Category Archives: Story for children

THE SELFISH GIANT – Kids story

“Owning things is human, sharing them is divine”.

You have heard or giants in stories haven’t you? What makes someone a giant? Are they real or unreal? Do giants really have to be tall? They are all large and strong. Some are good, and some are bad. Oscar Wilde’s story is a beautiful parable of what makes people bad, and what makes them change.

Every afternoon, the children went and played in the Giant’s garden. It was a large and lovely garden with soft green grass and trees. After seven years. The Giant came back. He had been away, visiting his friend, the Cornish ogre. He saw the children playing in his garden. “How can they play in my garden?” he was wondering.
So he built a wall all around it. He was indeed a very selfish giant. Now the poor children had nowhere to play. They tried to play on the road: but the road was very dusty and full of hard stones. They became unhappy. Then the spring came and an over the country there were little blossoms and little birds; but in the garden of the selfish giant it was still winter.

One morning the giant was lying awake in bed when he heard some lovely music. It sounded very sweet to his ears. It was only a linnet singing outside the window. “I think the spring has come at last” said the giant; and he jumped out of his bed and looked out. There, he saw the most wonderful sight.

Though a little hole in the wall the children had crept in; and they were sitting in the branches of the trees. In every tree that he could see there was a little child, and the trees were so glad to have the children back again that they had covered themselves with blossoms. It was a lovely scene.

But in one corner there was still winter. A little boy was standing under the tree. As he could not reach up to the branches, he was crying bitterly. And the giant’s heart melted as he looked out. “How selfish I have been”, he said. Now I know why the spring could not come here. I will that poor little boy on the top on the tree. Then I will knock down the wall and my garden shall be the children’s playground forever.”

So he opened the door and crept downstairs. But when the children saw him, they were so frightened that they all ran away and the garden became winter once again. But the little boy did not run because his eyes were full of tears. He did not see the giant coming. And the giant stole up behind him and took him gently in his hands and put him up into the tree.

And at once the tree broke into blossom and the birds came and sang on it. The little boy stretched out his two arms and flung them around the giant’s neck and kissed him. The other children saw that the giant was no longer wicked and came back; and with them came the spring. “It is your garden now, little children” said the giant and he took a big and knocked down the wall. All day long they played and in the evening they came to the giant to bid him goodbye.

The giant loved the little boy the best because he had kissed him. Every afternoon when the school was over, he children came and played in the garden. The little boy whom the giant loved was not to be seen. The giant loved all the children but longed for the little child, and often spoke of him.

Years went on; the giant grew very old and feeble. He could not play about anymore; co he sat on an arm chair and watched the children at their games and admired his garden. “I have many beautiful flowers”, he said “but the children are the most beautiful flowers of all”.

One winter morning he looked out of his window as he was dressing. Suddenly he rubbed his eyes in wonder and looked out again. It certainly was a marvelous sight! In the farthest corn or of the garden was tree quite covered with lovely white blossoms? Its branches were golden and silver fruit were hanging down from them; and underneath stood the little boy whom he had loved so much. The giant ran downstairs in great joy and out into the garden, till he came near the child.

The child smiled and said to the giant. “You let me play once in your garden. Today you shall come with me to my garden, which is paradise”. And when the children ran in that afternoon, they found the giant lying dead under the tree, all covered with white blossoms.

A GIFT OF CHAPPALS – Children story

Smiling Rukku Manni threw open the door. Ravi and Meena rushed out, and Ravi pulled Mridu into the house. “Wait, let me take off my slippers,” protested Mridu. She set them out neatly near pair of large black ones. Those were grey, actually, with dust. You could see the clear mark of every toe on the front part of each slipper. The marks for the two big toes were long and scrawny.

Mrddu didn’t have much time to wonder about whose slippers they were, because Ravi dragged to the backyard, behind a thick bitter – berry bush. There, inside a torn football lined with sacking and filled with sand, lay a very small kitten, lapping up milk from a coconut half-shell. We” found him outside the gate this morning he was mewing and mewing, poor thing,” said Meena. “It’s a secret. Amma says Paati will leave for our Paddu Mama’s house if she knows we have a cat.”
“people are always telling us to be king to animals, but when we are, they scream, “Ooh, don’t bring that dirty creature here!” said Ravi. “Do you know how hard it is just to get a little milk from the kitchen? Paati saw me with a glass in my hand just now. I( told her I’m very hungry, I want to drink it, but the way she looked atme! I want to dring it, but they way she looked at me! I had to drink most of it to throw her off the scent. Then she wanted the tumbler back.’Paati, paaati, I’ll wash it myself, why should I put you to trouble’, I told her. I had to run and pour the milk into this coconut shell and then run back and wash the tumbler and put it back before she got really suspicious. Now we have to think of some other way to fed Mahendran”.

“Mahendran? This little Kitty’s name is Mahendran?” Mridu was impressed! It was a real name – not just a cute kitty –cat name.

“Actually his full name is Mahendravarma Pallava Poonai .M.P. Poonai for short if you like. He’s fine breed of cat. Just look at his fur. Like a lion’smane! And you know what the emblems of the ancient Pallava kings was, don’t you?” he looked expectantly at Mridu.

Mridu giggled.

“Think I’m joking? Well, just wait. I’ll show you sometime. It’s clear you don’t know a thing about history. Haven’t been to Mahabalipuram, have you?” he said mysteriously. “well, when our class went to Mahabalipuram, I saw a status of his thatha’s thatha’s thatha’s thatha’s thatha’s ……… etcetera, etcetera….Fact is, Maherndran here is d ascended from that very same ancient cat. A close relative, scientifically lion, emblem of the Pallava dynasty!” Ravi went on, walking around the bitter- berry bush waving a twing up and down, his eyes sparkling “this cat is a descendant of none other than the Mahabalipuram Rishi – Cat! And if I may Just remind you, they worshipped cats in ancient Egypt!:

How he loved the sound of his own voice! Meena and Mridu exchanged looks.

