The Moral of The Ugly Duckling – Lessons For Kids!

Moral of the ugly duckling

The Ugly Duckling is a fairytale written by the much-loved and famous Danish author and poet Hans Christian Andersen. Since its publication in the early 1840s, the story has been a family favorite and has been adapted into several musicals, dramas, and films. The story is about a duckling who looks a little different than the others and is criticized for its looks repeatedly (and what happens after that: Plot Twist).

The Summary of The Ugly Duckling

The ugly duckling is very dissimilar from his siblings from the day he was born. He hatched the last and looked completely different from his family. Then, his siblings began to make fun of him, called him names, and discriminated against him because of his appearance.

The young duckling has had enough! He leaves one night for a place where he will be accepted. On his journey, he was lucky to find a friend caterpillar who could relate to the duckling’s sufferings and knew that looks don’t define one’s true worth.

They built a beautiful friendship, trusted each other, and hoped that tomorrow would be better. To their surprise, one night, they both turned into their best versions of themselves and created their own path despite the trauma they had been through in the past.

9 Lessons to Learn from The Story Ugly Duckling

I am sure we have heard the ugly duckling story many times, but did we think of the lessons hidden in the story?

This timeless story focuses on a range of issues that are even as relevant today as they were back when the story was published. There are many valuable lessons that children can take away from the story of an ugly duckling.

1.     Some of us are late bloomers

The story helps us to understand that not everybody develops or grows on the same graph. As the ugly duckling was the last to hatch, it didn’t mean something was wrong with him. It simply meant that he grew at a different rate than others, and that’s completely acceptable and normal. 

2.     Words are powerful

Words have tremendous power, and this story demonstrates that perfectly. The disheartening things said to the ugly duckling and how his self-esteem shattered after hearing those hateful comments show the negative impact words can have. But, on the other hand, the empowering and trusting words of his mother and friend, Catty the caterpillar, prove the greatness and power of kind words.

3.     Get away from the negativity

Due to awful bullying by fellow ducklings, the ugly duckling ran away at night after giving a kiss to his mom. He couldn’t bear the constant negative comments and mistreatment by his own family. Now, running away from challenging situations is not ideal, but if something becomes toxic and affects your self-esteem, it is better to take a step back and find your own path.

4.     Be compassionate toward others

It doesn’t take much to be empathetic toward others, like how the caterpillar showed compassion to the ugly duckling when he saw him all down and demotivated. By being kind with his words, the caterpillar made the duckling feel better and gain a little confidence. Furthermore, it sprouted a healthy friendship and companionship that enabled them to become better together.

5.     Learn to love yourself

We saw that the duckling lost confidence in himself as he walked along the river, wondering why he was so different. He thought of himself as ugly and didn’t understand why his mother thought otherwise. But, to find true happiness and embrace the changes, he needed to love himself and stop depending on others for validation.

6.     Make friends wisely

Friends and surroundings play an essential part in our self-perception. The ugly duckling felt bad among other ducklings who were disrespectful towards him. But he was happier with the caterpillar who supported him and helped him find his spirit again. Therefore, having friends that build us up are far more essential than others.

7.     Everybody is different

One exciting scene in the ugly duckling shows that the duckling keeps comparing himself to other ducklings and questions why he looks so different from his siblings. However, he soon understood that the things that made him different were also what made him great and unique. Similarly, everybody is different, and that is what makes them “them.”

8.     Understand your worth

There were several great things about the ugly duckling, but he based his identity on the one thing everybody thought was negative about him. So, although it took him a little while to figure out his true worth, the duckling grew to be neither ordinary, rejected, nor ugly.

9.     Have hope

This story teaches us to have hope and that everything will get better eventually. The final scene depicts the duckling’s true self and the happiness he experiences with a good friend beside him. The ugly duckling became a beautiful swan, and the caterpillar evolved into an elegant butterfly. Hence, we learned that all you need is to believe in yourself, never give up, and hope for the best.

What does the Ugly Duckling by Family Roberto promote?

Family Roberto brings traditional fairy tales with a modern twist for our new-age audience. We aim to promote a wholesome family time while highlighting some of the vital virtues and values for kids.

Likewise, The Ugly Duckling teaches acceptance of others, believing in yourself, the importance of healthy relationships, and clinging to hope for a better future.

With great graphics and storytelling, you and the kids will enjoy the story and share a valuable experience.

Take Away

The Ugly Duckling is a thought-provoking tale that is a great conversation starter about discrimination, bullying, friendship, respect, and tolerance with your little ones. The idea remains that we should never give up on ourselves and follow our path to discover our true selves. With the right mindset and friends by your side, you will be able to find your place too, just like the duckling.

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