Characteristics of children's stories and their elements

To distinguish children’s stories from literary stories made for adults, it is enough to recognize that while the literary story is limited to capturing the characters at a certain moment of their action, the children’s story offers the closed curve of a life, of an adventure or an action. In the children’s story, this action, life or adventure appears broken down into actions, behaviors or characters that are normally repeated three times, despite the limited length of the children’s story.

In addition to this difference, in terms of structure, there are other clear differences, such as that the themes of children’s stories are different from the themes of literary stories for adults, although the truth is that there need not be too many taboo themes in children’s stories.

The number three is a symbolic number in the children’s story. This triple repetition favors the retention and understanding of the argument , as well as other effects, such as enhancing observation and fostering the child’s critical spirit by offering similar behaviors with slight differences. Another possibility of triple repetition is the presentation of different behavior models, with which the child can successively identify in the search for the happy ending and the triumph, which normally corresponds to the third character or the third behavior.



There are differences between the fable and the story , the most important being the purpose of each of them and how it affects the child’s thinking. While the story makes the child himself feel identified with the protagonist of the story , the fable does not have that meaning, he can only try to understand the punishment or the problem that can lead him to perform certain actions that are summarized in the call moral. In addition, it does not allow the child to imagine other possible scenarios for the story, having a very specific meaning.

Another characteristic of the children’s story is the happy ending , which is so ingrained that just as there are generic formulas to introduce the stories ( once upon a time …), there are generic formulas to finish them (… and they were happy and ate partridges ), with the peculiarity of that these endings always imply the happy ending.

Some contemporary authors have allowed themselves to ignore the existence or importance of the happy ending and have met with the rejection of many children and adults; However, other authors believe that the happy ending contributes to creating an excessively idealized vision of reality in the child. And you do you think?

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