Here is a list of 10 stories of all times that can help teach children values like honesty, diligence, compassion, modesty and respect for others in a fun and entertaining way.
1. Thirsty Crow: On a hot summer day, a thirsty crow flies from place to place in search of water. At last he sees a pitcher of water but finds his beak too short to reach the water level. He finally thinks of a plan and is able to reach the water and quench his thirst. The story teaches children not to despair in difficult times and to be resourceful by finding ways to deal with situations and problems.
2. The Lion and the Mouse: A perfect tale for little kids, The Lion and the Mouse tells the story of a lion who gets strangled in a hunter’s trap, and the little mouse nibbles the net and sets the lion free. The moral teaches children that no matter how small they are, they can still help others.
3. The Tortoise and the Hare: An Aesop’s Fable about two unequal opponents – hare and a tortoise, the story teaches children that sobriety, determination and perseverance (depicted by the tortoise) wins over overconfidence and conceit (depicted by the hare).
4. The Boy Who Cried Wolf: Again from Aesop’s collection, the story is about a boy who tricks the villagers by making them believe that a wolf is trying to get his sheep. When a wolf really does come, the villagers ignore’ his screams thinking it’s a false alarm. This story teaches children the consequences of lies and trickery.
5. The Ant and Grasshopper: A story of hard work and preparation versus indolence, The Ant and Grasshopper describes how the ant spends spring season gathering food and provision for winter, while the grasshopper whiles his time singing and relishing the pleasant weather and ends up in famine when winter arrives. The situation teaches kids to take responsibility and be equipped for what is to come.
6. The Lion and the Rabbit: The Lion and the Rabbit is about a lion who eats all the forest animals one by one. When it’s the rabbit’s turn, he uses his discretion to fool the lion by showing him his reflection and making him believe its another lion who is a rival to him. The story teaches children that being smart and wise is more important than being strong or mighty.
7. The Monkey and the Crocodile: The story is about a monkey who befriends a crocodile and gets him juicy fruits from trees. Eventually the crocodile and his mate get greedy and hatch a scheme to eat the monkey. The monkey however uses his sharp wits to trick the crocodile and saves himself. The Monkey and the Crocodile teaches children not to trust anyone and to use their presence of mind to escape from dangerous situations.
8. The Woodcutter: The story of a poor and honest woodcutter who drops his axe in a deep river accidentally, he is saddened about earning his livelihood on losing his crucial tool. However, he is surprised with a fairy’s appearance who offers him axes made of silver, gold and then of precious diamonds. The woodcutter refuses to take them saying they don’t belong to him. Impressed by his integrity, the fairy offers him all the axes of silver, gold and diamonds along with his original axe. The moral of the story is that being honest often comes with a reward.
9. The Golden Goose and the Greedy Farmer: Story of a farmer who had a special goose that laid a golden egg every day, the farmer became impatient to wait each day for the golden egg to be laid, he wondered if he slayed the goose, he would find several golden eggs in its belly. His greed incites him to slay the precious goose but he finds nothing in goose’s stomach. The story demonstrates the consequences of greed and haste.
10. The Frog and the Ox: The story is about a boastful frog tries to compete with the ox. The frog is envious of the ox’s size for which he inflates his body and ends up bursting himself. The learning from the tale is to be humble and avoid arrogance and bragging.
Also read: How stories can boost learning in children