The Legend of Sleeping Bear Sand Dunes

The Legend of Sleeping Bear Sand Dunes
Reading Level
     edHelper's suggested reading level:   grades 3 to 4
     Flesch-Kincaid grade level:   5.02

     challenging words:    knowing, atop, state, fell, shores, journey, giant, lived, instead, large, point, across, behind, leave, care, safe
     content words:    Lake Michigan, Great White Spirit, White Spirit, North Manitou Island, South Manitou Island, Great Spirit, Sleeping Bear Sand Dune

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The Legend of Sleeping Bear Sand Dunes
By Marc G. Van Poperin

1     Many years ago, in a state now called Wisconsin, lived a mother bear and her two cubs. One day, as they were in the woods gathering food, a fire broke out. All of the animals, including the mother bear and her cubs, had to leave the forest. The mother bear and her cubs swam across Lake Michigan to the state we now call Michigan. It was a very long swim. Soon, the two cubs grew very tired and fell behind their mother. When the mother bear came to the shores of Michigan, she climbed to the highest point she could find, a large hill made of sand, and waited for the cubs. She waited and waited and waited. But her cubs could not make the long journey. Instead, the Great White Spirit, who watched over all the animals, turned the cubs into two islands. The mother bear, who soon grew tired, saw her two cubs in the lake and knew that the Great White Spirit had taken care of them. She soon saw the two islands in Lake Michigan. Knowing that her cubs were safe, she soon fell fast asleep. Today, the cubs are known as North Manitou Island and South Manitou Island. Their mother, who the Great Spirit covered with sand to keep warm, now watches over her cubs from her spot atop the giant hill made of sand. We call her Sleeping Bear Sand Dune.

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