The Ugly Duckling

The Ugly Duckling Part III
The duckling's winter swimming pool didn't work out so well.
The duckling's winter swimming pool didn't work out so well.
©2007 Publications International, Ltd.

Below is the ending to the ugly duckling's story:

Winter came, and the pond turned to ice. A duck cannot swim on ice. The ugly duckling needed to practice, so he went in search of water that wasn't frozen.

Soon he came to a farmhouse. The fireplace had a roaring fire in it. Everything inside looked very warm and cozy. He waddled into the house and began his search.

Finally he found something. It was much smaller than the pond, but it would just have to do. He jumped in and started to swim.

The farmer's wife heard a lot of splashing. She was very surprised to find a large bird inside the house! She quickly grabbed the broom and chased him back out into the snow, knocking over a fresh bucket of milk in the process. The children laughed and laughed at the big bird who had tried to swim in their bathtub.

The duckling was really scared now! He found a hiding place under some bushes. Snow fell all around him. He tried to stay warm.

The poor ugly duckling had a hard time that long winter. There was barely any food to eat, and the icy wind made him very cold.

The duckling spent the winter outside and tried to stay warm.
©2007 Publications International, Ltd.

Just when he thought he couldn't stand it any more, something wonderful happened -- spring arrived! Now there was warm sunshine and blooming flowers. Many birds came back from their winter homes.

It was now warm enough to go back on the lake. How good it felt to swim on the water again. He stretched his neck all around. When he looked down, what a surprise he got!

There in the water was the most beautiful bird he had ever seen. He looked at the swans swimming farther down the lake. They must know this swan below the water.

The duckling didn't recognize the beautiful bird he saw in the water.
©2007 Publications International, Ltd.

The ugly duckling was surprised when he heard someone speak to him. "Come join us," the swans said. What? Could this be true? Could the beautiful swans really be talking to him?

The ugly duckling looked down in the water again. Why, that wasn't another bird at all. It was his own reflection that he saw in the water.

Over the winter, the ugly duckling had grown into a beautiful swan. He really wasn't a duck at all. No wonder he didn't fit in.

Finally the duckling found the friends he'd always wanted.
©2007 Publications International, Ltd.

The other swans circled around him and stroked him with their beaks. All the young swan had gone through made him appreciate his newfound happiness.

He saw beauty in all that surrounded him. He ruffled his feathers and thought, "I never dreamed I could be so happy when I was an ugly duckling."

For more children's stories and activities, check out:

More to Explore