Activity Plan: Folktale Fun
See children's imaginations soar as they invent their own folktales!
- Grades: PreK–K
Ready-To-Use Teaching Idea: Literacy
- chart paper
- drawing paper
- markers and crayons
- folktale books, such as Why Mosquitoes Buzz in People's Ears retold by Verna Aardema or Tikki Tikki Tembo retold by Arlene Mosel
Objective: Children will discuss the concept of a folktale and create their own folktale to develop creative-thinking, language, and writing skills.
- Talk to children about folktales. Explain that a folktale is a story that often teaches an important lesson or explains how something came to be.
- Share folktale books with children. Ask them to identify the main characters, the main idea of the story, and to describe what they learned. Does the story remind them of another story they have heard or an experience that they may have had in their own life?
- Invite the class to create a folktale. Prepare a piece of chart paper to record different types of topics the children could write about. Share a few ideas with children, such as: Why Rabbits Have Big Ears, Where the Days Go, Why the Moon Comes Out at Night, Why Roosters Crow, or Where Rainbows Come From. Brainstorm other ideas to add to the list.
- As a group, create the story. Encourage everyone to participate. Record the folktale on chart paper.
- After the group has created the folktale, provide children with sheets of manila construction paper, crayons, and markers. Ask each child to draw a particular portion of the class folktale. Print the appropriate story dictations under the drawings. When they are finished, encourage the group to create a cover page for their folktale.
- Place the class folktale book in the classroom library so children can continue to reread it. Remember to share the book with family members who come by the classroom. Keep writing materials available and topics posted so children can continue to develop their folktale writing skills.
Curriculum Connection: DRAMATIC PLAY
Dramatize a Folktale: Ask children to work in small groups to retell or dramatize a folktale. Suggest that they choose a favorite folktale or the folktale that they have written. Encourage them to use props such as puppets, dolls, and dress-up clothes, or use art materials to create their own puppets, costumes, or props.
Soft Child: How Rattlesnake Got Its Fangs: A Native American Folktale by Joe Hayes
Such a Noise! A Jewish Folk-tale translated by Aliana Brodmann-Menkes
Why the Sky Is Far Away: A Nigerian Folktale told by Mary-Joan Gerson