Feats on the Fiord {Free eBook & Activities}

Feats on the Fiord, originally written in the mid-1800s by Harriet Martineau, tells an intriguing story of action and adventure amid the fjords of Norway. The book became a children’s classic and was found on many book lists in its time, being reprinted several times with illustrations by many varied artists through the 1920s. The story was included in Everyman’s Library for Young People and can still be found in some libraries.

Miss Martineau’s Norwegian romance won its way long since into the hearts of children in this country. The unhackneyed setting to the incidents of the tale distinguish it from thousands of more ordinary children’s stories; nor is there any other tale so well-known having its scenes laid in the land of the fiords. It is quite safe to add that perhaps no other author has felt so strongly and communicated so convincingly the mystic charm of these northern lagoons with their still depths and reflections, their inaccessible walls of rock and their teeming wild-fowl life….

The author also brings home to the youthful mind the wonder of the physiographical peculiarities of northern latitudes. The book opens with the long nights and ends with the long days. The midnight sun and the northern lights play their parts, whilst the beautiful simplicity of farm-life in the Arctic circle is unfolded with authoritative interest.

As for the hero, young Oddo, he is a prince among dauntless boys, yet he never oversteps the bounds of true boyishness. He would be a hero anywhere; but as a leading character in this romance, combined with all the charm of natural effect in which he moves, he makes Feats on the Fiord a book to be classed among the few best of its kind.

from the Introduction

There are many reasons to read this delightful book:

  • A living book geography lesson on Norway that also explores its history and culture.
  • Action and adventure including a brush with pirates.
  • Strong characters to learn from.
  • A lesson in putting superstitious fears in their right place.

Feats on the Fiord is a valuable addition to any book list and can be enjoyed by children of all ages.

Free eBook

Feats on the Fiord {Free eBook & Activities}

You’ll find helps for these suggestions in the resources below.

  • Find Norway on a map.
  • Learn more about fjords.
  • Create a geographical feature notebooking page for a fjord.
  • The author gives an incredible description of the fjords. Try to draw the scene from the first chapter as she describes it.
  • Compare your drawing to the real thing.
  • In the story, the sun is staying up nearly all day. Find out why this is.
  • Explain how Erica changes.
  • Complete a character study of Oddo.
  • Compare and contrast M. Kollsen and the bishop.
  • Narrate or tell what is happening in the illustrations. The version of the book we have linked to is illustrated by Arthur Rackham. We have included several of these illustrations in the notebooking pages at the bottom.
  • Create a notebook page for the story.

Additional Resources

Norway Facts
National Geographic fact page for kids.

What is a Fjord

Photograph of one of the most famous fjords in Norway.

Seven Sisters Waterfalls
Also from the Geirangerfjord in Norway.

Midnight Sun — Light All Night!
Information on this phenomenon.


Activity: Compare & Contrast
Interactives and printables for the suggestions above.

How and Why Characters Change
Graphic organizer at ReadWriteThink to analyze Erica’s character.

Trading Card Creator
Interactive at ReadWriteThink for analyzing Oddo’s character.


Feats on the Fiord
Same book illustrated by P. Ebbutt.

Unit Studies & Lesson Plans

Those Fabulous Fjords
Lesson plan from the National Park Service that uses maps and pictures to investigate fjords — what they are and where they are found.

It’s Not a Ford…It’s a Fjord
Lesson plan from Arizona State University that uses mnemonics to help students remember various geographical landforms. Even if you choose not to do the entire lesson, you may still be able to use the geographical landforms notebooking page in the student worksheet download.

Printables & Notebooking Pages

Norway Map
From PAT.

Norway Flag
For notebook.

Country Notebooking Page
Option from NotebookingFairy.com.

Diagram for notebook.

Geography Terms Notebooking Pages
From NotebookingFairy.com for illustrating and describing a fjord.

Drawing & Writing Notebooking Paper {Free Download}
For illustrating and describing the scene from the first chapter.

Feats on the Fiord Notebooking Pages
Simple pages for copywork, narrations, or wrapping up.

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