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All ants look the same

A story about diversity, identity and equality - explained in a way that kids (and adults) will understand and want to talk about.

Photo of Tom Bradley

Written by

Mel wanted to be different.

She wanted to stand out.

But all ants look the same.

She tried pulling faces.

But that made her cheeks ache.

She tried carrying odd shaped leaves.

But no one noticed.

Everyone just marched on as usual.

Mel had to accept it. All ants look the same.

One day, Mel had a new idea.

Perhaps a funny walk would get her noticed.

First, the legs. Mel stretched as far as she could with each step.

Next, the arms. Mel waved them about as if they had a mind of their own.

She was thinking about how she was walking, but not where she was walking.

Thump!

Mel dusted herself down. She felt fine, but the others had gathered round.

“Gosh! Look!” said Kayla, “Your antenna, it’s broken!”

Mel was very upset.

Owen laughed and laughed. “You’re different now, that’s for sure!”

Everyone was talking about Mel.

The next day, things changed. “I’d like to be different too”, declared Jen.

She made herself a necklace from a blade of grass.

“Me too!” said Delon. He made some shoes from seed cases.

Soon, in one way or another, everyone was different.

Mel couldn’t believe it. 

No one seemed to notice.

There was just more to talk about.

When everyone was different, they were all the same.

Describe the intended vision for your early childhood book manuscript in 1-2 sentences

Helping children understand their world and discuss how to fit in and stand out.

Share your suggested book title

All ants look the same

PLEASE USE THE VERSION OF THIS QUESTION AT THE TOP OF THE SUBMISSION FORM: Share a draft of your manuscript (250 word limit, not including title).

Mel wanted to be different. She wanted to stand out. But all ants look the same. She tried pulling faces. But that made her cheeks ache. She tried carrying odd shaped leaves. But no one noticed. Everyone just marched on as usual. Mel had to accept it. All ants look the same. One day, Mel had a new idea. Perhaps a funny walk would get her noticed. First, the legs. Mel stretched as far as she could with each step. Next, the arms. Mel waved them about as if they had a mind of their own. She was thinking about how she was walking, but not where she was walking. Thump! Mel dusted herself down. She felt fine, but the others had gathered round. “Gosh! Look!” said Kayla, “Your antenna, it’s broken!” Mel was very upset. Owen laughed and laughed. “You’re different now, that’s for sure!” Everyone was talking about Mel. The next day, things changed. “I’d like to be different too”, declared Jen. She made herself a necklace from a blade of grass. “Me too!” said Delon. He made some shoes from seed cases. Soon, in one way or another, everyone was different. Mel couldn’t believe it. No one seemed to notice. There was just more to talk about. When everyone was different, they were all the same.

How has this book been informed by early childhood language development research and evidence? (response minimum 250 Characters)

Mostly, I've just tried to write a good story. In order to make it accessible to young readers or non-native English speakers, care has been taken to choose tier-1 words throughout the story, without eroding the emotional resonance of the story. In addition, there are several childhood development themes that run through the story, providing the potential for discussion between parents/carers and children... "The standards call for all students to engage with complex texts that offer opportunities for higher-level thinking" https://www.naeyc.org/resources/pubs/yc/sep2015/book-matters "Since we live our culture each day, sometimes our unique familial practices and beliefs become invisible to us" http://extensionpublications.unl.edu/assets/pdf/g2242.pdf "As young children are just beginning to develop self-control, challenging behavior is common and expected in the years from birth to three." https://www.zerotothree.org/early-development/challenging-behaviors

Location: Country

UK

Provide an example visual identity for a look and feel you might like to achieve. ( (optional question, 3-5 visuals)

Multiple Choice - Have you been previously published (online, self-published, and print included)?

  • No

Do you have an agent?

  • No

How did you hear about the Challenge? (optional question)

  • OpenIDEO announcement email

What best describes you? (optional question)

  • I am/we are creatives, writers, or artists

16 comments

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Comment
Photo of Ashanti Antonio Prescott
Team

Brilliant! A bittersweet theme. Good luck

Photo of Tom Bradley
Team

Thank you!

Photo of Ashanti Antonio Prescott
Team

Tom welcome. How you editing going?

Photo of Tom Bradley
Team

Slowly. It's hard. I've picked each line carefully so I'm now a bit stuck.

I think I need an editor. :-p

Photo of Ashanti Antonio Prescott
Team

Oh, noted. Then you should, as long as it will help.

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