Top 10 Short Moral Stories in English for Children & Adults

Moral stories have a way of influencing people.

Reading stories to your children can help inculcate good values in them, as some short stories with moral lessons are very stirring for impressionable minds.

And sometimes, fewer the words, the more powerful it is. brings to you some of the most extraordinary short moral stories for your daily reading session.

So, whether you are reading to your children or searching for some motivation yourself, all these Inspirational Moral Stories have a heartfelt message instilled in them.

Here are 10 Short Moral Stories with Pictures for Kids (or Adults)!

1. The Hungry Lion

The Greedy Lion- Short Moral Stories for kids

On a very hot day in the forest, a lion was feeling very hungry. He was looking for prey to eat.

When he came out of his den, he looked around and all he found was a tiny rabbit. He leapt forward and caught the rabbit with ease.

After catching the rabbit, he looked around and saw a deer running away in the distance.

“This rabbit is too small. It can’t fill my stomach” thought the lion. The lion became greedy and thought; “Instead of eating this small rabbit, let me eat the big deer.”

He let the rabbit go immediately and went chasing the deer. But the deer vanished into the forest before the lion could reach it. The lion had now lost the rabbit as well as the deer because of his greed.

Moral of the story- A bird in the hand is worth two in the bush.

2. The Boy who cried Wolf

The Boy who cried Wolf Short Moral Story

There lived a shepherd boy in a village who was very mischievous and liked trouble making. One day, as he was watching the sheep grazing in the field, he got really bored.

So, he decided to have some fun. He cried, “Wolf! Wolf!” so loudly that the entire village came running with stones to chase away the wolf before it could take away any of the sheep.

When the villagers saw that there was no wolf, they got angry and left grudgingly. The boy was very entertained seeing the commotion he made. The next day, the boy cried again, “Wolf! Wolf!” and, one more time, the villagers rushed to chase the wolf away.

The third day, the boy went up the small hill, he suddenly saw a wolf attacking his sheep. He cried at the top of his voice, “Wolf! Wolf! Wolf!”, but no one came to help him. The villagers assumed that he was just trying to fool them again.

At the end of the day, the shepherd lost many sheep all because of his foolishness.

Moral of the story- Nobody believes a liar, even if he is speaking the truth. 

3. The Thirsty Crow

the thirsty crow short story with moral

One hot, summer day, a crow was flying around and was really thirsty. He looked around for drinking water, but could not locate any.

After flying in circles around the town, he noticed a pot in the verandah of a house. He quickly went up to the pot to drink water, but his beak could not reach the water since the water level was too low.

The crow stood there dejected, but then an idea hit him. He thought, ‘If I throw pebbles in the pot, the level of the water will rise up. Then, I will be able to drink the water easily’.

So, he picked up some stones from the floor and flew back to the pot and threw it in. He noticed that the level had risen a bit, but he still couldn’t reach it.

The crow traveled back and forth to throw stones into the pot, but after a while, he became very tired.

Rather than giving up, the crow picked up small pebbles and put them in the pot for more than an hour.

Gradually, the water level rose and the crow could drink from it. He drank and quenched his thirst until he didn’t need to drink anymore.

Moral of the story- Patience will always help you succeed.

4. Sour Grapes

Sour Grapes Short Inspirational Story

One hot summer afternoon, a fox was walking through a field and saw a bunch of grapes hanging from a high branch.

“The perfect thing to help my thirst,” he thought to himself.

Going back a few steps, the fox jumped to reach the grapes. But since the branch was high, he missed the grapes. The fox tried to reach them again by jumping a few times more but failed each time.

The fox turned up his nose and said, “They’re probably sour anyway,” and proceeded to walk away.

Moral of the story- it’s easy to hate what you cannot have. Everything comes with hard work.

5. Controlling your Anger

Anger Management short story

There was a boy who would always get into fights with his friends over silly things. He had great difficulty controlling his anger. When he got angry, he would say rude things without thinking and would not even think how others would have felt.

One day, his father gifted him a hammer and a box full of nails. He said to the boy, “Whenever you get angry, hammer a nail into the backyard fence.”

In the very first days, the boy pinned up more than half of the nails. Over the next few weeks, he used up fewer nails because he was realizing that he was getting angry a lot. Then finally, after his anger was in control, the father asked the boy to remove a nail for each day he didn’t lose his temper.

After a few days, the number of nails on the wall went down and finally when the boy removed his last nail, his father told him, “You have learned your lesson. But, can you see these holes in the wall? The fence will never be the same again. Similarly, when you do things in anger, you’ll leave a scar.”

