Mythology, Folklore, and the Hero's Journey

| Arthurian Legend | | Beowulf | | Classical Mythology | | Creation Stories | | Fairy Tales and Folktales | | The Archetypal Hero's Journey | | Homer, The Iliad and The Odyssey |

Teacher Guide to Mythology
How might students use storyboards to demonstrate and to extend their learning? Check the resources here. Includes character maps, essential questions, plot diagram, key symbols, themes, and motifs, a depiction of the hero's journey archetype as it related to Perseus, and more. Note: Storyboard That helps sponsor this site.

Aesop's Fables
Lesson plans and other teaching resources for the fables.

The Aeneid
Lesson plans and teaching resources for Virgil's epic poem.

American Folklore
Folksy retellings of a variety of tales: Native American myths and legends, weather folklore, ghost stories, and tall tales of Paul Bunyan, Pecos Bill, and others.

Arthurian Legend Teaching Resources
Lesson plans and classroom activities for teaching about King Arthur.

Beatrix Potter's Naughty Animal Tales
By studying Beatrix Potter's childhood and her artwork, students gain insight into the unusual, solitary world of Victorian childhood and can compare/contrast it with their own world to understand why Potter wrote such simple stories and why she wrote about animals rather than people. This site includes lots of support links and includes art activities.

Beowulf Teaching Resources
Lesson plans and classroom activities for teaching Beowulf .

Born on a Mountaintop? Davy Crockett, Tall Tales, and History
Students investigate tall tales prior to writing one. This lesson is designed for grades 3-5.

Classical Mythology Teaching Resources
Lesson plans and classroom activities for teaching about Greek and Roman mythology.

Common Visions, Common Voices
These lessons use art and trickster stories to help students understand that people in various cultures are more alike than different.

Coyote and Anansi
As a result of this activity, students in grades 3-5 will produce a folktale that mimics or is inspired by the themes, characters and messages of folktales previously heard and discussed, and will generate and discuss ideas about how to function in their own and other people's cultures.

Creation Stories
Collections of creation stories from a variety of cultures.

Description of a Familiar Object using Mythology
Students describe the throne they would have if they were a deity.

Dramatizing Folktales, Legends, and Myths
Elementary students work together to research, select, and dramatize a Native American myth or legend.

East vs. West — the Myths that Mystify
This TED talk by Devdutt Pattanaik compares and contrasts views of the western world and India. Recommended for high school and above, runs 18:26.

Encyclopedia Mythica
Brief articles about figures from many mythologies. Don't miss the image gallery and the genealogy tables.

Eros and Psyche, Part I and Eros and Psyche, Part II
A Reader's Theater script of the story, written by a teacher for classroom use. Requires Adobe Reader for access.

Fables and Stories
This read-aloud anthology is designed for first grade. It includes texts, vocabulary, and literacy activities for "The Boy Who Cried Wolf," "The Maid and the Milk Pail," "The Goose and the Golden Eggs," "The Dog in the Manger," "The Wolf in Sheep's Clothing," "The Fox and the Grapes," "The Little Half-Chick (Medio Pollito)," "The Crowded, Noisy House," "The Tale of Peter Rabbit," and "All Tales are Anansi's." Adobe Reader required. 178 pages.

Fairy Tales & Folktales
Lesson plans and classroom activities for teaching fairy tales and folktales, including Cinderella and Little Red Riding Hood. Some sites include variations of the tale from around the world.

Folklore and Mythology
A remarkable collection of links to stories from around the world.

Lesson plans and teaching ideas for the epic.

A Graphic Scene
Students use graphic organizers to compare and contrast Hercules and Perseus. This lesson includes printable graphic organizers and links to stories. It is designed for middle schoolers.

Helpful Animals and Compassionate Humans in Folklore
Through examining several examples of helpful animal tales from around the world, students will learn about humans living in cooperation with the land and sea and with the beasts that inhabit them.

Hercules the hero: understanding the myth
Background information, summary of the 12 Labors, pronunciation guide, and lesson plans, including critical consideration of the Disney video.

Homer's Iliad and Odyssey
Lesson plans, background information, and classroom activities.

Inspired by Muses, Graces and Fates
In this lesson, students identify the character traits of each Muse, Grace, or Fate. They study some writings of ancient Greek literature. They discover how artists throughout the ages have used the Muses in literature, music, dance, theatre, and the visual arts. Students then create a line or two of literature, as well as dance, music, and choral speaking performance based on a specific Muse, Grace, or Fate. Designed for grades 5-8.

It's Only an Allusion
This printable handout is designed for the conclusion of a unit on mythology. It begins by explaining allusions and extends the study by incorporating poetry, fine art, and the modern business world. Access requires Adobe Reader or compatible application.

Jason and the Golden Fleece
Students work in small groups to compare the ancient story with modern ones.

The Journey of the Hero
Lesson plans and teaching resources for the archetype of the hero's journey or quest, sometimes called the monomyth.

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