Listening to short stories is surely one of the best pleasures of life. Stories play an important role in our lives. This statement particularly holds true for children who grow up listening to the short stories that have been written and passed down through the years. Short stories serve double purpose of entertaining children and passing valuable lessons in culture and manners. Many schools and parents teach some of the educational concepts using the handy tool of storytelling.
Short story is a large category. It has several sub-genres including fairy tales, classic short stories, myths and legends and popular tales. Many short stories are in existence since centuries whereas many others are written in today’s time and age and they are equally popular. Only those short stories are popular with the kids that have appropriate length and fascinating characters. If a story drags on for too long, child tends to get bored easily. An interesting short story is never overtly didactic in nature. Short stories for children carry a moral but they are present as an underlying factor and not as an imposing element.
Short stories thrive on real feel of the characters. Characters larger than life are always popular amongst children. If the story book has interesting pictures in it, it will be even more appealing to the children.
Some of the stories like Arabian Nights are quite lengthy but if they can be converted into a short story mould by dividing them in parts, they find instant acceptance among the children. Among the popular short stories, Aesop's fables, Panchatantra and the Jataka tales take the cake. The collection of these short stories is in existence since centuries and has always been loved by children. If Panchatantra tales is an enchanting mix of human and animal characters presented in a hugely interesting way then Aesop's fables are primarily animal stories. Children always love to read and know about weeping birds and talking monkeys. These tales have strong values that a child can learn from. Similarly, the Jataka tales are based on remarkable fables and messages.
The witty short stories of Akbar and Birbal are full of drama, humor and excitement. Children can never get bored of such stories.