“What dos those have to do with anything?” Mridu demanded.

“Huh! I’m telling you this cat is escended… from the Egyptian cat – god…. No, goddess! bastet! ya! Tahat’s it!”

“So?”

“well, one of the descend ants of that cat-goddess was a stowaway in one of the Pallava ships, and his descendant was the mahabalipuram Rishi –Cat, whose descendant is – “Ravi flourished his twig at Mahennran”-M.P. Poonai here… whoop EEK!” he shrieked, very pleased with himself.

Mahendran looked up, alarmed. He had just been sharpening his claws on the edge of the coconut shell. But worse that Ravi’s awful whoop EEK was a ‘Kreech….1’ from the window. What a weird sound?! If Mridu was startled, M.P. Poonai was frightened out of his wits. Hair standing on end, he bounced up and scurried towards a bamboo tray of red chillies that had been set out to dry. Trying to hide beneath it, he tipped a few chillies over himself.

“Mi – a-aw! He howled miserably.

The ‘Kreeching’ went on and on, “what’s that noise?” said Mridu.

“That’s Lalli learning to play the violin. “Grunted Ravi.

“She’ll never learn a thing. The music-maser just goes on playing like a taint whizzing on and on, while lalli’s all the time derailing! Going completely off track!”

Mridu crept up to the Window. Lalli was sitting a little distance away, awkwardly holding her violin and bowstring, her elbows jutting out and her eyes glazed with concentration. In front of her, with most of his back to the window, was the bony figure of the music – master. He had a mostly bald head with a fringe of oiled black hair falling around his ears and an old-fashioned tuft .A gold chain gleamed around his leathery neck, and a diamond ring glittered on his hand as it glided up and down the stem of the violin. A large foot stuck out from beneath his gold – bordered veshti edge, and he was beating time on the floor with the scrawny big toe.

He played a few notes. Lalli stumbled behind him on her violin, which looked quite helpless and unhappy in her hands. What a difference! The music – master’s notes seemed to floated up and settle perfectly in to the invisible tracks of the melody. It was like the wheels of a train fitting smoothly into the rails and whizzing along, as Ravi said. Mridu started at that huge, Be ringed hand moving effortlessly up the violin’s stem, making lovely music.
Squawk! There was Lalli derailing again!

“Amma” came a wail from the gate.”Amma – oh!”
“Ravi sends that beggar away!” cried his mother from the back verandah, where she was chatting with tapi. “He has been coming here every day for the past week, and it’s time he found another house to beg from!”Paati explained to Tapi.
Mridu and Meena followed Ravi out. The beggar was already in the garden, making himself quite at home. He had spread his upper cloth under the neem tree, and was leaning against its trunk, apparently prepared to take a little an ooze while he waited for the alms to appear.” Go away said Ravi sternly.”My Paati says it’s time you found another house to beg from!”
The beggar opened his eyes very wide and gazed at each of the children one by one. “The ladies of this house,” he said, at last, in a voice choked with feeling,” are very kind souls. I have kept my body and soul together on their generosity for a whole week. I cannot believe the they would turn me away.” He raised his voice “Amma! Amma – oh!” Sad his wail might, but it certainly wasn’t feeble. It began in a deep, strong rumble somewhere in his withered belly, and came booming out of his mouth, with its few remaining teeth stained brown with betel – chewing.

Ravi, tell him there’s nothing left in the Kitchen!” called Rukku Manni. “and he’s not to come again- tell him that!” .And he’s not to come again – tell him that!”She sounded fed up.

Ravi didn’t have to repeat it all to the beggar. What his mother said had been easy for them all to hear, there under the neem tree. The beggar sat up and sighed.

“I’LL go, I”II go!” he said wearily. “Only let me have a rest here under this tree. Then sun is so hot, the tar has melted on the road. My feet are already blistered. He stretched out his feet to show large, pink, peeling blisters on the soles of his bare feet.

“I suppose he doesn’t have the money to buy Chap pals,” or I’d have given them to him,” And his feet were larger than Mridu’s and Meena’s.

The beggar was shaking out his upper cloth and tightening his dhoti. He raised his eyes and looked fearfully at the road, gleaming in the afternoon heat.

“He needs something on his feet!” Meena said, Her big eyes filling, “It’s not fair!”

“Ssh!” said Ravi. “I’m thinking aboutit1 blubbering, ’It’s not fair, it’s not fair’ isn’t going to help. In two minutes he’ll be frying his feet on that road. What he needs is a pair of chappals. So where do we get them? Come, let’s search the house,” He pushed Mridu and Meena into the house.

Just as she stepped into the verandah, Mridu’s eyes fell on the odd-looking chappals she had noticed when she arrived.
“Ravi!” she whispered to him.”Whose are those?”

Ravi turned and glanced at the shabby-looking, but stubby old slippers. He beamed and nodded.”These are just the right size,” he said, picking them up. Mridu and Meena followed him nervously back into the garden.
“Here!” sais Ravi to the beggar, dropping the slippers in front of the old man. “wear these and don’t come back!” The beggar stared at the slippers, hurriedly flung his towel over his shoulder, pushed his feet into them and left, muttering a blessing to the children. Ina minute he had vanished around the corner of the street.

The music – master came out of the hues and took an unappreciative look at the three of them sitting quietly under the tree, playing marbles. Then he searched for his chappals in the verandah, where he had put them.

“Lilli!” he called, after a few moments. She hurried up to him. “Have you seen My chappals, my dear? I remember having kept them here!”

Ravi, Mridu, and Meena silently watched Lalli and the music – master search every corner of the verandah. He scurried around, looking over the railing and crouching near the flower pots to look between them. “Brand new, they were! Went al the way to mount Road to buy them!” he went on saying. “They cost a whole month’s fees, do you know?”
Soon Lalli went in to tell her mother. Rukku Mani appeared, looking harassed, with Paati following her.
“Where could they be? It’s really quite upsetting to think someone might have stolem them. So many vendors come to the door,” worried Paati.

