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>> Hi, everyone. I’m Henry, and I’m a puppet with a disability. I’m here to welcome you to a fun, new activity — Fun for the Disabled presents, with cheer, Children’s Books for the Disabled. It’s finally here. Today’s book is called ‘Are They Really Scary?’

Written by Julia Inserro, illustrated by Tanya Varcelija, this book is about a girl who was scared of spiders until, one day, she gets to know a spider better and wonders for herself, “Are they really scary?”

And now, here’s Vanessa to introduce our reader for today.

[MUSIC FADES]

>> Thanks, Henry.

[♪♪♪]

>> We’re in for a real treat. Today’s readers are Cole Massey and LaDonna Freidheim, reading the book entitled ‘Are They Really Scary’, written by Julia Inserro and illustrated by Tanya Varcelija.

Have you ever had to deal with a scary situation? Let’s see how our characters face one. Get ready for a fun story. On to you, Cole Massie and LaDonna Freidheim.

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>> Yikes. Spiders are really scary.

>> Wait. Please don’t step on me. Everyone always says I’m scary, but I don’t understand. Why am I scary?

>> You’re furry.

>> Dogs are furry. Cats are furry. Your Uncle Rich is kind of furry too. Are you scared of them?

>> No, but you can be different colors, like black, brown, orange, yellow, and red.

>> Lots of things are black, and brown, and orange, and yellow, and red — licorice, brownies, oranges, lemonade, strawberries. Do those things scare you too?

>> No. You have fangs.

>> I use my fangs like teeth. I brush them every day, just like you.

>> You have eight legs.

>> An octopus has eight legs. A scorpion has eight legs. Are you scared of them?

>> A little.

>> Fair enough. I’m scared of them too.

>> You have six eyes.

>> Yes, most spiders have eight eyes, but some have six, and some have just two, like you.

I’m very tiny, so I need to make sure no one’s going to step on me. If you were as tiny as me, you would appreciate having a lot of eyes too.

>> Your eyes are red.

>> My eyes only look red in certain light. Your eyes are red after you’ve gone swimming in the pool.

>> You can fly.

>> Not really, although I do like to pretend I’m flying when I’m swinging on my silk threads. I’ve seen you swing too.

Hmm. So what can I do to keep you from stepping on me?

>> Well, I’m not sure. You look different.

>> So if I use just two legs, keep my extra eyes closed, cover my fur, and disguise my fangs, that would make you like me more?

>> Yes. That would be perfect. Thank you very much.

>> I’m not very happy like this. This isn’t who I want to be. I’m going to go back to being who I am. I like me. I’ll do my best not to scare you. Please don’t step on me.

>> No, no. Don’t hurt him.

>> Yikes.

>> Spider, even though you are different from me, I see that you can get scared, and — and you can be hurt too. I think we can be friends. I want to help you, even though you’re still a little scary.

This home is guarded by the Spider Protection Squad.

>> Thank you, actor Cole Massie and dancer LaDonna Freidheim, for reading to us today. I’m so glad that the little girl and the spider were able to become friends. Both the little girl and the spider can teach us an important lesson. Like the little girl, when you meet someone who looks or acts differently, do your best to be kind and to understand them. Join the Spider Protection Squad.

Like the spider, when you are meeting new friends, remember to stay true to who you are and stand up for yourself. Make sure that you don’t change yourself just to please others. No matter your abilities, characteristics, or gender, you are wonderful.

Kids, I hope you had fun and learned a lot. Remember to be proud of who you are. What is something about you that you are proud of? Ask a family member to help you tell us about it in the Comments Section below.

Parents, keep on encouraging your kids to learn from and collaborate with those who are different from them. Check out Julia Inserro’s website at JuliaInserro.com for some fun activities. If you have any thoughts to share, please put them in the Comments Section below.

Thank you once again, actor Cole Massie and dancer LaDonna Freidheim, for reading ‘Are They Really Scary?’ If you enjoyed this reading, please subscribe to our newsletter and check out more of our Fun for the Disabled presents Children’s Books for the Disabled series.

Bye bye.

>> Thank you for stopping by. I hope you enjoyed ‘Are They Really Scary?’, written by Julia Inserro and illustrated Tanya Varcelija. ‘Cause you need to be proud of who you are, you’re a shining star. Want to be kind, with the really smart mind, and remember, that mind is your house. So you need to stand up for yourself, but also, be understanding and respectful, accepting and helpful, ‘cause differences between people is what makes us unique, and that’s what makes us complete.

So thanks for watching, ‘cause you sure are neat. Yeah, yeah.

[MUSIC FADES]

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