Here is another excerpt from the book In the Child's World by Emilie Poulsson.


To The Teacher—

After the morning greetings the central subject of the morning may be introduced in many ways; perhaps by directing the children's observation to the weather, finding what they noticed about it on the way to kindergarten; or, if they have been singing "Come, little leaves," the subject of the wind may be brought uppermost easily and naturally through the song.

The Wind as an Unseen Power.

(The thought in this form is, of course, only for the teacher's mind. No more than the impression is to be given to the children; and this will be done by leading them to recall familiar manifestations of the wind's power.)


What does the wind do? Plays with the leaves, gets the trees ready for winter, covers the ground with them to help keep the roots and seeds warm, tells the birds that winter is coming, blows the nuts down from the tall trees in the wood, as well as the apples, pears and other fruits from the orchard trees.

(Anecdote of child in an orchard, who sees an apple but is unable to reach it and asks the wind to bring it to her.)

Going back to other than Autumn work,—the wind rocks the birds in the nests, flies kites, drives sailboats, blows the clothes dry, helps the sun dry the ground after rain, and turns the windmills, which are sometimes used instead of water-mills. Can we hear the wind? Can we feel the wind? Can we see the wind?

Can we see what the wind does?


The Wind as a Sower of Seeds.

(Recall some of the previous talks on seeds. Let the children tell what seeds need to be planted;—corn seeds, or we will have no corn; wheat seeds, or we will have no wheat; flower seeds or no flowers, etc., etc.)

What has the farmer been doing lately? Gathering seeds from farm and garden to plant in the spring. What pretty yellow flower do we find in the grass in the spring? Does the dandelion have seeds? the daisy? the oak tree? Does the farmer go everywhere to gather such seeds? But we always have dandelions and daisies. Then they must have been planted. Who does this? Some one who works and plays, though we never see him. Yes ! the wind sows such seeds,—blows them from the plant, carries them along, drops them, blows dust and leaves over them till they are covered and can take root by and by, and come up in the spring when the other seeds do.

What the Winds Bring.

Contrast gentle breezes and wild, boisterous winds. Notice how Mr. Wind sometimes knocks at one window, sometimes at another;—that is, comes from different directions. North Wind coming from the cold countries, tells us to remember "Agoonack," brings ice and snow, is a friend of "Little Jack Frost." South Wind comes from the warm countries, whispers of summer, comes from the same land as the oranges and bananas, brings warmth. East Wind comes from the ocean, brings moisture, fog or rain. "West Wind, Best Wind" brings bright, clear weather.

Weather Vane useful to tell which wind is blowing. Anecdote of child and weather vane. Child was going on a picnic; weather doubtful; but soon the weather vane turned, showing that the wind had changed, promising good weather. Child happy and grateful. Froebel's play of the Weather Vane.

A favorite verse about the wind is:—

" Whichever way the wind doth blow
Some heart is glad to have it so.
Then blow it east or blow it west,
The wind that blows, that wind is best,"



How West Wind Helped Dandelion
by Emilie Poulsson

There was once a Dandelion plant which grew in the grass just outside a garden fence. The leaves of the plant were thick and green, and its flower (held on rather a high stem, for it was a late blossom) was very full and round, and of the brightest yellow.

The Dandelion was usually as happy as a queen—though not because of the golden crown, oh, no! Nor is it the crown which makes the queen happy, if that is what you are thinking! But the Dandelion was happy in the beautiful world and in her loving friends, and happy in her work and her play.

Who were her friends? Oh! the Sunbeams that came sliding down from the great sun and kept little Dandelion warm, and made her green leaves greener and her yellow flower brighter whenever they came ; and the Raindrops who tumbled their little silvery selves down upon her, as if in a great fury sometimes, but only intending a frolic and not really hurting her. They brought her all the water she had to drink and bathe in, and Dandelion missed them very much if they stayed long away. The great Winds were her friends, too. Dandelion was just the least bit afraid of them, to tell the truth, and liked them best when they were gentle and quiet, or when they sent their messengers, the little Breezes, to play with her.

Dandelion had friends of another sort, too; little creatures made of music, motion, and feathers,— (we call them birds).

Insects, too, visited her;—butterflies as yellow as her flower, grasshoppers as green as her leaves, bees going a-marketing for honey and pollen, ants running nimbly along on their six threadlike legs, and many, many others, down to the tiny, moving, black specks which seemed too small to be alive and yet were as full of life as their larger neighbors.

Besides all these friends, Dandelion had some flower friends; the clovers who lived near her on the roadside, and the garden flowers who lived on the other side of the fence. The nearest neighbors among the garden flowers were some morning-glories who had actually climbed over the fence and were as friendly as possible.

Dandelion's play was with any of these different friends. Her work was to grow and make seeds,—as many good seeds as she possibly could.

As the long, bright days passed, Dandelion worked faithfully, in a flower's quiet, unseen way of working; and at last her seeds were formed. Instead of the golden crown of a flower which she had worn, her stalk held up a beautiful ball of silvery gauze. The tiny seeds were in this ball and would be ripe very soon.

