From Unit Plan: Myths, Folktales, and Fairy Tales

Books for Students

Favorite Greek Myths
by Mary Pope Osborne (Grades 1–5)

A handsome, distinctive volume of 12 ancient Greek stories made exciting and accessible for today's young readers.

Golden Tales: Myths, Legends, and Folktales From Latin America
by Lulu Delacre (Grades 1–3)

Welcome to the rich and colorful lands of Latin America, before and after the days of Columbus. Myths, legends, and folktales celebrate the thirteen Latin American countries, including the West Indies, Puerto Rico, and Mexico, as well as four native cultures. Each culture is represented in glorious artwork that makes this a treasury for all ages.

Greek Mythology Collection: 5 Books
(Grades 7–9)

  • The Adventures of Ulysses by Bernard Evslin
  • The Greek Gods by Ned Hoopes
  • Heroes and Monsters of Greek Myth by Bernard Evslin, Dorothy Evslin, and Ned Hoope
  • Top Ten Greek Legends by Terry Deary and Michael Tickner
  • The Trojan War by Bernard Evslin

Heroes and Monsters of Greek Myths
by Dorothy Evslin, Bernard Evslin, Ned Hoopes, and William Hunter (Grades 6–12)

A timeless collection of mythical adventures, including the exciting tales of Perseus, Theseus, Atlanta, and Pygmalion.

Tikki Tikki Tembo
written by Arlene Mosel, illustrated by Blair Lent (Grades PreK–1)

A Chinese folktale about a boy named Chang and his problems with a very long, rhyming name.

Principal's New Clothes
written by Stephanie Calmenson, illustrated by Denise Brunkus (Grades K–3)

In this updated version of the famous Hans Christian Andersen fairy tale, a school principal is tricked into wearing just his underwear to school. A twist on the traditional ending complements this modern-day story.

Multicultural Folk Tales Collection: 15 Books
(Grades K–3)

  • Anansi the Spider: A Tale From the Ashanti by Gerald McDermott
  • Borreguita and the Coyote written by Verna Aardema, illustrated by Petra Mathers
  • Bringing the Rain to Kapiti Plain written by Verna Aardema, illustrated by Beatriz Vidal
  • Flossie and the Fox written by Patricia McKissack, illustrated by Rachel Isadora
  • The Hunterman and the Crocodile by Baba Wagué Diakité
  • The Legend of the Indian Paintbrush by Tomie dePaola
  • Lon Po Po: A Red-Riding Hood Story From China by Ed Young
  • Ming Lo Moves the Mountain by Arnold Lobel
  • Mufaro's Beautiful Daughters by John Steptoe
  • Sam and the Tigers by Julius Lester and Jerry Pinkney
  • So Say the Little Monkeys written by Nancy Van Laan, illustrated by Yumi Heo
  • The Three Little Javelinas written by Susan Lowell, illustrated by Jim Harris
  • Tikki Tikki Tembo written by Arlene Mosel, illustrated by Blair Lent
  • Why Mosquitoes Buzz in People's Ears written by Verna Aardema, illustrated by Leo Dillon and Diane Dillon
  • The Woman Who Outshone the Sun written by Alejandro Cruz Martinez, illustrated by Fernando Olivera

Folk Tales Collection: 20 Books
(Grades K–3)

  • Anansi the Spider: A Tale From the Ashanti by Gerald McDermott
  • The Blind Men and the Elephant by Karen Backstein and Annie Mitra
  • Borreguita and the Coyote written by Verna Aardema, illustrated by Petra Mathers
  • Bringing the Rain to Kapiti Plain written by Verna Aardema, illustrated by Beatriz Vidal
  • City Mouse, Country Mouse by Violet Findley and Ann Iosa
  • Flossie and the Fox written by Patricia McKissack, illustrated by Rachel Isadora
  • The Frog Prince written by Edith H. Tarcov, illustrated by James Marshall
  • John Henry by Julius Lester and Jerry Pinkney
  • Johnny Appleseed written by Reeve Lindbergh, illustrated by Kathy Jakobsen
  • The Legend of the Bluebonnet by Tomie dePaola
  • The Legend of the Indian Paintbrush by Tomie dePaola
  • The Magic Fish written by Freya Littledale, illustrated by Winslow Pinney Pels
  • Ming Lo Moves the Mountain by Arnold Lobel
  • The Mitten by Jan Brett
  • Mufaro's Beautiful Daughters by John Steptoe
  • Paul Bunyan by Jane B. Mason
  • The Seven Chinese Brothers written by Margaret Mahy, illustrated by Jean Tseng
  • The Talking Eggs written by Robert D. Souci, illustrated by Jerry Pinkney
  • Tikki Tikki Tembo written by Arlene Mosel, illustrated by Blair Lent
  • Why Mosquitoes Buzz in People's Ears written by Verna Aardema, illustrated by Leo Dillon and Diane Dillon

