A tree and boy reveal the opposite character presenting the false, modern, moral alternatives of altruistic & egotism, respectively: the tree gives its all –even its life– for the boy, whereasthe boy takes the benefits with indifference.
A little boy plays on a tree he loves, and that loves him. As he matures he only visits her when he wants something. Her happiness lies in giving him her fruit, limbs and trunk! Finally, as a depressed, unappreciative old man, he sits on the dead stump "and the tree was happy." An honest reader must ask, "Really? You're dead." This parable exposes the folly of giving and taking as today's preeminent moral choice. Parents are left to teach a smarter alternative...
The fact that his friends have fears seems to be enough to help Franklin brave his dark shell for sleeping.
Bourgeois treats Franklin's removable* shell as if it were scary, like a child's bedroom at night. After seeing that other creatures also had irrational fears Franklin braves his shell, with a nightlight. How do the irrational fears of others suggest one should brave one's own? (*At the Encarta site one can see how a turtle's shell is integrated into its bone structure. Note how the backbone is part of the carapace –the top shell.)