Lesson: Greek Gods Survey
Objective: Students recognize 2-3 of the main Greek gods.
Students recognize the function gods played in cultural organization.
Essential Questions: (write on board)
Who were the gods in whom the Ancient Greeks believed?
How were the gods supposedly related to each other?
Why would the Ancient Greeks have such a system of gods?
Profile of a God(dess)
projection or poster of mind map (blank or mostly blank)
Anticipatory Set: (10 min)
Written prompt: In Greek myths, people said there was a goddess of marriage, a god of the sea, even a god of war. What reasons can you think of for people to believe in such a system of gods?
After 5 minutes of writing, call randomly for students to share their ideas.
Input: (30 min)
Tell students that Greek myths can be very confusing unless we understand some of the main characters. Today we will each do a small amount of research in order to make a mind map all together of the Greek system of gods. Each student will research one or more gods or goddesses and some facts about Ancient Greek life. Then, we will put the information we find together so that we have some background knowledge as we start reading Greek myths.
Students should log on to Winged Sandals.The gods listed should be divided up among students, though higher readers may be given more gods. For each god, they should complete the Profile of a God(dess).
Once they have completed this phase, they should click through to the Historical Information. They should note 10 separate facts they understood (!) from reading through the site.
Students who finish early might enjoy the thematic activities.
Guided Practice: (20 min)
Engage students in a discussion of what they learned about Ancient Greek society. This is an opportunity to model a mind map without explicitly instructing on its creation. You can draw a mind map of what they report as they discuss. Ideally, this would be preservable for later as a handout for all.
Ask students what they noticed about the mind map you made. (Do they know what it is called? etc.)
Project the mind map template for the gods. Call students as randomly as is feasible to report on the gods they researched. They should stand and guide the teacher or recorder (good role for a student who can’t listen) in mapping the details of the god(dess).
Independent Work: (15 min)
Students play Memory with player cards of Greek gods in pairs or groups of 4. They should reference the mind map each time they draw a god and name some traits of them.
If they finish in time, students might enjoy identifying with a particular god(dess) via this quiz.
Conclusion/Assessment: (5 min)
Students write in their Language Arts notebooks:
Each of the Greek gods had power over a particular area of life. People believed that if they gave offerings or prayers to a certain god, they could get favors in some area of life. If you could choose one god to ask for favors from, which one would it be? What would you ask for?
Starter Mind Map:
Vocab to Watch Out For:
|What went well?||What would you change?||What needs explanation?|
|Students laughed at the artwork but thought the animation was fun. They were interested in the whimsical aspect of the gods.||There are many other sites available, and some of them might be better for lower readers. The lowest readers got very little correct information from the historical passages.||There are flash movies of some myths on the site. The students were anxious to watch them, and some watched stories we were going to read. This ruins the unit for them to some degree. It would be better to prevent that.|