Short story – written by Vasundhara Anand, a grade 5 student
Mala Subramanian was in art class. She loved art. Every day, her art teacher would give the class homework. Today’s homework was: Draw or make a model of your paradise.
Once Mala heard this, she got very excited. She made the best model in class, which was and displayed in the hall! After school, her mother picked her up, and asked her, “How was your day?”. “It was great!” replied Mala, and she meant it.
As soon as she got home, she started thinking of the design. ‘For my paradise,’ she thought ‘I would be lying in a hammock. A waterfall and lots of plants, trees, and flowers. I’ll use styrofoam for the overall project. For the hammock I’ll use a clean bit of cloth, and tie it to two twigs, and stick it in the Styrofoam. I’ll clean the sticks a little bit too. For the plants, trees, and flowers, I’ll use cheap toys and paint them. I’ll paint the sky, with butterflies, on the styrofoam. I will also use hot glue to make the texture of the waterfall and paint it’.
Satisfied with her own creativity, she sat down to start. Her brother, who was doing his homework, was next to her. She started with the styrofoam, and put hot glue on it, for the waterfall texture. While she waited for it to dry, she painted the grass, collected two twigs, and tied a clean bit of cloth to it, and stuck it in the Styrofoam. By now the hot glue had dried, and she painted the waterfall and the rocks. She painted the sky with butterflies. She went to get the cheap, plastic toys. The toys did not have any special features, they were just for playing with. So, she got the toys and came back. When she saw her project, she was shocked! Blue paint had spilled all over the left of the project, where the hammock was. Her brother looked apologetic and shocked.
Mala guessed that he had knocked it over. Even though she was upset and angry, she couldn’t shout at her brother. He apologized sincerely many times and was trying to clean the mess, which he was doing well. She helped him clean up and then, once it was all clean, she wondered what to do with her project.
It looked like a lake… a lake! It looked like the water was coming down from the cliff like a waterfall, into the lake! Now all she had to do was remove the hammock from the lake, and hope that her art teacher would accept it. She hoped it would be good enough for display in the hall. The next day, it was art class again. At the end of the class, she asked her teacher, “Will this be good enough to display in the hall?”. Her teacher looked at the project and exclaimed “Yes! It is so nice! Where did you get the idea of a waterfall into a lake?”.
Mala told the teacher what all had happened the previous day. Her teacher laughed and said “Well, thank your brother from me. Without spilling the paint, we would not have such a good display!”. Mala was very happy. Because of her brother’s spilling, she was getting so much praise! She would give her brother her pocket money for a week! When she got home, she saw her brother doing his homework. She ran over to him and hugged him. “Because of you my project is in display in the hall! Tank you so much! I’ll give you my pocket money for a week!” she exclaimed.
Her brother, surprised that she wasn’t angry, said “Thanks”.
All is well that ends well.
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