Once a Mouse, a Frog, and a Little Red hen,
Together kept a house,
The Frog was the laziest of frogs,
And lazier still was the Mouse.
The work all fell on the Little Red Hen,
Who had to get the wood,
And build the fires, and scrub, and cook,
And sometimes hunt the food.
One day , as she was scratching round,
She found a bag of rye:
She said, "Now who will make some bread?"
Said the lazy mouse, "Not I."
"Not I," croaked the Frog as he drowsed in the shade,
Red Hen made no reply,
But flew around with bowl and spoon,
And mixed and stirred the rye.
"Who'll make the fire to bake the bread?"
Said the Mouse again, "Not I."
And, scarcely op'ning his sleepy eyes,
Frog made the same reply.
The Little Red Hen said never a word,
But a roaring fire she made;
And while the bread was baking brown,
"Who'll set the table?" she said.
"Not I," said the sleepy Frog with a yawn;
"Nor I," said the Mouse again.
So the table she set and the bread put on,
"Who'll eat this bread?" said the Hen.
"I will!" cried the Frog. "And I!" squeaked the Mouse,
As they near the table drew;
"Oh, no, you won't!" said the Little Red Hen,
And away with the loaf she flew.
"The Mouse, the Frog and the Little Red Hen," a poem written anonymously and shared in a collection A Book of a Thousand Poems
with an introduction by J. M. MacBain (Peter Bedrick Books, 1983). The poem can also be found in Side by Side: Poems to Read Together
collected by Lee Bennett Hopkins, with illustrations by Hilary Knight (Simon & Schuster, 1988).
Little Red Hen Lesson Plan [PDF}