“Jack and the Beanstalk” is a fairy tale designed to entertain children and teach them a moral story that they can relate to while growing up. I believe this story teaches children appropriate moral lessons and inappropriate ones. An appropriate lesson being not to be greedy and be pleased with what you have, and the inappropriate one being that if you do not think before your actions you will be rewarded, and that stealing is all right. First I will give you a summary of the story and then break it down telling why this story can give children these ideas.
The story begins with a poor widowed woman telling her son, Jack, to take their cow to town to sell it, because it can no longer produce milk. As Jack is making his way into town he sees a man. The man offers Jack some “magic beans” for the cow. He says that these “magic beans” will help him and his mother a lot more then some gold could ever help them. Jack quickly makes the deal. When he shows his mother what he has done she quickly becomes angry and tosses the beans out the window.
Over night the beans start to grow and form a magic beanstalk that go all the way up into the heavens. Jack then begins to climb the beanstalk until he reaches the giant’s house and is almost immediately discovered by him. In fear of being discovered Jack mainlines it straight down the beanstalk, but before that manages to steals some gold from the giant. He then gives the gold to his mother and she is amazed and pleased with what he had done. After the gold runs out Jack decides to climb the beanstalk to the giant’s house again.
Once again he is almost discovered, but before being seen he steals the giant’s hen. This hen lays golden eggs when commanded too. When his mother first saw the hen she was not pleased but after seeing what the hen was capable of was very pleased. After that Jack and his mother lived in luxury. Jack grew tired and bored one day and decided to make a third trip up to the giant’s house. On his third trip he tried to steal a harp that could play music, but the harp calls out for its master and the giant chases Jack down the beanstalk.
When Jack gets to the ground he grabs an axe and cuts down the beanstalk, causing the giant to fall to the ground and die and Jack and his mother live happily ever after. In the beginning of this story Jack trades his family cow, the only possession of value him and his mother have left, to a random stranger for some “magic beans. ” If I was in Jack’s shoes and I did this, my mother probably would have killed me. To me this was an incredibly stupid move by Jack. The stranger who was selling these beans could have been lying. Instead, these beans were real “magic beans” and created Jack a magic beanstalk.
This story basically says that if you trust strangers and make incredibly terrible decisions you will be rewarded for it, and I do not agree with that. The next part of this story Jack starts climbing up the beanstalk to steal from the giant. During Jack’s first trip up the beanstalk he returns with gold, which only last him and his mother a short time, so he has to make a second trip up there. When he climbs back up there he steals a goose, which last him and his mother a lifetime. Jack returns there a third time out of boredom, gets caught, and ends up killing the giant during his escape.
I believe that this part of the story has an appropriate and inappropriate moral lesson to be learned which could be applied to today. The appropriate one being you should not act in a greedy manner and that you should be happy with what you have because when Jack returns up the beanstalk the third time for no reason accept he is bored he almost faces death. The inappropriate lesson a person could learn from reading this story is that stealing from people is the right thing to do if you are poor, and as long as you kill the person you are stealing from it is all right.