Elaine Forrestal

Teacher’s Notes for Wild Wind

Before reading the book

  1. Turn the book over and read the blurb on the back.
    Compare the white silhouette in the middle of the cover with those on the other Eden Glassie books.
    Why has the designer used these particular symbols?

    Inside the back cover you will see black and white pictures alongside the titles of the other books in the Eden Glassie Mystery quartet, just as you did in the first book, Deep Water.

    What has changed? 
    What remains the same?
    Can you tell why each of the changes was made? 
    Or does one remain a mystery? 

    This is the final Eden Glassie Mystery. It completes the circle of seasons that began in spring/summer with Deep Water, continues through the autumn/winter of Stone Circle, returns to spring/summer in Black Earth and autumn/winter in Wild Wind

    Each book contains at least one mystery that is solved within its pages, and features one of the elements, water, earth, fire and wind. But there is also an overall mystery that remains unsolved – or does it?

    An elusive parallel universe beckons from these pages, inviting a second reading after the surface adventures have been worked through.

Revisit  other books in the series

In Deep Water, Tori sets out, ignoring the advice and opinions of family members, to search for his dog. His courage, loyalty and belief in himself are all tested along the way.  

Should he have told someone where he was going?
Would they have stopped him?

In Stone Circle, while rescuing Maddie from danger, Tori and the others are forced to confront questions about truth.
What is it?
Does it exist?
Is there such a thing as ‘the truth’,  
or is there only ‘the truth as I see it’?

In Black Earth, all the reserves of strength and courage that Tori has developed are needed to save Bronte’s life.  

But does it take more guts to speak up for what you believe in than to rescue someone from a fire?  
Do we choose to save our loved ones, or even strangers, from harm?  
Or does some instinct kick in when their life is threatened and we happen to be there, on the spot and in a position to help?  

As the four main characters grow, changes occur within each of them, the circular nature of relationships between people is shown when Tori and Bronte, who have always been ‘best mates’, fall out over the four-wheeler motorbike.  

And when Auntie Helen’s life is threatened, Morgan, usually so fearless, shows a much less confident, more dependent side to his character, reverting to an earlier state of being.  

There are times in all our lives when we need to revisit the past in order to move forward with greater maturity and certainty into the future. Perhaps, for Morgan, this is one of those times.  

  1. Imagine yourself as a spoke in a wheel.

    As the wheel turns, one part of you (in the centre) will be moving forward. Another part of you (on the outside edge) will be moving back for at least half of the journey. Try placing two coloured tags on one spoke of your bike wheel,one at the centre and one near the outer rim.As you walk forward, beside your bike, watch how the outer tag is sometimes in front of, and sometimes behind, the one at the hub or centre of the wheel.

    Make a spinning top by drawing, on cardboard, around a lid and cutting out the:- circle. (Or use your compass.)

    See figure 1 and figure 2

    Colour each quarter of the circle to represent one of the Eden Glassie Mysteries (Deep Water/green, Wild Wind/blue etc)

    Make a small hole in the centre of the circle. (The point of your compass will be useful for this.) 

    Push a sharpened pencil through the hole and spin your top.
    What happens to the colours?


  2. Design and make a board game based on the adventures in the Eden Glassie Mysteries. 
    Use your spinning top as the dice.

    In Wild Wind, when Auntie Helen is injured and all contact with Uncle Ian and the outside world is cut off, each of the four children reacts in a different way. 

    Fear of the unknown and the power of forgiveness are both experienced and explored. 
    We can run away, hide, pretend it’s not there, but eventually we all have to deal with the thing that scares us. 
    And sometimes, when we do come face to face with it, the scary thing is not so scary after all.

  3. Think about the thing that scares you most in the whole world.
    On a blank piece of paper, write down what it is (don’t add your name). Collect and collate all the slips to make one list of the ‘worst fears’ in your class or group.  In pairs discuss your own worst fear and why it is so scary for you.
    Choose two of the most common ‘worst fears’ and role-play some ways to deal with them.

After you have read the novel:

The Eden Glassie Mysteries are written as a circular quartet, not a linear series.  

This means that you should be able to pick up any one of the books and continue reading around the circle.  

How has Elaine Forrestal made this possible?

  1. How many circles did you notice in this story?

    Beginning with the cyclone itself, list as many as you can think of. 
    Clue: there are at least three in Chapter 21.

  2. In America, cyclones are called hurricanes. 
    Can you think of another story involving four main characters and a fierce, circular storm?  Clue: follow the yellow brick road to your library and ask your librarian.

  3. In Chapter 3, the power goes off at Eden Glassie.
    Has the power ever gone off at your house? 
    How did you feel?
    What did you do?
    Which appliance did you miss most?
    Write a short account of your (or your family’s) experiences without electricity.

    Or

    Imagine that you lived in the days before electricity was invented and write a story about one day in your life.

  4. Forgiveness is one of the ‘hidden’ themes in Wild Wind.

    Tori feels sorry for the wolf and is prepared to help it, in spite of the fact that it attacked Auntie Helen.
    Everyone feels sorry for Mike (or Delphine) after Mike is beaten up by Ripper and Spike. 

    Is it necessary to feel sorry for someone before you can forgive them? 
    Is there anything that you feel is unforgiveable? 
    What would be the hardest thing for you to forgive?


Famous cyclones

Cyclone Tracey devastated the city of Darwin during the hours of darkness on Christmas Eve, 1974.  

Cyclone Alby left a trail of damage from Geraldton to Albany, hammering the city of Perth on April 4th 1978 .

Cyclone Bobby cut Western Australia off from the rest of the country on 24th February 1995 when it crossed the coast unexpectedly, flattened the north-west town of Onslow and veered inland causing widespread flooding on the Nullarbor Plain. Both the Eyre Highway and the Indian Pacific railway line were washed away and no vehicles could get through, either way, for seven days.

Research


Cyclones are given names so that people can easily distinguish one from another, especially as there can be two or three cyclones happening around Australia at the same time.  

Find out who chooses the names and how they decide which name to give.
Visit your local Bureau of Meteorology.
Find out which instruments are used to track cyclones.

Wolves are not found in the wild in Australia.

Which Australian animal is most like a wolf?
What are the main differences between the two species?
Go on an excursion to the zoo.  
Check out the different kinds of wolves and native dogs.  
Is the Tasmanian wolf really a wolf?

Something to think about

Did you think the events in these books were real?
Did they turn out to be a story, after all?  

Or did they start out as a story and become real for you?  
Discuss this with other members of your class or group.