The Bobbsey Twins at Home/Chapter 7
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Chapter VII: The School Play
|Chapter VIII: Snoop in Trouble→|
THE SCHOOL PLAY
"Snap! Snap!" cried Freddie, as he left his seat and put his arms around the dog's neck. "Good dog, Snap!"
Snap liked to be petted, and he wagged his tail faster than before and barked. Flossie saw a queer look on her teacher's face, and the little girl said:
"Snap, you must be quiet. You musn't bark in school any more than we must whisper. I didn't want to speak out loud," she said to the teacher, "but I had to, or Snap wouldn't hear me."
"Oh, that part's all right, my dear," the teacher said kindly. "But how did your dog get here?"
"I—I don't know," answered Flossie, while Freddie kept on petting Snap.
Just then the door of the other school room, in which Nan and Bert studied, opened, and the teacher from there came in. She was a new one.
"Is that dog here?" she asked. Then she could see that Snap was there. The children in Flossie's room were laughing now. Some of the pupils from the other room were standing in the doorway behind the teacher, looking in.
"Whose dog is that?" the new teacher asked.
"He's ours, if you please," said Bert.
"Did you bring him to school?"
"No, ma'am. He must have got loose," answered Nan. "He was chained up when we left for school this morning, and he must have got lonesome and come to find us."
"Well, he found you all right," said Flossie's teacher with a laugh. "The doors are open, because it is so warm," she said to the new teacher, "so Snap had no trouble in getting in. He never came to school before, though."
"He's like Mary's little lamb, isn't he?" asked Freddie.
"Well, he must be put out," said the new teacher, smiling. "Of course it wasn't the fault
of you children that he came in. But you had better take him home I think, Bert. And see that he is well chained. I'll excuse you from class long enough to take your dog home. Now, children, go back to your seats."
"Say, Bert," whispered Ned Barton, "I'll help you take Snap home if you want me to."
"No, indeed!" laughed the new teacher. "One boy is enough to have out of the class at a time. I think Bert can manage the dog alone."
"Yes ma'am, I can," said Bert. "Come on, Snap!"
Snap barked and wagged his tail again. He was happy as long as he was with one of the children.
"Our dog can do tricks," said Freddie. "Make him do a trick, Bert, before you take him home. Snap used to be in a circus," Freddie told the teacher, "and he can turn somersaults. Don't you want to see him do a trick, teacher?"
"Oh, yes, please let him," begged Flossie.
The other children looked eager, and the teacher smiled. The new teacher had gone back to her classroom with her pupils, except Bert, who had stayed to look after Snap.
"Well, as it is almost time for recess, I don't mind if Bert makes Snap do one or two tricks," Flossie's teacher said, smiling. "But only two. School isn't just the place for dogs."
"Ready Snap!" called Bert. "March like a soldier!"
"You may take my blackboard pointer for a gun," the teacher said.
Snap stood up on his hind legs, and in one paw he held the long pointer. Then he marched around the room as nearly like a soldier as a dog can march. The children laughed and clapped their hands.
"Now turn a somersault!" ordered Bert. This Snap did, too. This was one of his best tricks. Over and over he went around the school room, outside the rows of desks. This made the children laugh more than before.
"I think that will be enough, thank you, Bert," the teacher said. "You had better take the dog home now."
Bert did so, and saw to it that Snap was well chained.
"We like to see you," said Bert as he was leaving to go back to his class, "but you must not come to school after us, Snap."
At recess, which was nearly over when Bert got back to school, the children talked and laughed about Snap's visit.
"I wish your dog would come to school every day," said Alice Boyd to Flossie.
"Yes, wouldn't it be fun to have him do tricks," cried Johnnie Wilson.
But Snap did not get loose again, and he soon got used to having the children away most of the day. But how glad he was when they came home, and he could romp and play with them!
One day Flossie's teacher said to the class: "Now, children, you have been very good this week, and you have known your lessons well, so I think it is time we had a little fun."
"Oh, are you going to let Snap come to school again?" asked Edna Blake.
"No, hardly that," the teacher answered with a smile, "but we shall have a little play. I'll fix some curtains across the platform where my desk stands, and that will be the stage. You children—at least some of you—will be the actors and actresses. It will be a very simple little play, and I think you can do it. If you do it well perhaps we may give our play out on the large platform in the big room before the whole school."
"We had a play in Uncle Dan's barn once in the country," said Flossie.
"I was in it, too," spoke up Freddie, "and I fell down in a hen's nest and got all eggs."
Even the teacher laughed at this.
"Well, we hope you'll not fall in any hen's nest in our little school play," said the teacher.
She picked out Flossie, Freddie, Alice Boyd, Johnnie Wilson and some others to be in the play, and they began to study their parts.
The play was to be called "Mother Goose and her Friends," and the children would take the parts of the different characters so well known to all. The teacher was to be Mother Goose herself, with a tall peaked hat, and a long stick.
"And will you ride on the back of a goosey-gander?" Freddie asked. "It's that way in the book."
"No, I hardly think I shall ride on the back of a gander," answered the teacher. "But we will have it as nearly like Mother Goose as we can. You will be Little Boy Blue, Freddie, for you have blue eyes."
"And what can I be?" asked Flossie.
"I think I'll call you Little Miss Muffet."
"Only I'm not afraid of spiders," Flossie said. "That is I'm not afraid of them if they don't get on me. One can come and sit down beside me and I won't mind."
"I guess for the spider we'll get a make-believe one, from the five-and-ten-cent store," said Miss Earle, the teacher. "Now I'll give out the other parts."
There were about a dozen children who were to take part in the little play. They were to dress up with clothes which they could bring from home. Freddie had a blue suit, so he looked exactly like Boy Blue.
One Friday afternoon the little play was given in the school room. The teacher had strung a wire across in front of her platform, and had hung a red curtain on this. Flossie, Freddie and the other players were behind the curtain, while the remaining children sat at their desks to watch the play.
"Are you all ready now?" asked Miss Earle of the children behind the curtain. "All ready! I'm going to pull the curtain back in a minute. Remember you are to walk out first, Freddie, and you are to make a bow and then look to the left, then to the right and say: 'Oh, I wonder where she can be?' Then along comes Flossie, as Little Miss Muffet, and she asks you whom you are looking for."
"Yes, and then I say I'm looking for Mary, who had a little lamb, for I lent her my horn, and she went away with it to help Bo-Peep find her sheep; and now I can't blow my horn to get the cows out of the corn," Freddie said.
"That's it!" exclaimed the teacher in a whisper, for they had all talked in low voices behind the curtain, so the other children would not hear them. "You remember very well, Freddie. Now we will begin."
The curtain was pulled back, and Freddie walked out from one side where some boxes had been piled up to look like a house.
"Oh, I wonder where she can be," said Freddie, looking to the left and to the right. "Where can she be?"
"Whom are you looking for?" asked Flossie, coming out from the other side of the platform.
"For Mary, who had a little lamb," went on Freddie. "I lent her my horn and—"
But just then there was a crash, and down tumbled the pile of boxes that was the make-believe house, and with them tumbled Johnnie Wilson, who was dressed up like Little Jack Horner.
"Oh, I've hurt my thumb! I've hurt my thumb!" he cried. "Now I can't pull the plum out of the pie!"