One day Dandelion saw two children, Max and Nannie, walking about in the garden in a very business-like way. When they came to the morning-glory vine, she could hear what they were saying.

"Where is the box for the morning-glory seeds, Max?" called the little girl. "I see ever so many ripe ones."

"Here it is," replied Max, who had been looking in the basket which he carried. "We must gather a great many morning- glory seeds, for you know we want to plant them all along the fence next year; and we are going to send some to Cousin Fan, too."

"Yes, and then she will have the same kind of flowers away off there that we have here," said Nannie, as she poked among the leaves and blossoms of the morning-glory vine to find the plump seed vessels. Soon she had gathered all the ripe ones, and she and Max went back up the garden walk and into the house.

The Dandelion plant pondered on what it had heard. Seeds! Why, Dandelion plants had seeds as well as morning-glory vines! Probably Max and Nannie would come for her seeds. They would soon be ready, —in a few days, surely.

The few days passed quickly. Every morning Max and Nannie came out with their basket and little boxes and went to the garden plants, gathering the ripe seeds. But alas ! for the hopes of the Dandelion plant! They never looked at her or even thought of her seeds, although they loved dandelions as well as any other children.

Poor Dandelion felt very much slighted. Why did not Max and Nannie want her seeds to plant next year or to send to Cousin Fan? Who would gather her seeds? She had tried so hard and worked so faithfully, and arranged her seeds so beautifully. Was it all for nothing?

Hark! "Cheer-up! Cheer-up!" sang a robin in the orchard; and a little whispering breeze rustled past her, breathing softly; "Wait, oh, wait!"

"Ah! but what will become of my seeds? No one will gather them and they will all be wasted."

The breeze passed on and then came a stronger puff of air.

"West Wind is coming," thought Dandelion, trembling a little; and just then she heard him calling.

"What, ho! there, Dandelion! Are you too warm? I will fan you. Are you too wet? I will help you shake the heavy drops from your leaves and flowers."

"No," said the Dandelion, "my leaves are not laden with water, nor is my heart parched with heat; but my seeds, my precious seeds are all to be wasted. No one will gather them."

"Ho, ho !" laughed West Wind, noisily, but kindly. "And what do you wish to have done with your seeds?"

"I wish they could be planted next year," said Dandelion, "some of them here, and some of them far away,—just as will be done to the seeds of the garden plants."

"Ho, ho!" laughed West Wind again, as noisily and kindly as before. "That is an easy matter to arrange. In fact it is arranged. It is one of the things I was to attend to this very morning, if your seeds were ripe."

"And have you brought a little box with you?" asked Dandelion.

"Not I!" replied West Wind. "I manage differently from the children. I sow the seeds as I gather them, and I also cover them. Then they are all ready to wake up and grow in the early spring."

"Oh! thank you, good West Wind," said Dandelion. "What a kind friend you are!"

"It is a part of our work," said West Wind. "My brothers and I have a great deal of seed-sowing to do in all the forests and fields over the whole earth. But I must not talk any longer. Now, ready! One, two, three, whew! Away they go."

Dandelion heard a merry
whistle and felt a sudden
strong puff against her.

At the same instant all
her seeds were gone. Where the
feathery white ball had been there
showed now a little bald knob.

"Why!" said Dandelion rather bewildered, "how quickly that was done!"

She looked about her. Here and there on the grass near her she saw several of her seeds; and then looking farther and yet farther away she could see others whirling and dancing through the air carried along by the friendly seed sower, West Wind.

The little silky plumes which each seed wore, and which had made Dandelion's ball of silvery gauze,made it easy for the wind to take the seeds as far as Dandelion could wish; and some were also left to grow right there on the roadside bank, where she herself had always lived.

Dandelion was very happy. The robin in the orchard sang again his hearty "Cheer-up! Cheer-up!" and a little breeze which followed after West Wind whispered softly as before: "Wait! oh, wait!"

"Yes," said Dandelion; "there was no need of my worrying. But who would have thought that the great West Wind would take care of the seeds of a plain little Dandelion!"

The Dandelion Cycle
by Emilie Poulsson

"Pretty little Goldilocks, shining in the sun,
Pray, what will become of you when the summer's done ? "

"Then I'll be old Silverhead; for, as I grow old,
All my shining hair will be white instead of gold.

"And where rests a silver hair that has blown from me,
Other little Goldilocks in the Spring you'll see!

"Goldilocks to Silverhead, Silverhead to gold,
So the change is going on every year, I'm told."

Odysseus and the Bag of Winds

Far-famed Odysseus was on his way across the sea, to his home in rocky Ithaca, when he came to the island of Aeolia. Many had been his wanderings, by sea and land, since he had left his own fair dwelling, and most welcome was the sight of this friendly shore. Here lived the great King of the winds—Aeolus—who could send gentle zephyrs murmuring over the sea, and could call back the wild tempests when they played too roughly with the waves. Well might Odysseus and his companions rejoice at coming to the wonderful floating island of King Aeolus, for here they were kindly treated, after their toils and troubles, and when the time came for them to start once more on their way Aeolus stowed in their boat gifts and provisions of all kinds for their voyage.

