Read and Understand, Folktales & Fables, Stories & Activities, Grades 2-3
Moore, Jo Ellen
At least twelve of the twenty-one stories used here are recognizable fables, including GGE, BC, The Tortoise and the Eagle, GA, The Monkey and the Crocodile, CP, FS, The Rabbit That Ran Away, The Crow and the Peacock, BW, SW, The Tiger and the Big Wind. Following each story there are four or five skill pages covering things like comprehension, vocabulary, phonics, structural analysis, and parts of speech. Simple illustrations accompany the story text. The best of the illustrations is a view of monkey lying on crocodile's back in mid-river (52). In GGE, the farmer and his wife, after killing the goose, keep buying geese in the hopes of finding another gold-layer (11). The Tortoise and the Eagle (23), described as an African Fable, is new to me. Tortoise hosts eagle often, but eagle never invites tortoise. Tortoise hides himself in a gourd full of fruit which he gives to eagle. He declares himself in eagle's home. When eagle gets angry, tortoise demands to be taken home and seizes on eagle's leg. He holds on until eagle takes him home. The grasshopper in GA never goes to the ants' home; he comes to a realization on his own about saving from your abundance for later need (38). The Little People (102) is new to me. A young Native American boy meets some diminutive people who offer to trade with him for their diminutive bow and arrows. He refuses and later regrets that he judged on size. The Crow and the Peacock (108) is not the usual Aesopic fable. White crow paints yellow peacock the colors we now associate with the peacock. Peacock is so proud that he wants no competition from crow. He manages to knock over all the paints except black. SW (119) is unfortunately told in the poorer version. In the final tale, the rabbit talks the tiger into believing that a big wind is coming and into demanding that he, tiger, be tied up first for security against the wind (131).