Children love stories. It’s true!
And every child enjoys it for different reasons – be it travelling to magical worlds, learning new concepts, going on adventures, etc.
With stories, the possibilities are truly limitless — your child can join Tintin as he travels the world, solves mysteries and nabs crooks; your child can study at Hogwarts and learn about life through the magical world of Harry Potter; your child can go back in time and become an active participant at Akbar’s court.
The list goes on!
Perhaps the best way to help a child explore, express, understand emotions, problems, problem-solving, habits, and much more is via stories. Be it a quick bedtime tale or a grandma fable, each story helps a child enter a completely different magical and imaginative world that has no boundaries.
Let us now have a look at 40 such popular and amazing stories for kids:
Select your child’s age group so we can customise the story list for you:
Short Stories For Kids
Most children end up finding one or two stories that they love, and end up listening to/reading them over and over again. Short stories with very few characters, a simple setting and theme are the easiest to remember.
In fact, it also helps children enhance their literacy skills. Simple three and four letter words are put together to form such stories. They can be heard, comprehended and read by the child with ease. Here are some short story examples –
- Friends Forever – This story is about the friendship between a frog and a mouse and shows how your actions against others can backfire on yourself. This story will teach your child about the African saying “Don’t dig too deep a pit for your enemy, you may fall into it yourself”.
- The Prince And The Snake – This story follows the journey of a prince whose body has been invaded by a devilish snake and how he manages to escape from the clutches of the snake.
- Lion And The Mouse – This story explains the proverb “Small acts of kindness will be rewarded greatly” and how anyone regardless of their size and appearance, can make a major impact in certain situations. This tale can teach your child to appreciate others and create a helping tendency in their minds.
- Hare And The Tortoise – Everyone is aware about this story where the hare is defeated by the tortoise in a race proving the proverb “Slow and steady wins the race”. But the story doesn’t end there as they eventually have another race! And it consists of a number of morals your child should learn about.
Moral Stories For Kids
Children enjoy reading about different characters and story plots. But how often do they learn something from these tales?
What if your child could be taught good manners or habits through these stories, that can be applied in their everyday lives? In fact, the way a child behaves, talks and responds to a situation can be directly influenced by simple, moral stories. Here are some of the most popular and easy to comprehend moral stories –
- The Golden Goose – This story is about a farmer who had a goose that was laying one golden egg every day. As the story goes on, it focuses on the themes of greed and how it can ruin anyone’s life.
- The Ant And The Grasshopper – This story is based on the concept of working hard in the present for a prosperous future and it features a hardworking ant and a lazy grasshopper. Through this tale, children will understand the need, importance and benefits of hard work.
- The Honest Woodcutter – This tale is based on the moral “Honesty is the best policy” and involves a poor woodcutter who loses his axe in a river. It shows children how they will get appreciated and rewarded if they live with honesty.
- The Greedy Crocodile – Based on the theme of greed, this story describes an encounter involving a boy, a crocodile, and a rabbit. This tale teaches children about the essence of the proverb – “a bird in hand is worth two in a bush”
- The Boy Who Cried Wolf – This story proves that nobody will believe a liar, even when he speaks the truth. The main plot is centered around how the habit of lying affects a shepherd boy.
- The Ugly Duckling – This tale deals with the concept of apperance, and emphazizes on the fact that beauty does not mean superority. It portrays the struggles of an ugly duckling and the challenges faced by it due to its appearance.
Vidya Ragu, a psychologist, learning & development expert, tells us about the crucial role that stories play in the lives of our children – and how you can become a great storyteller! Watch the video below for details:
Inspirational Stories For Kids
Stories about great personalities, their struggles and achievements are a wonderful source of encouragement for children. In fact, your child will learn that no barrier is a dead-end and you can achieve any dream the way Malala or Abdul Kalam did!
Reading these stories gives children a chance to learn new things and build a strong character. Moreover, motivational stories can inspire your child to pick up a book and feel excited about reading. Here are some lovely motivational stories for kids –
- Anne Frank – Venture into this sad yet inspiring diary of Anne Frank, a jewish victim of the Holocaust in Germany, as she explains her struggles during the Second World War. This will show children how traumatising war can be and why they must strive towards world peace.
- Mahatma Gandhi – Take a look at the biography of the Father of our Nation and revisit the struggles he had to endure to help India become Independent. This biography will give children a glimpse of historical events that eventually resulted in our independence.
- I Am Malala – This is an inspiring tale of Malala, a young woman activist who fought for the right to education for women in Pakistan. Becoming the youngest Nobel Peace Prize laureate, speaks leaps and bounds of her contributions and achievements and teaches children all over the world that anyone can make a difference.
