Dora plans and then takes the proper steps to return books to the library.
As she hikes to the library to return her borrowed books Dora invites children along . In her backpack are books and tools needed for the trip. The mapped route includes a "Troll" bridge, a storm cloud, mud, a river and of course 'Swiper'. Swiper represents a child who 'swipes' toys. He is thwarted by a firm, but non aggressive, "Swiper, no swiping" command. Dora's positive, smart world is useful literature, but it is limited to the same narrow formula.
Dora & friends use a definite plan of action to reach treasure.
The child reader 'helps' Dora reach a treasure chest. Using stickers and a simple map, a bridge, boat and the keys to a treasure chest are 'assembled'. The story includes "Swiper", a fox character that represents a child who 'swipes' toys. He is thwarted by a firm, but non aggressive, "Swiper, no swiping" command. Dora's positive and smart world is useful literature, but restricted to the same narrow formula.
Bauer explains how sensible planning –with detailed discussion on the development of character, plot, perspective, dialogue, and figurative language– is essential in preparing and revising a work of fiction.
This advice on writing may seem simplistic, even redundant for those taking writing classes in grade school. But, where school work is a series of lesson segments and assignments, Bauer's What's Your Story? presents beginner level information in an organized whole. The wealth of constructive explanation shows an early writer how to think and plan a story effectively. The book's best advice lies in learning the details of the world; its great weakness is inattention to theme.
This could be a Rudyard Kipling "Just So" story titled, How the Cat Got its Purr.
Mother Holly's lazy and mischievous cat is old enough to earn his keep in her magic cottage. She leaves him the task of cleaning up, or else! He promptly has an accident with her stew. Cleaning up the mess he grabs the watering can, and it rains from the ceiling. Now her wetted corn must be dried, so he fans up the fire place. The bellows produce so much fire the popcorn pops, but it explodes like thunder. Holly arrives just as everything is cleaned up, but one kernel. He pops it in his mouth and...
A boy seeks rain puddles to splash in, but Nature has her own agenda.
A boy anxiously awaits the rain to try out his new boots. His father understands his passion for playing in puddles, and encourages him to seek out existing puddles. Soon, the un-named boy finds the most biggest puddle of all. In his enjoyment the little boy gets wet almost everywhere (including inside his boots). He is happy, though rain for his boots had not yet come... and that's all.
Wilson Bentley's lifelong fascination with, and sensible study of, snowflakes eventually earned him the respect of scientists.
Young Wilson Bentley noticed that snowflakes were beautiful, but more amazingly, he saw no two snowflakes that were alike, it was an unending miracle. He tried drawing them. He learned to photograph them. He learned how air conditions altered snowflake patterns. His interest seemed weird to his neighbors, who thought, "Snow in Vermont is as common as dirt", why photograph it? But Bentley resisted the criticisms, eventually to be respected by scientists around the world.
Miss. Late misses out a lot by being late, except with Mr. Lazy.
Miss. Late ruins shopping dates, and loses her jobs at the bank, restaurant & office. She only succeeds as house maid for Mr. Lazy because he is late with things too. Of course, then Mr. Silly asks her out to a dance. As expected, when he arrives she is not ready and the joke is her claim, "I'll be down in a minute." This is a simple message children can understand about tardiness. Unfortunately, it's narrative is boring and the ending uninspiring.
A poor impoverished child sells matches all day on a freezing New Year's Eve but, overcome by cold, we are told of her last visions and of her journey to Heaven.
Un-named, she is any poor girl struggling in a dysfunctional family. Shoeless, shivering and afraid to return home, for she has sold no matches and will be beaten, she retreats into an untraveled alley. As the cold consumes her we are shown her final visions of things she treasured. This marvelously presented, painfully emotive tragedy offers a useful lesson contrasting those who really struggle for life with those who do not. It is not for young children, but for teenagers to learn H. C. Andersen's awful focus on the worst in life.
Teddy bear, Corduroy, tries to improve himself to earn the love and care of a little girl.
In this tremendously popular story, Corduroy thinks Lisa won't buy him because he is missing a button. That night he searches the store for one, but is foiled by the watchman, who returns him to his usual shelf. Lisa returns, buys him and sews on a button for him. In a tilt towards the injustice of unconditional love, the moral of self improvement is undone when Corduroy's effort has no influence Lisa's choice.
Eventually, Danziger's narration brings untidy second grader, Amber Brown, around to winning the tidy desk award.
Amber's Grade Two teacher invents "Deskarina" the desk fairy, who is similar to "Dentalina" the Tooth Fairy. Amber decides she wants Deskarina's Clean Desk Award and, after some false starts and a major room tidying at home, finally wins the ribbon. Orderliness as virtue is diminished when applied to the paltry goal of a tidy desk. Told in the present tense, the story is boringly narrated and padded with mundane events such as snack time.