Tuesday, January 25, 2011

A classic duck tale!

As I was on the look-out for some good recommendations of picture books for my son, I found some books were classic oldies that families have been reading for generations. When I began reading them to Abhay, it didn’t take me long to realize why they were called classics. These books probably need no introduction for someone brought up here, but for me – they are a revelation in themselves!

One of the first classics I read was “Make way for Ducklings” by Robert McCloskey. Named as the official children’s book of Massachusetts, Abhay is never tired of this gem! Mr and Mrs. Mallard were looking for an ideal home to start a family. Proud little ducks that they were, no place seemed to be good enough for them until they fly over the pond in Boston public garden. Tired and worn out, they dive into the pond looking for some food only to be disappointed. Almost ready to fly out, they encounter an unusual sight – a large bird pushing a boat full of people with the boatman sitting on its back. Polite little ducks that they were, Mr. Mallard wished the bird “Good Morning”. The bird was not so courteous, but the people were. Much to the delight of the famished Mallards, the people on the boat threw peanuts into the water making for a great snack. Just as they were about to make a decision regarding Boston public garden, a young boy rams his bicycle into Mrs. Mallard thereby narrowing its chances of being picked as future home of the Mallards. So to find more options, they fly over famous landmarks of Boston and zero in on an island on Charles River that Mrs. Mallard deems appropriate for her nesting ground. As the Mallards settle down, they befriend a police man named Michael. Soon the Mallard family grows with the addition eight little ducklings. Raised under the strict supervision Mrs. Mallard, the ducklings are taught how to swim and dive and walk in a line until they are ready to embark on their biggest adventure ever. Lead by their matriarch Mrs Mallard and a little help from Michael and his team, the eight ducklings boldly walk across the busy town of Boston to reach the public garden that they eventually make their home sweet home. As they arrive at their destination, not forgetting their manners, they turn around to thank the policemen who made way for the ducklings!

If you are in the Boston area with your little ones, don’t forget to stop at the Boston public garden to call on Mrs. Mallard and her ducklings and enjoy a ride on the 130 year old Swan boats!

1 comment:

  1. Divya,
    I remember you telling me about this park and the ducklings when you had been to Boston.
    Abhay had the experience of visualising the story.