Ice Girl

story by Simon Cooke , illustrated by Queenie Chan

Learning intention: 

I am learning to consider the experience of secondary characters in a story so I can analyse how things may be different from their point of view. 


Success criteria: 

  • I can use textual evidence to identify the experiences of the protagonist in a story. 
  • I can identify the experiences of a secondary character in a text and how they may differ from the protagonist. 
  • I can write a story from the secondary character’s point of view. 


Essential knowledge: 

For more information on considering point of view when reading and writing, watch the English Textual Concepts video for Point of View 


After reading the text, discuss the emotions that Rosetta experienced at different times throughout the story. These may include: 

  • Stressed at having to work alone to make enough money for her father’s medicine 
  • Shocked at seeing a girl moving through the ice 
  • Fear at seeing a man in dark clothing with a snake that appeared from smoke 
  • Confusion at what she had seen after she returned home 
  • Desperation as her father’s condition worsened and his medicine ran out 
  • Guilt about selling the ice girl to the clerk 
  • Remorse as she realised what she had done 
  • Wonder as the ice girl gave her a gift and rejoined her parents 
  • Hope as she returned in anticipation of selling the bell and moving somewhere warmer with her father 


Discuss how the author has given readers this understanding of Rosetta’s experience by making her the protagonist in the story and how this allows the narrator to convey her feelings on a deeper level. Explain that this is done by following her throughout the story as well as exploring her inner thoughts. Give examples from the text, such as: 

  • Not knowing what else to do, she turned her back on the ice wall and made for home’ 
  • ‘Rosetta swallowed hard, hating herself for what she was about to do’ 
  • ‘I am no better than the man that hunted her, Rosetta thought grimly’ 
  • ‘Rosetta wondered if the ice girl had a father and a mother. She wondered if they missed her’ 


Ask students to consider how the story may be different if it was written from the point of view of the ice girl. Discuss what is known about the girl, based on textual evidence. This may include: 

  • She was running though the ice in terror to flee from a man in black
  • The man released smoke that turned into a snake, which tried to strike the girl until Rosetta cut the ice block away to save the girl
  • She was taken on the back of the sled by Rosetta to the ice store and sold to a man
  • Rosetta returned early the next morning to take her back to the ice wall
  • The girl took a tiny bell from her bag and rang it, making the ice wall shift
  • A man and a woman (likely to be her parents or family) appeared and she embraced them before fading into the ice wall. 

Use these points to discuss what is not known about the ice girl’s story. Such as, who the man in black was and why he was chasing her? Why does she live in the ice and how she is able to move through it? How can her bell control the ice and what she was thinking and feeling when she encountered Rosetta?  

Explain to students that they are to write the story from the ice girl’s point of view, coming up with their own ideas to fill the gaps in what we know about the ice girl’s story. They may wish to start with a brainstorm of what these may be before writing a draft and publishing. 



Assessment for/as learning: 

The School Magazine’s Imaginative text rubric can be used to guide students in writing and assessing their narratives.