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This story is suitable for children age 6 to 8 approx.

Jack and the beanstalk.

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There was once upon a time a poor widow who had an only son named Jack, and a cow named Milky White. And all they had to live on was the milk the cow gave every morning, which they carried to the market and sold. But one morning Milky White gave no milk. "What shall we do, what shall we do?" said the widow, wringing her hands. "Cheer up, mother, I'll go and get work somewhere," said Jack. "We've tried that before, and nobody would take you," said his mother. "We must sell Milky White and with the money start a shop, or something." "All right, mother," says Jack. "It's market day today, and I'll soon sell Milky White, and then we'll see what we can do." So he took the cow, and off he started. He hadn't gone far when he met a funny looking old man, who said to him, "Good morning, Jack." "Good morning to you," said Jack, and wondered how he knew his name. "Well, Jack, and where are you off to?" said the man. "I'm going to market to sell our cow there." "Oh, you look the proper sort of chap to sell cows," said the man. "I wonder if you know how many beans make five."

"Two in each hand and one in your mouth," says Jack, as sharp as a needle. "Right you are," says the man, "and here they are, the very beans themselves," he went on, pulling out of his pocket a number of strange looking beans. "As you are so sharp," says he, "I don't mind doing a swap with you. Your cow for these beans." "Go along," says Jack. "You take me for a fool!" "Ah! You don't know what these beans are," said the man. "If you plant them overnight, by morning they grow right up to the sky." "Really?" said Jack. "You don't say." "Yes, that is so. And if it doesn't turn out to be true you can have your cow back." "Right," says Jack, and hands him over Milky White and pockets the beans. Back home goes Jack and says to his mother: "You'll never guess mother what I got for Milky White." And his mother became very excited: "Five pounds? Ten? Fifteen? No, it can't be twenty." "I told you you couldn't guess. What do you say to these beans? They're magical. Plant them overnight and"


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