Why People Walk With Two Legs Instead of Four

Emma wrote this folk tale yesterday.  She gave us permission to post it here on the blog.  It took her 45 minutes, pointing to one letter after another.  She is so, so talented!

Why People Walk With Two Legs Instead of Four

“Many years ago, people were walking on all fours like many animals.  Reaching for food meant they could use front arms or back legs.  They were very strong.  Other animals were not afraid of them.  They looked at other animals as family.

“There was much to see from being so low to the ground.  There was much to touch from living in the dirt and the grass.  They tasted whatever they could. People now are more fussy with food.  The smells were all they knew.

“What is missing?

“You are right if you said:  sound.  People heard sounds from high above and they did not know where they were coming from.  The sounds were soft and silky.   Days went by without knowledge of sound.  One people leader wanted badly to hear it louder.  The only way she thought possible was to be taller.  She practiced standing on her back legs and it was successful.  Everyone else followed.  The soft and silky sounds were birds chirping.”

Emma began writing this series of folk tales while we were in Texas last month.  She has written five now and the third one was entitled, Why People Walk on Two Legs.  You can read it by clicking on the link, but in it she wrote, “They had to work in the fields wearing knee-shoes and regular shoes.  They could not run fast that way.”  I love that!  She goes on to talk about a king who had outlawed walking, until he was injured from all that crawling around and the only remedy was for him to walk, whereupon he made it legal for people to walk on their two feet and so they did, never looking back.  To me, that story was about how until we experience what another goes through, we often remain divided, though I have no idea if that was her intent.   This one is completely different, even though the titles are similar.

I am in Chicago at the TASH conference, where IbbyLeah Kelly and I are presenting first thing this morning on Relationships and Multi-media (so excited to be with my two wonderful friends!)

Em giving the Queen’s wave astride her favorite statue – Balto

Em on Balto

24 responses to “Why People Walk With Two Legs Instead of Four

  1. She certainly has got the structure for folktales down pat!

  2. Hi Ariane I love reading what Emma writes. I hope she continues to give you permission to post them.

    On a completely different topic, I thought you would be happy to know that this morning, Ryan Tubridy, a very popular TV and radio host in Ireland, talked about “The Reason I Jump” on his morning radio show. He gave it glowing reviews and recommended it to anyone who wants an insight into autism. He said he really didn’t understand autism, never knowing anyone who is on the spectrum, but this book is an easy read that explains so much. A recommendation from Ryan, while not on par with Oprah, can cause books to fly off the shelves in Ireland.

  3. That’s brilliant!!!! Emma’s so gifted!!!

  4. She is so gifted and she is such a gift. It is a beautiful story, thank you Emma for writing it.

  5. What is super interesting (or super bureaucratic, depending on how you look at it) is that Em is actually doing 6th grade Common Core aligned writing. Developing a thematic folktale, fable or myth and comprehending their narrative yet expository nature is work 6th graders do at the end of the year, and as if to prove my point- which is this: To Emma- everyone who underestimates the intelligence and analytical abilities of someone who doesn’t necessarily articulate their thoughts out loud in the same way “mainstream” people might needs a reality check.


  6. Such a beautiful story!

  7. I love your story, Emma! You write wonderful stories. You also sing. Maybe one day you will sing a story you wrote, and that would be super fun to hear!
    Have a great time. at the conference, Ariane! Ibby and Kelly, too! XO!

  8. I had the privilege and honor of witnessing her spell this out one letter at a time on her stencil board. She works so hard, and this took her 45 minutes to write but what a beautiful tale! Hope you enjoy and share! Go Emma!

    • So sad I missed watching her. While the TASH Conference was wonderful and doing the trunk show a necessity, watching Em write is by far the most wonderful thing and I feel so fortunate whenever I get to!

  9. I am definitely drawn in, to become one walking on all fours in Emma’s story. Emma, this is a fantastic way of sharing yourself with us…keep going!

  10. What a creative beauty she is! There is so much depth to her writing too, far beyond just a tale, I think she is telling us things far within even that :).

  11. Brilliant! I look forward to reading more of Emma’s writing. Thank her for sharing her wonderful work with us, please.

  12. I admire her perseverance and the enormous amount of effort she puts into these stories SO MUCH. It’s humbling to think that we, the readers, are worth that amount of time and effort. Thank you Emma.

  13. Wonderful, and as a former teacher I have to say if any of my students had written this I’d be incredibly proud. Great job Emma!

  14. so glad she gave persmission to share this…such a treat. just love her endlessly inventive mind. when i read these terrific stories i just think about how much she has to offer the world, and how lucky the world is for that fact.

  15. Such effort and perseverance by Emma, but so very worth it. She has captured the form of a traditional folk story perfectly. As for her writing, she has an economical yet distinctive style that suggests an older author. I’m a big fan of her work!

  16. “Bonjour” from Down-under! Our beautiful OT recommended we check out Emma’s Hope Book! After less then 24 hours we are hooked. It is so lovely to read and have thoughts resonate with your own experience. I love all your stories Emma and can’t wait to start reading some to my son Jack. He is 6 years old and loves stories (particularly rhyming stories like the Lynley Dodd series), reading, music, watching sport and learning French (yep – a second language). We recently found this picture of a rainbow giraffe. http://fedgeno.com/meme-generator/111
    Jack really likes it and I thought you might too. Love Ester and Jack =) lokah samastah sukhino

  17. Emma you’re a really talented writer keep writing the world needs to hear your voice

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