Family Book Club Week 4: 20,000 Leagues Under the Sea

Here we are in week 4 of our Family Book Club: 20,000 Leagues Under the Sea. One week left to go. How are the conversations going at your house? Have you been able to expand on some of these great topics of friendship, exploration and even death?

Family Book Club - week 4

Reading Goal

This week read chapters 13-16.

20,000 Leagues Under the Sea Discussion Questions & Activities

I love what asking questions does for connecting through the story… I also love that it allows me to check the level of interest in my bouncy kids. They are often building or dancing while I read. Questions help me know they actually are paying attention (and that I’m not wasting my time reading out loud).

Chapter 13 –  Discussion Questions

  • On page 82 the author states, “Now we had returned to the surface of the waves, giving us once again the joy of daily walks on the platform.” Without having been in a submarine, it’s hard to imagine what it’s like to be inside a small space for months. Talk about times you’ve been forced to stay inside for long periods of time, maybe because you were sick or the weather made it hard to go outside. What was it like when you finally got to be in the sunshine and fresh air again.
  • Captain Nemo shares the story of many treasures abandoned at the bottom of the sea. What do you think about that? Is it fair for Captain Nemo to take the money? Who do you think the money belongs to? Do you think there is still treasure at the bottom of the ocean?

Chapter 14 – Discussion Question & Activity

  • Ned points out that Captain Nemo stopped the ship at the exact time they were going to escape. Do you think it was a coincidence (that it happened by chance) or do you think it’s possible that he knew of the plan to escape? Why do your feel that way?
  • Captain Nemo takes Mr. Aronnax to the City of Atlantis. Do some research. What is the City of Atlantis? Is it a fictional place?

Chapter 15 – Discussion Question

  • Reading tip: When you read a word that might be new to your kids (or new to you), use that as a learning experience. Can you figure out the meaning of the word by paying attention to the context? If not, look it up in the dictionary. Big M quickly asked what a fathom was while reading page 102. I didn’t know. Do you?

Chapter 16 – Discussion Question

  • Ned and Captain Nemo talk about “killing for killing sake”. Is this different than hunting animals as a way of survival (for food or clothing)? How do you feel about hunting, discuss it as it feels right for your families beliefs.
  • Why is Ned so angry with the Captain? Do you have ideas for how to solve the conflict?

If you are reading along, please email me at I have some ideas for how to tweak/ improve on the Family Book Club and I would love to get your input. 

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