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The Ugly Duckling (Caldecott Honor Book) by…

The Ugly Duckling (Caldecott Honor Book) (edition 1999)

by Hans Christian Andersen

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Title:The Ugly Duckling (Caldecott Honor Book)
Authors:Hans Christian Andersen
Info:HarperCollins (1999), Hardcover, 40 pages
Collections:Your library
Tags:fiction, classics, school, ATOS Level 4.5, 4th grade reading level, AD650L, 3rd-4th grade reading level, children

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The Ugly Duckling by Hans Christian Andersen

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Sarah Durkin
Professor Martens
1 March 2016
Reading Log Entry #15: The Ugly Duckling by, Hans Christian Andersen
I like this story because it has a good message. Never give up just because you do not “fit in” with a certain crowd. Everyone is unique in his or her own way, just like the duck in the story. It is good to embrace peoples differences. This story does a good job explaining that you are whom you are and trying to change yourself to get people to like you will get you nowhere in life. The duck later realized that he did not look like the others for a reason and ended up turning into a beautiful swan. This made him stand out, but he was proud of who he was. Also, readers are able to flip through the book and look at all of the illustrations explaining and showing how the duck feels. Treating people badly or bullying them just because they are different than you does not make you better than them. The duck always got his feelings hurt, but did not understand why. Finally, this book does a good job explaining that differences between people should be accepted, not rejected. For example, when the other ducks do not let him be a part of their group, they would single him out and make him feel bad about himself for being different. Readers should know that after reading this children's book, to be kind to others. ( )
  SarahDurkin | Feb 24, 2016 |

In this Hans Christian Anderson classic, an ugly duckling is born to a family of beautiful ducks. After realizing he is not the same as his flock, he leaves and endures many hardships in the world beyond his pond. Finally, when he decided he is just going to let go and be killed by a flock of beautiful geese, he looks at his reflection and sees a beautiful swan.

Personal Reflection:
"It is only with the heart that one can see clearly, for the most essential things are invisible to the eye" Antoine De Sainte Exupery. This was a quote in the beginning of the version I read and I thought it spoke volumes on the moral of the story. This was by far not my favorite version of this classic. I feel it would be better suited for an older classroom versus an early childhood setting.

Classroom Extension:
1) Have the children illustrate their version of the Ugly Duckling
2) Use as an extension to other stories discussing morals, read and discuss the moral of each book.
  kerifreeman | Feb 6, 2016 |
The Ugly Duckling is a classic book that describes how a ugly big duckling was born into a duck family. His mother, the duck, loved him and tried to make everyone else like him. But the other animals and ever the woman feeding them did not like him, so he ran away. Through his journey of hardship, he grew up. He became a beautiful swan that everyone loved, but he was not proud and angry. He was happy he had went through all the hardships to enjoy the true happiness he had.
Personal Reaction:
After reading The Ugly Duckling, it has made me think a lot about my past and how children get picked on for their looks or even their weight as a child. Although they grow up to be beautiful people, smart and successful even, they had to endure hardships. This classic book was written in the 60’s so the terminology is a bit different then what is not. It is an elegant story and the illustrations provide a great creative imaginative word full of animals and nature.

Classroom Extension Ideas:
1. This is an excellent book to talk about bullying. As a class we can discuss what is bullying, how the duckling was bullied, and also if any students have been bullied. By discussing bullying, the students can write down ways that they can prevent bullying. We will discuss ways to make people feel welcome and how to make new people, or different people feel like they are apart of the group. Put students in groups and have them discuss their differences and similarities. They should write down what they like about each of their group members and how they can play together. Then we can all go around the room, and each student will talk about the student next to them, what they like about them and what is unique about them.
2. This book is also a great way to introduce what baby animals are called. After reading this book, pick out all the animals and write down what their babies are called. Also provide the proper plural terms for animals, goose - geese, etc. Then the class can create baby animals using clay, or draw baby animals. ( )
  Genevieve.Foerster | Feb 3, 2016 |
This book is a classic. We all know the story. The Duckling was odd from the very beginning. He grows up and has a variety of adventures only to realize at the end that he is not a duck at all...but a beautiful swan.

This Golden book really is meant more for the parent to read to the young child. The illustrations are classic and stylish. But the print is small...And with use of words like "Fluttered" and "cackled" by the time the young reader can acknowledge what these words mean in context they wouldn't be interested in reading a story like this one.

