What is possible to learn from Charlotte's Web? What are specific examples?My teacher asks some queastions that I cannot answer for some reason. I'm totally lost. Maybe some real teacher with a...

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akannan's profile pic

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The lesson of loyalty is one of those lessons that all readers can take from White's story.  Charlotte is loyal to Wilbur and Wilbur to Charlotte.  This is a dominant characteristic of both throughout the novel and is one that can be taken away as a lesson.  The idea of being able to stand for and by someone is extremely important, and one worthy of learning.  In a larger sense, there is also something shown in the novel about the nature of animals, which can be taken away from it.  The development of a consciousness about the lives led by animals and the behaviors they show towards one another brings a level of compassion within the reader.  To develop this consciousness towards animals, especially at an early age, is something that can constitute as a lesson learned from the work.

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pohnpei397's profile pic

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One thing that I think you can learn from this book is that true friends are very important.  If it were not for Charlotte, Wilbur would have gotten killed.  But Charlotte goes to the trouble of writing all these words in her web to save his bacon (oooh, that was a funny one).

I think another thing that you can learn from this is that you should not prejudge how valuable something can be.  At first, Wilbur seems like a runt and is going to get killed.  Even so, he ends up winning a prize at the fair.

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epollock's profile pic

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E B White's reasons for writing "Charlotte's Web" are complex, but the best lesson it teaches is to live. Not just live day-to-day but live life well, full, and free. If anyone is bored or lonely, the book carries an important message that you should do all you can to avoid loneliness and boredom. Make friends, but more importantly is to fill your life with activities that can sustain you even in your darkest hour. Friends may come and go, but a fulfilling activity can last a lifetime.

In Chapter 3, Wilbur says,

I’m less than two months old and I’m tired of living.

A few pages later in Chapter 4, it says,

He didn’t know whether he could endure the awful loneliness any more.

As much as anything, the story has a great lesson that since we are mortal and must die, what do we do with our lives? Are we passive and lead a dull life, or do we face our own death and live life head-on? White says the latter.

paulettegb's profile pic

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Charlotte's Web is considered a children's story, but everyone can learn so much from it.  I read it with my high school ESL students every year, and each time I find some new insight.

The major themes in CW are friendship, sacrifice, loyality, growing up, life and death.

I remember being very shocked at Charlotte's death when my teacher read CW to us in third grade.  It was the first time someone I cared about died, and it was a good introduction to the fact that everything dies.

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