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Where Do You Think You...
Jean Fritz
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Where Do You Think You're Going, Christopher Columbus?

3.72  ·  Rating details ·  109 Ratings  ·  24 Reviews
Christopher Columbus counted on finding gold and spices when he set sail to discover a new route to the Indies, but all he got was parrots, naked natives in grass huts, and mosquito bites. But that didn't stop him from making more trips across the sea, even when he didn't find the riches he hoped for. What he never expected was that he'd discover a whole new world. Jean Fr ...more
Hardcover, 80 pages
Published September 22nd 1997 by Perfection Learning (first published October 12th 1980)
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Rating details
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Grade/interest level: Upper Elementary/Middle School (4-8)
Reading level: Lexile 890/Grade level equivalent 5.6
Genre: Informational/Biography

Main Characters: Christopher Columbus
Setting: Various
POV: Third person

This is a traditional depiction of the discovery of the America’s by Christopher Columbus. The biography tells of his travels, his expectations and his discoveries. It explains that Columbus originally set out to travel to the Indies in hope of gold and spices, but encounters many
Margaret Chind
Video - animated storybook on Overdrive. 30 minutes.
If one must teach their child about Columbus' true history in a way that is not grotesque but is still honest and true, this is the one to read to your child. It was hilarious at times because of the sarcastic tone that Jean Fritz uses! I really liked how she explains the actions of Columbus, his upbringing, the history of the man, the mistakes he made, the slavery he contributed to, the exploration portion behind the man, the pride issues he had.

Every parent should read THIS book to your child
Katie Fitzgerald
This month, while the Old School Kidlit Reading Challenge has been focusing on nonfiction, I decided to finally sit down and read a stack of the late Jean Fritz's books about the history of the United States. In total, I read 8 titles:

And Then What Happened, Paul Revere? illustrated by Margot Tomes (1973)
Why Don't You Get a Horse, Sam Adams? illustrated by Trina Schart Hyman (1974)
Where Was Patrick Henry on the 29th of May? illustrated by Margot Tomes (1975)
What's the Big Idea, Ben Franklin?
May 09, 2017 rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
I love Jean Fritz! Her style is so fun, maybe even a little sarcastic. I think the tone of the book gives facts without judging the historical characters. After all, Columbus (who really did some terrible things) was just a product of his time. How can we, who live in a completely different era, judge him when really he thought he was doing everything for God, Gold, and Glory?
I learned so many fascinating things about Columbus and his 4 journeys to the Caribbean. Definitely a good primer for fu
Sep 02, 2017 rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
Where Do You Think You’re Going, Christopher Columbus? tells the story of Christopher Columbus. It is made a bit gentle for kids, but does not shy away from things like capturing natives and sending them to Spain to be sold as slaves. Like all books by Jean Fritz, it’s easy to read and understand. I highly recommend this book for kids learning about Christopher Columbus or the opening of exploration of the new world by Europe.
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Apr 24, 2012 rated it liked it  ·  review of another edition
Shelves: eced-221
This book is all about Christopher Columbus' life as he sets out for his voyage to the Indies. He wants to travel here to find gold and other goods that can be brought back to Spain. The three ships that are used for the voyage are the Nina, the Pinta, and the Santa Maria. Throughout the expedition, Columbus and his crew run into some problems.

Christopher Columbus is and explorer that is commonly know by children. They will become interested in the ships that he is using on his voyage to carry p
Oct 10, 2011 rated it liked it  ·  review of another edition
Shelves: biography
While this book is clearly based on nonfictional events, some of it is clearly supposition, thus I have classified is as historical fiction.

wide reading for CI 546

grade level: content would be elementary but reading level probably late elementary to middle school.

genre: realistic historical combination of nonfiction and fiction.

themes: discovery, exploration, history of the Americas

school use: I used a few paragraphs of this as a read-aloud with my 7th graders. There's some vocabulary that requi
Amber Harper
Sep 12, 2015 rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
I consider Jean Fritz to be a Wow author. Anyone who can take the facts from history and weave them together in a story that grabs my fifth graders' attention is a winner in my book.

