B G: If it is not too late, perhaps a Native American traditional story, such as
"How Bear Lost His Tail (and why the Big Bear in the heavens still has his )". (( **Practice with appropriate motions and sounds....))
Oh, my beloved:: Hear now the story as was told to me by one much wiser than I.
Long ago, when the animal people would speak as you and I , Bear had a long and beautiful tail. He knew that, but set no store by it, being not as vain as some. Fox, on the other hand, also had a tail of some beauty and was not shy in telling of it. Indeed, Fox grew jealous of Bear's tail and decided he must rid himself of this (to him) unfair competition. And so this is what happened....
In the late fall of the year, when Fox knew Bear would be always hungry, before his long winter nap, Fox caught a nice fat Trout and sat himself by the trail where he knew Bear must travel. Sure enough , along comes Bear.
"Hello, brother Fox", said Bear. " What is that you have there? A fine dinner, I see !"
"Yes" Fox replied between bites, "It is my dinner."
"And where did you catch such a fish? I might like to catch such for myself !" said Bear.
"Over on the lake shore" said Fox. Now Bear knew such Trout were usually caught in a fast stream, and not in a lake, so he was doubtful, and said:
"Oh, I find that hard to believe. What bait did you use?"
"My TAIL !" munched Fox.
"Tail?? How so tail? " said Bear.
"Why, I can show you. Follow me to the Lake." so the two walked off down the trail to the lake shore.
Fox indicated a rock by the water's edge and said to Bear " See? This is where you sit. Stick your tail into the water and swish it around. When the fish bite on to it, pull out your tail and there you are ! Fish Dinner !"
Bear was eager to have such a fine trout to eat, so he sat down and stuck his tail in the water and swished it around. "Like this?" He asked.
"Exactly !" said Fox, who started to walk away.
"But how long do I sit here?" asked the trusting Bear.
"Until you catch the fish, silly!" said Fox, who smiled and ran off, very pleased with himself.
Well, soon Bear grew drowsy. The sun was setting and soon Bear had fallen asleep, pleased with himself that he would soon have a fine fish for eating.
When Bear woke up, it was next morning, and lo ! The lake had frozen over in the night ! Bear found his tail was frozen solid in the lake ice, and he knew the cruel trick Fox had played on him. The only thing he could do was tear his tail off as he sat up and had to go down the trail , sad at this turn of events.
Now, the Great Spirit Manitou had seen all this and took pity on Bear. In his dream that night, the Great Spirit came to Bear and said, " I cannot give you back your tail, but here is what I will do: I will make a picture in the sky so that all may see how long and beautiful your tail was, you and your cub. And henceforth, Fox will never again wave his tail high and proud in the air, but will carry it low to the ground. So shall it be. "
And so it has been. So the Bear in the sky has the long, wavy tail, the Bear you see in the woods has a short stubby tail, and the Fox you see along the trail will not wave his tail in the air.
Remember, and tell your Cubs , so they may be as wise as YOU !