Sunday, April 19, 2020

Reading Notes: Italian Popular Tales, Part A

Italian Popular Tales Unit from the UN-Textbook
Depiction of the eventual Pope and son

The story begins with a father whose son has been away studying at school for the past ten years, when he received a letter from the son's teacher claiming that he needed to take his son back as he could not teach him any more. Upon the son's return, his father set up a large feast to celebrate him even inviting many different powerful noble men from all across Italy. The noble men all gave speeches like in most ancient feasts, but once they were done on of them asked the son to tell him one thing that he had learned in his ten years of schooling. The son claimed to have learned the language of various animals including: dogs, frogs, and even birds. The whole crowd erupted in laughter at the answer and all left almost immediately. The father was mocked for being so proud while the son was made fun of for being a fool. The father became so enraged at this that he ordered two of his servants to go out and kill the son. After they did this they were supposed to bring back his heart, but they could not do it and instead decided to bring back a random dog's heart instead. After this the boy flees for a long time until he came across a rich treasurer's castle and asked to stay inside as he had been on the move for some time. Upon his arrival though a group of dogs came to gather outside the castle and as the son understood them he found out that a large group of assassins were coming to attack the castle that very night. The treasurer set up the guards to eliminate the assassins and was so grateful to the son that he offered his daughter's hand in marriage to him on the condition that he couldn't come back until a year and three days had passed. Next, the boy met the king's daughter and was able to help her finally sleep by calming the frogs in the nearby pond as she had thrown a cross into the fountain, so after removing she was saved and also offered to the son in marriage. The son finally left and went to Rome where he made three new friends along the road only to be followed by a flock of singing birds. The son finally interpreted what they were saying as they were trying to pick the new Pope and suddenly it landed on the son who shortly after became Pope. The newly-ordained Pope summoned all the people he had helped as well as his father, who instantly wept as he realized he was wrong, and they lived together in peace.

Saturday, April 18, 2020

Week 13 Story: The Sky is Falling!

Swiper the Fox

Once upon a time, there was a small hen named Pat who was resting peacefully in her nest out in her home field when all of the sudden something shook her awake as it felt like something had fallen from above on her head.

"Oh my!" Pat squawked
"The sky is falling!"

And just like that Pat shot up and began to go throughout the forest looking for her friends as she had to find someone important to tell this life-altering news. Pat first went to her brother John who was a mighty rooster and he was perplexed by just how the sky could be falling, but tagged along as he was worried about his little sister. Next, the group found their friend Don the duck, who was out near the pond looking at lily pads, and hurried up to him to tell them about their predicament. Don agreed to help as he felt someone had to know about such serious news. Lastly, the group went out onto the pond to find the biggest of their friend Gina the goose who offered to ferry the birds back across the pond and take them on the fastest route to get to the king.

The party was moving along on the trail that Gina had showed them and were nearing the king's mighty castle, when they noticed a shadow shifting in the nearby brush. Gina ran up to the brush flapping her wings out wide and out popped the local forest trickster Swiper. He was a devious fox who would pick on all of the other animals of the woods, but the group was taken aback when he offered to help them out as he knew an even faster way to get to the king's castle. After agreeing they followed Swiper to a tunnel that he claimed led right into the castle, but everyone was skeptical.

"Swiper that's no tunnel!" Pat called out as she noticed what looked like multiple sets of fox eyes.

She knew that this was yet another one of his plots so they all went back forgetting all about the sky.

"Ah man!" Swiper cried out knowing that he had been caught.

( from the UN-Textbook)

Author's Notes:
Kept all of the original animals and introduction, but changed the names as they were all rather long and silly as they rhymed (ex: Henny-Penny). Also changed the ending as instead of having the fox successfully attack/trick the party besides the main character I had a familiar childhood ending where the devious fox was found out.

Reading Notes: English Fairy Tales, Part B

English Fairy Tales Unit from the UN-Textbook
Depiction of Henny-penny having the "sky fall down"

Before getting into the actual telling and plot of this story it is interesting to note that each of the characters have a sort of second name after their own that rhymed with their first name. For example. one of the main characters of this story is know as "Henny-penny," or "Cocky-locky," and I will omit the second name for ease of reading / referencing. To begin, Henny was going around in her local cornyard when suddenly she was hit on the head by something from above. This led Henny to call out that the sky was falling and that she needed to go to tell the king, so she set out to and on her way first met Cocky who was a rooster and after Henny had told him what she was going to do, he gladly joined along. Next, Henny and Cocky kept going along the path to the king when they encountered Ducky who followed Cocky's suit for after he heard about Henny's mission he too wanted to tag along. Then, the three continued along the path to the king when they encountered Goosey who did the same as the two prior and joined the party to tell the king that the sky was falling. The last animal the party encountered was Foxy who after being asked by the group the same line of questions, told them that they were all headed the wrong way to get to the king and offered to show the group the right way there. Foxy lead the group to a nearby cave and offered them to come through one by one and killed them each as they came down. This happened in the reverse order the animals joined the party until Cocky was bitten twice and Henny knew something was wrong so she ran home and never got to tell the king that the sky is falling.

