I told a story (or to be more precise, half a story) the other day. It was half a story about Max. Max was a
One day, as he was going about his mousey business, he found a
You probably recognise it as a sunflower seed. A beautifully clean and shiny one at that.
Anyway, Max the mouse was so pleased with his beautifully clean and shiny seed that he decided not to eat it straight away (such mousey willpower!) Instead he put it away for safe keeping.
To cut a long story short, the seed got dropped, had a narrow escape in a tussle with a vacuum cleaner and ended up being emptied along with the vacuum dust, onto a rubbish heap in the garden.
Max of course was very sad. He did not want to eat the by now extremely dirty and decidedly un-shiny seed. He went back indoors (he was a house mouse you see) in disgust. At which point, I stopped, leaving us all on veritable tenterhooks. And very uncomfortable they were too!
Firstly so we could have a go at retelling the story ourselves. Which, as you can see…..
from these examples…..
we all did admirably well!
And secondly so that we could have a little think about what-happened-next. Because, stories, as we know, usually have a happy ending. And to lose your best most shiny seed is not an especially happy ending when you are a mouse.
To recap, we have a sad (and quite possibly hungry) Max the mouse with winter on its way. Winter comes - and winter goes. And then it is spring and the weather has turned warm. And Max pokes his nose outside for the first time and ventures towards the garden rubbish heap. Where an amazing sight met his eyes.
Any guesses as to what it was that he saw?
Takomerwa was the first to offer up a suggestion. I think he saw ‘a seed,’ he told us. Which is not quite true.
Hiromi and Aalian (having noted the ‘not quite’) both suggested that it was ‘a sunflower,’ that met Max’s eyes that warm spring morning. But that’s not quite true either. We were all on the right track though, because what Max actually saw was that his seed had sprouted. A tiny sunflower plant had started to grow.
And then, as Max kept watch during the spring and into the summer, so the tiny sunflower plant grew first leaves and then a bud.
The bud duly opened and next came a beautiful yellow-petalled sun-flower.
And then, even though it didn’t say this in the story, we know that an insect must have visited Max’s sunflower…..
because after that, the flower bent over its head, the petals withered and fell off, leaving a brown seed-head simply bursting with more seeds than Max had ever seen before.
As Tanisha rightly predicted, the ‘seeds (will) fall’ and Max ‘will get a new sunflower.’
In fact of course, hundreds and hundreds of seeds fell, enough to supply Max (and all of his friends and relations) all through the coming winter with tasty and nutritious sunflower kernels to eat. And being a clever little chap, Max saved one or two of the seeds to plant, so that he would have a new sunflower plant the coming year. And the one after that.
‘It’s a life cycle,’ summed up Yousouf.
And of course he’s right.