Rukku Manni caught sight of Ravi, Mridu, and Meena sitting under the tree, “Have you children…” she began, and then, seeing they were curiously quiet, went on more slowly, “seen anyone lurking around the verandah?” A sharp V-shaped line had formed between her eyebrows. Another straight, tighter one appeared in place of her usually soft, pleasant mouth. Rukku Manni was angry! Thought Mridu with a shilver. She wouldn’t be so upset if she knew about the poor beggar with sores on his feet, she tried to tell herself.

Taking a deep breath, she cried, “Rukku manni, there was a beggar here. Poor thing, he had such boils on his feet!”

“So?” said Rukku Manni grimly, turning to Ravi.”You gave the music –master’s chappals to that old beggar who turns up here?”
“Children these days….!” Groaned Paati.

“Amma, didn’t you tell me about Karna who gave away everything he had, even his gold earrings, he ws so king and generous?”
“Silly!” snapped Rukku Manni. “Karna didn’t give away other people’s things; he only gave away his own”.
“But my chappals wouldn’t have fitted the beggar’s feet…” Ravi rushed brashly on, “And Amma, if they did fit, would you really not have minded?”

“Ravi!” said Rukku Manni, very angry now.”Go inside this minute.”

She hurried indoors and brought out Gopu Mama’s hardly worn, new chappals. “These should fit you, Sir, Please put these on. I am so sorry. My son has been vestry naughty.” The music – maser’s eyes lit up. He put them on, trying not to look too happy. “Well, I suppose these will have to do.. These days children have no respect for elders, what to do? A hanuman incarnate… only Rama can save such a naughty fellow!” Rukku Manni’s eyes flashed. She didn’t seem to like Ravi being called a monkey, even a holy monkey. She stood stiff and straight by the front door. It was clear she wanted him to leave quickly.

When he had clattered off in his new chappals, she said,”Mridu, come in and have some Tiffin. Honestly, how do you children think of such things? Thank God your Gopu Mama doesn’t wear his chappals to work…” As she walked towards the kitchen with Mridu and Meena, she suddenly began to laugh. “But he’s always In such a hurry to throw off his shoes and socks and get into his chappals as soon as th comes home. What’s your Mama going to say this evening when I tell him I gave his chappals to the music – master?”

The Emperor’s New Clothes – English story for children

Storyteller: As all good stories go,

This too happened long, long ago.

Exactly when, I do not know,

But my dear grandma told me so,

That in the palace, built on the plain,

Lived the Emperor who was very, very vain.

He dressed at dawn, he dressed at night,

He dressed as often as he might.

He dressed for breakfast, he dressed for tea,

He dressed, whenever it pleased him, you see.

For affairs of State he couldn’t care less,

No wonder his empire was in a sorry mess.

Ah! Here he comes, all clad in green,

Watch him strut, watch him preen.

Emperor: “How far have you progressed, worthy gentlemen? I can hardly wait for the dress to be finished. I absolutely must, have a glimpse of your handiwork.”

First Dressmaker: “you have come in good time. Your majesty. The dress is almost complete. All that remain is the Jewel studded royal train. Come, take a look”.

(He leads the Emperor to a corner, where there is an empty loom).

Second Dressmaker: (running his hands thought the air)” Ah, do you see the embroidery at the neck? This peacock, studded with three jewels, isn’t it marvelous?  And look at this diamond studded waistband. If you have ever seen anything more wonderful than this, why, we are willing to eat our shoes!”

Emperor: (under his breath) “My Lord! I can’t see a thing! Can it be that I, the Emperor of such a vast empire, am actually stupid? Well, if I am, then I must be careful, not to show it.”

Emperor: (walks towards the loom and exclaims aloud) “it’s unbelievable! Marvelous. Simply marvelous! And yes, the peacock looks real. I can’t tell you how happy you have made me. In fact, I can’t wait to wear it.”

First Dressmaker:  “just one hour more. You’re Majesty and the dress will be ready for you to wear.”

Scene 3

Storyteller: Exclaiming over an invisible dress.

The foolish Emperor hides his distress.

The minister says, shaking his head, “What a dress!”

Though he can’t see a thread.

The courtiers, all too eager to please.

Is all praise of the invisible piece?

Each wondering as he prepares to lie,

“When the other can see it, why can’t l?

While all exclaim over the dress’s beauty.”

The dressmakers run away with their booty.

Now there’s the Emperor in the town square.

Wearing a dress that just isn’t there.

(The Emperor is taking a state ride through the town to show off his wonderful new dress to his admiring subjects. Though none of them can see the dress, all of them pretend to admire it, for fear that they would otherwise be considered fools)

First Townsman: “well, I ‘m sure we haven’t seen anything like this in all our lives. How majestic our Emperor looks in his wonderful robe.”

Second Townsman: “Yes, indeed. They say that he gave those clever dressmakers some of the finest jewels in his treasury. And why not? They have made for him a dress, fit for the very Gods!”

Third Townsman: “What colours! What designs! It has the colours of a rainbow”.

A child in a Woman’s Arms: “Mama! But I can’t see any clothes. He is wearing only his underwear and nothing else!”

Woman: “Hush, my child. Not so loud. Don’t listen to the child.”

First Townsman: “Did you hear what that child said? To tell you the truth, I too can’t see any clothes on the Emperor, except his undergarments”

Second Townsman: “The child is right. The Emperor does not seem to have any clothes on”.

(Soon there is a Buzz in the crowd. Slowly word reaches the Prime Minister that nobody can see the Emperor’s new clothes.)

Prime Minister: “you’re Majesty, er… Well … er…”

Emperor: “out with it! What is it? Have you found some new Marvels in this dress?”

Prime Minister: “Er.., well. Your Majesty, you see, I have just heard that nobody can see your new dress.

