5 Moral Lessons to Learn From the Story 'Jack and the Beanstalk'

Updated on February 8, 2017

Some Truth From a Fairytale

As a child, one of my favorite stories was "Jack and The Beanstalk." I viewed poor Jack as a child who was trying to do what was best for his family. Now that I am I older, I have revisited the story and have found that there are some important life lessons.

1. When Your Mother Sends You to the Market, Do What She Tells You

Jack had a simple task to do: take his cow to the market and sell it to get some money to buy his family food. But, he got taken in by a swift talking bean salesman. Moral of the story: Listen to your mother when she tells you to do something.

Of course, the story kind of works out for Jack. The beans get thrown out the window, and during the night while they slept, a great beanstalk rises up into the sky. In the morning, Jack wakes up and climbs the beanstalk. This brings me to my next life lesson.

2. Do Not Let Your Eyes Become Bigger Than Your Wallet

Jack lays his eyes on the giant's possessions (the harp, the gold coins, and the hen that lays the golden eggs) and he desires them. This simple act leads Jack down the wrong path.

3. What's Yours Is Yours, What's Theirs You Do Not Touch Without Permission

When all is said and done, Jack stole the harp, the gold coins, and the golden hen — items that did not belong to him. He then climbed down the bean stalk, chopped it down, and then let the giant fall to his doom. Of course, Jack and his mom lived happily ever after. But can we truthfully say that the giant got what he deserved? He was going to eat poor Jack, but wasn't the giant just protecting his possessions? This leads into next moral lesson.

4. If You Know It's Wrong Then It's Wrong — No Matter How Much You Justify What You're Doing

Jack saw a way to end his family's plight, but it was not the most honorable one. He could have held his head up high, admitted his mistake, and then sought out work to help support his mother and himself.

5. Last Life Lesson

In all fairness, there is a new politically correct version of "Jack and Beanstalk." In this story, Jack realizes how he has wronged the giant and seeks to right that wrong. He works out a deal with the giant in which he has visitation rights with the harp. In return, the giant gives Jack gold coins in order to help Jack and his mother survive. The new version of "Jack and the Beanstalk" leads me to my last life lesson: When everyone works together, more is accomplished.

Questions & Answers


      0 of 8192 characters used
      Post Comment
      • profile image


        7 months ago

        this is a nice story.

      • profile image


        9 months ago

        Only reading this to my 4 year old did I see this is a truly terrible story for all the reasons you stated. The new pc version sounds equally awful... So the lesson being is that if you steal what is not yours you can make good by sharing what you stole with the rightful owner!

      • profile image


        11 months ago

        I disagree with this assessment of the story "Jack and the Beanstalk." Jack didn't listen to his mother, he stole, and he killed, and in the end, he and his mother lived happily ever after, by selling the golden eggs from the stolen swan.

        There were injustices between the wealthy and the poor, and it was not uncommon back then to have a giant (fat) wealthy person eating more than his fair share, while the poor starved themselves to death. This tale is similar to Robin Hood, that he stole from the rich and gave to the poor. The rich in those tales were greedy and selfish, hoarding gold, living in their tall castles, gorging themselves on food, while the rest of the people starved to death.

        Jack wouldn't have gone back to the giant to negotiate, because if he did, he would be punished by having his head chopped off for stealing. And besides that, Jack doesn't have anything to negotiate with the giant, because he's poor. What could he offer? And who would negotiate with a criminal?

      • profile image


        12 months ago


      • profile image


        17 months ago

        Just got a copy of Jack and the Beanstalk and read it to my grandkids. It made perfect sense to me as a kid, but now through my adult understanding, just seems wrong of Jack! Looked it up to see if I was missing some great moral, and found your article and comments very helpful.

      • profile image


        19 months ago

        I just wanted to say that it was great

      • profile image


        22 months ago

        What is moral of the story pls tell me

      • profile image


        2 years ago

        What about: If you are going to steal, you must be prepared to kill.

      • profile image

        Belinda Roccaforte 

        5 years ago

        Researching various fairytales for their allegorical value as morality tales. Ancient fairy tales are being re-written because at face value we see the lessons as outdated and actually "bad." If one takes the time, however, to look deeper the original moral was the best. Instead of reinterpreting Jack and the Beanstalk and determine Jack was a thief and the giant was good the original moral had to do with the giant being a hoarder of wealth and someone who has isolated himself from humanity in his greed. Jack personifies the whim of fate that destroys the giant and takes his hoard. Not dissimilar to the parable Jesus told of the rich man who stored up all of his wealth and then "that night he died." Thanks G. K. Chesterton. I love fairytales. --the Ethics of Elfland

      • profile image


        5 years ago

        iM sO veRy eNjOy tHe sToRy ..

      • rasta1 profile image

        Marvin Parke 

        6 years ago from Jamaica

        Great decoding. I also see Jack as the bad guy and the story is about how wealth is truly acquired.

      • whittwrites profile imageAUTHOR

        T.B Whitt 

        7 years ago from the Philly area

        I have always loved fairy tales. I look for the lessons in them we should have learned. Thanks all for your comments

      • girishpuri profile image

        Girish puri 

        7 years ago from NCR , INDIA

        Certain things which we ignore during our childhood, we understand after wards, your hub is an excellent example of lesson learnt after wards, great share, voted up.

