Apple Orchard

The Little Red House With No Doors and No Windows and a Star Inside

Grade Levels: Pre-K - 3

Posted: September 11, 2020 | Updated: September 11, 2020
Created by: Schoolhouse by the Sea


This story is wonderful to share with youngsters in the Fall. It's been adapted by Ms. Sylvia from Carolyn Sherwin Bailey’s “The Round, Red House”.

Have an apple and a knife on-hand to cut crosswise when the mother does so in the story. You just might find a special surprise.

Printable Story (PDF)

The Story

Once upon a time, not so long ago, there was a little boy who was tired of all his toys. He was tired of all his play. He was just tired of everything. Nothing interested him. Have you ever felt that way?

He went to his mother, who always knew how to make things better. He sighed and asked her, “What should I do?”

As usual, his mother had the answer. “You should set off on a journey. Go find the little red house with no doors and no windows and a star inside.”

A little red house? With no doors at all? Without even a window? And who had ever heard of a star inside a house? Usually his mother had good ideas, but he thought that this one was very strange.

“Are you sure a house like that exists? I don’t know where to find one,” he said.

“Go down the road, past the farmer’s house and over the hill,” said his mother, “and then hurry back as soon as you can and tell me all about your adventures.”

Still unsure, the little boy put on his cap and his jacket and started out. He had not gone very far down the road when he saw a little girl singing and dancing in the sunshine. Her eyes sparkled with happiness and she was singing like a robin.

“Excuse me. Do you know where I can find a little red house with no doors and no windows and a star inside?” asked the little boy.

The girl laughed, “Ask my daddy, the farmer,” she said. “Perhaps he knows!”

So the little boy went on until he came to the great brown barn where the farmer kept barrels of fat potatoes and baskets of yellow squashes and golden pumpkins. The farmer himself stood in the doorway looking out over the green pastures and yellow grain fields.

“Excuse me, sir. Do you know where I can find a little red house with no doors and no windows and a star inside?” asked the little boy of the farmer.

The farmer laughed too. “I lived a great many years and I never saw one,” he chuckled, ”but ask Granny, who lives at the foot of the hill. She knows how to make molasses, taffy, popcorn balls, and red mittens! Perhaps she can show you the way.”

So the little boy kept walking until he came to the Granny, sitting in her pretty garden of herbs and marigolds. She was wrinkled as a walnut and as smiling as the sunshine. “Excuse me, dear Granny,” said the little boy. “Can you please tell me where I’d find a little red house with no doors and no windows and a star inside?”

Granny was knitting a red mitten, and when she heard the little boy’s question, she laughed so joyfully that the wool ball rolled off her lap and down the little pebbly path.

“I would like to find that little house myself,” she chuckled. “I would be warm when the frosty night comes and the starlight would be much prettier than a candle. Ask the wind who blows about so much and listens at all the chimneys. Perhaps the wind can show you the way.”

It had already been a strange day, but this seemed to be the strangest idea of all! Still, the little boy thanked the Granny politely, then went on up the hill rather sorrowfully. He wondered if his mother, who usually knew almost everything, had made a mistake.

The wind was coming down the hill as the little boy climbed up. As they met, the wind turned about and went along, singing beside the little boy. It whistled in his ear, then pushed him and dropped a pretty orange leaf into his hand. “I wonder,” thought the little boy, after they had gone along together for a while, “if the wind could help me find a little red house with no doors and no windows and a star inside.”

The wind cannot speak in our words, but it went singing ahead of the little boy until it came to an orchard. There it climbed up in the apple tree and shook the branches. When the little boy caught up, he stood below the tree. He hears a plop, followed by a soft little thud. There at his feet lay a great, rosy apple.

The little boy bent down and picked up the apple. It was as much as his two hands could hold. It was red as the sun had been able to paint it, and the thick brown stem stood up as straight as a chimney, and it had no doors and no windows. Was there a star inside?

The little boy called to the wind, “Thank you,” and, to his surprise, heard the wind whistle back, “You’re welcome.”

Rushing as fast as his legs could carry him and holding the apple safe in his hands, the boy and his apple raced back over the hill, past the farm, and down the road. Panting hard, he gave the apple to his mother.

She smiled, then took a knife and cut the apple crosswise through the center. Oh, how wonderful! Can you believe it? There, inside that juicy, round, red apple, lay a star, holding beautiful brown seeds.

“The round red house, with no windows or doors and a star inside. This is amazing! Is there a star in every apple?” the little boy said to his mother. “We’ll have to see,” answered his mother.

And they did.

Printable Story (PDF)