Country Mouse and City Mouse | Nal'ibali
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Written stories

Country Mouse and City Mouse


Written by Jacqui L’Ange


Illustrated by Patrick Latimer

Listen to the story here

Country Mouse came to town to get a new pair of glasses. City Mouse met her at the station. “Welcome, cousin,” he said. “Nice to see you,” said Country Mouse, although she couldn’t see very much at all. She looked up, but the blue sky was hiding behind grey buildings. Country Mouse put on her glasses. “Where are all the trees?” she asked. “Who needs trees?” said City Mouse.

“Skyscrapers are so much taller!” Country Mouse coughed. “I want to go home.” “Nothing ever happens in the country,” City Mouse said. “Don’t you get bored?” Country Mouse laughed. “Come see for yourself!”

He heard a rustle and a buzz and a scrape-scrape-scrape. “Birds share berries with us,” said Country Mouse. “And bees share honey. Life is sweet!” A shiny round creature appeared, rolling a ball in behind him with his spiny legs.

“Dung Beetle keeps things clean.” “And what does Caracal do?” “He eats us,” said Country Mouse. “Run!” The first thing City Mouse noticed was the quiet.

Country Mouse lived at the base of a broad tree, under a wide blue sky. “Just listen,” she said.  That was enough for City Mouse. “I’d rather dodge the traffic than a scary wild cat!” Country Mouse stayed in her country home, where she enjoyed the peace and quiet. Once in a while, she ran an errand in the city. But when she went there, she made sure City Mouse was there to protect her.

City Mouse went back to his city apartment. When it got too noisy, even for him, he went to stay with his cousin for a holiday. It seems we love the places we know best. What do you love about where you live?


Nal’ibali fun

Ideas to talk about

Do you have cousins? Where do they live? Would you choose to live in the country or in a city? Why? How are the living conditions in villages and cities different?


Where do you live? Draw a picture of your home and the surrounding area.


Look closely at the picture of the countryside. Read the text on these pages again and then find each of the animals and objects in the picture. 


Is your home your favourite place? Or is it somewhere else? Write a list of the reasons you chose your favourite place.


Use a medium-sized cardboard box to make a home for a mouse. Use small boxes (like matchboxes), bottle tops and other recycled materials to make mouse-sized furniture for the house. You can decorate the furniture with fabric scraps or coloured paper. Finally, use playdough or clay to make some mice to live in the house.


Retell the story using your own characters in place of Country Mouse and Town Mouse.