Teacher Playlists: 40 Stories Playlist

The Oak Tree and the Reeds

A big, strong oak tree doesn’t allow sun to reach the little reeds until a storm; the reeds bend and survive, but the oak tree breaks and falls, leaving the reeds in the sunshine. 286 words.

The Blind Men and the Elephant

Blind men argue whether an elephant is a snake, spear, wall, tree or something else; a boy sees the truth all along, but doesn’t bother to argue with them. 370 words.

The Country Mouse and the City Mouse

A country mouse enjoys the luxuries of city life until a frightening city cat convinces him a simple life with safety is better than a rich life full of danger. 431 words.

The Lion and the Mouse

A lion releases a mouse, believing it’s too small and weak ever to return the favor, but when the lion is trapped in a net the mouse gnaws the threads and releases the lion. 395 words.

The Rooster and the Fox

A fox traps a rooster by flattering the rooster’s singing voice, but the rooster escapes when he convinces the fox to taunt and trash talk his pursuers. 436 words.

The Little Red Hen

Lazy animals refuse to help the hen plant the seed, harvest the grain, or bake the bread, so the hen refuses to share the baked bread with the lazy animals. 477 words.

The Grasshopper and the Ants

The grasshopper plays, making fun of ants who work and prepare for the future, but in winter they have food, are warm, and relax, while the grasshopper is cold and hungry. 686 words.

The Boy Who Cried Wolf

Bored watching over the sheep, a boy causes excitement by lying that a wolf threatens; when a real wolf attacks, the people think the boy’s lying and won’t come to help him. 722 words.

Chicken Little

An acorn falls on Chicken Little’s head and convinces him and his friends the sky is falling; they go to tell the king, but the fox lures them into his den. 743 words.

The Three Wishes

A fairy grants three wishes to a man and wife who squander them; the wife nearly winds up with a sausage attached to her nose. 765 words.

The Queen Bee

Two elder brothers call a boy Numbskull, but ants, ducks, and bees reward his kindness and help him accomplish tasks to win princesses as brides for himself and his brothers. 886 words.

The Elves and Shoemaker

By secretly making shoes, two elves save a poor shoemaker and his wife; the man and wife make clothes to reward the elves, who leave when their help is no longer needed. 830 words.

Goldilocks and the Three Bears

A nosy little girl invades the bears’ home and falls asleep; when they return and discover her, she wakes and runs away. 1092 words.

Toads and Diamonds

Mistreated by her elder sister and mother, a girl is polite to a fairy who causes jewels to fall from the girl’s mouth when she speaks; toads fall from her impolite sister’s mouth. 1087 words.

The Turtle and the Rabbit

A modest turtle races a speedy rabbit who brags, shows off, and takes a nap; by slowly and steadily moving ahead, never stopping or quitting, the turtle wins the race. 880 words.

The Frog-Prince

A frog returns a ball for a princess who treats him badly until her parents insist she be nicer; her kind treatment breaks a spell, he becomes a handsome prince, and they marry. 1188 words.

The Three Little Pigs

Two pigs squander their money and build shabby houses; their smarter brother saves and works hard to build a brick house which protects them all from the big bad wolf. 986 words.

The Three Billy Goats Gruff

Two billy goats trick a mean troll into waiting for their brother; with his horns the big brother knocks the troll off the bridge. 891 words.

Tortoise, Elephant, and Hippo

Elephant and Hippo bully other animals until Tortoise tricks them into a tug of war; thinking it’s Turtle, each pulls against each other; humbled, they then treat others nicely. 984 words.

The Tale of Peter Rabbit

Peter disobeys his mother and enters Mr. MacGregor’s garden, where he is almost captured and put into a pie; Peter escapes and returns to his mother who scolds him. 933 words.

The Pied Piper of Hamelin

Town officials hire a piper to play music to lead rats away; when they try to cheat him, he plays beautiful music and leads the children to heaven, away from the dishonest adults. 967 words.

The Gingerbread Man

The Gingerbread Man speaks rudely, brags, and outruns all the people and animals until the fox’s help, is tricked and swallowed. 1095 words.

How Anansi the Spider Got Long Legs

Anansi once had two ordinary legs like people, but, lazy and hungry, he selfishly schemes to eat his friends’ food and winds up with eight long skinny legs. 1296 words.


A cruel man spins straw into gold to save a girl’s life, demanding her first child in payment; when she’s queen she saves her child by learning the man’s secret name. 1344 words.

Little Red Riding Hood

A girl speaks to a wolf and leaves the proper path; the wolf swallows the grandmother and girl, but a huntsman kills the wolf, opens the wolf’s belly, and rescues both of them. 1243 words.


A witch forces a couple to give her their daughter, then locks the girl away in a high tower; the girl lowers her long hair to a prince who climbs the tower and rescues her. 1471 words.

The Bremen Town Musicians

When their owners plan to do away with them, four animals leave to become musicians; they trick some robbers, chase them away, and make a new home in the robbers’ house. 1450 words.

Puss in Boots

After his master buys him some boots, a cat tricks a king and an ogre and arranges for his master to marry a princess 1789 words.

The Hardy Tin Soldier

A one-legged toy soldier loves a cardboard dancer; a cruel goblin causes the soldier to fall from a window, get swallowed by a fish, and be tossed in a stove with the dancer. 1705 words.

The Goose Girl

A false maid betrays a princess who must work as a goose firl until she discovers a way to reveal her true identity. 2097 words.

Jack the Giant Killer

Clever and brave, Jack travels the country killing a series of giants, rescues some ladies, marries a duke’s daughter, and receives a castle from King Arthur. 1911 words.

The Quern at the Bottom of the Sea

Sent to “the bad place“ by his mean rich brother, the poor younger brother trades for a magic grindstone, becomes rich, and sells it to a sea captain who grinds too much salt. 1983 words.

Molly Whuppie

Not pretty like two older sisters, Molly is clever and brave, saving them from an ogre, and taking the ogre’s silver sword, bag of gold, and diamond pin; all three girls marry princes. 2352 words.

The Emperor's New Clothes

Lying thieves claim they can make magical clothes invisible to bad and stupid people; the emperor parades naked, adults pretend to see clothes, until a child speaks the truth. 2126 words.

Snow White and the Seven Dwarfs

A princess escapes a cruel stepmother and lives in the woods with seven dwarfs; the mean stepmother nearly kills her with a poison apple, but a prince saves and marries her. 2540 words.


Mistreated, hard-working Cinderella gets a beautiful gown and magic coach from her fairy godmother; when her foot fits the glass slipper a prince marries her. 2567 words.

Tom Thumb

Though no bigger than a thumb, Tom is clever and tricky; he helps his father and mother, outwits thieves, is swallowed by a cow and a wolf, but escapes and returns home. 2659 words.

Sleeping Beauty

Cursed by a bad fairy, a princess sleeps for a hundred years, but finally is awakened and rescued by a handsome prince. 2280 words.

The Fisherman and His Wife

A fisherman catches a magic fish and releases it; his wife keeps demanding the fisherman ask more and more favors from the fish, until finally the fish takes everything back. 2211 words.

Jack and the Beanstalk

Jack trades a cow for magic beans which grow into a beanstalk; he climbs to the clouds, from a giant takes gold, a magic hen, and a magic harp, and makes his mother happy. 2588 words.

Hansel and Gretel

Abandoned in the forest because of a wicked stepmother, a boy and girl find a candy house, are captured by a witch, trick her, and return home with riches for their father. 3154 words.