Character Education Assembly:
The Fisherman and His Wife
A fisherman and his wife, Isabel, live in a small hut by the sea. Each day Isabel tends the garden while her husband sets out to catch fish for their supper. They have everything they need and enjoy a simple, happy life. When a magical prince-turned-flounder turns up in his net one day, the kindly fisherman shows mercy and sets poor creature free. Isabel is not pleased. Realizing that a magical fish must be able to grant wishes, she insists that the fisherman march down to the sea and collect on the “favor” they are owed; after all, the fisherman spared the flounder’s life! Isabel wants to upgrade their hut to a nice, clean cottage, and the flounder obliges.
No sooner does Isabel get her way, however, than she starts to complain. The chickens and ducks are too loud, and the garden has too many weeds. Isabel is quickly consumed by greed. No longer happy with the cottage, she demands that the fisherman march down and ask for a castle. She then wishes her way through stints as queen, empress, and finally, ruler of the universe! The fisherman, wanting only for Isabel to be happy, spends all of his wishes on her whimsical desires. When the flounder finally asks him what he wants, the fisherman replies “…for Isabel to be happy with her life, no matter what it takes.” He returns home to find Isabel beaming at the door of their old humble hut. Both she and the fisherman learned that getting everything we want is not nearly as important as appreciating everything we have.