Fritz has taken the basic story of Christopher Columbus that my students know so well and has filled in all the details from history in a way that allows students to see the significance and the difficulty of what Columbus did. Fritz also doesn't mince words or paint Columbus as a perfect hero who never did wrong, bu
Nola Redd
Aug 10, 2015 rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
Shelves: children-s
An excellent overview of the life of explorer Christopher Columbus. The story is kept fairly simple and in narrative form, so that my fifth grader can easily follow it. It does stress the idea that Columbus thought he was led by (the Christian) God to "India", aka the new world, though always in terms of "he felt that", not that he "was". This could be a minor differentiation for middle school children, but could also be a good opportunity to discuss motivation and results (would the Native Amer ...more
Mar 30, 2015 rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
Fritz always has a fun, unifying idea for her biographies; for this one, she presents Columbus as a constant wayfarer, always off on an adventure or dreaming of one. Fritz mentions how "lucky" some events in Columbus's early life, but she also highlights how convinced Columbus was that God was leading him to do certain things (or sending him signs confirming his "chosen" status for certain events). Around a 5th grade reading level, its length and the cheerful, humorous, engaging prose makes it a ...more
Jessica Lynch
Apr 19, 2012 rated it it was ok  ·  review of another edition
Shelves: eced-221
Where do you think you're going, Christopher Columbus is about his journey to find a trading route from Spain to the Indies. It discuss how he landed in the new world thinking that it was Japan.

Christopher Columbus is someone that all of the students know about. He is also someone that some students would want to learn about outside of class because he is believed to be the founder of the new world. The author is very good at presenting Christopher Columbus as a real person.The information pres
Ryan Hong
Apr 28, 2011 rated it liked it  ·  review of another edition
Recommends it for: teacher
Shelves: ps112, 4305, history
1. What is the main idea? Columbus's life and journey.
2. What is a fact? He is Italian.
3. What happened after Columbus went there? War began.
4. Why did war start? People thinks Christopher is stealing their land.
5. What is different between Columbus and some people in Italy? They sometimes disagree.
6. What do you think will happen next? War will start.
7. What does Christopher mean? Christ bearing.
8. You can tell that Columbus is cruel.
9. What is an opinion? Columbus is cruel.
10. What is a lesson
Deborah Duke
Jan 12, 2014 rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
This biography by Jean Fritz is a good fit for middle-grade students. The book is not overly simplistic, nor is it bogged down with too many details. Fritz writes in a mildly entertaining manner which kept my son engaged in the material. The view of Columbus is relatively balanced. With a little bit of coaching, my son was able to conclude that, “although he was a good sailor, Christopher Columbus was not a good leader.”
There's plenty of information packed into this compact 80 page illustrated account of the famous "discovery" of the new world.
Of course C. Columbus died believing it was China, Japan, and India and NOT a "new world".
Mar 24, 2014 rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
Just right for an 11 year old who likes history. My son finished it in one sitting and said it was "very thorough."
A lighthearted, factually balanced account of Christopher Columbus's exploration and discovery of the new world.
May 17, 2015 rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
Every child deserves to read Jean Fritz books. Well researched, a touch of humor and fascinating small facts. I continue to love history because of Fritz's writing.
Mar 08, 2012 rated it liked it  ·  review of another edition
Shelves: history-for-kids
Great title, I think. A non-glorified and not simplistic story of CC. We enjoyed it.
Aug 13, 2014 rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
Glad my son had to read this for school...I got a lot out of it, hearing more than just the glorified tales of Christopher Columbus.
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Jean Fritz was a children’s author with a fascination with writing historical fictions. She was born on November 16, 1915, in Hankow, China to missionary parents. After living in China for 13 years, Fritz and her family moved back to the United States. Beginning her career with an English degree, Fritz became an award-winning and respected author. She received an honor for every book that she wrot ...more
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