Mrs. Luerssen's Third Grade Class
Terryville Elementary School
Port Jefferson Station, New York


Stone Fox by John Reynolds Gardiner is a beautiful story about a courageous ten year old boy, Willy. Willy set out to win the dogsled race against the undefeated Stone Fox. Willlie was determined to win the prize money of five hundred dollars so Grandfather could pay his taxes and keep the farm. Out of all the obstacles Willy encountered during the race, none was as heartbreaking as the death of his best friend, his dog, Searchlight.

There was not a dry eye in Room 303 as we listened to the chapter of Searchlight’s death. My class was just as sad when the book ended. So we decided to continue the story for one more chapter. The students worked cooperatively with a partner and wrote an additional chapter along with illustrating their chapter together. I hope you enjoy reading our stories as much as we enjoyed writing them. 


Little Willy went to Clifford Snyder’s to pay his grandfather’s tax bill. Little Willy went to his grandfather’s house and told Grandfather that the taxes on the house were paid.

Little Willy went for a walk and ended up at an abandoned farmhouse. He went inside the house and there he saw Stone Fox. Stone Fox asked Little Willy if he would like to have one of his very own dogs, his Samoyeds.

Little Willy was so excited that Stone Fox offered him one of his dogs. Litle Willy decided to take the dog that reminded him of Searchlight. Little Willy named the dog Diamond.

Little Willy took Diamond back to Grandfather’s house. Grandfather was very happy for Little Willy. Little Willy took Diamond outside and hooked him up to the dogsled.

Little Willy and Grandfather climbed onto the sled. Diamond took off for Doc Smith’s house. When they got to Doc Smith’s house, they all went inside for some apple crisp pie. They were all talking about the next race. 

by John C. and David T.



After Little Willy and Searchlight crossed the finish line, they found out that Searchlight was still breathing. So they went to Doc Smith’s house for medicine.

Doc Smith and Little Willly brought Searchlight to Grandfather’s house. When they got there they put Searchlight in his bed. Then they went upstairs to Grandfather’s room. When they got there they saw Grandfather crying.

“Why are you crying, Grandfather?” asked Willy.

“I am so happy that Searchlight is alive,” said Grandfather.

Grandfather invited Doc Smith, Mayor Smiley, Dusty, Lester, Clifford Snyder, Mrs. Williamson and even Stone Fox for a party to celebrate that Searchlight was still alive. Stone Fox and Little Willy became friends and always helped each other. 

by Vanessa J. and Kristina S.

kristina2.jpg (25385 bytes)


Little Willy became very good friends with Stone Fox. Little Willy won five hundred dollars. He kept the farm. Grandfather became better because he paid the taxes.

One day there was a knock on the door. Little Willy answered the door. It was Stone Fox. He had a black puppy like Searchlight.

When Little Willy saw the puppy in Stone Fox’s hand he fell in love with the puppy. Grandfather was also surprised to see the puppy. The all went outside to play with the puppy. They named the puppy Searchlight because he was cuddly just like the Searchlight who died. Stone Fox and Willy became good friends. They went over each other’s houses often.

A year after the race where Searchlight died, Doc Smith called Grandfather’s house to let them know that there was going to be another dogsled race. Little Willy got on the phone to speak to Doc Smith. He said, “No way. I am not going to do that anymore. I don’t want to take any chances with my new dog.” The dog got bigger and bigger and Little Willy loved him more each day. 

by Jodi M. Ursula U.



Once Little Willy passed the finish line, Stone Fox walked back to the sled and put his rifle away. He passsed the finish line to come in second place. So then Stone Fox let the other racers pass the finish line.

After the race, Little Willy went to school. When he got home he saw somebody taking the money he won in the race to pay the taxes. So he went inside to stop that person and then he saw it was just Grandfather.

“What are you going to do with the money, Grandfather?” asked Willy.

“I am getting fifty dollars for the re-match.”said Grandfather.

“The re-match?” exclaimed Willy.

“Yes, the re-match,” said Grandfather. “It is between the first and second place winners.”

“But Searchlight died.” said Little Willy.

