A Crushed Dream by Jessica Maher

Growing up all Jasmine wanted to do was play softball on the varsity team for her high school. She wanted to represent them on the field in one of the most important positions. Starting out as a freshman, she trained diligently with her mom, every single day after school before the season even started. When the softball season started, Jasmine was ready to show off her skills!


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The Boy Who Never Smiled by Theresa McMillan

There once was a boy who never smiled. His name was Matt Downer. But all the kids called him “Mad Downer,” because they said he always looked mad. He never smiled at his mother or father. He never smiled to his friends. He never smiled when he was happy. And he never, never smiled when he poised for a picture. He just never smiled. He even hated the very idea of smiling. When his mother or father tried to get him to smile, Matt would shout “No!” When Matt’s friends asked him why he never smiled, he said, “Smiling is for losers. Why should I smile?” He never seemed to care that not smiling was making everyone around him sad.


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Red Marbles

Red Marbles:

I was at the corner grocery store buying some early potatoes. I noticed a small boy, delicate of bone and feature, ragged but clean, hungrily apprising a basket of freshly picked green peas.

I paid for my potatoes, but was also drawn to the display of fresh green peas. I am a pushover for creamed peas and new potatoes.

Pondering the peas, I couldn’t help overhearing the conversation between Mr. Miller (the store owner) and the ragged boy next to me.

‘Hello, Barry, how are you today?’

‘Hello, Mr. Miller. Fine, thank you. Just admiring them peas. They sure look good.’

‘They are good, Barry. How’s your Ma?’

‘Fine. Getting stronger all the time.’

‘Good. Anything I can help you with?’

‘No, Sir. Just admiring the peas.’

‘Would you like to take some home?’ asked Mr. Miller. ;

‘No, sir. Got nothing to pay for ’em with.’

‘Well, what have you to trade me for some of those peas?’

‘All I have is my prize marble here.’

‘Is that right? Let me see it,’ said Miller.

‘Here ’tis. She’s a dandy.’

‘I can see that. Hmm mmm, only thing is this one is blue and I sort of go for red.. Do you have a red one like this at home?’ the store owner asked.

‘ Not ‘zackley, but almost.’

‘Tell you what. Take this sack of peas home with you and next trip this way let me look at that red marble,’ Mr. Miller told the boy.

‘Sure will. Thanks, Mr. Miller.’

Mrs. Miller, who had been standing nearby, came over to help me.

With a smile, she said, ‘There are two other boys like him in our community, all three are in very poor circumstances. Jim just loves to bargain with them for peas, apples, tomatoes or whatever. When they come back with their red marbles, and they always do, he decides he doesn’t like red after all and he sends them home with a bag of produce for a green marble or an orange one, when they come on their next trip to the store.’

I left the store smiling to myself, impressed with this man. A short time later I moved to Colorado , but I never forgot the story of this man, the boys and their bartering for marbles..

Several years went by, each more rapid than the previous one. Just recently I had occasion to visit some old friends in that Idaho community, and while I was there learned that Mr. Miller had died. They were having his visitation that evening, and knowing my friends wanted to go, I agreed to accompany them. Upon arrival at the mortuary, we fell into line to meet the relatives of the deceased and to offer whatever words of comfort we could.


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Huggles the Honeybear by Gavin Fouche

It was the end of a busy day at Wriggley’s Toyshop. Everybody had gone home and the great big green doors which guarded the toys inside had been tightly shut and locked.

Inside, the toyshop was covered in darkness. But all was not quiet as a faint whimpering noise could be heard. It was coming from one of the toy-shelves.

From the sales counter, of where he had been placed on display for promotional purposes, Policeman Pete switched on his torch. (Luckily for him batteries had been included!) “Who’s there?” He asked as he slowly swung the torch beam across the toyshop.


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Letter to the Teacher by Sandy Goodwick

Moebius Sydrome

Letter to the teacher by Sandy Goodwick

Dear Teacher:

About Moebius Syndrome: I’m giving you this because I want you to understand more about me. You’ll see I am just like everybody else in your class in lots of ways, but in some ways, I’m not the same. I need you to know how I am “different” from the other kids in our class so you can help make school a safe place for me.


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The Magic Mirror by Kari Storm

Fae was a very beautiful little girl, but she didn’t always see how beautiful she was. She looked different from other little girls. Her right hand looked like a pappy’s paw.

When she walked down the hallway at school the other kids would stare at Fae. Some of the kids would point and laugh. George, the little boy who sat next to her class, called her mean names.


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