Quackenstein Hatches a Family is written by Sudipta Bardhan-Quallen, illustrated
by Brian T. Jones and read by Kristen Bell.
Crack open this tale of family and fright,
as cute as it is creepy. All the animals in the zoo have friends and family to play
with and love. All of them, that is, except Quackenstein. Lonely and bitter in his
ramshackle corner, he decides to adopt an egg. He cares for it diligently, waiting
until the moment when it will hatch a baby duck of his own.
Welcome to Storyline Online, brought to you by the SAG-AFTRA Foundation.
I'm Kristen Bell, and today I will be reading "Quackenstein Hatches a Family,"
written by Sudipta Bardhan-Quallen and illustrated by Brian T. Jones.
In the darkest
corner of the zoo There stood a gloomy shack.
A nearby scrawl read "Keep out
all!! Just leave me be! Signed, Quack" Most creatures lived In packs and herds,
In gaggles, bloats, and litters. But all alone There on his own Poor Quackenstein
grew bitter. He was the hermit of the zoo And faced a lonely struggle. "It isn't fair!
My nest is bare!" He had no one to snuggle. Quack passed the nursery one day,
Where babies laughed and tumbled. "Everyone has some someone, Except for me,
" he mumbled. He spied a small, secluded nook. On impulse, he proceeded.
He bumped his head. "A sign!" It read: Orphaned eggs, homes needed.
Quack hatched a plan and crept ahead. This duck would not be stopped. On shaky
legs, He chose an egg And cackled: I'll adopt! Quack set it on his empty nest.
He kept his prize protected. He'd gently coo, "Dear ducky-poo, You'll never be
neglected!" Then on one dark and stormy night, The hour had arrived. Quack heard
a crack-- He stumbled back And shouted: It's alive! Just then a small beak broke
the shell! Quack's heart thumped in his chest, But then two paws With sharp,
curved claws Thrust through and stabbed the nest. "I've hatched... a monster!
You're no duck," Quack screeched, and went quite pale. The thing had fur And
legs with spurs And some poor beaver's tail. The creature lurched. Quack gasped,
"Stay back!" The beast paid him no heed. Quack tried to hide. He ran outside,
Alarmed and rubber-kneed. Quack shrieked and sprightly dove behind Some logs
out on the water. But Quack got pushed And saw he'd smushed An angry romp
of otters. Drenched, the poor duck ducked behind A mama heron reading.
Her babies screamed. The thing's claws gleamed. It leered and kept proceeding.
Quack shushed the rowdy heron hedge. But birds just ran off blind. They fled in
shock Toward cuddling crocs-- Soon all were intertwined. Quack rashly rushed
and promptly crushed A hugging husk of hares. "My fault!" Quack cried, But then
he spied The monster's chilling glare. So quickly Quack hid in a cave, But there
he'd made an error. A furry shape Blocked his escape. "I'm trapped!"
he screeched in terror. The thing then snarled, "Oh, there you are!" It stalked the
trembling fowl. With sharp claws bared And shoulders squared, It leaped in with
a growl! Its paws soon squeezed the cringing duck, And Quack thought,
"This is BAD!" His spirit broke When someone spoke-- The thing said: Hello Dad!
Quack could feel his cold heart melt, And how his stomach fluttered.
"You chased me through The great big zoo To be with me?" he sputtered.
The creature beamed, "Yes, Daddy, yes!" Quack's heart began to sing.
"Come, son," he squawked, And off they walked, In step, and paw in wing.
Then in the corner of the zoo That once housed Quackenstein, A space was
cleared And there appeared A shiny brand-new sign. "Welcome to our happy
home.Come by to visit us. Love, Quack" it read. Below, it said: "And his son,
Platypus." The end.
I chose this book because I really like the rhyming, I really
like the language,the big words, but more importantly, I love that Quack felt lonely
and he decided to solve his problem by adopting one of these eggs that didn't
have a family. And even though he was initially scared, because the platypus that
came out of the egg looked different than him, he eventually realized that it was
the perfect way to make a family for himself, and realized that he needed that
platypus just as much as the platypus needed him. Thank you for watching
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and keep reading.
1. Why was Quackenstein bitter?
2. Retell how he hatches a family?
3. Why did he get scared when the egg hatched? What happened at the end?