The Little Red Hen

Golden Book version book cover
Golden Book version book cover

The Little Red Hen is an old folk tale, most likely of Russian origin. The best known version in the United States is that popularized by Little Golden Books, a series of children's books published for the mass market since the 1940s.

 

Plot summary

In the tale, the little red hen finds a grain of wheat, and asks for help from the other farmyard animals to plant it. No one is willing to help. When the wheat matures, she asks for help to harvest it, then thresh it, then mill it, and bake the flour into bread. At each stage she gets no volunteers. Finally she asks who will help her eat the bread. All the previous non-participants eagerly volunteer, but she declines their help and eats it with her chicks, leaving none for others.

The story is applied in teaching children the virtues of the work ethic and personal initiative. It is so well known that it is frequently rewritten by pundits and bloggers to illustrate their favorite points.

"The Little Red Hen." Wikipedia. Wikipedia, 2007. Answers.com 08 Nov. 2007. http://www.answers.com/topic/the-little-red-hen
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