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Old 03-02-2006, 07:50 PM
Cutieali25 Cutieali25 is offline
Join Date: Feb 2006
Posts: 11
New York
Folk tale versus Fairy Tale?

What's the real difference between folk tales and fairy tales. Whats the best wau to discuss it with second graders?

I know that folk tales are usually passed down tales by word of mouth and teach you a lesson.
Fairy tales is a story usually written for children that involve magic and fantacy.

Is there anymore about fairy tales and folk tales i should be discussing?

I am about to begin a unit on folk tales using the book Stone Soup. Any suggestions beside making stone soup in the classroom?

Thanks for your help!

Old 03-02-2006, 08:29 PM
Mamacita's Avatar
Mamacita Mamacita is offline
Join Date: Sep 2004
Posts: 3,317
College writing, hands-on science
Folk tales and fairy tales are very different AND very similar. Folk tales usually contain exaggeration and often an animal dressed and acting like a human. There is usually a lesson, although that is also the purpose of fables.

Fairy tales were not originally for children. Real fairy tales are very dark and scary and violent; therefore, children adore them IF they are allowed to experience them uncensored. I love Disney, but that studio really knows how to diminish a good story. (I still love them, but grrrrrrrrrrrr!) A fairy tale usually, but not always, contains magic, or a bewitched person, or a magic tree or disguised witch, etc. (There was no fairy godmother in Cinderella!!!!!!!!!!!!) The lesson of both folk tales and fairy tales was usually that obedience is best. Often the ending of a fairy tale was NOT happy. (another thing Disney interfered with.) I loved to teach my Fairy Tale unit; my kids were fascinated with the scary bloody REAL stories.

Of course, Cinderella is French, and by a fairly modern author. (the one who finally writes the story down usually gets the credit, even though the basic plotline is eons old.)

Go to the library and get an UNABRIDGED volume of real fairy tales. Your kids will love them! And no, little kids are not too young for the real deal.

Disney left the wicked stepmother alive; therefore, she's still OUT THERE and could come for YOU next. The actual story had her and the stepsisters stripped *****, put inside barrels that were studded with red-hot spikes, and rolled down the hill and through the town.

Most satisfying. The children are now safe, because she's gone and can't hurt anyone any more.

I loathe censorship, as you all already knew. Kids are tough. Give them the real story.

I know the story of Stone Soup but I never included it in my units because the lower grades did.
Donít be content with being average. Average is as close to the bottom as it is to the top.
Old 03-03-2006, 02:43 PM
wig's Avatar
wig wig is offline
Join Date: Oct 2005
Posts: 1,036
Middle School Teacher
Here is a great link for ideas for teaching fairy tales and folk tales:


Folk tales are the traditional beliefs, practices, lessons, legends and tales of a culture or of a people passed down orally through stories.

Fairy tales are fanciful and imaginary stories about people, fairies, animals or things who have magical powers.

Similarity: Every story has a problem and complications before the problem is resolved.

Difference: Folk tales require that people use their brains to solve their problems while fairy tales require that people have magic to help them.
Old 03-03-2006, 02:58 PM
Miss W's Avatar
Miss W Miss W is offline
Join Date: Apr 2005
Posts: 4,882
Arkansas, USA
2nd Grade All-Boy Teacher
Fairy Tale
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fairy, folk, tale, versus

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