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Once Upon A Time: Three Stories to Read Together

June 14, 2021 | Nathan Johnson

Do you remember

GRUMPY BIRD?

And do you remember how much fun the Rivers Class children had telling this story?

Well, they have been telling stories ever since. 

During this storytelling time in Drama, the children have been telling three more stories — memorizing sequencing, taking turns, working on using their voices in many different ways, solving problems, exercising fine and gross motor skills making sets and costumes…

And in the case of the final story,

writing their own! 

Here are three stories (illustrated through pictures from Drama) for you to enjoy with your child.

Feel free to bookmark this blog for nap time or bedtime and enjoy them as a story together. 


The Three Billy Goats Gruff

Once upon a time, there were three billy goats. And the name of each of them was Gruff.

They planned to go to the big meadow where there was lots of green grass for them to eat and eat and eat and get fat. 

But to get to the meadow they had to reach the far side of the river,

and to reach the far side of the river they had to cross a bridge, 

and under the bridge lived a Troll

And he was as mean as he was ugly.

First came the littlest Billy Goat Gruff. 

WHO’S THAT TRIP TRAPPING OVER MY BRIDGE?

“It’s only me, the Littlest Billy Goat Gruff. I’m going to the meadow to make myself fat.”

“OH NO YOU’RE NOT, I’M COMING TO GOBBLE YOU UP!”

“Oh please don’t eat me, I’m only little that I am. Wait for my brother, he’s much bigger”

“VERY WELL, BE OFF WITH YOU!”

Next came the Medium Billy Goat Gruff. 

WHO’S THAT TRIP TRAPPING OVER MY BRIDGE?

“It’s only me, the Medium Billy Goat Gruff. I’m going to the meadow to make myself fat.”

“OH NO YOU’RE NOT, I’M COMING TO GOBBLE YOU UP!”

“Oh please don’t eat me, I’m hardly bigger at all. Wait for my brother, he’s much bigger”

“VERY WELL, BE OFF WITH YOU!”

Next came the Biggest Billy Goat Gruff, and when he walked across the bridge it creaked and groaned.  

“WHO’S THAT TRIP TRAPPING OVER MY BRIDGE?”

“IT IS I, THE BIGGEST BILLY GOAT GRUFF. I’M GOING TO THE MEADOW TO MAKE MYSELF FAT”

“I’M COMING TO GOBBLE YOU UP!”

“I’VE GOT TWO HORNS AND FOUR HOOFS, SEE WHAT YOU CAN DO!”

So up came the Troll and no sooner was he on the bridge, did the Biggest Billy Goat trample him with his hooves and buck him with his horns, throwing the Troll,

SPLASH,

into the rushing river.

Then the Biggest Billy Goat went to join the others and they ate and ate and ate and got fat. 

So, 

Snip, snap, snout. 

This tale’s told out


The Three Little Pigs

Once upon a time, there were Three Little Pigs …

They each built their house along a road.

The first little pig built her house out of straw.

The second little pig built his house out of sticks

The third little pig built her house out of bricks.

But what they didn’t know is that down the road lived a Big Bad Wolf! 

“I SMELL BACON!”

First, he went to the straw house…

“LITTLE PIG, LITTLE PIG, LET ME IN.”

“Not by the hair of my chinny-chin-chin!”

“THEN I’LL HUFF AND I’LL PUFF AND I’LL BLOW YOUR HOUSE IN!”

So he huffed and puffed and blew that straw house down. 

The little pig quickly ran next door to the house made of sticks. 

The wolf followed…

“LITTLE PIGS, LITTLE PIGS, LET ME IN.”

“Not by the hair of our chinny-chin-chins!”

“THEN I’LL HUFF AND I’LL PUFF AND I’LL BLOW YOUR HOUSE IN!”

So he huffed and puffed and blew that stick house down. 

The little pigs quickly ran next door to the house made of bricks. 

The wolf followed…

“LITTLE PIGS, LITTLE PIGS, LET ME IN.”

“Not by the hair of our chinny-chin-chins!”

“THEN I’LL HUFF AND I’LL PUFF AND I’LL BLOW YOUR HOUSE IN!”

So he huffed and puffed …

… and he puffed and he huffed, but he could not blow the brick house down.  

He got very angry and said, “I know, I’ll climb up on the roof and go down the chimney!”

But the pigs were quick and smart. They heard him up on the roof and, quick as a flash, they boiled up some water right under him. When he fell in, they put the lid on and boiled him up into furry wolf stew! 

So,

Splash, plop, yum. 

This tale’s all done


The Three Babies

By the Rivers Class Children:

Charlie, John, Lena, Maddox, Rebekah, Rodrigo, & Thomas

Once upon a time, there were three babies…

1 — 2 — 3!

They were so cute

And so cuddly, 

But so lonely!

Because there was no one to take care of them. 

They cried and cried and cried, 

Until along came…

THE TROLL!

“I’ll take care of you,” said the Troll.

“Hooray!” said the babies.

“Come with me to live under a bridge and eat billy goats.”

“No, no, no,” said the babies, “Be off with you!”

They cried and cried and cried, 

Until along came…

A BIG BAD WOLF!

“I’ll take care of you,” said the Big Bad Wolf.

“Hooray!” said the babies.

“Come with me to live in my cave and eat piggies.”

“No, no, no,” said the babies, “Be off with you!”

They cried and cried and cried, 

Until along came…

A Mommy and a Daddy!

(or two daddies or two mommies, depending on who is in Drama at that moment)

“We’ll take care of you,” said the Mommy and Daddy.

“Hooray!” said the babies.

“Come with me to live in a nice house and eat squished bananas and puffs.”

“Yes, yes, yes!” said the babies.

“Oh no!” said the Mommy.

“We are lost…” said the Daddy.

“We don’t know the way home!”

Then along came

Grumpy Bird.

“Follow me!” she said.

When Bird picked up a baby, they all picked up a baby.

When Bird found her way home, they all found their way home.

When Bird rocked a baby, they all rocked a baby.

And they all lived happily ever after.

___________________________

Did you enjoy those stories? 

Guess what! We’re illustrating that last one … 

(Stay tuned for more on that)

GOD, we thank you for stories!

For pretending

And dressing up.

Thank you for ideas — our own and other peoples’.

Thank you for babies and Mommies and Daddies.

Thank you for friends to play with.

Amen.

Nathan Johnson

Rivers Class Assistant Teacher & Lower School Visual Art Teacher

Nathan Johnson graduated in 2004 from Lenoir-Rhyne University with a Bachelor of Arts in Visual Arts (focusing on Illustration, Art History, and Puppetry), Theatre, and Elementary Education, followed by further time in Europe studying Art, and in Nova Scotia working with adults with developmental differences.

Happily back at his Alma mater (MSS class of 1995) Nathan has passionately committed his career to preserving the dignity and wonder of childhood. As children are more and more burdened with technology and privilege, he believes that in order for children to learn and grow, they must be given freedom within structure, choices with guidance, allowed to play, struggle, get dirty, and above all, for each child to be taught that they are a beloved child of God.

When not in the classroom, Nathan can be found kayaking, camping, hosting a game night, wandering around New York City, making friends with strangers, and spending time with his 11 nieces and nephews.

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