      • whittwrites profile imageAUTHOR

        T.B Whitt 

        7 years ago from the Philly area

        Thanks for you wonderful comment. I look at each story and look for deeper meaning.

      • Reynold Jay profile image

        Reynold Jay 

        7 years ago from Saginaw, Michigan

        Hey--I learned sopmething from this--and I never thought much about Jack and the BEanstalk in wuite this way! Welcome to Hubs! I enjoyed this very much. You have this laid out beautifully and it is easy to understand. Keep up the great HUBS. I gotta give this an Up ONE AND BEAUTIFUL. I' can't help myself as I simply must be your biggest fan!


      This website uses cookies

      As a user in the EEA, your approval is needed on a few things. To provide a better website experience, letterpile.com uses cookies (and other similar technologies) and may collect, process, and share personal data. Please choose which areas of our service you consent to our doing so.

      For more information on managing or withdrawing consents and how we handle data, visit our Privacy Policy at: https://letterpile.com/privacy-policy#gdpr

      Show Details
      HubPages Device IDThis is used to identify particular browsers or devices when the access the service, and is used for security reasons.
      LoginThis is necessary to sign in to the HubPages Service.
      Google RecaptchaThis is used to prevent bots and spam. (Privacy Policy)
      AkismetThis is used to detect comment spam. (Privacy Policy)
      HubPages Google AnalyticsThis is used to provide data on traffic to our website, all personally identifyable data is anonymized. (Privacy Policy)
      HubPages Traffic PixelThis is used to collect data on traffic to articles and other pages on our site. Unless you are signed in to a HubPages account, all personally identifiable information is anonymized.
      Amazon Web ServicesThis is a cloud services platform that we used to host our service. (Privacy Policy)
      CloudflareThis is a cloud CDN service that we use to efficiently deliver files required for our service to operate such as javascript, cascading style sheets, images, and videos. (Privacy Policy)
      Google Hosted LibrariesJavascript software libraries such as jQuery are loaded at endpoints on the googleapis.com or gstatic.com domains, for performance and efficiency reasons. (Privacy Policy)
      Google Custom SearchThis is feature allows you to search the site. (Privacy Policy)
      Google MapsSome articles have Google Maps embedded in them. (Privacy Policy)
      Google ChartsThis is used to display charts and graphs on articles and the author center. (Privacy Policy)
      Google AdSense Host APIThis service allows you to sign up for or associate a Google AdSense account with HubPages, so that you can earn money from ads on your articles. No data is shared unless you engage with this feature. (Privacy Policy)
      Google YouTubeSome articles have YouTube videos embedded in them. (Privacy Policy)
      VimeoSome articles have Vimeo videos embedded in them. (Privacy Policy)
      PaypalThis is used for a registered author who enrolls in the HubPages Earnings program and requests to be paid via PayPal. No data is shared with Paypal unless you engage with this feature. (Privacy Policy)
      Facebook LoginYou can use this to streamline signing up for, or signing in to your Hubpages account. No data is shared with Facebook unless you engage with this feature. (Privacy Policy)
      MavenThis supports the Maven widget and search functionality. (Privacy Policy)
      Google AdSenseThis is an ad network. (Privacy Policy)
      Google DoubleClickGoogle provides ad serving technology and runs an ad network. (Privacy Policy)
      Index ExchangeThis is an ad network. (Privacy Policy)
      SovrnThis is an ad network. (Privacy Policy)
      Facebook AdsThis is an ad network. (Privacy Policy)
      Amazon Unified Ad MarketplaceThis is an ad network. (Privacy Policy)
      AppNexusThis is an ad network. (Privacy Policy)
      OpenxThis is an ad network. (Privacy Policy)
      Rubicon ProjectThis is an ad network. (Privacy Policy)
      TripleLiftThis is an ad network. (Privacy Policy)
      Say MediaWe partner with Say Media to deliver ad campaigns on our sites. (Privacy Policy)
      Remarketing PixelsWe may use remarketing pixels from advertising networks such as Google AdWords, Bing Ads, and Facebook in order to advertise the HubPages Service to people that have visited our sites.
      Conversion Tracking PixelsWe may use conversion tracking pixels from advertising networks such as Google AdWords, Bing Ads, and Facebook in order to identify when an advertisement has successfully resulted in the desired action, such as signing up for the HubPages Service or publishing an article on the HubPages Service.
      Author Google AnalyticsThis is used to provide traffic data and reports to the authors of articles on the HubPages Service. (Privacy Policy)
      ComscoreComScore is a media measurement and analytics company providing marketing data and analytics to enterprises, media and advertising agencies, and publishers. Non-consent will result in ComScore only processing obfuscated personal data. (Privacy Policy)
      Amazon Tracking PixelSome articles display amazon products as part of the Amazon Affiliate program, this pixel provides traffic statistics for those products (Privacy Policy)
      ClickscoThis is a data management platform studying reader behavior (Privacy Policy)