like Indonesia or Samoa.

  • Survival Items – plan out what items you are going to discuss in your essay and look up how they are used, how you would get them or make them in this situation, and their potential cost.


  • Cast Away – Movie rated PG-13, starring Tom Hanks about a man stranded alone on an island.

  • Survivor Man – Series about a man who endures different survivor situations

  • Island of the Blue Dolphins – Book about a girl who is abandoned on an island and her attempt to make a life for herself there.

  • Lord of the Flies – Book about a group of boys stranded on an island after a plane crash.

  • Peak – Book about a boy climbing Mount Everest. Some great description and detail on tool and items necessary for surviving.

  • Hatchet – Book about a man lost in the woods.

  • The Cay – Book and Movie

  • Lost – Series especially season 1, rated TV14, about a group of people plane crashed on a strange and mysterious island.

  • To Build a Fire – Short Story about a man in the artic north who is trying to build a fire after falling into water.

  • Jack London or Gary Paulsen – Authors many stories about survival situations.


  • 6 Paragraph Minimum

    • Introduction – explain the scenario, what happened, how you ended up in that survival situation, and some of the tools you will need.

    • 4 Body Paragraphs (minimum) – each detailing a different item, tool, or skill required for survival in your situation, how it is used, how is is obtained, etc.

    • Conclusion – Restating the information, situation and tools described, in order to bring the essay to an end.

  • Expository/Informational Format – this is not a story, you are giving information about how you would survive and the tools you will need/use


  • Other project ideas are accepted

    • Video Project

    • Presentation via PowerPoint/Prezi/Other Presentation Media

    • Audio Recordings

    • Etc.

  • Students are encouraged to be creative and to have fun with this project, the goal is to inform, to learn how to utilize research to inform and audience on a topic.

  • Expository/Informational Format – this is not a story, you are giving information about how to survive and the tools will be needed/used

  • For specific requirements for non-essay project, come talk with Mr. Zumbrun or Mrs. Kiesig to explain your plan and goals for the project and to work out requirements

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