Reading traditional tales from countries around the world introduces different cultures and traditions while teaching children important life lessons. Take your young learners on an imaginary journey around the globe with these Ladybird Readers activities using tales from India, China and Africa.
While exploring these stories with your young learners:
- Find each country on a map or globe and look at how far it is from your home country.
- Consider the climate of each country and compare it with the climate of your home country.
Traditional tales from China
This is a beautiful Chinese folk tale about a young boy called Jun and a challenge set by the Emperor. The moral of the story is to always tell the truth and to have patience.
The Empty Pot Activities
Using the role-play
Use the role-play to bring this story to life.
Explore the moral of the story with these questions:
- Why didn’t Jun’s pot have any leaves in it?
- Why did the other boys have leaves in their pots?
- Why did the Emperor like Jun’s pot?
- Why is it important to tell the truth?
This is an inspirational traditional Chinese story about using your talents to help others.
The Magic Paintbrush Activities
Explore how young learners can use their own talents to help others with the following questions:
- Do you help your family?
- Why should we help people?
- Make a list of the ways you help people in different situations: at school, at home or with your friends.
Traditional tale from Africa
This traditional tale set in Ethiopia teaches patience and understanding.
The Cheetah’s Whisker Activities
Analyse the Picture Words below
Explore the Picture Words and spark children’s interest in the story using these questions:
- How far is it from your own country? Use a map or a globe to look at where Ethiopia is geographically.
- What can you see in the picture of the savannah?
- Can you climb trees?
Research the cheetah
Discuss the answers to these questions with your young learners:
- Where do they live?
- What do they eat?
- Are they dangerous?
Traditional Tales from India
This is a traditional Indian folklore story about honesty, doing the right thing and helping others.
The Tiger, the Brahmin and the Jackal Activities
Analyse the front cover
Use the front cover of the book to identify the three characters from the book name:
- The Tiger
- The Brahmin
- The Jackal
Ask young learners to describe the three characters and make predictions about what they think will happen in the book.
Talk about the traditional clothes worn by Brahmin and ask young learners these questions:
- Do you have traditional clothes that you wear?
- Are your traditional clothes similar or different to Brahmin’s?
- Can you draw a picture of a traditional dress from your country?
This is a traditional Indian story about kindness and love prevailing over evil.
The Story of Laila and Ajeet Activities
Discuss the blurb
Look at the blurb from the back of the book with your young learners:
Laila is kind and clever, but her father is the terrible Rajah. When Ajeet falls in love with her, the Rajah gives him a very hard job to do.
Ask these questions to encourage predictions about the story:
- What do you think will happen in this story?
- What is a Rajah?
- What do you think will happen to Laila and Ajeet?
- What do you think the “very hard job” will be?
Levels: Beginner | Intermediate
Age: 10 | 6 | 7 | 8 | 9