A Christmas Carol Story (Simplified and with Pictures)

A Christmas Carol: An engaging Retelling by the team at the Learner's Nook

“A Christmas Carol” was written by Charles Dickens in 1843. It is unique among Christmas stories as it is somewhat horror-tinged, involving ghosts or spirits. It has been remade many times as live-action movies and as animated classics. We have written our version for young readers who are still mastering English. We hope that you and your family find it to be entertaining and educational for your child.

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This is our second Christmas story for kids. Click here to read our story about Rudolph the Red-Nosed Reindeer.

If you are interested in the original “A Christmas Carol,” it can be found here on Project Gutenberg.

A Christmas Carol Story Summary

An old and greedy man named Ebeneezer Scrooge is confronted by three ghosts the night before Christmas. The first ghost, the Ghost of Christmas Past, is his old partner Jacob Marley. Jacob warns Scrooge of the dangers of his life and takes him back to see their childhood. While there, Scrooge realizes that he was once happy, and he wonders about what could have been if he had focused on love instead of money.

The second ghost, the Ghost of Christmas Present, takes him to the home of his employee, Bob Cratchit. While there, Scrooge sees what his penny-pinching ways have done to his employee’s life. He sees that Bob’s family is only barely getting by, and the strain is affecting Bob’s youngest child, Tiny Tim, who Scrooge worries won’t survive. Scrooge is then returned to his bedroom to await the final ghost.

Finally, the Ghost of Christmas Future brings Scrooge to his future grave where he can see that he dies alone, without anyone loving him or missing him. We also learn that Tiny Tim has passed away as well.

Scrooge wakes up the next morning realizing that he has to change his life so that he can avoid that terrible future. He begins by donating money to the needy on his street. The story ends with Scrooge giving Bob a raise and living the rest of his life by the principles taught to him by the three ghosts of Christmas.

How Is Our Story Different?

The original story by Charles Dickens is much longer than our version and it uses older English. We have simplified the story a lot and modernized the language as much as possible. As well, the original story deals with some very dark themes, like death. We have skirted around these themes to make this story more pleasant for younger readers.

We have also tried to simplify names. Ebeneezer Scrooge is just referred to as Mr. Scrooge. As well, Bob Cratchit is just called Bob.

We hope that young readers still learning to read English will be able to read and enjoy this story during the holiday season.

A Christmas Carol

Please note that we have hyperlinked complex words to the dictionary for your convenience. If you click on one of these words, you will be taken to a definition of what that word means in simple English. If you need a translation, here is a link to Google Translate.

A Christmas Carol

There was once a greedy man named Mr. Scrooge.
The only thing he loved was money.
He had no friends or family.

Mr. Scrooge and Bob

Mr. Scrooge owned a company with only one employee.
That employee’s name was Bob.
Mr. Scrooge was often mean to Bob.
But Bob was always hard-working and nice to Mr. Scrooge.

Mr.Scrooge sleeping on a pile of money.

The night before Christmas, Mr. Scrooge went home.
He spent all night counting his money.
Finally, he went to sleep.

The first ghost

A little later, Mr. Scrooge woke up.
He heard someone outside his door.
Opening the door, he saw a ghost!

The three ghosts of Christmas.

“Why are you here, ghost?” asked Mr. Scrooge.
“To tell you that you will be visited by three Christmas ghosts tonight,” said the first ghost.

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“But, why?” asked Mr. Scrooge.
“To show you the meaning of Christmas,” said the ghost.
“What does that mean,” asked Mr. Scrooge.
“You will see,” said the ghost.

Mr.Scrooge and the ghost in the restaurant.

The first ghost snapped its fingers.
Everything changed.
The ghost and Mr. Scrooge were now inside a restaurant.
But no one could see them!

Young Mr.Scrooge eating and having fun with his friend

Scrooge could see himself eating food and laughing.
They were in the past!
Mr. Scrooge saw how happy he used to be.
Mr. Scrooge wanted to be nice and happy again.

Mr. Scrooge understanding what the ghost was trying to tell him.

“Do you understand what we are showing you, Mr. Scrooge?” asked the ghost.
“Yes, I do,” replied Mr. Scrooge.
“Good, then I will leave you with the second ghost.”
The ghost disappeared, and Mr. Scrooge was back in his bedroom.

The second ghost of Christmas

Mr. Scrooge went back to sleep but was quickly woken up again.
In his bedroom was the second ghost.
The second ghost snapped its fingers, and Mr. Scrooge found himself in a house.

Bob's family

He didn’t recognize this house.
It looked very old and dirty.
But then, he saw his employee, Bob.

Bob's family is happy.

They were in Bob’s house!
Bob was with his family.
Mr. Scrooge looked around.
He realized that even though they were poor, everyone was very happy.

Mr. Scrooge understanding what the ghost was trying to tell him.

“Do you understand what we are showing you, Mr. Scrooge?” asked the second ghost.
“Yes, I do,” replied Mr. Scrooge.
“Good, then I will leave you with the third ghost.”
The second ghost disappeared, and Mr. Scrooge was back in his bedroom.

The third ghost of Christmas

Mr. Scrooge went back to sleep but was quickly woken up again.
In his bedroom was the third ghost.
The third ghost snapped its fingers, and Mr. Scrooge found himself beside a bed.

old man in bed

In the bed was an old man.
But he looked familiar.
It was him, Mr. Scrooge!

Old Mr. Scrooge all alone.

Mr. Scrooge looked around.
There was no one there.
It was just him all alone.

Mr. Scrooge understanding what the ghost was trying to tell him.

“Do you understand what we are showing you, Mr. Scrooge?” asked the third ghost.
“Yes, I do,” replied Mr. Scrooge.
“Good, then I will leave you.”
The third ghost disappeared, and Mr. Scrooge was back in his bedroom.
He quickly went to sleep.

Mr. Scrooge running out the door

Mr. Scrooge woke up the next morning.
It was Christmas!
Mr. Scrooge had to change his life!

Mr. Scrooge giving money to a poor boy

Mr. Scrooge ran out into the street.
He saw a poor boy, and he took out his wallet.
“Here, take some money, Merry Christmas,” said Mr. Scrooge.

Mr. Scrooge in his car grabbing food.

Mr. Scrooge then drove to Bob’s house.
On the way, he stopped by the store and bought a feast.

The End

At Bob’s house, everyone welcomed Mr. Scrooge.
They cooked the feast, and everyone was happy.
After that day, Mr. Scrooge never forgot that happiness was more important than money.

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Other Christmas Resources from The Learner’s Nook

We have been putting out lots of other great Christmas content like this. Here is a full list of all things Christmas here at the Learner’s Nook this year.

Christmas Vocabulary
Best Christmas Songs for English Learners
The Elves and the Shoemaker (Story)

A Christmas Carol is our second Christmas story (our first was Rudolph the Red-Nosed Reindeer). If you are looking to do more reading with your child, we also have a collection of fairy tales and fables written in simple English.

If you want to hear more about the articles and stories we are releasing here on the Learner’s Nook, sign up with your email address. We hope you have a happy holidays and good luck with your English-learning.

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