Journey to the center of the earth

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In this reader you will find:

- Games and language activities - An audio recording of the story - A picture dictionary


Audio Files

Look on the inside front cover to find out how to download the free audio files.


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Journey to the centre of the Earth


Caring about the natural world | Being adventurous | Courage Downloadable

Stage 4 A2

Jules Verne was a master of adventure stories. He also wanted children to think about nature. This story asks them to wonder what is under the ground and if there is another world there. It is told by a young man, Axel, who with his uncle and a guide go down under the Earth through the crater of a volcano. The children follow them through tunnels and caves to find strange plants and animals and have exciting adventures. It’s a story about natural phenomena, but also about persistence, initiative and courage in the face of the unknown.

Jules Verne


Jules Verne Journey to the Centre of the Earth

Jules Verne Journey to the Centre of the Earth

Stage 4 A2


Illustrated by Gustavo Mazali

Starters Starters/Movers Movers Flyers


Young Downloadable


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Eli Readers is a beautifully illustrated series of timeless classic and original stories for learners of English.

The pleasure of Reading


Audio Files

2 Introduction

Jules Verne wrote ourney to the Centre of the Earth more than 150 years ago. He also wrote Around the World in Eighty Days and Twenty Thousand Leagues Under the Sea. His stories were all exciting adventures. He is often called the ‘Father of Science Fiction’. Who was Jules Verne? He was born in a town near the sea in France. When he was a child he watched the ships and imagined their adventures. There’s a story that his father stopped Jules Verne from running away to sea to have adventures himself! His father wanted him to be a lawyer but, Jules Verne wanted to write books. In the end, that’s what he did. He wanted to share his passion for science and experiments. In ourney to the Centre of the Earth he says, ‘Science is made up of mistakes, but these are useful as they lead little by little to the truth.’


Meet the characters Professor Otto Lidenbrock: A famous and very enthusiastic scientist. Nothing is too difficult or too dangerous for him and he is determined to get to the centre of the Earth. Axel: An orphan, he lives with his uncle, Professor Lidenbrock. He is afraid of the dangers they find under the ground but he stays with his uncle and helps him when he can. Hans: A guide from Iceland. He is very big and strong and is good at making things with his hands. He doesn’t talk very much but he is kind and clever. Hans is very important for the success of the journey.


3 CHAPTER 1: Into the volcano


I live with my uncle, the famous geologist Professor Lidenbrock. Our journey to the centre of the Earth started one day when he was reading a very old book from Iceland. Suddenly, a piece of paper fell out. It was a letter with strange writing. My uncle couldn’t read it but I could. The words were in reverse order. It was from a man who lived five hundred years ago. His name was Arne Saknussemm. It said, ‘Go down the volcano of Snaefells Yoculand and you will come to the centre of the Earth. I did it myself.’ ‘Pack our bags!’ said my uncle, ‘We’re going to Iceland.’ I thought, ‘Oh no! Down a volcano? I don’t like that idea!’


4 But my uncle loves adventures and that

is exactly what we did. We found a guide called Hans and went to the Snaefells Yoculand volcano. We started climbing down into the volcano. It was very cold. ‘I hope we don’t find anything!’ I thought.


But at the bottom there were three chimneys… and on one of them were the letters A S. ‘I knew we were right! I knew this was the volcano! Arne Saknussemm was here!’ called my uncle. ‘Hurry up Axel! We’re on our way to the centre of the Earth!’ I looked at Hans but he didn’t say anything.


5 CHAPTER 2: Down the tunnel

At the bottom of the chimney there was a tunnel. My uncle started walking down it with Hans following. I looked up at the tiny circle of blue sky and thought, ‘Goodbye sky! When will I see you again?’ Then, I lit my lamp and went into the tunnel behind them. 8

The environment we went into was very different and new. Sometimes the tunnel was wide but sometimes it was narrow and we had to crawl along it. Sometimes it glittered with minerals like jewels. The walls of the tunnel were hot and the air smelled like bad eggs. ‘It’s sulphur,’ said my uncle, ‘from the volcano.’


Activity Pages 1 Underline the adjectives in blue and the nouns in red. Then match them to the characters in the story.

afraid strong








2 Use the words to complete the sentences. Number them in order. forest narrow


sea stalactites

stalagmites tunnel

Sometimes the tunnel was ____________ sometimes it was ____________. They came to a ____________ and then to an underground ____________. At the bottom of the chimney there was a ____________. The caves had ____________ and ____________. 28

3 Find where they went. Write the sentences in order, using the prepositions in the volcano.

on into

through across

• abeach • adeepdarktunnel • anundergroundsea • aforestwithhugemushrooms They went: 1 _____________________________________________ 2 _____________________________________________ 3 _____________________________________________ 4 _____________________________________________


4 Find the words (the letters are in reverse order). Fill the gaps in the poem.

The Journey to the Centre of the Earth poem They went down into A deep 1 ________________ And there at the bottom What did they see? They saw long 2 ________________ Without any 3 ________________ And also 4 ________________ With 5 ________________ What else did they find Deep down there Far away from the Bright fresh 6 ________________? They found tall 7 ________________ Among some trees And dangerous animals In 8 ________________ 9 ________________. smoorhsum

saes slennut sevac




ria sthgil


5 Project: Volcanoes. Do research about volcanoes (for example on the National Geographic Kids website) to answer these questions. Find more information. 1 What’s the difference between an active, a dormant and an extinct volcano? 2 How many volcanoes are still active on Earth? 3 Can you find volcanoes under the ocean? 4 Where can you find more volcanoes on Earth? 5 What’s the difference between magma and lava? 6 How hot is lava? Work in groups and make posters about volcanoes. Add diagrams and photos. 6 Discuss with a partner: think about what Professor Lidenbrock, Axel and Hans found under the Earth. What do you think is possible and what is just fiction? Compare your answers with the rest of the class. 31

7 Invent something they found on the journey. Draw and write about it.

They came to ______________________________ __________________________________________ __________________________________________ 8 Do you like the story? Draw your face.


= I love the story!

= I like the story.

= I quite like the story.

= I don’t like the story.

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