Read with your child: A fable for each month


The Boy Who Cried Wolf
A shepherd boy is watching the village’s sheep in a mountain meadow above the Village. He gets lonely and calls 'wolf' to get villagers to see him. The villagers drop what they’re doing to come to his aid and are angry when there is no wolf. The boy does this again. This time, the wolf comes but the villagers do not.

Lesson learned: If you lie once, people won’t believe you when you tell the truth.

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King Midas
Midas is granted one wish. He chooses to have everything he touches turn to gold. He loves his newfound power until he turns his daughter into a statue of gold by touching her hand. He begs to reverse the wish/curse and his daughter is returned to normal.

Lesson learned: People are more important than money

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Despite his mother's warning, Peter Rabbit explores Mr. McGregor's garden. Sure enough, Mr. McGregor chases Peter with a rake. Peter loses his shoes among the potatoes and cabbage, and his jacket gets caught in a gooseberry net. Frightened and out of breath, Peter finally sees the gate and slips back home. He is put to bed with a dose of chamomile tea while his three well-behaved sisters enjoy their dinner.

Lesson Learned: Think before you act; there can be very serious consequences to misbehaving.

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The Magic Porridge Pot
Maisie is a poor little girl who lives with her mother in a cottage. When she went out to pick berries, she saw an old woman she thought was a bad witch who was drowning. Maisie saved her and the woman gave Maisie a magic pot that cooks porridge just by saying four words, 'Cook little pot, cook!' The witch turned out to be good and Maisie and her mother never went hungry again.

Lesson learned: Do something nice for someone and the favor will be returned.

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The Ugly Duckling
In this story, a duckling is abandoned and deserted because he is different. Despite trying to make friends, the ugly duckling is laughed at and rejected by everyone he meets. Then one day the ugly duckling comes across a number of beautiful white swans swimming on a lake and discovers his real identity, seeing his own reflection in the water. He had grown into a beautiful swan too, and had never been an ugly duckling after all.

Lesson learned: Beauty on the inside is more important than beauty on the outside.

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The Lion and the Mouse
A tiny mouse runs over a sleeping lion’s paw by accident. The lion wakes up and threatens to eat the mouse. The mouse begs for his life, saying if freed, he will return the favor one day. The lion laughs at the idea that the mouse will be able to do something for him, but decides to let him go. After time passes, the mouse hears the lion roaring in the jungle. The mouse goes to see what has happened and finds the lion trapped in a net. The mouse chews through the net and is able to free him.

Lesson learned: If you help others, you’ll get help in return when you least expect it.

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The Tortoise and the Hare
Hare and Slow and Steady Tortoise are having a race. Hare, who is generally cocky about his speed, pauses for a short nap. When he hears the crowd roar for Slow and Steady approaching the finish line, he takes off, but a last-minute sprint, and a long neck, give Slow and Steady the inevitable victory.

Lesson learned: Perseverance pays off.

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The Empty Pot
Jun is very good at growing flowers, so when the emperor gives the children seeds to grow to help him choose the next emperor, he is very excited. He gets his seed and takes very good care of it, but it doesn’t grow. When it is time to go to the emperor with his best results, Jun must go with his empty pot, even though the other children all have beautiful flowers. However, his honesty is rewarded when the emperor reveals that none of the seeds he gave out had been able to grow a flower.

Lesson Learned: Telling the truth always pays off.

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The Selfish Giant
There is a very selfish giant who won’t let kids play in his garden. When the kids sneak in to play, the trees and flowers bloom and spring arrives. When he builds a wall to keep them out, it’s becomes cold and wintry in his garden and nothing will grow. He realizes things are much better when you share.

Lesson Learned: When you open your heart, good things will happen.

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Charlie and the Chocolate Factory
Five lucky people find a Golden Ticket wrapped in one of Willy Wonka's wonderful candy bars and win a visit to his mysterious chocolate factory. Charlie Bucket is too poor to buy more than one candy bar a year, so when he wins a ticket, his whole family celebrates. The four other lucky children are not as nice as Charlie, and they're punished for their bad behavior. But there's a wonderful surprise waiting for Charlie at the end of the tour.

Lesson Learned: People, both good and bad, get what they deserve.

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Little Red Hen
Little Red Hen asks housemates Cat, Dog, and Mouse for help planting seeds to grow wheat. They all refuse. She continues to ask for help everyday with no luck. When they smell the delicious bread she made with the wheat, they want to help her eat it.

Lesson learned: To reap the benefits of something, you need to help out with the work.

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The Emperor's New Clothes
Once upon a time there was a vain emperor who loved new clothes more than anything. He was the perfect person for two sly tricksters' clever plot. Claiming to be able to weave a fabulous cloth that is invisible to all who are stupid or unfit for their jobs, the tricksters promise to create a marvelous set of clothes for the emperor to wear in the great procession. The emperor pays the tricksters handsomely for their work, but he and his subjects are in for a very big surprise!

Lesson Learned: Pride and vanity can be foolhardy.

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