March 3

ELA 20 The Original Fairytales – Not What You’re Expecting

While you likely grew up thinking of fairytales as stories with a happy ending after heroes and heroines manage through a complicated problem, the original fairytales were stories intended to scare children into submission and doing what they were told. They were dark, included elements really not appropriate for children, by today’s standards, and are surprisingly different in their messages.

One of your tasks in this section is to select one of the original fairytales. You’ll read it to understand what they used to be like and analyze them for patterns or common messages. Then you’ll consider the comparison – how are they a different type of story than fairytales of the present?

Don’t believe me? Check out the Dark Side of the Grimms Fairytales (article)

Sites to find your original fairytale from are provided below.
Note: Make sure you select one that’s long enough that you’ll be able to analyze it for meaning and content. Some of the shorter ones won’t include enough to really consider. Check with me on your story choice if you’re uncertain.

Page 3 Question 5 Support: Developing Your own Critical Thinking Questions
You are also asked to develop some thoughtful questions for discussion, after studying your original fairy tale text. You are well-practiced at answering questions posed to you, but not as practiced at developing thoughtful, higher-level thinking questions yourself. Here, you have an opportunity to practice that.

You want to try developing more-advanced types of questions that would require someone to understand the text and apply it to their experiences and knowledge, rather than asking them questions for answers that can be found directly in the text.

Lower level questions are easier to answer: for example, list the characters in your story. (Remembering)

Higher level questions require more thought to answer: for example, explain why a character acted the way they did. (Applying)

Pg 4 Group Comparative Discussion: What are the similarities, differences, and characteristics in general of fairytales?

Here is a discussion recording you could use: six students compared the original fairytales they studied. (2022)

Pg 6 Inquiry Searching: Articles that support/refute your initial personal conclusion. 

  • You’re asked to research a bit online to find articles that inform you better on whether fairytales are good or bad for kids today. To do that search, to find those types of articles, it’s just about how you word your Google Search Question. For example, see the search questions below.


Posted March 3, 2020 by Waldner in category ELA 20

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