There was once a rat, who thought that he must have none other than the king’s daughter as his wife. So, he went to the king and proposed to wed the princess.
Said the rat to the king: “Oh great king, let me marry your daughter because you are the greatest one on the earth.”
The king, however, said: “You are wrong, my friend. The sun is mightier than me.”
So the rat went to the sun and said: “You are mightier than the king. Please give me your daughter in wedding.”
“But the cloud is more powerful than me,” said the sun.
The rat went to the cloud and said to him: “Please give me your daughter. You are mightier than the sun.”
“I am not that powerful,” said the cloud, “The wind pushes me around. He is stronger than me.”
So, the rat went to the wind and said to him, “Please let me marry your daughter.”
“No, I am not as strong as you think,” said the wind, “No matter how hard I blow, I cannot take the grass away with me. The grass is, therefore, more powerful than me.”
The rat went to the grass and asked for his daughter’s hand.
But the grass said: “The rat burrows beneath me, cuts at my root and kills me. I cannot stop him. The rat is more powerful than me.”
The rat then got convinced more than ever that there was none greater on earth than a rat. So, he married a rat.
Level: Elementary/Secondary (Class 5 to 8)
(Can be adapted to lower level, using pictures)
Grammar Focus: Direct speech, Present tense
Vocabulary Focus: Adjectives of Comparison
Activity: Listening to the story, re-telling the story
The reading part:
1. Ask the students if they have heard any folk story, what are the stories like, characters like, etc.
2. Tell/read the story to the students. (Telling a story is always a better idea.)
The three layers:
3. Talk about the story – What happened in the story? How was the ending?
4. Talk about beyond the story – What lesson did the character learn? What was the moral of the story?
5. Talk about the text – about the sentence construction, direct speech, about the use of adjectives of comparison.
6. Ask students how the story would be if other animals were used – for example, a cat or a dog.
The production part:
7. Ask the students to re-tell the story. (Students could also pick a role/character and act it out.)
8. Ask the students to write the story from memory.