By: Valerie Tripp
Another book I read for the 26 books with Bringing Up Burns challenge this year: Molly Learns a Lesson. It's another childhood favorite. My dad would buy my sister and me American Girl books and read them to us; my brother also joined in and listened. I introduced Charis to Molly back in December when we were learning a little bit about World War II.
Molly Learns a Lesson is set in 1944. Molly is in 3rd grade. Her teacher, Miss Campbell, tells the 3rd grade class that the class was invited to participate in a contest: Lend-a-Hand, to help with the war effort. Being true 3rd graders, the class decided to divide up into boys vs. girls. The girls decide to knit socks, but Molly hates this idea. She thought that socks take "a long time. They were complicated." Later that day, Molly and her two friends (Linda and Susan) decided they would NOT participate with the rest of the 3rd grade girls; instead, they decided to collect bottletops (and to keep it a secret from the rest of the 3rd grade girls).
The next day Molly, Susan, and Linda tried to collect bottletops, but it was not going well. The 3 muskateers (Molly, Linda, and Susan) decided to spy on the knitting bee the third grade girls were having, but they were caught by Alison's mother. They discovered there was not much forward movement knitting socks. Finally, Molly suggested that the girls knit squares and make a blanket with those squares. One of the other girls suggested going to her apartment building to ask the tenants for bottletops. In the end, the third grade girls won the Lend-a-Hand contest. Molly learned that some secrets are worth sharing to help each other work together.
This book moved me to tears. Yes, I know it's fiction, but when it talks about families having loved ones away at war, I started crying. Charis was concerned for her mother and wanted to make sure everything was okay. I said, "Yes. War is very sad."
What is your favorite American girl book? Have you read any of the Molly books?