These are the two fairy tale collections we’ve been reading from. I highly recommend the one on the left, Treasury of Classic Children’s Stories. (affiliate link) (Update in 2015: All three of my kids loved, loved, loved the fairy tales in Classic Children’s Stories. At first I read them aloud, later they read them to themselves. In fact, ED now reads the stories to herself and the book is on our kitchen table!). The pictures are beautiful and there are more illustrations. The book on the right is The Random House Children’s Treasury: Fairy Tales, Nursery Rhymes & Nonsense Verse. (affiliate link) The one on the right is good as well, but it’s a little more difficult for ED (age 2 1/2) to follow.
One thing I didn’t think to add when I first wrote this post was that we LOVE LOVE LOVE the stories read by Natasha at storynory.com. You can listen to them free online or you can download them (free) and burn them onto a CD to listen in the car (or wherever) as we do. It is an AMAZING website (and I love Natasha’s voice). I feel like most people must know about it, but if not — check it out! She has a huge selection of fairy tales, plus Greek myths, Oscar Wilde, Alice in Wonderland, Bible stories, Knights of the Round Table and more.
Here are some of the activities we did to go along with our Fairy Tale Unit:
After reading this story, I taught the kids to braid (a skill we never tackled before) just as Rapunzel’s hair was braided for the witch to climb up.
LD eventually caught on fairly well. It was harder for DD. I thought we might do a craft where Rapunzel peaks out of the top of the tower/paper towel roll with her braid draping down the tower. It was too busy at the end of the week last week, though.
Hansel and Gretel
After reading this story, we decided to make our own a bread crumb trail. We let some time go by just as Hansel and Gretel had to wait for their father and step-mother. Then we tried to find our bread crumb trail and realized just how hard it is since the bread blends in so well with the leaves, stones and other forest debris.
It took a lot of hunting, but we finally found one lone breadcrumb out in the woods (next to the leaf). No wonder Hansel and Gretel had such a tough time out there!
The Three Little Pigs Puppet Show
Followed by lots of new fairy tale performances put on by the kids! In LD’s version the knights had a long extended battle!
We’ve talked about where these fairy tales originated (mostly from England and Germany) and we’ve been locating them on our map of Europe. I printed out an outline map from activity village one day to color in some of the countries. We’ve also been playing a geography game of Europe, but it’s such a good game I’ll make another separate posting about that.
- Fairy Garden Setup Starts off our New Unit on Fairy Tales
- Fairy Tale Unit: Jack and the Beanstalk
- Fairy Tale Unit: The Emperor’s New Clothes
Disclosure: Please note that some of the links above are affiliate links, and at no additional cost to you, I will earn a commission if you decide to make a purchase.