When teaching children, it is effective to use stories as learning tools. "The Boy Who Cried Wolf" is a story with a useful moral as well as an interesting character who can lend himself to many activities. Social skills, language arts and writing activities can all stem from this story.
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An easy way to help children understand the story of "The Boy Who Cried Wolf" is to have them act it out. For a large group, have some children be sheep and others act as villagers. Because this is a short story, you can rotate the parts and let more than one child be the boy who cried wolf. Provide some props, such as a shepherd's crook or robe for the main character.
For an older group, have students write a paragraph describing how the story could fit into their lives. Ideas include ways for them to tell the truth, occasions when they have lost people's trust or times in their lives when it could become dangerous to lie too often. You might want to have a brainstorming session beforehand to get the creative juices flowing.
Discuss the moral of the story with the class. Ideas such as "honesty is the best policy" or not slacking off at work can be written on a board or large easel pad. Let the class vote on the best moral for the story. Come up with other well-known stories that also illustrate the same theme. Older children can write their own short story that also contains the chosen moral.
Divide the children into groups and have them make up a song for a character in the story. You could give them classical music clips to create lyrics for, or use well-known songs such as "Twinkle Twinkle Little Star" and change the words. Each group can then perform their song for the class. Have the children think about how the character is feeling at different points in the story and incorporate that into their song.
Discuss with the class why the boy cried wolf when he was supposed to be watching the sheep. Ideas can include being bored at work. Most school-aged children can understand and identify with being bored, especially when they are supposed to be doing school work. Brainstorm ideas with the class that can prevent boredom or help them cope when they become bored. Have the children draw pictures of the boy using an alternative method rather than tricking the village people.
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