I can’t too. I …. I do think we have been Duped. Your Majesty, pardon me for saying this, but you are not wearing any clothes and everyone can see that you are wearing only your undergarments.”

(This moved the Emperor deeply, for it seemed to him that the people were right. The emperor waited to hear no more. But he felt that he must continue with the procession. The ministers continued to hold on to the train which was not there at all.)

Storyteller: The Emperor vowed that never again would he be so silly and vain. And here, story ends.

Lali and the Lioness of Gir

Monkeys swing merrily from tree to tree. Deer, wild, boars, and antelopes roam freely among the clump of trees. If you were to go deep into the fores5, you might even see a majestic lion, stalking its prey. This is the Gir forest in Gujarat, the only reserve forest in Asia where you can still see the king of the forest walking around.
The siddis were a tribe who lived in this forest. They were largely shepherds and spent most of the day grazing their sheep in the jungles. Masira was a little Siddi girl. She lived in the forest with her father, jussad, who was the tribal lamp called Lai. The two of them were inseparable. Wherever Masira went, Lali was sure to follow. Masira loved Lai very much. She had a bell tried around Lali’s neck. Whenever Lali wandered far out into the forest, the tinkle of the bell would let Masira know exactly where she was.
One day Masira fell ill. She couldn’t take Lai out to the jungle to graze. Jussad sent Lali along with the other sheep. When evening fell, the shepherds brought all their sheep back. All the other sheep returned. But where was Lali? Lali had strayed away from the flock and had gone deep into the jungle. She didn’t know how to get back to her flock.
Masira was troubled to find that Lali had not returned.” Baba! My Lali is out there-all alone in the jungle. Baba! Do something. She has to be brought back. Please… please bring her back. Oh, I can’t bear to think of Lali spending the dark night all alone in the jungle”, Cried Masira.
“Don’t worry my child. Your Lali will be safe. I ‘ll Bring her back,” Jussad said. He set out in search of her, with two companions. They had not gone far when there was a loud clap of thunder and the rain came down thick and fast. The three men returned to their homes without finding lali.
The next morning Masira woke up and asked jussad, “Has Lali comes home, Baba?”  Jussad looked down. Masira knew at once that they had not been able to find Lali. The little girl’s eyes filled with tears. Big sobs shook her thin body. Jussad could not find words to comfort her. “Hush, hush, my child. I’ll bring her back today,” he said.
That morning jussad and his companions set out into the forest looking for the lost lab. But Lali was nowhere to be seen. Even the tinkle of her bell could not be heard.
They walked on and on. The sun was climbing higher in the sky. It was afternoon. Suddenly, one of them noticed something lying in the grass under a tree. He picked it up. It was lali’s beel! Perhaps Lali was close by. They searched and searched. But there was no sign of Lali. That could mean only one thing- some wild animal had eaten Lali. But there was no blood anywhere.
They searched once again. Then one of them said,” There’s no use looking for her anymore. Surely, some wild beast has seaten her up. The rain must have washed away the blood.” The others returned to the village.
Jussad couldn’t near to go home without Lali. He knew his little daughter would be heartbroken. How could he ever comfort her? Worried and feeling tried, he sat down under a big tree. Suddenly, he heard a familiar sound. “Ma-a-ah… Maa-aah.” There it was again. Jussad jumped up with joy. It was Lali! Lali was still alive!
He rushed towards the place from where Lali seemed to call. Soon, he came to a large hollow. He looked in, and what he saw made his blood freeze. There stood Lali, bleating pitifully. Less than a hundred feet away stood a big lioness, staring steadily at the little lamb. She stood still. Her tail swished to and fro as she started at Lali. Then she strode towards Lali. Lali bleated again. Then, when she saw the lioness walking towards her, she too began to walk towards the queen of the forest. Jussad’s heart sank. It would only be a matter of minutes before the lioness would tear Lali to pieces.
Lali was now very close to the lioness. She bleated and sniffed at the lioness. The lioness continued to stare. And then before Jussad’s unbelieving eyes, a miracle took place. The lioness turned and walked away from the little lamb. As soon as she was gone, Jussad raced down and grabbed Lali. Then he ran all the way back to his village.
Back home, Masira was sitting on her cot, looking anxiously towards the forest. As soon as she saw jussad coming back with Lali in his arms, her face lit up. She opened her arms, and gathered Lali close to her. Jussad told her how the lioness had walked away without harming the lamb. “Baba I have been praying the whole day to God to keep my Lali away from harm. Of course, he heard me.”

