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Fairy tales with competent women for a preschooler


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#1 Pintosrock

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Posted 17 July 2017 - 02:42 PM

I hate the clean/Disney versions for their portrayal of women. The original Anderson/Grimm versions are too grisly for my preschooler. I like Tatterhood, but it's just a collection of short stories. In a perfect world, I'd like a mix of text and pictures. Have you seen anything like that?

#2 Ravin

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Posted 17 July 2017 - 03:28 PM

Just tell your own versions.



#3 desertflower

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Posted 17 July 2017 - 07:37 PM

When my dd was that age she tagged along with big brother. I've never heard of Tatterhood.

So, my dd listened to the Wizard of Oz, Charlotte's Web, and the Secret Garden. I'm guessing you want something that has leading strong girls in them.

#4 desertflower

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Posted 17 July 2017 - 07:38 PM

I'm reading Heidi to her now.

#5 desertflower

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Posted 17 July 2017 - 11:35 PM

So, not fairy tales but there is the first little house series. Big illustrations.

#6 Alessandra

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Posted 18 July 2017 - 12:30 AM

OP, I completely agree about Disney versions. We read fairy tales constantly, from preschool on up. This is what we did.

Core Knowledge's Books to Build On (most libraries have it). It has recommendations for specific editions, excellent choices. They also include multicultural suggestions, for example Cinderella type stories from China, Africa, Native Americans.

I also spent time in my public library and many other branches in the library system, specifically looking for nicely written, beautifully illustrated fairy tales. I then bought the ones I liked most, often buying used books, because the editions currently in print are not always the best editions. I prefer separate books, with a variety of illustration styles. We probably have five shelves of fairy tales from all over the world.

That said, our favorite one volume collections are
Random House Book of Fairy Tales
Random House Book of Nursery Stories
I think these are out of print, but well worth having. There is a great Mother Goose in this series too.

It is also fun to get different versions of the same story. For example, comparing versions of Three Little Pigs is a good thinking exercise for little kids.

We started with nursery tales, like Three Little Pigs, Three Billy Goats Gruff, Chicken Little, and so on. Oops, no competent women, lol, but no Disnification either.

As for Grimm, there is no one 'original' edition. The Grimm Brothers did a lot of rewriting over decades, so there are multiple versions of several tales. Also, many of the tales were taken from existing folklore, so are not original to the Grimms. Personally, I chose whatever text -- Grimm or a rewriting -- would appeal most to my kids.

Andersen is a different matter. He wrote his own tales, using lyrical language that can disappear in some translations. So I always try to read a version that is as close to the original as possible. Core Knowlege does not suggest Andersen until second grade, iirc.

Another suggestion -- check out Jim Weiss, Greathall, for wonderful audio retellings. He simplifies, but sensitively. His voice changes for different characters in a way that never ceased to amaze my children. We had hours and hours of enjoyment from these. I think his website arranges recordings by recommended age, very helpful.

Edited by Alessandra, 18 July 2017 - 06:45 AM.

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