From Cinderella to The Three Little Pigs, Sleeping Beauty to Rapunzel, fairy tales and nursery rhymes have been a beloved part of literature throughout history — just ask any kid from 3 to 93. While most of us know the stories by heart — from “once upon a time” to “happily ever after” — have you ever stopped to wonder what would happen if the literary world went wonky for a day and all the fairy tales got mixed up?

Imagine the misadventures that would have unfolded if the three little pigs went into the home construction business with the three blind mice. Instead of pushing a witch into the oven, what if Hansel and Gretel had pushed in Cinderella’s carriage pumpkin and pulled out a prize-winning pie? Would the Big Bad Wolf have been so bad if he turned out to be a vegetarian all along?

With just one little edit, suddenly a classic tale has the power to tell a very different story.

You don’t have to be Hans Christian Andersen, the renowned writer of fairy tales, to add a fresh burst of pixie dust to a favorite fable. The next time you and your child find yourselves stuck indoors on a rainy afternoon, choose a treasured tale, hop down the rabbit hole and let this imagination inspiration be your guide to rewriting.


50 Join the Discussion

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  1. Once upon a time, a girl named Little Red Riding Hood was going to her grandma’s house to give her cookies since grandma was sick. Little Red ran through the forest. BANG! She smacked right into a big goat. “Ow!” Little Red yelped. “Sorry, I saw nice, fresh grass over there.”
    “My grandma lives over there!”
    “I’ll take you to your grandma’s house.”
    So the two of them went to grandma’s house while crashing into wolves. The goat finally said his name “Billy, the big goat.” Everyone had a great time because apparently, grandma was having a party! The wolves stayed on the ground. Everyone lived happily ever after (not the wolves).

    • That is a WONDERfully different ending to the story of Little Red Riding Hood, Caden! We enjoyed reading it very much! Thank you for sharing your creative ending with everyone in Wonderopolis today! :-)

  2. The Three Little Pigs
    Caleb Anderson

    The three little pigs sat on a wall.
    The three little pigs meet a greatest wolf of all.
    The great wolf had a great sneeze.
    The three little pigs fell with the breeze.
    All the kings horses and all the kings men,
    Could not put the three little pigs back together again.

  3. Jack and Jill went up the hill and saw a big, long, green thing going up to the sky. So, they decided that they were going to climb the thing to try to get their pail of water. When Jack and Jill got to the top, they saw a big golden goose. The goose was hiding behind this giant broken crown. He whispered, “Get down!” Jack and Jill where scared. Then they heard “Fi, fo, fum, I smell a stinky one… or three!” Jack said, “Wait, is that my crown?” “I don’t know, is it?” said the goose obnoxiously. Just then, Jack stumbled over a water pail and it spilled all over him, and Jill came tumbling after.
    The End

  4. Rapunzel and Snow White
    Britta Kraakevik

    Once upon a time, Rapunzel sat in a tower waiting for someone to save her. One day, Snow White was looking for the seven dwarfs when she came upon a huge tower. “Oh, what is this?” She said surprised. Rapunzel yelled. “Hey, can you please hand me that key down there, I’m kinda stuck!” “Ahhhhhhhhhh!” Screamed Snow White. ” Help, Help!” Snow White yelled! Prince Charming came running in. “I heard a yelp, what’s wrong?” Rapunzel threw her hair to the ground. “Hello, this is my fairy tale so, um, GET OUT!” Rapunzel screamed! Rapunzel was left without a goodbye.

    • Thanks for this great new ending to the Rapunzel fairy tale, Britta! We really enjoyed reading it! We like how you showed that by being mean to Snow White and Prince Charming, Rapunzel was left without a goodbye! :-)

  5. The Three Little Pigs
    by Carson Kelly

    Once upon a time, the Big Bad Wolf was getting everyone in town to build his great wall. They were working so hard. When it was finished, the Big Bad Wolf was so high up he could touch the sun. The wolf smashed the sun and took a chunk off. All of the sudden, the wall started to break and the big bad wolf fell to the ground and shattered into pieces. He learned never to be greedy again.

    • Hello, Carson! We really liked your new ending to the Three Little Pigs! We’re glad the Big, Bad Wolf learned his lesson in the end! Thank you for sharing your fairy tale with us! :-)

  6. Rapunzel
    By Rachael Jewell

    Once upon a time there was a princess named Rapunzel. She was the meanest, most bossiest princess of all time. One day she met the wicked witch. She thought they were gonna team up to rule the world! Instead, Rapunzel ended up doing something mean Snow White. She wasn’t too happy about that. So she took a dragons wing and ate it. After eating she felt much better!

    • Thanks so much for visiting Wonderopolis and for sharing your fairy tale ending with everyone, Rachael! It was super creative! :-)

  7. Did you know that most original fairy tales were really gross and violent? For instance, after the maid took the princess’s place in THE GOOSE MAID, she was dragged through town in a nail-studded barrel until she was dead! Another example is when the queen in SNOW WHITE lost in the end, she was forced to dance in red-hot iron shoes until she dropped dead.

  8. Dear Wonderopolis,

    What if Alice in Wonderland got mixed up with tangled? I wonder what would happen? How long has Wonderopolis been going on?

    Your friend,

    • Great Questions, Kyle! We think you should write your own fairy tale! Be sure to share it with us, Wonder Friend! Did you know that we have a Wonder about Wonderland? Check this one out.

      Wonder #793: Where Is Wonderland?