Fairy Tales Collection: 10 Books
(Grades K–3)

  • The Bremen-town Musicians by written by Ruth Belov Gross, illustrated by Jack Kent
  • Cinderella Penguin by Janet Perlman
  • Emperor Penguin's New Clothes by Janet Perlman
  • The Gingerbread Man written by Jim Aylesworth, illustrated by Barbara McClintock
  • The Little Red Hen by Paul Galdone
  • Red Riding Hood by James Marshall
  • Rumpelstiltskin by Paul O. Zelinsky
  • Sleepless Beauty written by Frances Minters, illustrated by G. Brian Karas
  • The Three Billy-Goats Gruff by Ellen Appleby
  • The Three Little Pigs by James Marshall
  • The Friendship Tree

Professional Resources

Scholastic Book Guides: Favorite Greek Myths
from Scholastic Book Guides (Grades 6–9)

This guide includes:

  • Book summary and author information
  • Vocabulary builders
  • Discussion questions
  • Reproducible graphic organizers and writing activities
  • Effective management ideas for whole class, small group, and independent instruction

Teaching Genre: Myths and Legends: A Complete Unit That Helps Students Explore This Exciting Genre and Become Better Readers and Writers
Terry Cooper (Grades 4–8)

Encourage your students' love of reading and help them to gain a better understanding of myths and legends. Each genre unit comes with six copies of the student anthology, filled with several high-interest stories that increase in degree of difficulty, as well as a 48-page teaching guide — all contained in a reusable storage bag.

Folk Tale Plays From Around the World That Kids Will Love!: 8 Short Read-Aloud Plays With Engaging Activities That Build Reading Skills, Add Spark to Social Studies Lessons, and Explore Diverse Cultures
by Marci Appelbaum, Jeff Catanese (Grades 3–5)

High-interest plays that explore culture and get kids into the act of reading!

Easy-to-Read Folktale Plays to Teach Conflict Resolution: 10 Reproducible Plays From Around the World With Engaging Activities That Help Kids Build the Skills They Need to Prevent and Resolve Conflicts
by Kathleen M. Hollenbeck (Grades 2–3)

These short plays based on classic tales such as the Frog King, the Ugly Duckling, and the Lion and the Mouse emphasize ways of preventing and resolving conflicts.

Teaching Genre: Tall Tales: A Complete Unit That Helps Students Explore This Exciting Genre and Become Better Readers and Writers
by Terry Cooper (Grades 4–8)

Encourage your students' love of reading and help them to gain a better understanding of tall tales. Each unit comes with six copies of the student anthology, filled with several high-interest stories that increase in degree of difficulty, as well as a 48-page teaching guide.

Favorite Fairy Tales Video Collection
(Grades K–4)

This enchanting video adaptation of award-winning, outstanding children's literature will help to make books come alive for every child, no matter their learning style. This classroom collection includes:

  • Chicken Little
  • The Emperor's New Clothes
  • The Three Billy Goats Gruff

The collection is accompanied by a comprehensive activity guide with exciting ways to enhance early language and literacy skills.

Cinderella Outgrows the Glass Slipper and Other Zany Fractured Fairy Tale Plays: 5 Funny Plays With Related Writing Activities and Graphic Organizers That Motivate Kids to Explore Plot, Characters, and Setting
by J. M. Wolf (Grades 3–5)

What happens when Cinderella wears shoes she's made from recycled materials to the ball? Tap into students' sense of humor with five lively plays that take the plots, characters, and settings of traditional fairy tales and turn them on their heads!

12 Fabulously Funny Fairy Tale Plays: Humorous Takes on Favorite Tales That Boost Reading Skills, Build Fluency and Keep Your Class Chuckling With Lots of Read-Aloud Fun!
by Justin McCory Martin (Grades 2–4)

Students will have oodles of fun building essential reading skills with rib-tickling versions of beloved fairy tales turned into read-aloud plays! Even your most reluctant readers won't be able to resist these hilarious twists on their favorite tales.

Related Websites

The Æsop for Children
The Library of Congress provides more than 100 of Æsop's fables, some illustrated, for young readers.

The Chinese Fairy Book
The Public Domain Review: A Project of the Open Knowledge Foundation provides a free and complete online edition of The Chinese Fairy Book, edited by Dr. R. Wilhelm and originally published in 1921. The book includes 74 traditional Chinese folk tales.

Mythweb
Devoted to the heroes, gods and monsters of Greek mythology, this site has an encyclopedia of gods, illustrated stories of heroes, and connections with today's world.