WHO WILL BE NINGTHOU – story in English

Long, long ago, in the land of Kangleipak in Manipur, there lived a Ningthou and a Leima. They were loved dearly by the people.
The Ningthou and Leima, on their part, never stopped thinking about their meeyam their people. “Our meeyam should be happy,” they said.
The people were not the only ones who loved their Ningthou and Leima. The birds and animals too loved them. The Ningthou and Leima always said: “Everybody in Kangleipak should live in peace. Not only the people, but the birds, animals and trees.”
Their beloved king and queen had three sons: Sanajaoba, Sanayaima and Sanatomba. Twelve years later, a daughter was born. She was named Sanatombi. She was a lovely child, soft and beautiful inside. She was loved by one and all.
The years went by, and the children grew up well. And then one day, the Ningthou called all his ministers and said: “It is now time to decide the Tunggi Ningthou, the future king.”
The ministers were shocked. “But O Ningthou, what is there to decide? Sanajaoba, your eldest son, will be our future king.”
“Well,” the Ningthou replied. “That’s how it happened in the old days. The eldest son always became the king. But times have changed. So let us select a king who is most worthy of becoming a king.”
“We will have a contest to select the future king,” the Leima said, and so, in the land of Kangleipak, there was a contest, a horse race.
Whoever reached the khongnang, the banyan tree, first would be declared Tunggi Ningthou. But then, a strange thing happened. Sanajaoba, Sanayaima and Sanatomba all three of them finished the race together. They were expert riders and all three reached the finish line at the same time!
There was great excitement. “Look at them!” the people shouted, “Shagol thauba nupa, such fine horsemen!”
But one question remained; Who would be the Tunggi Ningthou?
The Ningthou and Leima turned to their sons. The Ningthou said, “Sanajaoba. Sanayaima and Sanatomba, you have proved that you are fine horsemen. Do something different each one of you, so that we can decide who will be Tunggi Ningthou.” Suddenly, Sanajaoba mounted his horse and held his spear straight in front of him. He looked around. There was a hush among people. “What is Sanajaoba, the eldest, going to do? They thought to themselves.
Sanajaoba then looked at the huge khongnang standing majestically in the distance. He pierced the tree and jumped his horse right through it!
“Bravo! Bravo!” The people shouted, “Thouro! Thouro! And then they fell silent.
Now it was the turn of the second son, Sanayaima. What would he do? Sanayaima too looked at the khongnang as he mounted his horse. Then he too rode towards the tree, harder and harder. The people watched in silence, afraid even to breathe. When he was really close, he urged his horse to jump. Higher and higher the horse rose until horse and rider jumped clear over the huge tree and landed on the other side in a wonderful motion.
The People breathed in relief and said in unison: Phajei! Phajei! Wonderful! Wonderful!
And now, it was the turn of the youngest son, Sanatomba. He, too, rode his horse towards the khongnang and, before anybody knew what was happening, uprooted it. Triumphantly he carried the tree to the Ningthou and Leima and laid it at their feet! Shouts of Thouro! Thouro! Phajei! Phajei!” filled the mountains.
The people grew restless. Why were the Ningthou and the Leima taking so long to make the announcement?
They craned their necks to see what was happening. The Ningthou and Leima were watching Sanatombi, their five year-old daughter. She looked sad and lonely. She stared at the khongnang which lay dead by the throne. Birds flapped worriedly around, searching for their homes in the tree. Sanatombi walked up to the khongnang and whispered, “The khongnang is dead. It was hurt by the spear and now it is dead.
The people were all attention. The Ningthou stood up. He looked at the three boys. He looked at the little girl. He turned to the people. “If anybody is worthy of becoming the ruler,” he said, “it is little Sanatombi. It was she who told us to look at the soul of the khongnang. Sanatombi feels the pain of others. She feels the pain of the people, the animals, the birds, the trees.”
“I declare Sanatombi the future Leima of Kangleipak,” the Ningthou said. A silence fell. Everyone turned to look at the little girl, their future queen. There she stood, all of five, like a small khongnang, with birds flying all around her. They sat on her shoulders and on her head. She held out her hands full of grain and the birds flapped about her, pecking at the food.
“A Leima is one who doesn’t hurt anybody in the kingdom.”

Rip Van winkle – Kid story

Many years ago, at the foothills of the Kaatskill (Kat-skill) mountains, was a little village. In the village lived a simple, good-natured fellow named Rip Van Winkle. He was a kind neighbour, ready to help anyone. Everyone in the village liked him. The children of the village shouted with joy whenever they saw him because he played with them, he taught them to fly kites and shoot marbles, and told them long stories.
The only problem with Rip was that he was very lazy. He did not work on his own farm and just idled away his time. His fences were falling to pieces. His cow was going astray. Weeds grew on his farm. Rip’s constant
companion was his dog, named Wolf. To avoid work, he would walk away into the forest with his dog.
One day. Rip just walked on and on and reached the highest part of the mountains. It was late in the afternoon when he reached there. Tired after his long climb, he lay down and began daydreaming. It was soon
evening and he realised it would be night by the time he reached his village.
Suddenly, he heard a voice calling out, “Rip Van Winkle, Rip Van Winkle!’ He looked around and saw a short, old man, with thick hair and a grizzled beard walking towards him with a barrel. He made signs to help him carry the barrel. Rip hurried to help the stranger who caught his hand tightly. Together they reached a place where there were some more odd looking men, playing ninepins. They were all dressed the same way and all of them had beards of various shapes and colours. Even though they were  playing a game, their faces were serious and there was silence! The only sound was the noise of the balls, which echoed in the mountains like thunder.
As Rip and his companion reached them, they stopped playing and stared at Rip with a fixed gaze. Rip was really frightened. His companion emptied the contents of the barrel into glasses and made Rip drink it.
Rip obeyed as he was trembling with fear. Since he was thirsty he drank a few more glasses and slowly fell into a deep sleep.
On waking up, he found that he was at the place where he had first met the old man. He rubbed his eyes — it was a bright sunny morning. “Surely, I have not slept here all night,” thought Rip.
He looked around for Wolf, but he was nowhere. Rip whistled for him. “Wolf! Wolf!” he then shouted. No dog was to be seen. “Where has this dog gone?” he muttered to himself. He began to descend the mountain to go back to his village.
As he neared the village, he met a number of people but he didn’t know any of them. The villagers also stared at him equally surprised. “Who is this man?” said one.
“I’ve never seen him before,” said another, “look at his long white beard and his wrinkled face.”
On hearing this, Rip stroked his chin and, to his astonishment, he found his beard had grown a foot long, and it was all white!
An old woman walked up to him and looked at his face for a moment. Then she exclaimed — “It is Rip Van Winkle! Welcome home again, old neighbour! Where have you been these twenty long years?