One of these gifts was very strange in its appearance—a great bulging sack, as large as an ox; in fact it was made of an ox's skin—tied tightly about with a cord of shining silver. This placed carefully in the boat, and taking Odysseus aside told him that in this skin he had bound up the blustering winds, so that no storms should disturb the calm of the ocean, and drive the little boat out of her course. If, however, Odysseus should at any time be in need of a powerful blast to carry the boat swiftly away from some dangerous coast, or from some enemy, he was to open the bag with great caution and, letting out only the wind he wished, to close it again quickly, and bind it fast with the silver cord. When Aeolus had bidden farewell to Odysseus and his crew, he sent a gentle west wind after him, to bear them prosperously on their way.

Day after day they sailed peacefully over the gleaming ocean, the soft gale bearing them along, while Odysseus managed the sail, and kept watch night and day. On the tenth day Odysseus was lying asleep in the boat, resting from his labors, when the sailors began talking among themselves of the mysterious-looking bag. "It must be full of treasures," said they, "and why should not we have our share of them?"

Speaking thus foolishly, they finally decided to open the bag. They loosed the silver cord, but they need to do no more, for the boisterous winds at once burst forth, and in a twinkling had lashed the quiet waves into foam, and whirled the boat far out of her course. The helmsman could do nothing, since the boat no longer obeyed the rudder, and even Odysseus, awakened by the commotion, was powerless against these roaring, whistling winds that tossed the little boat hither and thither at their will.

At last Odysseus and his men, driven far from their native shores, saw land once again. The foolish sailors were glad enough to pull the boat up on the beach, and in safety once more to built their fire and prepare a comfortable meal.

Many days and years went by before Odysseus at last reached his home. He had many adventures after this, but when he dwelt in peace and quiet at last, in the home from which he had been absent so long, he was always fond of telling the story of the bag of winds given him by King Aeolus, and of the great disaster brought upon his sailors and himself by their foolish curiosity.

The North Wind at Play (From the German)
as told by Harriet Ryan

Once upon a time, in a house under a hill, lived Aeolus and his four sons: North Wind, South Wind, East Wind and West Wind.

One day North Wind said to his father: "May I go out to play?"

"Oh, yes!" said his father, "if you don't stay too long."

Then away ran North Wind with a merry shout and song, banging the door behind him.

As he ran along the road he saw in the orchard a beautiful tree upon which were green apples.

"Oh! come and play with me," said North Wind. "Come and play with me!"

"Oh, no!" said the tree; "I must stay quite still and help the apples to grow, else they will not be large and round and red in the autumn for the little children. Oh, no, North Wind, I cannot go."

"Puff! " said the North Wind—and down all the apples fell to the ground.

The next thing North Wind saw was a beautiful waving field of corn.

"Oh! Come and play with me! Oh! Come and play with me!" said North Wind.

"No, no!" said the corn; "I must stand quite still and grow. If you will look under this beautiful green silk you will see some little kernels lying. These must grow big and yellow to be ground into meal to make golden pudding for the children. So you see I cannot go to play."

At this the North Wind sighed—" Ah-ha-a-a! " and the corn lay down on the ground.

Running along, North Wind saw a lily growing under a window.

"Oh, you lovely lily! come and play with me," said North Wind.

"I cannot," said the lily, gently ; "I have to stay here because the farmer's little girl is not at all well, and I am her friend, and every morning she comes and smiles down at me and I smile back again. I am sure she would miss me very much if I should go; so I must stay here, dear North Wind."

North Wind touched her very gently,—but she hung her head and never again looked up.

Now the farmer went out to work, and when he saw the corn and the apple tree, he said: "Ah! Mr. North Wind has been here!" But when he went home, his little girl told him about the lily. And the farmer said: "I'll go right up to Mr. and tell him all about it!"

So away he went; and he said: "Good morning, Mr. Your boy, North Wind, has been down my way; and he has blown the apples from the trees, and the corn is lying down on the ground; but, worse than this, he has hurt my little girl's lily!"

" Ah!" said Mr. Aeolus, "I am very sorry. I will speak to North Wind when he comes in." And then the farmer went home.

By and by in came North Wind.

"My boy," said Aeolus, "the farmer has been here, and he has told me all the harm which you have done." And then the father told North Wind the story of the apples and the corn and the lily.

"Oh, well," said North Wind, "I know I did it; but I didn't mean to. I just meant to have a little fun with the apple tree; but when I said 'Puff-f-f all the apples fell down! And it was just the same with the corn; it lay down before I knew that I had hurt it. As for the lily, that was the loveliest thing you ever saw, father ; I only kissed it when I came away."

"I believe that what you tell me is true, my boy; but if you cannot help being so rough and rude when you play, you must go out only when the farmer has gathered the apples and corn, and when the flowers have been taken safely into the house. When the snow is on the ground, you and Jack Frost may have fine frolics together."


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