How to Teach the Story "Good Wolf, Bad Wolf" to Kids

By Dan Richter
"Good Wolf, Bad Wolf" tells of the internal struggle of good versus evil.

The story of “Good Wolf, Bad Wolf” is an American Indian story that has been passed down from generation to generation. The story tells the tale of a grandfather who informs his grandson about the “two wolves” that battle each other inside every living human. One wolf, the grandfather says, possesses all good qualities, like kindness, humility and understanding. The second wolf, the grandfather says, possesses all negative qualities, such as hate, spite and ego. In the end, the grandfather says, the wolf that you feed is the one that will win the internal battle.

Like other fables and fairy tales, “Good Wolf, Bad Wolf” can be told to kids as a means to of getting them to think of what kind of person they want to be and exercising a positive attitude.

Sit the kids down and tell them the story of “Good Wolf, Bad Wolf.” Be an engaging storyteller by being descriptive in your storytelling and using dramatic emphasis on certain words and voice inflection.

Ask the kids if they liked the story and what they think the moral of the story is. Give the kids a moment to think about the story and let them talk about the story amongst themselves. Remind the kids of what a moral is, if need be, and encourage them to find a deeper meaning in the story. Ask the children to list additional good qualities that the “good wolf” would possess as well as additional bad qualities the “bad wolf” would possess.

Tell the children outright what the moral of the “Good Wolf, Bad Wolf” story is after they had an opportunity to tell you what they think. Explain to the children that every person has the opportunity to choose what kind of person they want to be: either a nice, caring, kind-hearted person, or a mean, bullying, rude person. Explain to the children that you “feed” each wolf in the way you act. In other words, acting naughty “feeds” the bad wolf, while behaving properly “feeds” the good wolf. Tell the children that the more often they are nice, good kids, the easier it will be to stay that way.

About the Author

Dan Richter began freelance writing in 2006. His work has appeared in a variety of publications, including the "Wausau Daily Herald," "Stevens Point Journal," "Central Wisconsin Business Magazine" and the "Iowa City Press-Citizen." Richter graduated from the University of Wisconsin-Stevens Point in 2009 with a Bachelor of Arts in communication and media studies.