“I have a surprise for you, Willy,” said Grandfather. Grandfather showed Little Willy a dog.

“His name is Speedy,” said Grandfather. “He is very fast.”

It was the day of the re-match and everyone was there. The race began and Little Willy and Stone Fox stayed neck and neck until they could see the finish line.

“Go Speedy!” exclained Littly Willy. Then it felt like he was flying.

Little Willy saw Stone Fox was right on his tail. Then they passed Grandfather’s house. So Speedy started to go faster. Then Stone Fox passed Little Willy and they started to go back and forth. Then Little Willy came in first place and got five hundred dollars and Stone Fox got three hundred dollars. 

by Derek K. and Nicholas V.

nick.jpg (45264 bytes)


Little Willy crossed th finish line with Searchlight in his arms. He won five hundred dollars. The he carried Searchlight home.

When Little Willy got home he told Grandfather put down his oatmeal and went with Willy. They went back to bury Searchlight. Then they said some prayers. Willy went over to the grave and put the sled on it and carved, “Good Racer” on the gravestone. Little Willy got everyone to come to Searchlight’s grave to say a prayer. It was a very sad moment for Willy.

After half an hour it was over. Everyone was gone but Willy. He missed Searchlight a lot. 

by Ryan E. and Thomas C.



After what happened, Stone Fox felt sorry for Little Willy because he knew what it felt to loose a dog. Then Stone Fox decided to give Little Willy one of his best dogs. Little Willy thought about having another dog. Little Willy decided to take the dog because it was so friendly. He called the dog Lucky.

Little Willy went home to show Grandfather the dog. Then Little Willy trained the dog and Lucky became Little Willy’s friend. Lucky acted a lot like Searchlight. Whenever Little Willy looked at Lucky she reminded Little Willy of Searchlight.

One day Little Willy was teaching Lucky tricks outside and Lucky got lost. Little Willy tried to find Lucky but her couldn’t find her. Then four days later Little Willy saw Lucky standing by the door. Little Willy saw a note from Stone Fox by Lucky. It said, “Dear Willy, I found your dog. She was visiting me. Sincerely, Stone Fox.”

One day Little Willy and Lucky visited Stone Fox. Stone Fox was happy that Little Willy and Lucky came to visit and the dogs were happy to see Little Willy.

Grandfather was feeling much better as time went on. Every day they visited Searchlight’s grave. One day they put a note by Searchlight’s grave and it said. “Dear Searchlight, I wish I could see you one more time. Stone Fox gave me a nice dog just like you.. It’s name is Lucky. You would like her a lot. I miss you. Sincerely, Little Willy.” 

by Lorraine M. and Jackie M.


lorjac.jpg (35364 bytes)


After Little Willy paid the money to Clifford Sneider, his grandfather felt better. Then they went to buy a new dog after Searchlight died. They named him Lucky. Lucky was just the same as Searchlight. They grew a new potato farm for the summer time. Next year the race will be only twenty dollars to enter. The prize money will be one thousand dollars. They decided to enter the race.

It was the day before the race and Litttle Willy was sleeping. Little Willy woke up late for the race. He was lucky because he was almost late. Stone Fox did not show up at first. Stone Fox got there twenty minutes late and caught up. Stone Fox was behind Little Willy at first. He gained speed and caught up to Little Willy. Someone crashed into Stone Fox so Little Willy won the race. Five minutes later Little Willy got one thousand dollars. 

by Max M. and Dominick G.

max.jpg (27045 bytes)



When Little Willy passed the finish line the judges gave him the five hundred dollars for winning the dogsled race. When he went home he told Grandpa he won the money and Grandpa was happy. Then Little Willy told Grandpa that Searchlight died and Grandpa was sad. Then Little Willy and Grandpa went to Clifford Snyder, the tax man, to pay the bill. When they finally paid the bill Grandpa felt much better.

When they got home there was no more snow falling so they had a funeral for Searchlight. At the funeral they said prayers for Searchlight and thanked him for all the things he did. After the funeral Little Willy and Grandpa went to say thank you to Stone Fox for not letting anybody pass the line because of Searchlight. Stone Fox said, “You’re welcome.”

