Old Mother Duck's six little ducklings are her pride and joy. But it's very hard work teaching ducklings how to behave and keeping them safe. Sometimes their curiosity makes them forget her warnings not to talk to strangers, not to stray too far from her, and to come in from the rain.
Not all Mother Duck's words of wisdom are followed and the ducklings soon learn of the consequences of making fun of their elders and venturing to forbidden places. Children will identify with these gentle stories where nothing bad happens but the lessons and consequences are clear. A hundred years after Katharine Pyle's delightful tale was written, the same principle holds true: mother knows best.