Still, it's a classic. I enjoy it and is why I am keeping it as one of my favorites. ( )
  DVerdecia | Jan 29, 2016 |
I did not like this book because of its language and plot, but I did enjoy the main character’s determination. Before I read this tale, I thought back to the times when I listened to this story as a child. I remembered the main idea, which was the ugly duckling turned into a swan and finally found happiness and acceptance in the world. The current version however, was extremely long and drawn out, and included unnecessary details. For instance, in the beginning paragraph it said, “The stork walking about on his long red legs chattered in the Egyptian language which he had learnt from his mother.” I felt that this detail was not necessary because it had nothing to do with the story, and only confused me as a reader. Even though the language is written as though it is telling a story, I still did not find the plot to be well paced and organized. The ugly duckling traveled to different places, and met so many different characters that it was soon hard to keep up with the story line. I did enjoy the duckling’s character because he was determined and always believed in himself. For example, the ugly duckling chose to leave his family on the farm in order to find a place that would be more accepting of him. I feel that this takes a lot of bravery especially from a young duckling; he was not kicked out of his home, but instead chose to leave on his own.
I feel that the overall message of this tale is to always believe in yourself, no matter how others perceive you. Once the ugly duckling gained the courage to use his wings to fly, he began to transform into a beautiful swan. I really liked that the swan knew that he deserved to find happiness and that he worked hard for it, “He now felt glad at having suffered sorrow and trouble, because it enabled him to enjoy so much better all the pleasure and happiness around him.” Working hard will always pay off in the end. ( )
  ecahan1 | Mar 30, 2015 |
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» Add other authors (114 possible)

Author nameRoleType of authorWork?Status
Hans Christian Andersenprimary authorall editionscalculated
Adams, AdrienneIllustratorsecondary authorsome editionsconfirmed
Keigwin, R.P.Translatorsecondary authorsome editionsconfirmed
McCue, LisaIllustratorsecondary authorsome editionsconfirmed
Van Nutt, RobertIllustratorsecondary authorsome editionsconfirmed
Williams, JennieIllustratorsecondary authorsome editionsconfirmed
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In appreciation of the wonders of nature and the gift of time-honored stories -J.P.
First words
It was summer, and the pond was alive with the music and color of life.
Last words
(Click to show. Warning: May contain spoilers.)
Disambiguation notice
Please beware that this story has been adapted numerous times. Please leave this entry for the full, unabridged tale by Andersen!
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Amazon.com Amazon.com Review (ISBN 068815932X, Hardcover)

Three-time Caldecott Honor artist and four-time winner of the Coretta Scott King Award, Jerry Pinkney doesn't disappoint with this lovely, old-fashioned, richly textured watercolor adaptation of Hans Christian Andersen's The Ugly Duckling. The mother duck knew from the very beginning that one of her babies would be different from the rest... the sixth egg was large and oddly shaped. When it finally hatches that summer, she thinks the "monstrous big duckling" must be a turkey chick! Other ducks are appalled by the ugly duckling, and he is chased, pecked, and kicked aside. When he can't stand it anymore, he runs away from the pond, eventually taking refuge in the warm cottage of an old woman with a cat and a hen. Missing the delicious feeling of the water too much to stay, however, he heads out again into the wide, increasingly cold autumn world.
One day, he heard a sound of whirring wings, and up in the air he saw a flock of birds flying high. They were as bright as the snow that had fallen during the night, and their long necks were stretched southward. Oh, if only he could go with them! But what sort of companion could he be to those beautiful beings?"
At last, after a hard, cold winter--and plenty of the kind of adventures no one really wants to have--the duckling sees the same flock of birds he'd seen in the sky so many months ago. He decides he will follow them, somewhat dramatically preferring to be killed by them rather than suffer any more "cold and hunger and cruelty." Much to his surprise, they welcome him! And when he looks for his dull, awkward reflection in the water, he sees a beautiful swan instead. Children who feel ostracized, even for the tiniest of differences, may shed a few sympathetic tears for the ugly duckling. And no doubt, it was Andersen's wish to give them the hope of one day finding their own peaceful place. (Ages 3 to 9) --Karin Snelson

(retrieved from Amazon Thu, 12 Mar 2015 18:12:03 -0400)

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An ugly duckling spends an unhappy year ostracized by the other animals before he grows into a beautiful swan.

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