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Folktales

Power of Words Indian Folk Tale 1: The Power of Words      https://sites.google.com/site/valueslessons  

A group of frogs were travelling through the woods, and two of them fell into a deep hole. All the other frogs gathered around the hole. When they saw how deep it was, they told the two frogs that they were as good as dead.
The two frogs ignored the comments and tried to jump up out of the hole with all of their might. The other frogs kept yelling, "Give up! You're not going to make it." Finally, one of the frogs believed what the other frogs were saying and gave up. He curled up and died.
The other frog continued to jump as hard as he could. Once again, the crowd of frogs yelled at him, "Stop the pain. You're just going to die. It's no use! Give up!" He jumped even harder and finally made it out.
When he got out, the other frogs said, "Didn't you hear us?"
The frog told them, "I'm stone deaf, but thanks so much for all your encouragement. It kept me going when I felt like giving up!"

mage Source: http://www.itattooz.net/itattooz/Animal/frog/images/1298375591itattooz-frog-tattoo.jpg

Discussion Question

What does this story teach us about the power our words have? (There is power of life and death in our words: An encouraging word to someone who is down can help them make it through the day. A destructive word to someone who is down can be all it takes to make them give up hope. Be careful what you say.)

Optional Colouring In: A picture of a jumping frog is found at:  http://cliparts.co/cliparts/8TG/oyb/8TGoybqTa.gif


Watch your Words Indian Folk Tale 2: The Power of a Rumour
Once upon a time a hare was resting under a banyan tree in a forest. He had a feeling of doom and thought, “What would happen to me if the earth broke? “ Suddenly, he heard a loud, cracking sound. He cried, “It’s happened, the earth is breaking up”. He jumped up and ran madly away.
When he was running through the forest, another hare saw him and asked, “Where are you going in such a hurry? “. 
The Hare cried,” The earth is breaking up. You better run too”. The second hare ran so fast that he overtook the first hare. As they were passing the forest, both of them shouted to other hares, “The earth is breaking up. The earth is breaking up”. Very soon, thousands of hares were running through the forest.
On seeing hares running through the forest, the other animals too got frightened. The news spread from mouth to mouth and soon, everyone came to know that the earth was breaking up. It didn’t take much time before all the animals joined the race. All creatures whether reptiles or birds, insects or four-footed animals, everyone was trying to escape and their cries of fear created chaos all around.
A lion standing on a hill saw all the animals running and thought,” What's the matter? “. He ran down the hill and positioned himself in front of the crowd. He shouted at them, “Stop! Stop! ”. The powerful presence of the lion curtailed the rising wave of fright among the animals. A parrot yelled, “The earth is breaking up”. The Lion asked,” Who said it? “. The parrot replied, “I heard it from the monkeys".
When the monkeys were asked, they replied that they had heard it from the tigers. When the tigers were asked, it was found that they were informed by the elephants. The elephants told that the buffaloes formed their source. Finally, when the hares were caught up, they pointed one to another until the one, who started this menace was recognized.
The Lion asked the hare, “What made you think that the earth is breaking up?” The hare wavering in fear answered, “Your Majesty, I heard it cracking with my own ears”. The Lion investigated the matter, seeking the sound that the hare had heard. Ultimately, he found that the sound had been caused by a large coconut falling from a tree. The coconut fell on a pile of rocks and cracked open.
The Lion said to all the animals, “Go back to your homes. The earth is absolutely safe. Next time, check a rumour before acting on it”. The animals, which were now feeling quite stupid, went back to their homes. All except the hare, whom the lion had for supper.

Story source:http://www.culturalindia.net/indian-folktales/jataka-tales/power-of-a-rumour.html   Image source: https://c1.staticflickr.com/9/8047/8096598411_d57bfddfa0_z.jpg

Discussion Questions

1. What does this story teach us about rumours?
2. How can we find out whether or not a rumour is true?

Optional Colouring In: A picture of a hare is found at: http://www.getcoloringpages.com/images/g8/g8ffrlh.gif