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The Story of David and Goliath
- The Book of Samuel
In this passage, the translation taken from the New King James Version Bible, the young and small shepherd David takes up the giant enemy warrior Goliath’s challenge for battle in a true underdog fashion.Pair “The Lion and the Mouse” with “The Story of David and Goliath” and ask students to the themes of the two texts. What can they teach us about what it means to be strong?
The Griffin and the Minor Canon
- Frank R. Stockton
In this short story, a griffin drawn from the wild to a church in a nearby town to see a statue made in his likeness decides to stay—much to the fear and dismay of the townspeople.Pair “The Lion and the Mouse” with “The Griffin and the Minor Canon” and ask students to consider the friendship between both pairs. Are they mutually beneficial?
Athena and Poseidon’s Contest for Athens
This text features an intro to the genre of Greek mythology and a story about how the city Athens got its name.Pair “Athena and Poseidon’s Contest for Athens” with “The Lion and the Mouse,” and ask students if there is a difference between a fable and a myth. If so, how are the genres different?
Ancient Greece: The Birthplace of Western Individualism
“Ancient Greece: The Birthplace of Western Individualism” contemplates the relationship between the ancient Greeks’ human-oriented polytheism and their cultural endorsement of individualism.Pair “Ancient Greece: The Birthplace of Western Individualism” with “The Lion and the Mouse” and ask students to think about how the fable plays out the themes discussed in the informational text. Do you think Aesop’s use of animals in his fables is similar to the ancient Greeks’ use of gods and goddesses who meddled in human affairs and behaved irrationally in their mythology? Does the fable advance or contest the notion of individualism identified in the article as being characteristic of ancient Greek society?
Can’t We All Just Get Along?
- BirdBrain Science
This informational text discusses the diverse interactions of organisms that can be mutually beneficial.Pair “The Lion and the Mouse” with “Can’t We All Just Get Along?” and ask students whether they think the relationship between the lion and the mouse is symbiotic. How are small organisms portrayed in these two texts? Do they have power or are they constantly defenseless?
The Selfish Giant
- Oscar Wilde
A selfish giant’s interaction with a special child inspires him to become generous.Pair “The Selfish Giant” and “The Lion and the Mouse” and ask students to compare the themes of friendship and selflessness. How does the friendship between the giant and the little boy compare to the mouse and the lion’s friendship? How do their friendships differ? How does friendship benefit us?
- Ralph Fletcher
In Ralph Fletcher’s “Funeral,” a group of boys have a funeral for their friend who is moving away.Pair “The Lion and the Mouse” and “Funeral” and ask students to compare how the two texts depict friendship. How does the relationship between the lion and the mouse compare to the friendships in “Funeral”?
- Hans Christian Andersen
Born in the center of a tulip and stuck forever at a small size, Thumbelina faces many challenges because she is so different from others around her.Pair “Thumbelina” with “The Lion and the Mouse” and have students compare and contrast the different ways characters in the two stories try to overcome adversity. What do Tiny and the mouse have in common? What do the lion and the sparrow have in common? What roles do they play?
The Rescue of the Tin Woodman
- L. Frank Baum
In L. Frank Baum’s “The Rescue of the Tin Woodman,” Dorothy and the Scarecrow help the Tin Woodman.Pair “The Lion and the Mouse” with “The Rescue of the Tin Woodman” and ask students to discuss the problems in each story and how the characters solve them. Why do the characters in “The Rescue of the Tin Woodman” save the Tin Woodman? How does this compare to why the mouse saves the lion?
The Fox and the Horse
- The Brothers Grimm
In the folktale “The Fox and the Horse,” a fox helps a horse prove himself to his master.Pair “The Lion and the Mouse” with “The Fox and the Horse” and ask students to compare the unlikely partnerships formed in both of these texts. What are each of these authors trying to tell us about friendship? Why do you think these authors chose to teach about friendship through animals?
