The ants and the grasshopper

Now we are going to read a story called ‘The ants and the grasshopper*,’ and I want you to think about whether or not the grasshopper is being lazy.

One bright day towards the end of summer, a family of ants is bustling about in the warm sunshine, searching for stalks of wheat. The stalks are big and heavy – much too big for one ant to carry. But when they all work together, they can just manage to drag the wheat over the hard stones and the dry leaves and the rough pieces of bark all the way to the hole that leads down to their nest.


They are still hard at work when one of the ants stops.

‘Can you hear music?’ he asks. As he speaks, the music gets louder. It is beautiful. Then they see a grasshopper coming towards them, chirping and singing and playing his violin.

‘What are you doing?’ the grasshopper asks.

‘We are storing up food for the winter,’ the ants reply. ‘And you should be doing the same.’

‘Winter is far away,’ sings the grasshopper, ‘and it is a beautiful day to play.’

And the grasshopper chirps and sings and plays some more and the ants keep on working.

*Based on Aesop’s fable

Discuss with your child

Was the grasshopper being lazy? Why do you think that?

Should the ants share food with the grasshopper? What do you think, and why?