Injoy, Inc. Summer Writing Program Week 3, printable worksheets, lapbook activity and drawing for FREE Writing Program from Institute for Excellence in Writing featuring FABLES!
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Just Joining?

Thanks for joining the Summer Reading Program! Even if this is your first week, you can go back and review lessons 1 and 2, and complete any of the optional activities at your convenience--or just jump in with this lesson!

For Lesson 1, click here.
For Lesson 2, click here.

If you lapbook, here is a printable activity for week 1 and week 2.

Enter a drawing for this FREE curriculum!

Giveaway drawing! Be sure to go here to enter!

This week we're giving away a copy of the Institute for Excellence in Writing curriculum, Fables, Myths, and Fairy Tales.

We'll announce the winner in next week's lesson.

Go here to enter. You get extra entries by sharing the giveaway with your friends, commenting on our Facebook page, following us and more!

Learn more about this curriculum here.

Q. Do we have to complete all the activities every week of the Summer Writing Program?

A. No!

It's summer! Only do what is fun for you! But, writing a fable is fun for the whole family to do together, so if any of these activities sound fun, and will promote learning at the same time, well then--have fun! You can save up these lessons and complete them all in one week, or you can pick and choose which activities to complete.

The optional worksheets are for:
  1. Those students who just love worksheets
  2. Students who are keeping a fable notebook.
  3. Students who need just a little reminder to keep up their spelling and handwriting skills over the summer!
  4. Moms to hand out for an impromptu writing lesson now, or later for review during the school year.

Teacher Planning Ideas

The entire lesson is included in this email; you can opt to use these resources several ways:
  • Complete the lesson ideas right from your computer.
  • Print out the teacher lesson sheet  here for your lesson plan book.
  • Print out optional age/grade appropriate worksheets/printables listed below.
  • Complete any or all of these ideas throughout the week, or at any time during our Summer Writing Program. There's no pressure! Just use whatever works for you and your students and enjoy this process!
  • Check out my Oh Joy! blog for fun ideas, and be sure to like and follow the Injoy, Inc. Facebook page for important announcements about contests, giveaways, and additional fun!
If you have any questions, please email me at Now on to this week's lesson!


Shari Popejoy

How to Write a Fable Week 3 Lesson
Developing Characters to Enhance a Story

Free Summer Writing Program;

Lesson 3: Characters from fables. The Fox and the Crow:

For a handy Parent/Teacher printout for your lesson plan book that includes many of these activities and the fable text, click here.

A fable is a short tale that teaches a moral lesson; it often uses animals or inanimate objects as characters. In a fable, an inanimate object can have human characteristics, too. A teapot could be short and stout--could be happy or pout! The characters or subjects in a fable can be inanimate objects like the grapes in Fox and Grapes, or the Sun and Wind from lesson 2.

Read the fable Fox and the Crow just below and complete some of the optional activities.

Begin to Create Your Fable Characters

This week you'll want to begin creating at least two interesting characters for the fable you will write later for our Fable Contest. At least one of these should be an animal, or a fairytale creature like an ogre, leprechaun, unicorns, etc. Give your characters some interesting attributes: they hiccup, they scramble their words around, they wear their clothes backwards, they never comb their hair, they always wear purple, or orange suspenders, or always carry around a purse with animal crackers. Get creative! Sketch your characters. Then replace the fox and crow with your characters and retell the story.

Print a lapbook printable activity here.
Print an optional Pre-Kindergarten worksheet by clicking here.

Print an optional early elementary worksheet by clicking here.
Print an optional worksheet for reluctant writers/spellers by clicking here.
Print an optional worksheet for older elementary or middle school students by clicking here.
Print an optional worksheet for students in grades 7-12 by clicking here.

Writers are so much fun, and we enjoy talking with you about your writing projects. Be sure to like the facebook page and read Injoy Ink for information about ways we can connect online!