      By the way… Wonderopolis is 3 1/2 years old! Do you know what our first Wonder was about?

      Keep WONDERing! :-)

  9. Dear Wonderopolis,

    If fairy tales were mixed up I would not like that. I like all fairy tales how they are. I don’t like them all different ways. How would you like them if they were different?

    Your friend Atiana

    • Hello, Atiana! Thank you for sharing your opinion about fairy tales with us today! We like all different kinds of stories in Wonderopolis! Yet, we especially love the stories with happy endings! Keep WONDERing with us, Wonder Friend! :-)

  10. Dear Wonderopolis,

    I do like fairy tales mixed up because if one fairy tale is not intersting but the other one is it would be funny with fairy tales mixed up.

    Your friend,


    • Hello Miguel! We agree with you, Wonder Friend! We can make our own stories very interesting! Thanks for WONDERing with us today, Wonder Friend! :-)

  11. Dear Wonderopolis,

    I would change beauty and the beast because if you were a beast would you marry a princess? If I was a beast I wouldn’t marry a princess.

    your friend,
    kyle m

  12. Dear Wonderopolis,

    Thank you for putting this article up. It is very interesting if the mixed up Hansel and Gretel with Cinderella that would sound weird, but if you really think about it and use your imagination it would be an interesting story, very. With the Characters mixed up it would be very funny and cool. What story would you mix up?

    Your Wonderopolis Friend,

    • That’s a great question, Gabrielle! We think that we would mix up Little Red Riding Hood with Jack and the Beanstalk! That sounds like it would be interesting. What do you think? Thanks for sharing with us today, Wonder Friend! :-)

  13. Dear Wonderopolis,

    I don’t think it would be ok to take two story’s together. I think the authors will be mad. So its not a good idea.

    your friend,

  14. Dear Wonderopolis,
    I really liked your small article and video.The two little kids were very cute.You have to admit it.All fairy tales do end with happily ever after.It would be cool if something bad happened at the end of one.Then it would be cool and different if that had happened.

    Your Friend,

    • Absolutely, Myla! We like the way you think! Although, it is nice to see something happy and good come out of something that could be sad. Thanks for WONDERing with us today! :-)

  15. I totally think the bad guys should not always be portrayed like that! I believe that everyone can be nice if they want to.

    • WONDERful, Addy! We like the way you think! That would be a great way to change a fairy tale ending! Thanks for sharing with us! :-)

    • Excellent, Josephine! We’re happy that you read the stories and learned how to write your own! Way to go, Wonder Friend! :-)

  16. Dear Wonderopolis,

    I would combine Tangled and Sleeping
    Beauty because it would have a funny
    ending. Maximus would kiss Rapunzel.
    Just kidding! I wanted to make you guys

    Your little friend,

    • WONDERful, Diana! We’re so glad that you enjoyed this Wonder! What would you change about the little mermaid? Keep WONDERing, Wonder Friend! :-)

  17. Dear Wonderopolis,

    I would combined Tangled and Cars. And, I would change the ending “Live happily ever after” to the end fellows.

  18. That was a really short paragraph. You should write more to it, guys. I’m only saying that because I love reading.

    • WONDERful, Ahtziri! We love that you love reading! We may update the Wonder for you, soon. Thanks for sharing with us today! :-)

    • Hey, MrsUttersClass! Fairy tales make WONDERful stories. What is your favorite? We encourage you to continue WONDERing about them at your library. Did you know it’s poetry month? Be sure to check out the WONDERS about poetry. We hope you are having a WONDERful week! :)

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Have you ever wondered…

  • What would make your favorite fairy tale even better?
  • What would happen if the Big Bad Wolf met the Seven Dwarfs?
  • What fairy tale would you write about your life?

Wonder Gallery

Try It Out

Today you are going to rewrite a piece of literary history, but before we give you your assignment, there’s someone you need to meet.

Perhaps you’ve heard of Zogmund. Perhaps not. In case you don’t know him, allow us to introduce you.

Zogmund is the editor of all fairy tales and nursery rhymes. He is rumored to live somewhere in Sweden, where he enjoys three things: fresh air, Swedish meatballs and his magical red editing pen. Zogmund’s exact location, however, is top secret, as he doesn’t want the paparazzi showing up at his door.

After years and years of drafts and revisions, Zogmund is finally taking a long overdue vacation. Tomorrow he’s headed to Tahiti for grass huts and coconuts, but there is one small problem.

Zogmund has recently received a request from the Guild of Booksellers (aka G.O.B.) asking him to put a new spin on the classic fairy tales. A request from the G.O.B. is an offer Zogmund simply could not refuse.

You have just been hired as the assistant editor while Zogmund is busy soaking up rays and catching waves at the beach. Your job is to reinvent a favorite fairytale, fable or nursery rhyme.

Mash up two classics and find out what happens when Little Red Riding Hood loses a shoe in the woods on the way to her grandmother’s house. Become the voice of the spider that sat beside Little Miss Muffet while she ate her curds and whey. Write a much-anticipated sequel to tell the story of Rapunzel’s first haircut.

If you have a budding artist in the family, you can even add illustrations! If theater is more your style, turn your tale into a fun family-night play.

Want to share your story? Send a copy to Wonderopolis! We’re big fans of a happily ever after. Special thanks go to our partner site ReadWriteThink for inspiring this Wonder of the Day!


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Wonder What’s Next?

You don’t have to star in a fairy tale to help others find their “happily ever after.” Tomorrow’s wonder will teach us a lesson that makes good cents. See you soon!

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