When Little Willy and Grandpa returned home they thought for a while.

“Why don’t we get a new dog?”, Grandpa asked. “We can name it Searchlight 2. Let’s go get a new dog at the pet shop.”

When they got to the pet shop they saw the one dog that they wanted. Then they went home.

When they got home they were still a little bit sad but they felt much better. When they played with Searchlight 2 they had fun. While they played they trained Searchlight 2. Searchlight 2 was a lot like Searchlight1. Maybe Willy will train Searchlight2 to be in the next dogsled race.  

by June Marie D. and Leticia F.

june2.jpg (14674 bytes)



The day of the race Little Willy started to think about what Stone Fox did at the end of the race. He was wondering if they could be friends and share dogs since Searchlight died.

The next day Little Willy went to the abandoned farmhouse where Stone Fox lived. Little Willy was scared at first but then he remembered what Stone Fox did yesterday. So Little Willy knocked on the door. Stone Fox answered the door.

“Why are you here?” Stone Fox asked in a deep voice.

“Um..., I came here to thank you for what you did for me,” said Little Willy.

Stone Fox was surprised.

“You may come in,”said Stone Fox.

So Little Willy went inside.

“Nice place,” said Little Willy. “I also came here to ask you to be my friend.”

“Okay.”, said Stone Fox.

“Can we share Samoyeds since Searchlight died?”, asked Little Willy.

“We can and we will be friends. Let’s go to the movies,”said Stone Fox.

They did and they had a lot of fun together over the years.

One day Little Willy went to Stone Fox’s house to visit and there was no answer. He saw the door was opened so he went in. Stone Fox had died in his sleep. Little Willy started to cry. He will always remember the friendship he had with Stone Fox and everything he always did for him.

by Kathelin G. and Donna M.

When Little Willy passed the finish line he got five hundred dollars and went home. On his way home Stone Fox caught up to Little Willy and Little Willy stopped and turned around. When he saw Stone Fox, Stone Fox was smiling and he was carrying a blanket. There was something inside the blanket. When Little Willy took it, he opened it and saw there was a baby Samoyed. "You can have it," said Stone Fox. "Thank you," said Little Willy, "Do you want to be my friend?" "Yes," said Stone Fox. They said good bye to each other and both went home. When Little Willy got home he paid the taxes and Grandfather got better. Little Willy was about to smile when he remembered about Searchlight. He ran outside and got Searchlight's body and showed him to Grandfather. When Grandfather saw Searchlight he started to cry and then Little Willy showed the baby Samoyed to Grandfather. "I will name this puppy Searchlight also,"said Little Willy.

by Andrew S. and Melanie P.


A week after the race Stone Fox came to congratulate Little Willy. He also told him that if his grandfather passes away he can come live with him. Little Willy asked Stone Fox if he could share his Samoyeds with him. They became best friends and they had fun together.

Little Willy asked Stone Fox where should he bury Searchlight. Stone Fox told him to bury him in the garden and to put a lot of flowers there.

A year past on and there was another race for 1,800 dollars. Little Willy and Stone Fox were tied and made it to the semifinals.

Winter came again and they spent a lot of time together drinking hot chocolate, talking and telling each other stories. They bought a snowmobile and had fun together riding it.

Somehow Grandfather got ill again so Little Willy brought him to Doc Smith to have surgery. Grandfather wound up dying. Little Willy and Stone Fox went to the funeral together. Stone Fox moved onto the farm with Little Willy and they took care of each other. 

by Mitchell S., Keith K. and Matthew H.

mitkeith2.jpg (25180 bytes)

New York State Standards used: 

English Language Arts Standard # 1: Students will read, write, listen, and speak for information and understanding. 

English Language Arts Standard #2: As speakers and writers, students use oral and written language that follows the accepted conventions of the English language for self-statement and artistic creation. 

English Language Arts Standard #3: Students will read, write, listen, and speak for social interaction. 

frostyhome.gif (2940 bytes)