By Michelle Lynn Senters-
Today, we are writing a fable in the style of Aesop.
A fable is short story that conveys a moral, a lesson in proper conduct. Most fables use personified animals (animals that speak and act like humans) as their main characters, but humans and inanimate objects are also used.
Aesop was a Greek storyteller who lived between 620–564 BC. Many fables are credited to his name, collectively known as Aesop’s Fables.
Read the following fables by Aesop. Notice how Aesop teaches proper conduct by showing the appropriate and inappropriate behavior of the characters. The moral is not revealed until the end of the story.
The Wind and the Sun
by Aesop, retold by Munro Leaf
The North-wind and the Sun once had an argument as to which had more power. They were squabbling back and forth with words, words, words, when an unlucky man happened to walk along the road beneath them.
“All right,” said the North-wind, “here’s a chance to prove who’s right. I’ll bet you I can take that man’s coat off more quickly than you can.”
“That’s a bet,” said the Sun, “you try first.”
The North-wind blew an icy puff at the man and nearly froze him, so he clutched his coat closer around him. Then the North-wind got angry and puffed, blew and blasted away so hard he even brought icy showers down on the miserable man, whose teeth rattled with the cold.
Naturally, the poor fellow hugged his think little coat all the tighter and the North-wind had to give up.
“Now, it’s my turn,” said the sun. “I’ll do it the easy way.”
He came out from behind a cloud and started to shine with all the heat he could.
After a short while, the man was so warm, he had to take off his coat and go sit in the shade of some trees. So the Sun won the bet.
Moral of the Story: It is easier to influence people through kindness than through force.
The Shepherd’s Boy (aka The Boy Who Cried Wolf)
by Aesop, retold by Munro Leaf
Just for a joke one day, he shouted, “Wolf! Wolf!” and all the Farmers came running with clubs and things to help him protect the sheep. He cried “Wolf! Wolf!” several times and each time they came to help him, they found that there wasn’t any wolf.
But one day, there really was a Wolf. And that Boy did yell! “Wolf! Wolf! Wolf!” he screamed at the top of his voice, but everybody just though he as up to his old trick and no one came to help. So, the Wolf killed all his sheep.
Moral of the Story: When a man is known to be a liar, people won’t believe him when he does tell the truth.
Now it’s your turn to tell a fable. Write a short story to teach one of the morals listed below. BE CREATIVE. Characters can be humans, animals, or inanimate objects. There must be a clear problem and solution to the story. SHOW the lesson your are teaching through the actions of the characters. At the end of the story, TELL your readers the lesson by writing the “Moral of the Story”. Illustrate your story, if desired.
- Don’t count your chickens before they hatch. (Meaning: Do not assume or boast that you will be successful until it actually happens.)
- The early bird catches the worm. (Meaning: Arriving early gives you an advantage.)
- If at first you don’t succeed try, try again. (Meaning: Patience, practice, and perseverance will help you achieve your goal.)
- One man’s trash is another man’s treasure. (Meaning: An object that one person sees as valueless may be valuable to someone else.)
- Tall oaks from little acorns grow. (Meaning: Everything big must start small.)
- You can’t judge a book by its cover. (Meaning: You can’t tell the heart of a person from their outward appearance.)
Write your first name, age, short story, and moral in the comment section below.
Michelle Lynn Senters is the Founder and Director of KIDS ARE WRITERS. She spends her days working as a Reading Interventionist and spends her evenings writing books for children and adults. You can learn more about Michelle HERE and at www.michellelynnsenters.com.