Many years ago, at the foothills of the Kaatskill (Kat-skill) mountains, was a little village. In the village lived a simple, good-natured fellow named Rip Van Winkle. He was a kind neighbour, ready to help anyone. Everyone in the village liked him. The children of the village shouted with joy whenever they saw him because he played with them, he taught them to fly kites and shoot marbles, and told them long stories.
The only problem with Rip was that he was very lazy. He did not work on his own farm and just idled away his time. His fences were falling to pieces. His cow was going astray. Weeds grew on his farm. Rip’s constantcompanion was his dog, named Wolf. To avoid work, he would walk away into the forest with his dog.
One day. Rip just walked on and on and reached the highest part of the mountains. It was late in the afternoon when he reached there. Tired after his long climb, he lay down and began daydreaming. It was soonevening and he realised it would be night by the time he reached his village.
Suddenly, he heard a voice calling out, “Rip Van Winkle, Rip Van Winkle!’ He looked around and saw a short, old man, with thick hair and a grizzled beard walking towards him with a barrel. He made signs to help him carry the barrel. Rip hurried to help the stranger who caught his hand tightly. Together they reached a place where there were some more odd looking men, playing ninepins. They were all dressed the same way and all of them had beards of various shapes and colours. Even though they were  playing a game, their faces were serious and there was silence! The only sound was the noise of the balls, which echoed in the mountains like thunder.
As Rip and his companion reached them, they stopped playing and stared at Rip with a fixed gaze. Rip was really frightened. His companion emptied the contents of the barrel into glasses and made Rip drink it.Rip obeyed as he was trembling with fear. Since he was thirsty he drank a few more glasses and slowly fell into a deep sleep.
On waking up, he found that he was at the place where he had first met the old man. He rubbed his eyes — it was a bright sunny morning. “Surely, I have not slept here all night,” thought Rip.
He looked around for Wolf, but he was nowhere. Rip whistled for him. “Wolf! Wolf!” he then shouted. No dog was to be seen. “Where has this dog gone?” he muttered to himself. He began to descend the mountain to go back to his village.
As he neared the village, he met a number of people but he didn’t know any of them. The villagers also stared at him equally surprised. “Who is this man?” said one.
“I’ve never seen him before,” said another, “look at his long white beard and his wrinkled face.”
On hearing this, Rip stroked his chin and, to his astonishment, he found his beard had grown a foot long, and it was all white!
An old woman walked up to him and looked at his face for a moment. Then she exclaimed — “It is Rip Van Winkle! Welcome home again, old neighbour! Where have you been these twenty long years?

English story – Robinson Crusoe

One day, when I was going towards my boat, I was surprised to see the footprint of a man on the sand.

I stood amazed! I listened; I looked around me; I could neither hear nor see anything.

I went up higher to look down; I went up the shore and down the shore, but it was no good;

I could find no other footprint but that one. I went to it again to see if there were any more footprints
and to tell if it had been my imagination. But I was not mistaken, for there was exactly the print of a foot — toes,heel, every part of a foot. I could not imagine how it came there.

I stayed a long time thinking, but became more and more confused.

At last I returned home very frightened, looking behind me after every two or three steps, mistaking every bush and tree to be a man.

When I, came to my cave (which I called my castle), I ran inside it, as if I was being chased.

I do not remember whether I used the ladder or went in by the hole in the rock, which I called the door. I ran for cover, faster than any animal could run.

I did not sleep that night. The more I thought about what I had seen, the more afraid I became. I thought it

could be one of the savages of the mainland who had wandered out to the sea, in a small boat.

Luckily I was not on shore at that time, but what if he had seen my boat! If he had seen the boat he would have realized that someone lived on the island and would soon return with others to kill and eat me.

And so I lay fearful for many days and prayed for protection. In doing so, I was much comforted and began
going out to investigate. But even now as I went forward, I looked behind me frequently, because I was still very frightened.

However, as I went about for two or three days and saw nothing I became a little bolder. I decided to go down o the shore again and examine the footprint once more. I decided to measure it with my own footmark.
As I came closer to the footprint, I realised that it could not be my footprint because I had not come to this part of the beach since a long time. Secondly, as I placed my foot alongside that footprint, it seemed larger than my own.

My fear returned! I went home again, believing that there was someone there.

The island was inhabited!

The Cookie – Story of small girl

The dining table was loaded with goodies – cake, pastries, pies, halwa, laddoo and yes, her favourite cookies. Nina wanted to eat them all. The 10-year-old stuffed a couple of cookies in her mouth but the cookies tasted a little different. No matter how hard she tried, she couldn’t gulp them down.

The dream broke at that point.

Nina woke up with a start and found herself chewing on a bed sheet. She was in her dormitory bed and it was pitch dark. A grumbling stomach reminded her of how terribly hungry she was. All because of Mr. Katiyaar, the poker-faced warden of the residential school which had been her home for the last one year.

The Cookie, Stories for kids: 139_1.gifHe had found Nina talking during dinner time and had punished her by asking her to go hungry to bed. Nothing escaped the eagle-eyed warden.

And now this dream which had made her hungrier. Nina paced up and down her dormitory in desperation. She looked enviously at roommates, peacefully asleep with their stomachs full.

Suddenly Nina remembered a box of cookies sent by her mother, that was lying in her locker. She had been hiding it from her friends for an emergency. Clearly, this was an emergency.

The locker room was at the extreme end of the long corridor, and venturing out in the dark and creepy hallway was nothing short of climbing Mount Everest. Nina took her first trembling step towards the doorway and almost ran back. She remembered a boy from her class bragging about his encounter with a ghost while he was on his way to the toilet at night.

But her stomach egged her on. The same hallway in the morning never looked so eerie, thought Nina. Pale with fright, the girl scout walked on and tried not to think about the ghosts and witches that could lurking around in a corner somewhere.

At last she reached the locker room. Slowly turning the doorknob, Nina stepped into the dark room, let out a sigh of relief and walked towards her locker. So familiar was she with her locker that she could locate it with her eyes shut.

Then a sound almost made her jump with fright. “It’s nothing but my imagination,” she assured herself. Again something rustled and moved in the room. Someone was there in the room, and Nina trembled with fear. Probably it was that ghost who frequented the corridor. She decided to grab her box of cookies and run back to her room.

Sweating with fear, Nina gripped the locker door and yanked it open. And she got the fright of her life – someone was sitting inside her locker! Even in the dark she could make out a pair of eyes like hers. So the corridor ghost lives in my locker, Nina thought in horror.