- Wings of Fire – Teach your child the motivational ideologies of one of the greatest role models of our country with A.P.J. Abdul Kalam’s “Wings of Fire”. This book will make children understand about Insipration, Motivation, Partriotism, Knowledge and much more.
- Goodnight Stories For Rebel Girls – This awe-inspiring collection of tales, chronicles the endearing journeys of some of the greatest women personalities who played a part in empowering women all over the globe.
Bedtime Stories For Kids
Bedtime stories are great to relax the child’s mind! They have simple characters, plots and settings. And additionally, bedtime stories are used to calm the child’s mind and help them sleep peacefully through the night. Research has shown that they dream about the rich characters and recall their actions.
For a parent, in today’s quick world, a nice bedtime story is an excellent way of building a bond with their young ones. In fact, you can push your child to predict the end, to suggest alternate endings, to describe the character and summarize the tale at the end. This will help their memory and creative thinking. Here are some popular bedtime stories –
- A City Rat And A Village Rat – This story draws a parallel between the peaceful nature of living in villages versus the stressful nature of city life with rats as central characters. By observing the portrayals of two different lifestyles, children can start to understand about the real world.
- Princess And The Pea – This fairy tale by Hans Christian Andersen, deals with a prince who is in search of a princess and how he gets to meet her.
- 5-Min Stories– This collection of stories features simple daily-life scenarios and will capture your child’s attention in 300 seconds with its wit and storylines.
Here’s a famous story that Flintobox recreated with colourful illustrations and animations! Your child is sure to love it 🙂
Adventure Stories For Kids
There is no better way to get your child to be more curious and intellectually stimulated because adventure stories are generally filled with a thrilling plot, maybe some strong characters and a diverse setting. Moreover, the intricate plot, with twists and turns, act as a stimulus.
It makes the child want to know more, predict the next move, pick up clues, connect the dots and solve problems. Children need to have a good and fully-functional coping system by the age of ten. They need to be strong and independent enough to solve their own problems without a lot of support from peers or parents.
Adventure stories with strong protagonists help children make mature decisions and focus better. Here are some must-read adventure stories:
Copyright – J.K.Rowling/Bloomsbury
- The Harry Potter Series – This 7-part book series, by J.K.Rowling chronicles the life of a young wizard, Harry Potter, and his friends Hermione Granger and Ron Weasley. It predominantly features Harry’s struggle against the main antagonist of the series – Lord Voldemort.
- The Famous Five– Check out this classic collection of novels from Enid Blyton, featuring various adventure stories that the lead characters Julian, Dick and Anne, George and their dog Timmy face.
- The Secret Seven– Enid Blyton brings us the entertaining tale of a secret society of kids looking to solve crimes, led by Peter with his sister Janet and their friends Jack, Colin, George, Pam and Barbara along with their golden spaniel, Scamper.
- Tintin– Set in the 20th century, this collection follows the journey of Tintin, a courageous young Belgian reporter and the adventures that he embarks on with his dog Snowy.
- Complete Adventures of Feluda– This Fiction series created by Satyajit Ray, features Feluda, a detective from Bengal and the mysteries that he solves. Check out this interesting collection chronicling the journey of the Indian Sherlock Holmes.
PRO TIP: Activity boxes such as Flintobox also provide exciting storybooks based on different themes and concepts. Every month, a box packed with enriching activities and an adventurous story will be packed and shipped to your doorstep! For more information on Flintobox activities, click here >
Funny Stories For Kids
When children watch a funny movie clip or cartoon, they never tend to recall the underlying story behind the clip. They take the amusing anecdote for granted, laugh and move on. But in the case of a story, the valuable lessons hidden inside these funny books are hard to miss.
They bring out values and morals in a fun, entertaining and educational manner. Many parents believe that funny stories are filled with silly pictures and characters, but this is far from the truth. A lot of research goes into putting together a book for a child.
As an adult, we might not notice the learning element in these funny stories, but children often connect well with the images, characters, and anecdotes. Here are some funny stories –
- Foolish Imitation– This tale involves the attempts of a foolish crow to imitate every aspect of a hawk. The major theme of this story is the importance of originality and explains to children that it’s better to be yourself than to mimic others.
- The Judge Monkey– The crux of this story features two cats fighting over a loaf of bread. This story proves the fact that it is better to share instead of possessive quarrelling.
- Funny Bedtime story examples– Check out this interesting collection of stories filled with humour to make sure that your child feels happy and light hearted before bedtime.
