Western Reserve Public Media


Elementary Lesson Plan:
Bridgett Bunny’s Ordinary Day That Wasn’t

Bridgett Bunny just loved ordinary days. She loved waking up early in the morning and seeing the sun streaking down through the trees in her forest home. She loved having berries and cream for breakfast and then going down to the Pine Woods with her friends. Fred E. Frog, Chester Cricket and Sara Squirrel were always fun to meet on the way to the woods. They had so much fun together. As they hopped along they loved hearing the crunching sound of the leaves under their feet. Often they would stop and sing with the birds as they passed by their tree. Sometimes they would find delicious nuts and berries to eat. “Welcome, welcome,” Wise Old Owl would hoot as they got near Pine Woods for the beginning of their school day. “Look whoooo’s here,” he would say kindly. Wise Old Owl was in the Pine Woods to teach the small creatures about the ways of the woods.

Even though Bridgett, Fred, Chester and Sara enjoyed listening to Wise Old Owl, the best part of the day was the time after school when the four friends had lots of time to play. “Let’s go wade in the creek,” Chester would chirp. “Yeah, we can catch some small fish,” Fred would add. Sara and Bridgett loved it when they would go exploring in the nearby caves. The cozy dens were a great place for sharing secrets. Just as it would start to get dark, they would say their good-byes and each go to their homes where a nice, warm supper was waiting. After supper, a bath and some stories, Bridgett would snuggle down into her bed. She would dream of her friends and smile with thoughts of the next day and all the fun they would have. Bridgett always had sweet dreams. Yes, Bridgett loved ordinary days.

On one ordinary day, though, everything changed. Something very bad, sad and scary happened. Bridgett felt awful. She couldn’t enjoy her ordinary days anymore. She had bad dreams that often kept her awake at night. In the mornings she would be tired and cranky. Nothing was the same. She didn’t feel bright and sunny. She felt like everything was covered with darkness. There was no place she wanted to be. She didn’t want to go to school in the Pine Woods. She had trouble remembering Wise Old Owl’s lessons. After school she didn’t want to play in the stream or pick berries or find fun things to watch. When Chester would chirp cheerfully, “Let’s have a race to the cave,” Bridgett would turn and hop the other way. Fred would croak, “Bridge, don’t go!” But Bridgett would just hop straight home. Her friends were worried about her. “What’s wrong with Bridge?” they would ask each other. They tried to talk with her, but she didn’t want to talk. Bridgett didn’t want to talk with anyone! She grew angry and scared because she didn’t understand why the bad, sad and scary thing had to happen. Sometimes she would go off into the woods alone and cry and cry.

One day, as she was sitting with her back to her favorite tree, she heard someone coming. She got scared and wanted to run away, but her feet didn’t seem to want to move. Her heart beat faster and faster as the sound got nearer. She hid her face in her arms so she wouldn’t have to see the scary thing. She jumped as she felt a soft, gentle touch on her shoulder. When she looked up she found Wise Old Owl looking at her with kindness in his eyes. “Bridgett, we have all been very worried about you,” he said. “I know that something very bad happened to you. Would you like to talk with me about it?”

As Wise Old Owl settled onto the moss beside Bridgett, the little bunny began to tell him all that had happened. She was able to tell Owl how angry and scared she was. Owl was able to tell her that it wasn’t her fault and to reassure her that she was fine now. As they talked, Bridgett began to feel a little better. They walked home together. For the first time in a long time, Bridgett ate a good supper and went to bed without having bad dreams.

The next morning she was waiting for her friends, ready to hop to the Pine Woods to have fun. Little by little, she began to enjoy all the parts of her ordinary day. Sometimes she would remember the bad, sad and scary thing and get a little upset again. But now she knew that she could talk with Wise Old Owl or with her mom and dad, and that she would feel better. Her ordinary days would never be exactly the same, but they would be very good again. Bridgett once again felt sunny.

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You can access a Web-streamed version of this story at www.WesternReservePublicMedia.org/trauma/video.htm.

It is also available in storybook form with illustrations at www.WesternReservePublicMedia.org/trauma/stories.htm.



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