from A Grandpa's Notebook, Meyer Moldeven

One of the ground rules in writing my 'grandpa' stories was to keep within the youngsters' range of comprehension and imagination, and about living things, objects, activities and places to which their imaginations could relate. In fantasy stories, when my grandchildren were very young, for instance, I animated toys familiar to them, or modified characters from their favorite books and sent them off on adventures that did not frighten or cause them apprehension for the toy's safety. At the story's conclusion, the toys and characters were back in a familiar and comfortable setting.

Deliberate destructive behavior in stories and anecdotes for the very young, I believe, serves no useful purpose. The young are already exposed to far more negative forces in the general run of storybooks, television shows, Internet games and the real world. Grandpas and grandmas don't need to pile them on. To the contrary, grandparents can influence a young mind toward reason and compassion. The tales they tell can be stabilizing forces in the day-to-day bustle and high excitement of the very young and, by the nature of a grandparent's role, suggest channels for positive values.

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