Indian Folk Tales
India is a land of rich culture and diversity. And with this rich culture comes some beautiful stories too. Some stories are based on real characters, like kings or famous people.
While some other stories are inspired by different communities and beliefs. Parents can choose from a range of amazing Indian folk tales and get their kids excited about story-time.
- Panchatantra – This is an ancient collection of stories (originally in Sanskrit). The stories that form the Panchatantra always consist of animal characters and every story comes with a moral. Pancha means Five, and Tantra means principle, and true to its name, there is a learning in every story.
- Tenali Raman – Tenali Raman, was the legendary Telugu poet and advisor of the King Krishnadevaraya. All the stories involve the two characters, their adventures together and how cleverly Tenali Raman solves the trickiest of issues. It is a fun and educational read for every child and almost all stories come with a moral too.
- Akbar & Birbal – Birbal who was an advisor in the court of the Emperor Akbar, was known for his intellect, wit and sense of humour. In all the stories, Akbar places a problem in front of Birbal, and Birbal cleverly finds a solution. He wins hearts and admiration every day. Children can learn a lot about the Mughal dynasty and Indian rulers too, through these stories.
Fairy Tale Stories
Filled with characters like dwarfs, fairies, gnomes, mermaids and talking animals, fairy tales are some of the most popular stories among kids. These stories help children enter a fantasy world with infinite possibilities, multiple characters and almost always, a happy ending.
Fantasy and fictional stories help develop the creative side of a child’s brain. Children dealing with issues, anxiety and learning disabilities, find comfort in fairy tales. They use their imagination, picture multiple characters and express their thoughts better.
Copyright – Aesop/Barnes and Noble
- Cinderella, Snow White, Little Red Riding Hood – These are some of the most popular fairy tales of all time and the best part about these stories is that there are so many different versions which lets you revisit the same story in different manners.
- Aesop’s Fables – Aesop’s Fables is a collection of fables credited to Aesop, a slave and storyteller believed to have lived in ancient Greece between 620 and 564 BCE.
- Grimm’s Fairy Tales – Also known as the Children’s and Household Tales, this is a collection of fairy tales first published in 1812 by the Grimm brothers, Jacob and Wilhelm.
Horror Stories For Kids
Life isn’t always about rainbows and butterflies. Some children enjoy the occasional scares, ghosts and chills down the spine. The stories are written in a simple and effective manner. If your child is bored of the regular happy ending fairy tales, then this could be a new genre to try.
As children see themselves are protagonists, and later enact out these stories, horror stories teach children to be powerful, face their fears and defeat evil. Here are some good horror stories and books –
Copyright – R.L.Stine/Scholastic
- Goosebumps – With scary puppets, werewolves, monsters and so much more inside, this series by R.L. Stine will send a chill down everybody’s spine. This collection of stories will help children understand the fact that the fearless can survive any danger when they make the right decisions.
- No Way Out– This story features Mike, who takes up a challenge of going inside a haunted house. It also features additional stories such as “The Price of Friendship” and “Hobgoblin Horror”.
- Horror story examples– This collection of stories covers a variety of themes and sub-genres, based on horror from renowned authors. It also features the audio versions of the stories that you can play to your child.
Indian Mythological Stories
Stories from our ancestors have been passed on to us. Stories about good vs evil, demons, gods, bravery, kings, love, sacrifice, friendship and so much more.
Copyright – C.Rajagopalachari/Bharatiya Vidya Bhavan
Indian mythological stories are a combination of fantasy, fiction and are often based on well-known characters, generally kings and gods.
- Mahabharata – It is an age old mythological epic about two clans, the Kauravas and Pandavas. It is an enjoyable read, filled with unique characters, wars, life-lessons and anecdotes.
- Ramayana – It is the story of Lord Rama. The story is about his valour, bravery, strength and determination to bring back his kidnapped wife, Sita, from the demon king, Ravana.
- Also, you could find multiple mythological books for children – like Ganesha, Prahalad, Shiva, Krishna and friends, Hanuman, Indian festivals and much more. All these stories have a few things in common – the power of good, the destruction of evil, the importance of making good choices and loving, respecting and protecting families and friends at all times.
Storytelling plays a crucial role in the overall development and growth of a child. Narrating a tale or helping a child read a story has been a parent-child fun activity since time immemorial.
A story not only instills virtues in your child, it also helps them confidently enter a world of dreams and endless possibilities. Help your child enhance his/her listening, memory and communication skills through such wonderful stories.
Do you believe that stories are important for children? Drop us a comment with your thoughts.
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