She let out a piercing scream. And to her surprise the ghost started yelling back. Hey, ghosts are not supposed to scream but make frightening noises, she thought. Nina’s mouth fell open in surprise and there was a silence in the room for a moment. The locker door swung back into its place.

Before she could think of anything, the door burst open and a swarm of students and teachers flooded the room. All the lights were switched on in a minute.
“What’s the matter?” growled the warden. He certainly looked displeased at having been woken up from his deep slumber. “There there… is a ghost in my locker,” Nina mumbled.

At the mention of the word ghost, half the students stepped back. Only the brave ones remained to witness the historic event.

“There is no such thing as ghost in this world,” said Mr. Katiyaar, looking more furious than ever. As everyone waited with bated breath, he took a hesitant step towards the locker and yanked open the door.

The Cookie, Stories for kids: 139_2.gifThe ghost looked familiar…It was Rajan, Nina’s classmate, sitting inside the spacious locker, her box of cookies clutched in his arms!

“What the hell are you doing here?” Mr. Katiyaar shouted, momentarily forgetting the ‘no swear word’ rule made by him. The boy dropped the box on the floor. He was shaking with fear. “He can’t speak, his mouth is full of cookies,” said one of the students, helpfully.

Nina suddenly remembered that Rajan, too, had been given the ‘no dinner’ punishement that evening for reaching the dining hall late.

“I can see that his mouth is full, but eating cookies and walking down the corridor at this hour defies every logic and rule, and as a punishment both Nina and Rajan will stay away from breakfast tomorrow morning,” roared said Mr. Katiyaar.

“Hold on for a minute, Mr. Katiyaar.” It was Mrs Verma, a teacher. “Do you realise that keeping children hungry for their mistakes leads them to do such things? A day begun without breakfast would make them more desperate. They might try to force some more lockers open, even yours.”

She had a better idea. “Why don’t we ask Rajan to make everyone’s bed for filching the cookies. And Nina can serve food to everyone at the breakfast because she got out of her room at night. That would solve your purpose, would it not,” she asked looking at the warden.

To everyone’s relief Mr. Katiyaar seemed to understand and moreover, surprised all the students and teachers alike by treating them to a warm glass of milk and the remaining cookies from Nina’s box!

There wasn’t a happier girl in the hostel who went to sleep, stomach full, that night!

Long bony fingers – Children story list

Somu loved to read ghost stories. Every time he paid a visit to the library, he got back a teeth-chattering horror tale. It was a signal that he was getting ready to play a scary trick on his friends. He was 10 years old.

His parents had learnt to recognise the signs now. The days on which the slim boy’s cocker spaniel eyes shone brighter than ever, and his brown wavy hair seemed to have a movement of their own, they knew that he must have read a ghost tale and was hatching a plot to scare someone.

The problem was that Somu loved reading. And so he did a lot of scaring too. But he was liked for his funny jokes and his helpful nature, so no one really minded. Though a few friends had often thought of making him feel a sense of fear. Fear that was very different from sitting in bed with a whole lot of munchies, bedsheet pulled up to the chin and reading a story for the pleasure of its thrills.

One day Somu’s friend Pavan asked him over to his house after school. Somu’s mum and dad said he could go – but they told him to come home before dark.

Long Bony Fingers, Stories for kids: 141_1.gif“Remember, now,” said his dad, “you’ll have to walk home through the park.” (something about the park….)

Promising he’d leave early, Somu set off for his friend’s house. He had a great time reading stories and looking at the pictures in some of Pavan’s exciting monster books. Time flew by and when Somu looked up he saw it was pitch dark.

“Oh no!” he gasped. “I have to get home”!

Somu began to walk along the path through the park that had fallen eerily silent. How dark it was. Why couldn’t the park officials put some lights? And then remembered that most of the park lights had been broken by them during their inter-locality cricket matches. In fact, if a boy succeeded in breaking a park light with a soaring sixer, he was considered a hero! Now it didn’t seem a bright idea any more. Especially when the chirping sound of the crickets had become deafening. If someone came up behind him, he wouldn’t be able to hear their footsteps.

And then he heard that noise. It came from behind.

It was a human voice.

“Guess what I can do with my long bony finger and my long pointed teeth”?

Somu yelped and started to run, but the pounding footsteps followed him. Finally, out of breath, he stopped and asked in a quavering voice:

“Who’s there”?

But all he heard was the voice saying:

“Guess what I can do with my long bony finger and my long pointed teeth”?

Somu started running again. The footsteps followed behind him. Once more he stopped and asked, “Who’s there”?

“Guess what I can do with my long bony finger and my long pointed teeth”? Again the same thing. Why couldn’t he say something else!

Poor Somu took to his heels again. As usual, when he got a stitch in his stomach he stopped and asked, “Look, who is it?”

“Guess what I can do with my long bony finger and my long pointed teeth”?

Long Bony Fingers, Stories for kids: 141_2.gifSomu ran down the path and found himself at his doorstep. But it was locked! And the footsteps were right behind him. With no more strength left in him Somu stood there and asked, “Who’s there”?

“Guess what I can do with my long bony finger and my long pointed teeth”?

Somu gulped and gathered his last bit of courage to ask, “Who are you and what can you do with your long bony finger and your long pointed teeth”?

BmBmBmBmBmBmBmBmBmBm…Hahahahahahaahhaha, went the monster.

Somu closed his ears and eyes and sat on his doorstep in fear. Then he opened his left eye a teeny weeny bit. The monster was right before him. He seemed to be wearing black trousers turned up at the end, as was fashionable. As his eyes climbed up the ghost’s figure, he got a shock.

It was his father!

“Somu, did I not tell you to come home before dark?” said dad.

“You did, Daddy”, sniffed Somu.

Well, I thought I would sneak up on you and give you a scare for a change, just like you do to others after reading one of your horror tales!”, said Somu’s dad.

Somu looked at his father for a long time. And then they went inside the house making monster noises.