Moral of the story- Angry words cannot be taken back. You will hurt someone when you are angry and never be able to take it back.

6. Think Before You Judge

Dont Judge Others Moral Story

A man in his thirties was looking out from the train’s window very excitedly. He exclaimed “Father, look at those trees! They are going backward!”

The man’s father who was with him smiled and replied back enthusiastically.  A group of teenagers sitting nearby looked at the man’s childish comment and started laughing.

Suddenly, the young man shouted again.

“Father, look at the clouds! They are moving with us!”

The group of youngsters burst into laughter again and started mocking the man.

“Take your son to a good doctor!” they teased the father.

The old man smiled and said-

“Actually, we are just coming from the hospital. My son was blind by birth and he got his vision today.”

The teenagers all became silent and realized their mistake. They felt ashamed of their behavior.

They promised to never judge anyone ever again.

Moral- Everyone is going through something you know nothing about. Do not judge people quickly before you get to know them.

7. The Cunning Fox and the Innocent Goat

The fox and the goat story for kids

One day, a fox was chased by a tiger in a forest.

He ran fast through the woods trying to escape the hungry tiger. While running hastily, he fell into a well. The fox tried to climb up the well, but he could manage it.

While he was almost on the verge of giving up, he heard the voice of a goat from the top of the well.

“What are you doing inside this well?” the goat asked innocently. Suddenly an idea hit the fox’s mind.

“The drought is coming soon and the water in the rivers will be finished soon. So, I am staying in the well to drink the sweet water.” The fox replied cunningly.

“Oh really? Then do you think I will not get any water to drink?” the goat asked the fox, quite believing the evil fox.

“Yes, all the water will dry up. You should join me here in the well.” The fox shouted back. “There is plenty of water here for the both of us.” the fox added.

The goat without even thinking jumped into the well. As soon as the goat landed, the fox placed one of his feet on her horn and escaped out of the well.

The poor goat was left behind. She cried for help and asked the fox to help her out. The fox said, “You should have looked before you leaped into the well to see if it was possible for you to come out of it. You did not do that, and hence you will suffer.”

The fox left the place, and the goat was stuck in the well, waiting for her death.

Moral of the story- Think before you act.

8. A True Friend

A True Friend Moral Story

Two friends, Sam and Ram went walking into a forest for a picnic on a holiday. When they were crossing the river, they saw a bear coming towards them. The friends became scared and started running.

Sam, who knew how to climb trees, ran up to the first one and climbed it quickly. He didn’t even think of Ram who didn’t know how to climb trees.

Suddenly a thought struck Ram. He had read that animals don’t like dead bodies, so he immediately fell to the ground and held his breath for some time. The bear came to Ram and sniffed him. The bear thought he was dead and it went on its way.

After the bear went away, Sam got down from the tree and asked Ram;

“What did the bear say to you?”

Ram replied, “The bear told me to stay away from friends like you” …and went back to his place alone leaving Sam to think about his behavior.

Moral of the story- A friend in need is a friend indeed

9. The Wise Man

The wise old man Moral Story

There lived a wise man in a village who was very famous for his ability to solve problems. One day he noticed that there were a few people who came with the same set of problems every time. To teach them a lesson, the wise man told them a joke. Everyone burst out into laughter.

After some time, he cracked the same joke and very few of them laughed again.

Later, he told the same joke for the third time and this time, no one laughed anymore.

The wise man smiled and said:

“When you can’t laugh at the same joke over and over again, why cry about the same problem repeatedly?

Moral of the story- Worrying about something continuously will not solve the problem. 

10. The Donkey’s Trick

The Donkeys trick Short story for children

A salt seller used to carry the salt bag on his donkey to the market every day.

One day, while they were on their usual way through the stream, the donkey slipped and fell in the water. With the donkey, the salt bag also got drenched and the salt dissolved in the water. This made the bag became very light to carry. The donkey, who noticed that the bag was now lighter, was very happy.

That’s when the idea hit him! Soon enough, the donkey started to play the same trick every day.

The salt seller soon noticed this trick and decided to teach the donkey a lesson. The next day, he purposely loaded a cotton bag on the donkey.

The donkey had already noticed that the bag was lighter but still tried the same trick because he was very lazy.

But the dampened cotton became very heavy to carry and the donkey still had to carry it to the destination. The donkey realized his mistake and didn’t play the trick anymore after that day.

Moral of the story- Laziness should not become a way of life. Luck does not always favor.

These were some of the best short moral stories for children and adults alike. All these moral stories will teach your children various values like patience, perseverance, honesty, hard work, anger management, etc.

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