Fox and The Crow

A crow who had stolen a piece of cheese was flying toward the top of a tall tree where he hoped to enjoy his prize, when a fox spied him. “If I plan this right,” said the fox to himself, “I shall have cheese for suppler.”
So as he sat under the tree, he began to speak in his politest tones: “Good day, mistress crow, how well you are looking today! How glossy your wings, and your breast is the breast of an eagle. And your claws — I beg pardon—your talons are as strong as steel. I have not heard your voice, but I am certain that it must surpass that of any other bird just as your beauty does.”
The vain crow was pleased by all this flattery. She believed every word of it and waggled her tail and flapped her wings to show her pleasure. She liked especially what friend fox said about her voice, for she had sometimes been told that her caw was a bit rusty. So, chuckling to think how she was going to surprise the fox with her most beautiful caw, she opened wide her mouth.
Down dropped the piece of cheese! The wily fox snatched it before it touched the ground, and as he walked away licking his chops, he offered these words of advice to the silly crow: “The next time someone praises your beauty be sure to hold your tongue.”

Moral: Flatterers are not to be trusted.

From Aesop's Fables, Grosset & Dunlap

Optional Activities

Activities and More Ways to Explore Fable Fun:

Check out a book of fables from the library, or find some online by googling Aesop's Fables; you can read several fables here.

  • Identify the characters of this fable. What are the characteristics of these characters?
  • Discuss with your child the character of the characters--the moral character. Identify positive and negative character traits, and discuss which characters are admirable and why.
Retell from memory or read these familiar fables. Identify the characters. What makes the character interesting and memorable? What do you think they look like? How are they dressed? What are they carrying? What kind of voice do they have? Do they have a lisp, an accent, a low or high, squeaky or gruff voice?
  • The Boy Who Cried Wolf
  • Androcles and the Lion
  • The Crow and the Pitcher
  • The Town Mouse and Country Mouse
  • The Tortoise and The Hare
  • The Ant and the Grasshopper

More Activities For Students of All Ages

Pre-Writers (print an optional worksheet for pre-kindergarten students here or for early elementary students here.)

  • Draw a picture of the action of The Fox and Crow.
  • Encourage young children to give an oral recitation of the story using their picture to retell the story.
  • Prompt children to identify the beginning sounds they hear in the characters and objects they've drawn.
  • Act out the story with your child; take turns being the fox, and then the crow.

Multi-Level Learning (print an optional worksheet for elementary students or middle school students here.)

  • Act out this fable together. Encourage the children to add interesting dialogue and expression to their voice to portray the emotion or the characteristics of the Fox and the Crow. How does a wily charmer sound? How does a vain crow sound?  What facial expressions or sound effects could they use?
  • Tell some familiar fables together and Identify the characters in some familiar tales or fables.

Reluctant Writers (print an optional worksheet for reluctant writers/spellers here).

  • Prepare an oral report  for the family; retell the Fox and the Crow. Discuss the moral of the story..
  • Arrange a family dramatization of the fable. Assign parts. Instruct each character how to portray their character, what kind of voice to use, give them props.
  • Direct a video production of Fox and the Crow.

Older Students (print an optional worksheet for middle school through high school students here.)

  • Check out a book of fables from the library and let the older children read (and reread over and over again) the stories to the younger children.
  • From the fable you created last week, work on creating depth for the characters (o'possum and kangaroo). How do they dress and talk and act. What props do they carry? Do they have any nervous ticks or habits?
  • Practice story telling by giving a 'speech'. Retell from memory, and look the audience in the eyes and judge their response to the sound effects you add, the dialog you insert, the funny expressions you use for each character.

Injoy, Inc. is offering a Fable Writing Contest!

We'll be selecting between 50 and 100 winners to publish in an e-book at the end of the summer. If you've always wanted to have a story published, this is a great opportunity! We'll select fables from many age levels, with prizes for the most fun and interesting fables.

Mark your calendar for August 23, 2013, the deadline to enter, and be sure to follow us on Facebook to get all the info on the contest as it is announced.


How To Write a Fable Accelerated Class

Our Write Now! Online Writing Class is completing a new course: How To Write A Fable Accelerated. In this optional class, students will write several fables, submit them for critique and analysis, and participate in live chats and other writing activities. Students who participate in this 8-week online writing workshop will be well prepared to enter several of their fables in the Injoy, Inc. Fable Contest

Sign up here for the additional class for the Write Now! student rate of $7.95 per month for the current class: How to write a Fable Accelerated: Exploring characters, plot and theme -- with a moral.

Please note: The Injoy, Inc. Summer Writing Program is FREE. It is a weekly online class that is emailed to you (like the email you are reading now). If your student would benefit from more individualized instruction like is described above, you may want to add the Write Now! option for a lesson fee. If you have any questions, please email us at
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