Myths and Fables

People enjoy listening to stories in every culture. Storytellers have fulfilled the need for a ‘good story’ since the beginning of human civilization. These stories include myths and fables.

Most people have their own favourite story from childhood and often these tales are both fascinating and frightening. What’s your favourite story and why?

What is a Myth?

A myth is a story based on tradition or legend, which ‘gives a message’ to those who tell and hear it, rather than recording a true event.

Although myths can be accounts of actual events, often details have been changed or the story has shifted in time or place.

Myths are often used to explain how human society began and can contain supernatural beings. There is great power in the meaning of these stories – a major reason why they survive as long as they do, sometimes for thousands of years.

What is a Fable?

Fables often make use of animals as central characters and through personification, they can also include inanimate objects such as trees or rocks. The objective of a fable is to teach the reader a lesson.

The Ant And The Grasshopper

One day in summer, a happy grasshopper was singing and dancing while playing his violin. He saw an ant passing by, carrying food on its tiny body to store for the winter.

“Come and play with me instead of working so hard,” said the grasshopper. “Let’s have some fun together.”

“I must store food for the winter,” said the ant, “and you should do the same.”

“Don’t worry about winter,” said the grasshopper laughing at him, “it’s still very far away.” But the ant didn’t listen and continued to do his work.

When winter came, the grasshopper was starving so he went to the ant’s house and begged for food. “If you had listened to my advice in the summer you would not be hungry now,” said the ant.

Comprehension Questions

What is the setting for the story?
Who are the characters?
How are the characters different?
What is the moral (lesson) of the story?

You can write your answers in the comment section.

And read some more famous children’s myths and fables now.