The Trumpet of the Swan


[A teacher ponders a lesson.]

Imagine a boy riding a bicycle. Steel handlebars wide apart, arms open wide. Impish smile spreading as worn leather shoes pedal round and round. Speed away from the cry, “Steady as you go.” Inhaling country air in gulps, joy is unleashed. This boy, this Elywn, loves herons on the lake, paddling his canoe. And now, this city man treasures those summers of slipping off into the woods. Imagine. This boy becomes a man who writes for children who love summer, who love trumpet swans and one that cannot speak. This storybook Sam embraces nature. 

First, share the life. Fifteen faces imagine our cyclist.  Their young hands open to page one – The Trumpet of the Swan – Begin, my cynets. Go beyond the classroom to summer’s call.

I am so fortunate to teach where I do. I create a world for my students that suits their sensibilities. This winter my young charges shared in the fictional world of E.B. White based upon this classic title, while I shared with them his boyhood based upon a stellar biography of the author.

Sims, Michael. The Story of Charlotte’s Web: E.B. White’s Eccentric Life In Nature and the Birth of An American Classic.  New York: Walker and Company, 2011. Print.

White, E.B. and Fred Marcellino, illus.  The Trumpet of the Swan.  New York: HarperCollins Publishers, 2000. Print.


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