Reading Notes: English Fairy Tales, Part A

English Fairy Tales Unit from the UN-Textbook
Visual of a skein

This unit begins with a woman making five pies in her kitchen with her daughter and when the mother took the all of the pies out of the oven she noticed that they all had been overcooked. Because of this, the pies all had too hard of crusts to eat, so the mother told her daughter to go and set the pies up on the nearby shelf so that they could go soft over time. The daughter instead decides that since the pies were going to eventually soften up then surely she could eat them now despite their hard crusts. After only a moment the daughter ate up all five pies with their hard crusts and it was not until dinner that the girl's mother called her to bring a pie as they likely had softened up by now. When the daughter went to go check the shelf that her mother told her to set each of the pies on, she looked and saw only the five plates that they were supposed to be on top of. She turned to her mother and lied to her saying that none of the pies had softened up yet to save herself. The mother decided she was going to have one of the pies regardless of the softness of the crust, and the daughter finally cracked telling the mother that she had in fact eaten all of the pies. The mother began to spin around and sing that her daughter had eaten the five pies. The king was heading down the street and overheard the singing only to ask her if he could marry her daughter. His only caveat was that she had to spin five skeins everyday or he would have her killed. The daughter did get to enjoy the high life until it came time to make the five skeins until an imp came to try and help, but was eventually banished with a simple rhyme.

Week 12 Story: Feline Fiddle

Depiction of Felix 

Long ago, their was a cat named Felix who wanted nothing more than to be able to woo his longtime crush Diamond. Felix paced around wondering how he could do this and had been practicing to serenade her, but every time he tried there was only a horrible scratching noise. Felix tried and tried to get his song down, but could not manage to hit a single note. He was devastated as he thought his plight was hopeless, for if he couldn't even learn a simple song, how could he ever win a perfect cat like Diamond. Felix went out to a nearby pond and began to look up to the stars to think about what he would do next. Suddenly, Felix noticed a star seeming to grow closer until it crashed down in the thicket across the pond. Felix hurried over to see the glowing object, and after pushing the brush aside saw a golden fiddle. He picked it up and felt a power rush over him and suddenly he felt light as air. Felix grabbed the accompanying bow and tried to play a few notes only to be shocked as he played the most beautiful ballad he had ever heard. Felix took off knowing he had to act fast and rushed over to Diamond's house. Felix positioned himself outside of her window and began to play the same stunning ballad that he felt perfectly showed how he felt for her. Soon after Diamond poked her head out of the window to try and find where this heavenly sound was coming from. She was floored that Felix had done all of this for her and ran out to give him a big hug. Felix was taken off guard at first and dropped the fiddle only to see it instantly disappear when it hit the ground again.

( from the UN-Textbook)

Author's Notes:
Extrapolated on the old nursery rhyme with the cat and the fiddle by creating characters and a plot. Also made the fiddle come to the cat rather than the cat just have the fiddle already. Also tied in the moon/space aspect for the violin's origin.

Reading Notes: Nursery Rhyme, Part B

Nursery Rhymes Unit from the UN-Textbook
Depiction of the cat with his fiddle

The main theme across these tellings is that they are all in a sort of sing song type of pattern as they are all defined as "rhymes," with certain rhyme schemes that differ between each of the stories. The first telling is a much shorter story than most of the others in this unit and revolves around the teller describing his son, John. His son had gone to bed, but left on his pants as well as only one of his shoes.

The next story has each of its verses begins with the phrase "Cock a doodle doo!" This was due to the main character of the story being a rooster calling out. The rooster starts out by explaining that his "dame," had lost her shoe as well as his master had lost his fiddling stick. The next verse describes that his dame does not know what to do with his master not being able to find his fiddling stick. The third verse repeats the first verse, but instead of the master losing his fiddling stick he instead found his fiddling stick. Then the dame begins to dance as the master has his fiddling stick and begins to play for the rooster and the dame. The final verse wrapped the story up with the dame still unable to find her shoe and left to bed unsure of what to do next to find her shoe.

The next story is a classic rhyme with many different characters quickly being introduced to many different wacky characters. This is also quite a short story as well and begins with a cat and his fiddle being introduced. Next, their is a cow who had jumped over the moon being introduced. Then, a small dog is introduced who laughed at all of the sites and chuckled to himself. Lastly, the story wraps up with the last characters being introduced as while all of these characters were being introduced a dish chased after a spoon.

Reading Notes: Nursery Rhymes, Part A

Nursery Rhymes Unit from the UN-Textbook
Depiction of Simple Simon

The main theme across these tellings is that they are all in a sort of sing song type of pattern as they are all defined as "rhymes," with certain rhyme schemes that differ between each of the stories. The first in this set is centered around two young children who were taken from their homes. These children rename anonymous in the story as per the speaker in this story. Both of the children were left out in the woods by their kidnappers and they remained there late into the night. They became sad as they realized their situation especially as the sun went down. After some time of crying, the two children "...lay down and died." After this a group of red robins came to spread strawberry leaves on the two children all throughout the day singing out about the "Poor babes in the wood!"

The next story is much shorter as it revolves around someone known as the Crooked Man who goes out and about encountering many different crooked objects and animals from a coin he finds on the road to the cat he purchased with that caught a similar mouse. After this whirlwind of crooked animal and objects the Crooked Man went back with his new friends to his crooked house.

The next story revolves around a character known only as Simple Simon. Simon begins by approaching a local pie man at a fair and asking him to let him have a taste of his pie. The pie man asked Simon for to show him that he has money to pay for it before letting him try his pies, but Simon tells the pie man that he does not have any money. So Simon went out to go fishing to make the money for some pie looking to catch a whale inside his mother's pail that was filled up all the water he had.