Explorer Journal Entries #5 and #6 – FREE CHOICE & Accomplishments/Failures

Journal #5 – For this journal, you get to CHOOSE what part of your explorer’s life you’d like to write about. Some people choose to do an entry regarding his life after his missions… Some choose to write as a crew member telling about his death… Some choose to write about another mission that they haven’t talked about… It’s up to you! Be creative and have fun!

Journal #6Journal of Accomplishments/Failures – In this journal, you write about either the things your explorer found/accomplished OR his failures because not all explorers accomplished what they set out to do! Here’s an example:

August 29, 1533

 Dear Journal, 

       I, Francisco Pizarro, have brought an end to the Incan Empire on this day. I have captured and executed Atahuallpa, the 13th emperor of the Incas. After defeating his own brother, he invited me for a celebratory feast. It was then that I ambushed him and took him prisoner. I defeated his men, stole his treasure, and put him to death.

       Now that I have my riches, I plan on founding a new land called Lima which means “City of the Kings” because that is what we are now. I have done what I set out to do.


Explorer Journal Entry #10 – Star Pattern Story

August 17, 1563

Dear Journal,

     One starry night on our ship, my crew and I were laying back and gazing at the bright stars above us. All at once, Jerome, my favorite mate, spotted a pattern and knew the story behind it. It only looked like a line and a triangle to us, but Jerome said that it was Aquarius, the water bearer to Zeus.

      Legend has it that while tending his flocks on Mount Ida, Ganymede, the son of the King of Troy, was noticed by Zeus. He was said to be an extremely handsome young man. Zeus sent his eagle messenger to bring Ganymede to Mount Olympus, and Zeus made him his cup bearer. To honor Ganymede, he placed a picture of him in the stars and named it Aquarius, which means “water carrier.”

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Explorer Journal Entry #4 – Describing a Crew Member or Ship

June 9, 1567

Dear Journal,

I won’t lie. Life at sea is not easy. Many men signed up to seek adventure on the open seas. Most of them had never even travelled out of their hometowns. However, some have had a harder time than others.

One of my crew members, William, began our journey with much vigor. He is a mere 22 years old, yet big and strong. His full red beard and brawny arms tell you not to get into a scuffle with him. However, it seems as though he has grown weary during our months at sea. No baths and little food has weakened him. Just last evening, he became so desperate for some extra salted meat and prunes that he stole from his shipmate, Jacob.

As the captain, I must designate his punishment. Discipline must be strict in order to maintain order on my ship. With reluctance, I have ordered Will to be flogged 19 times with a cat’o’ninetails this evening while all of his crewmates watch.

Explorer Journal – Letter Home (Entry #9 on handout)

April 5, 1567

Dear Father,

     My voyage with Mr. John Hawkins has been a trying one. Because of my Christian upbringing, which I am so grateful for, I struggle with our slavetrading mission. It is hard for me to view others as less than myself. Captain Hawkins has made me an officer and I am currently leading the expedition in the Judith. It is a hearty vessel with good sails. I believe you would be proud of me. I miss you dearly and often think of you and my brothers. I sincerely hope that you are all in good health. I anticipate seeing you soon.



Explorer Journal Entry #3 – A Day at Sea

April 1, 1508

Dear Journal,

 A life at sea isn’t as glorious as it may sound. We have to sleep on the deck where the waves often splash. This makes cold nights rather miserable. Worms and mold have attacked our precious food. My crew and I prefer to eat in the dark so that we don’t have to see the little critters crawling through our biscuits. The night sky is beautiful though, and we do have some fun as we pass the time making up new shanties.

Explorer Journal Entry #2 Examples – Mission (2 different examples)

Example #1 for today’s entry:

April 2, 1607

Dear Journal,

Today we set sail on my ship, the Hopewell. I am on a mission to find a Northwest Passage to Asia. We shall be journeying through the Arctic Ocean. I have heard that these waters are extremely frigid and treacherous. We have packed extra blankets and wool coats.

Example #2 for today’s entry:

October 16th, 1508

Dear Journal,

I begin my journey to new worlds today. I am on a quest for land, gold, and glory. My compass and trusty map are my guides. I will also look to the stars for direction. I and my crew serve the Royal Family and the crown of Spain.



Explorer Journal Entry #1 Example – What is going on in the world during your explorer’s time?

June 6, 1595

I am John Rolfe. I’m 10 years old and live in Norfolk, England. England is a great place to live. When I get older, I want to be an explorer like Amerigo Vespucci or John Cabot. My dad told me all about Amerigo and how he found America, and how John Cabot discovered parts of North America. I would love to follow in their footsteps someday.

But for now I will study the adventures they went on and listen to their stories from my father. Speaking of stories, there is a man here in England named William Shakespeare who is busy writing stories and plays. I wonder if Queen Elizabeth I will ever attend his plays. She has been queen of England since 1558.