An Introduction to Myths (Day 1)

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SWBAT determine the central message of myths and explain how it is conveyed through key details in the text.

Big Idea

Students learn how stories explained how the world worked before scientific explanations.

Modeling and Guided Practice

20 minutes

I told students we were going to learn about a new type of folk tale called myths. I directed their attention to a poster I’d created and posted in front of the room and explained the characteristics of myths. The poster would serve as a reference for students throughout the study. I emphasized the central message of myths is they explain a natural phenomenon, which are events that occur in nature. I gave examples, such as lightening, rain, etc.

I placed the myth, Zeus and Prometheus, on the document camera and read it aloud to students. I modeled the process of identifying the natural event it explained on a graphic organizer (GO), which I showed on the document camera also. I wrote the title of the myth at the top of the GO. Next, I wrote the natural event the myth explained, which was fire. Finally, I highlighted the sentence that explained how humans got fire and wrote it in the last box on the GO. I explained to students the importance of citing text evidence to explain the phenomenon.

I guided students through identifying the natural event in another myth. We also completed the graphic organizer and highlighted the key details that explained the event.

Independent Practice

15 minutes

For independent practice, students read a myth and identified the natural event by completing the graphic organizer and highlighting key details. I circulated around the room providing assistance as needed.


10 minutes

I assessed students via a checklist. I assessed whether or not they could identify the natural event and explain it through key details in the text. I was able to do a quick informal assessment by looking at their complete graphic organizers. I also checked to see if they had highlighted the evidence in the story. I did this to make sure students were referring explicitly to the text in crafting their responses.


5 minutes

We closed the lesson by reviewing the characteristics of myths. This was a new concept for students and I wanted to make sure the elements were firmly cemented for the following day’s lesson.