Lesson: Demeter Persephone Part II

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Lesson Objective

Students analyze interactions between characters Students determine characters’ traits Students analyze the way in which this myth is related to the themes and issues of its historical period

Lesson Plan

 Lesson Name: Demeter and Persephone II            Course: High School Language Arts by Anke al-Bataineh

Students analyze interactions between characters

Students determine characters’ traits

Students analyze the way in which this myth is related to the themes and issues of its historical period

Essential Questions:            (write on board)
What is the myth of Demeter and Persephone about? What purpose does it serve?

How can we learn about the personalities of characters in a story?

What were the important beliefs and problems of the Ancient Greeks?

Demeter and Persephone: Spring Held Hostage

Compare/contrast Zeus, Hades

Compare/contrast mortal, immortal mothers
Compare/contrast underworld, hell

Question Packet

Anticipatory Set:         (5 min)
Ask students to recall some important events from the beginning of the myth. Ask students to recall the meaning of characterization and some examples.


Group Work:                  (50 min)

Allow students to finish reading the myth and answering the packet questions in their pairs from yesterday. When they are completely finished with the packet (possibly excepting the very last question), the pair should split up and each pair up with someone from another group. They should then compare answers, focusing on the correct use of the QAR structure. Students may edit the format of their answers IF they can explain why this is necessary (not just copying). A separate pen color will help you monitor this.


Discussion:                  (20 min)

Lead students in discussing the following questions:

1.     Which questions were the hardest to answer? Why?

2.    What did you learn from comparing your answers with another group?

3.     What was the theme or themes of this myth? Support with evidence.

4.    What were the symbols in this myth? Did you find more than were listed in the packet? Explain.

5.    What purpose(s) do you think this myth serves?

6.    What have we learned about the culture, beliefs and problems of the Ancient Greeks? How have we learned this?

 Project the Venn diagram of the underworld vs. hell and complete with the class.

Conclusion/Assessment:         (15 min)

If students need help understanding the final assignment in the packet, or help working on it, take that time now.


When this assignment is finished, discuss any assessments you will do outside of the culminating project. This may include tests and reading other myths in this series, either with question packets, with the assignment to students to develop questions using the QAR model, or simply with the Graphic Organizer for Myth. Develop study plans with students.




Vocab to Watch Out For:




Lesson Reflection:

What went well?

What would you change?

What needs explanation?

Students are easily able to answer the discussion questions.

The type of projects and assignments that come out of this depend on the academic and behavioral level of the students. There is a certain amount of maturity required for reading these myths, believe it or not.

Due to issues of maturity but also emotional triggers for my special population, I removed the reference in the comic book to incest, when it is said that Zeus has children by his sister. If you want to keep this, you may want to prepare a lesson on the role of incest with the gods and be clear about how you expect students to handle it.

Lesson Resources

C C Hades Zeus   Classwork
C C underworld  
C C mothers  


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