The Lion and the Mouse   

It was a long time ago. A big lion was sleeping. A small mouse ran on top of the lion’s face. This woke the lion up. And it made the lion very mad! He took the mouse up in his paw. He was going to eat the mouse.

But the mouse begged for help. “Please let me live. I will thank you. I will help you one day. I promise!”

The lion heard the mouse’s bold words. He said, “That’s just too funny to believe.” He laughed and let the mouse go. The mouse called back to him. “Thank you for my freedom! You did the right thing!”

It was five days later. Hunters got the lion in one of their traps. They were going to send him to a zoo. The lion could not get out. The ropes of the trap were thick. The lion was mad. And he felt scared and alone.

He gave out a loud roar. The mouse was far away. But the lion’s roar was so loud that he heard it. He ran for an hour to find the lion. He got to the trap. He chewed on the rope for a long time. The rope broke. It made a hole so the lion could get out. The mouse had set him free. It was just like the lion had set the mouse free.

The mouse talked to him. “You thought a mouse like me could not help you. But I knew I would be true to my word. So now you know that even a small mouse can help a big cat!”

They were now close friends.

We learn from this. No one is too weak to do a good thing!

Note: this is 430L Lexile, later 3rd grade (really???); Readable IO Grade 1.0; ATOS 1.7, later 1st grade; Nation 95% 2,000, 98% 4,000 –> aggregate of the four measures: probably, on average, late 1st grade / early 2nd grade accessible.


Goldielocks And The Three Bears
Once upon a time, there were three bears who resided in a dense, evergreen forest. Dad was named Clayton; Mom was Kayla; Baby was Jason.
One seasonably warm day, Kayla Bear concocted a delicious hot honey and spicy prickly pear soup. She carefully poured it into three gorgeous pottery bowls.
One bowl was big, one was small, and one was right in the middle.
The soup was way too hot to eat immediately, so the bears discussed their situation and decided to go outside for a short stroll in the woods.
The soup would just be warm, and no longer too hot, when they returned from their healthy hike.
Near their residence, there was a girl named Goldielocks. She lived in a village that bordered the woods.
She was enjoying a brisk walk among the trees, too, when much to her surprise, she spied the Bears’ well-hidden house. Goldielocks was a generally curious young girl, so she sauntered up to the entrance.
She knocked firmly on the door, but no one was there, apparently, so she waltzed right into the Bears’ nicely decorated foyer.
She saw the soup sitting on the large oak dining room table, and she noticed a most appealing aroma wafting from the exquisite bowls.

She daintily tasted the soup. The soup in the big bowl was way too hot. From the middle bowl, the soup was too cold.
But from the small bowl, the soup was basically perfect. She vacuumed it down, slurping it like an uncouth roadside beggar! “Yummy!” she exclaimed.
Now, it so happened that Goldielocks had with her an iconic book about a royal princess who was secretly a great detective. She wanted to sit down and read it for a little while, engaging her mind to work out the complex and adventurous plot.
She saw three chairs, and decided that she would try out each one of them to find out which one was the most comfortable for her.
She tried out Clayton’s chair first, and discovered that it was too tall. Then she tried Kayla’s chair, and decided that it was too wide.
Finally, she experimented with Jason’s tiny chair, and realized that it was just right for her.
But, CRASH! As she sat in it, the chair broke into a million pieces, and Goldielocks fell hard to the floor. With a simple, “Ooops!” she cried out loudly, as she had been taught well to not utter expletives.
Well, now Goldielocks recognized that she was sleepy. She said to herself, “I think I will lie down,” and up the stairs she went to inspect the bedrooms.
She opened a door. There was one big bedroom with three beds in it.
The big bed was too hard for her. The middle bed was too soft for her.
But the small bed was just right. Goldielocks fell right to sleep, on the small bed. Although her dreams were sweet, she snored like a foghorn.
About that time, Clayton, Kayla, and Jason Bear came back to their house.
Some of the soup was gone from Clayton’s and Kayla’s bowls. Then Jason yelled, “Hey! What’s this? There’s not any soup in my bowl!”
Clayton’s and Kayla’s chairs had been moved, too. Then Jason screamed, “My chair has fallen apart!” The Bear family was hopping mad now.
Up the stairs they went. Clayton and Kayla found the blankets on their beds all wrinkled.
Then they all turned around. Jason shouted, “Ahhh! There’s a person in my bed!”
Clayton looked at the girl. He had seen her before, and he knew exactly who she was!
Completely unexpectedly, he barked to Kayla and Jason Bear, “RUN! Get out of the house and hide! NOW!”
It turned out that Goldielocks’ father was a very famous bear trainer at the circus.
Clayton Bear did not want Goldielocks to know that bears lived in this house, because the circus people might try to capture them!
So the bears all hid behind some big trees next to their home. Fortunately, Goldielocks finally left their house about an hour later.
Now the bears were safe, and lucky for them, they never saw that potentially dangerous Goldielocks again!

Note: this is 770L Lexile, middle 5th grade; Readable IO Grade 5.5; ATOS 5.3, later 5th grade; Nation 95% 3,000, 98% 9,000 –> aggregate of the four measures: probably, on average, middle 5th grade accessible.