I love reading stories to my neice Minahil. She visits us nearly every weekend with her mother and wants me to tell him some new story eachtime. I love to see the way her eyes shine with fascination, curiosity and imagination that takes her to wonderful world of fairies, magicians, witches and brave heroes. To see her eyes shine like that I need to come up with something great each week. I am very good at narrating the story but only if I know the story. I can not make up stories quickly.
While surfing I found Rumi‘s blog where he mentioned HamAsar, a Denmark based Urdu literary journal. They have a very nice collection of Danish stories translated into Urdu, specially Hans Christian Andersen‘s children’s stories. However, their claim that these stories are translated for the first time in Urdu is not correct. These stories are available in Urdu at local bookshops published by various publishers.
While browsing HamAsar, I decided to look around for children’s folk tales from different countries. I found a few websites:
Web Japan, has a collection of Japenese folk legends with really cute illustrations. Read the stories from “once upon a time in Japan” that every Japanese kid grows up listening to. FOLK LEGENDS OF JAPAN takes you on a journey to a fairy-tale world of boy heroes, terrible ogres, animal antics, and more
Chinese Tea Stories. Chinese folktales, retold by Colette Chooey.
African Folktales. Three African stories retold by Timothy Bush, including ‘The Salt Trader’s Justice’, ‘Lions Wings and Lion’s Bones’ and ‘The Curious Monkey’.
Mayan Folktales, These ancient folktales were told to Fernando PeÃ±alosa by don Pedro Miguel Say, a famous Q’anjob’al storyteller from San Miguel AcÃ¡tan, Huehuetenango, Guatemala.
I also found some Pakistani folktales for children, but I suppose you have Google, don’t you?