Telling the Truth

Need a story about how lying can be hurtful?  One of my colleagues shared  an older book with me called Sam, Bangs, and Mooshine (c. 1966) written and illustrated by the late Evaline Ness.

Our students often like to tell stories.  Imagination is a great skill.  I tell my students the one place they can make up whatever story they want is in Writer’s Workshop.  Each can use their voices to paint a story of their own.  They can be creative and catch the attention of their readers.

In the story, Sam, the little girl, lets her imagination go.  She is creative, but she doesn’t write stories.   Her father warns Sam many times to stop the “moonshine”.  The danger, as with Sam, Bangs, and Moonshine, is when a child deceives someone and is not truthful.   Sam does just that; she tells them to a little boy who believes her story of a baby kangaroo.  Thomas goes looking for the animal every time.  One day he goes looking and nearly drowns.  Sam does learn her lesson, as I would hope our students would as well.

Savorings for reading and in writing for Sam, Bangs, and Moonshine:

  • Reality versus Fantasy
  • Lesson on Truth
  • Predictions – the book provides the opportunity for  predicting what could happen with each “moonshine” Sam tells.
  • Community – the book can be a great sounding board for class discussion of the topic of truth
  • Story ideas
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