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City Mouse-Country Mouse

Engage creative thinking skills and spark the imagination with this idea for a classroom theater production!

Grade Level: 3-6

Materials: Printable Student Handout Script 

Story Preview: When Uptown Mouse visits his cousin in the country, he finds the rustic surroundings and simple ways unappealing. He invites his cousin to come with him to the city, promising that Country Mouse will never want to return. But the city has its unappealing aspects as well, and in the end, both mice find that home is truly where you make it.

Additional Resources

Author and illustrator Jan Brett has her own delightful rendition of the classic fable Town Mouse Country Mouse. Visit her Web site to find printable puppets and masks of the animal characters from her story.

Roles: Narrator, Uptown Mouse, Country Mouse, Woman, Man

Setting: present day, the country and the city

Theme: fables


  • uptown: fashionable or upscale
  • meager: too little or insufficient
  • weary: tired
  • filet mignon: thick slice of beef tenderloin
  • quaint: old-fashioned
  • dcor: furnishings, decorations
  • fare: food
  • posh: classy
  • bistro: caf, eating place
  • pastry: sweet baked goods
  • feline: cat
  • retire: leave
  • wily: cunning or sly

Props: No props are required, but a student may make the sound of a "threatening cat" if desired.

Follow-Up Questions:

  • In what ways is Country Mouse a "mouse of meager means"?
  • Who is Brigitte?
  • Why does Uptown Mouse invite his cousin to come with him to the city?
  • What does Uptown Mouse do when he encounters the cat in the bistro?
  • Why does Country Mouse leave the city so quickly?
  • What is meant by the moral "better beans and bacon in peace than cake and cheese in fear"?

Follow-Up Activity:
Share a few real estate ads from newspapers, flyers, or online research. Discuss how such advertisements highlight the benefits of living in different locations. Invite students to write and illustrate an ad for the home of one of the mice in the story. What are the plusses to living in the city or country? How might the negatives -- such as rustic surroundings or feline neighbors -- be turned into positives to create a more enticing listing?

Additional Notes:
Read four versions of the classic fable the Town Mouse and Country Mouse in this site by Professor D. L. Ashliman.

Article by Cara Bafile
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