The Uglified Ducky by Willy Clafin /illustrated by James Stimson


Willy Claflin Author website

Author biography-Willy Claflin source: publisher August House Little Folk
"Once upon a time there was a little baby moose that blundered away from his baby moosie nest right down to the edge of the pond. And right there by the edge of the pond was a baby ducky nest..."

The Uglified Ducky is a new twist to the Hans Christian Andersen's tale of The Ugly Duckling as retold by Maynard Moose (aka author, Willy Claflin). Little baby moose Maynard has wandered away from his moose mother into a duck's nest where upon he soon believes himself to be a duck even though he looks nothing like his ducky siblings. Since mother duck accepts him as her baby duckling, why should he think otherwise? Clumsy Maynard stumbles and trips when he tries to waddle, sinks into the pond when learning to paddle, and since he cannot produce a proper "quack" he must instead carry a sign that says "quack". Poor little misfit Maynard feels like he has been born into the "wrong fambly." Will he ever become a normal ducky or does nature have a surprise in store for Maynard?
The Uglified Ducky is especially enjoyable to use as a read aloud book as it comes with a CD featuring Willy Clafin as Maynard Moose. There are many opportunities for children to join in the telling of the story as they "quack" "Gronk Arooo" along with the storyteller. (description by ms. M)

bluebonnet_clipart.gifTexas Bluebonnet Literature Activities:
Use Story maker, an interactive program where kids can create their own story-choose characters, setting, goals, and more.

bluebonnet_clipart.gifTexas Bluebonnet Literature Connections:

Here are a few more retold tales that you might like.

UglyDuckling.jpgThe Ugly Duckling written by Hans Christian Andersen; retold and illustrated by Rachel Isadora
In this retelling of the Ugly Duckling, set on the African continent, the duckling spends an unhappy year ostracized by the other animals before he grows into a beautiful swan.

chickenlittle.jpgChicken Little by Rebecca Emberley and Ed Emberley
A retelling of the classic story of Chicken Little, who has an acorn fall on his head and runs in a panic to his friends Henny Penny, Lucky Ducky, and Loosey Goosey, to tell them the sky is falling.

threecabritos.jpgThe Three Cabritos by Eric A. Kimmel; illustrated by Stephen Gilpin
Retells, with a southwestern United States setting, the traditional tale about three billy goat brothers who trick a beast that lives under the bridge.

goldilocks.jpgGoldilocks and the Three Bears by Caralyn Buehner & Mark Buehner
In this variation on the classic folktale, a rhyming, rope-skipping, little girl rudely helps herself to the belongings of a genteel family of bears. (This is one of Ms. Murphy's favorite author/illustrator teams)

Wynetta and the Cornstalk by Helen Ketteman
A Texas retelling of Jack and the Beanstalk
“Once a whip of a girl named Waynetta lived with her Ma on a ranch in the poorest, scrubbiest part of Texas. They worked hard as eight-legged mules, but barely scraped by. One summer, a long dry spell hit. Their well bottomed out, the pond turned to dust, and the pastures dried up. Their longhorns got so thin it took three of them standing together to cast a shadow, and Waynetta and her Ma were forced to sell them off until only one longhorn was left. Finally, Waynetta’s Ma gave up all together. “We’ve run out of money to buy feed, Waynetta. You best sell that last critter ‘fore it starves.”