The Sparrow's Quest
- Elizabeth Laird
In “The Sparrow’s Quest,” Elizabeth Laird retells the story of a sparrow that searches for the most powerful thing on earth.Pair “The Lion and the Mouse” with “The Sparrow’s Quest” to provide students with another tale about the strength of small and seemingly powerless creatures. How does the power of the sparrow compare to the mouse?
Jared to the Rescue
- Carole Duncan Buckman
In Carole Duncan Buckman’s short story “Jared to the Rescue,” Jared helps one of his classmates on the first day of second grade.Pair “The Lion and the Mouse” with “Jared to the Rescue” and ask students to discuss how friendship develops in the two texts. How does the first meeting between the mouse and the lion compare to Jessica and Jared’s relationship at the beginning of “Jared to the Rescue”? What changes allows the characters to become friends in the two texts?
The Wind and the Sun
- Horace E. Scudder
In Horace E. Scudder’s fable “The Wind and the Sun,” the Wind and the Sun compete to see who is the strongest.Pair “The Lion and the Mouse” with “The Wind and the Sun” and ask students to discuss how the characters in the two fables have different strengths. How does the mouse’s small strength compare to the gentle power of the sun? How are they both powerful in their own ways?
- Jacqueline Adams
In Jacqueline Adams’ “Aly’s Discovery,” a young girl finds friendship in someone unexpectedPair “The Lion and the Mouse” with “Aly’s Discovery” and ask students to discuss the themes of friendship in the two texts. How is the lion and mouse’s friendship an unlikely one? How does their unlikely friendship compare to Aly and Rachel’s? Ask students to compare how the friendships in the two texts develop.
Seeking a Hidden Hive
- Jocelyn Rish
In Jocelyn Rish’s short story “Seeking a Hidden Hive,” a small boy and his grandfather are led to a beehive by a bird to collect honeycomb.Pair “The Lion and the Mouse” with “Seeking a Hidden Hive” and ask students to compare the relationship between the lion and the mouse with humans and the honey guide. What do the mouse and Guyo have in common? How do they both show what it means to be powerful?
The Wild Dog of Caucomgomoc
- Charles Boardman Hawes
In Charles Boardman Hawes’s “The Wild Dog of Caucomgomoc”, a man makes an unexpected
Standing out in the Herd
- Cecil Dzwowa
In the informational text “Standing Out in the Herd,” Cecil Dzwowa explains how a giraffe came to be a part of a herd of cows.Pair “The Lion and the Mouse” with “Standing Out in the Herd” and ask students to discuss how both texts explore unlikely friendships between animals. How do the animals in each text benefit from their relationship with one another? What can readers learn about their relationships with others from the animals in the text?
Two Famous Friends
- Jean K. Potratz
In the informational text “Two Famous Friends,” Jean K. Potratz discusses the rocky friendship between Thomas Jefferson and John Adams.Pair “The Lion and the Mouse” with “Two Famous Friends” and ask students to discuss how both texts explore unlikely friendships. Why are the lion and the mouse unlikely friends? How does this compare to the surprising friendship between Thomas Jefferson and John Adams? Ask students to discuss why it can be good to have a friend who has opposing views.
Zebra and Wasp
- Clare Mishica
In Clare Mishica’s fable “Zebra and Wasp,” a zebra helps a wasp escape from a spider web.Pair “The Lion and the Mouse” with “Zebra and Wasp” and ask students to compare the two fables. How do the stronger animals in the two stories help the weaker animals? How do the Lion and Zebra feel about the Mouse and Wasp’s promises to help them one day? How do the Mouse and Wasp prove themselves to the other animals?
The Elephant and the Crocodile
- H. Berkeley Score
In H. Berkely Score’s fable “The Elephant and the Crocodile,” an Elephant and a Crocodile complete a task to see which is the better animal.Pair “The Lion and the Mouse” with “The Elephant and the Crocodile” and ask students to compare the themes of the two fables. How do the animals in the two stories help each other? Why does the Lion originally think so little of the Mouse? How does the Mouse prove himself to the Lion? How do the Elephant and Crocodile prove themselves to each other?