BmBmBmBmBmBmBmBmBmBm…

Go For It, Bablu! – Children school story

It happened on the day school started after a heavenly two months of summer holidays. Shankar refused to wake up at 6 am. He wanted to dream more about his visit to his grandparents’ home. They lived in the picturesque city of Mysore in the southern Indian state of Karnataka. He particularly wanted to remember his two trips to the Bandipur National Park. It was a magical forest in the shade of the Nilgiri mountains which always seemed to have their heads in the clouds! Shankar had been lucky to see the stately Asian elephant, the Mugger crocodile, the four-horned antelope, and the leopard. The tiger had been elusive. “Next time,” Shankar told himself happy at the thought.

He wanted “next time” to be now! But first, his mother and then his father kept talking in his ear till he was forced to get up. Have you ever had anyone droning into your ear while you tried to sleep? It can be terrible. However, once Shankar saw his friends in the school bus, he felt happy to be back from his dream.

When Shankar returned home in the afternoon he saw his mother standing at the door. That was strange. He wondered, “Why hasn’t Amma gone to office today?” When he saw the worried look on her face he felt a flash of fear.

Amma gave him a tight hug and two kisses on the forehead. “Shankar, I wanted to tell you myself. Your father had an accident while driving to office. The good news is that he will be out of hospital in two weeks. He will be absolutely fine. But I think it is time to get a driver for him. You and I shall select a fine young man to drive Appa carefully to office.”

Go For It, Bablu!, Stories for kids: 144_1.gifAmma’s words calmed Shankar. He felt happy at the thought of helping out Appa. In the next few days he sat next to his mother while she interviewed several men for the post of chauffeur to Appa. They both decided on Raj. He was 30 years old and had a pleasant way of speaking. “Raj will take good care of Appa,” Shankar thought.

Finally, Appa returned from hospital. He told a worried Shankar that Raj had driven very carefully. A lot of exciting things happened on that Sunday. Raj’s family came to stay with them in the small flat in their backyard. That’s how Shankar met Raj’s eight-year-old son Bablu.

Bablu had a monkey face, with bright eyes and spiky hair. From the day he met Shankar, he became his fan. To eight-year-old Bablu, 11-year-old Shankar seemed to be a big boy. He would always follow Shankar around. Whenever Shankar looked up from the book he was reading, he would find Bablu’s face staring at him through the window. While brushing his teeth he would often get confused when he saw another face staring back at him from the mirror! And when he walked back from the school bus stop in the afternoon, he would have two shadows – one was his own and the other shadow was Bablu walking a few paces behind!

Bablu did not go to school. Of course he was admitted to a local government school but he refused to go. He told Shankar shyly that the teachers only made them copy words from the blackboard. Since he had not learnt to read he could not understand anything that was written on the board.

Shankar felt sorry for him. One Sunday, Shankar decided to ride his bicycle to his friend’s house nearby. As he wheeled out his bicycle from the garage, he saw a strange sight. Bablu was sitting under a tree holding a book in his hands. Shankar tip-toed closer and discovered that Bablu was holding one of his books. What’s more, Bablu was holding the book upside down. Since he could not read it, did not matter which way he held the book.

Shankar took the book out of Bablu’s hands and turned it the right side up. “This is how you are supposed to read,” he told Bablu in an affectionate tone. Two big tears rolled down Bablu’s cheeks. He looked like a sad little monkey. Bablu told Shankar, “I want to be like you but I can’t do anything.”

The bicycle went back into the garage. Shankar walked back to the house. His parents were reading the newspapers over steaming cups of delicious south Indian filter coffee. Shankar told them they had to help Bablu get into a better school.

It was not very easy to get Bablu admitted to a new school, because the time for admissions was over. But one principal looked at Bablu kindly and admitted him to her school. The next day, Bablu went to his new school a very proud boy – wearing a brand new shirt, shorts and a tie!

When Bablu returned from school he was a bit tearful. The other children in his class had teased him. He told Shankar, “They all said I am much older than them but in a smaller class. I don’t want to go to school.”

Go For It, Bablu!, Stories for kids: 144_2.gifShankar said, “Don’t cry Bablu. I will teach you to read and write. Very soon you will be as good if not better than your classmates.” From the loft the older boy took out all the books and kids magazines that he had read years ago. The kids magazines were in Hindi and in English, and Shankar’s favourites wereChandamana, Champak, Twinkle and Target. There were fairy tale books, from the Grimms Brothers to Hans Christian Anderson. There were several volumes of Panchatantra for kids, ‘Mahabharata for kids’. And, best of all, he still had his entire collection of early reading books. These would be ideal for getting Bablu to practice his reading. “Shankar thought to himself, “There is enough reading for kids here for Bablu to get over his fear of reading and writing.”

Shankar went to the stationary shop which kept kids magazines, books, craft kits for kids in the 4-8 age group and worksheets for kids up to Class VIII. He bought two interesting worksheets. One worksheet taught the Hindi alphabet. Each letter had a picture of a bird, animal, eatable, flower or tree next to it. There was also a story attached to each letter. The English worksheet was also similar. Bablu had a great time colouring the apple while chanting A for apple. Shankar read out the story of William Tell and the apple. He also read stories from Hindi kids magazines like Champak and Chandamama and from English kids magazines like National Geographic Kids’ magazine. When he wanted to reward Bablu for working hard he would read from his favourite fairy tale book for kids.

Two months later, Bablu returned from school with a beaming face. He kept his school bag on the chair and without eating his lunch ran to Shankar’s school bus stop. The moment Shankar got off from the school bus Bablu hugged him hard. He rattled on, “Shankar bhaiya, the principal praised me in the school assembly today. She told everyone that I am one of the best students in her school now! I have become the monitor of my class.”

Shankar picked up Bablu and did a war dance right there and then.

Now Bablu has another wish. He wants to work on the computer like Shankar. He wants to visit reading websites for kids, and he wants to play the online treasure hunt games that his Shankar bhaiya plays.

Go for it, Bablu!