Writing Fractured Fairy Tales

Adult interacting with children at day care by reading with them

This activity promotes development and learning by encouraging children to demonstrate flexibility in thoughts, actions, and behaviors.

Materials Needed:

  • Paper
  • Drawing and writing materials

Participants: This activity is intended for adult/child interaction.


  1. Read or tell your child a well-known fairy tale or children’s story, such as “The Three Billy Goats Gruff,” “The Three Little Pigs,” or “The Little Red Hen.” Talk with your children about point of view in a story. For example, in “The Three Billy Goats Gruff,” we hear the goats’ perspective.
  2. Consider what might happen if the story was told from a different point of view. Why was the troll so grumpy? Maybe the goats kept teasing him or maybe he was lonely, not grumpy. Maybe the goats misinterpreted what he was saying. Maybe he had never learned how to interact politely and needed some social skills pointers!
  3. Help your child retell, rewrite, and illustrate a fairy tale from a different perspective.

Learn More: Read more fractured fairy tales or updated fairy tales:

  • “Dusty Locks and the Three Bears” by Susan Lowell and Randy Cecil
  • “Somebody and the Three Blairs” by Marilyn Tolhurst and Simone Abel
  • “The Three Little Javelinas” by Susan Lowell and Jim Harris
  • “The Three Little Wolves and the Big, Bad Pig” by Eugene Trivizas and Helen Oxenbury
Bright Horizons
About the Author
Bright Horizons
Bright Horizons
In 1986, our founders saw that child care was an enormous obstacle for working parents. On-site centers became one way we responded to help employees – and organizations -- work better. Today we offer child care, elder care, and help for education and careers -- tools used by more than 1,000 of the world’s top employers and that power many of the world's best brands
Adult interacting with children at day care by reading with them