Dance, Music, Visual Arts, English as a Second Language, English Language Arts, Reading Literature, Mathematics, Social Studies
Material Type:
Formative Assessment, Lesson, Module, Presentation, Reading, Unit of Study
Lower Primary
  • Folktale
  • GEDB
  • Global Cultures
  • Global Education
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    Education Standards

    GEDB Folktales from Around the World: Culture Projects (Lesson 4 of 4)

    GEDB Folktales from Around the World: Culture Projects (Lesson 4 of 4)


    Students will collaborate together to choose, design, plan, and implement groups roles to determine what materials are needed to complete the project.  The teacher observe as student groups complete projects during the school day to ensure participation is achieved in an equitable manner. Students will select and research a specific folktale from the unit  Upon completing the group project, students may research a folktale independently provided the group agrees and their project goals are met.

    This lesson was developed by Lisa Bruet to fulfill requirements of the North Carolina Global Educator Digital Badge program. This lesson plan has been vetted at the local and state level for standards alignment, Global Education focus, and content accuracy.            





    Similarities and Differences in Folktales Around the World


    Students will collaborate with a group of students and select a Culture Project to complete together in school.  The group will choose, design and plan and implement what the groups roles will be and what materials are needed to complete the project.  The teacher should allow the students to work on projects in school so that equal participation is taking place and can be observed. The students may select the countries in the folktale unit to research or one of their own as long as the project goals are met and agreed upon by all members in the group.



    Student Engagement/Motivation

    Focus Response Question:   

    Why are folktales important for us to learn?  What is your favorite folktale and why?  Does your folktale have suspense, drama or romance?  

    Which has been your favorite folktale thus far?  

    Are there any other countries that you would like to learn more about after studying folktales?  

    How can you become more globally aware of people and different cultures?

    The teacher should use chart paper to document the student's responses to each question. 


    Learning Targets and Criteria for Success

    Essential Questions:

    EQ SS:  How can we show respect for other cultures?

    EQ SS:  How do cultures differ in terms of food, language, and arts through stories? 

    Learning Targets:

    I can make connections across the globe by researching and creating a culture project with my peers. 

    I can explain how to show respect through various stories from different cultures.

    I can demonstrate how to create and play instruments and games from various cultures. 

    Criteria for Success: 

    I will make connections across the globe by creating and researching a culture project with my peers. 

    I will respect cultures and different countries values through stories that I have read. 

    I will demonstrate how to create and play instruments and games from various cultures. 



    Materials for Culture Projects:

    Coffee cans (variety of sizes)

    Paper towel cardboard rolls

    Rubber Bands

    Beans (variety)

    Rolls of Wax Paper

    Toilet paper cardboard rolls

    Buttons (variety of size, color and shape)

    String or Yarn (variety of colors)


    popsicle sticks

    Colored Pencils

    Bottles of glue/Glue sticks

    Paper plates

    Tissue paper

    Variety of Colored Paint

    Styrofoam Balls (variety size)

    Gold Wrapping Paper

    Play Money


    Learning Tasks and Practice

    Integrated into Social Studies:

    The teacher will inform the students that they have been hired to become a group of researchers for their school. The teacher probs the following question:   What is a researcher?   Have students "turn and talk" to a neighbor on what they think a researcher does for a living?  After two or three minutes, have the students come back together and discuss their responses.  A researcher is a person who carries out academic or scientific research.

    The student's goal will be to find out information about the different countries customs, traditions, geography that make up this folktale unit The students will select one country to research and then choose a set of questions to answer.  The students will present the answers in a form of a group written/oral report. The students should be given at least two days to research with the third day for presentations. The students will work on the research project during literacy or social studies scheduled block time. Since the global lesson plans are four days the students will present on the fifth day.

    The teacher will place students into small groups of three to four students depending on the class size.  The students in the groups will be assigned Leader Roles each day so everyone will get the experience at different jobs.  The jobs are: Culture Motivator, Culture Maker, Culture Monitor and Project Manager. 

    Integrated into Social Studies-  The teacher informs the students that they are going to become a group of Researchers to find out more information about the different countries that we studied in our folktale unit.  The group can select one of the countries discussed or select one of their own as long the whole group agrees and the country has rich, cultural history.  The students will select one country to research, choose a set of questions to answer and also choose a Culture Project. The students will present the answers in a form of a group written/oral report. The students should be given at least two days to research with the third day to write reports or make multi-media presentations.   Since this project is integrated into Language Arts, Social Studies and Writing the students should have ample time to finish by Day 5 which is Presentation Day. The students will work on the research project during literacy or social studies scheduled block time. 


    Research Questions Set 1: Land, Size and People

    What is the size of your country?  How does it compare to the United States?

    How many people live in your country?  

    What types of landforms are in your country?

    What is your country's climate?  

    How does the climate affect the vegetation, animals or people in your country?

    In which hemisphere is your country located?  


    Research Questions Set 2:  Leaders and Resources

    What natural resources can be found in your country?

    What important leaders helped change your countries history?

    What bodies of water are important to your country?

    What are the other countries that border your country?

    What resources does your country produce?  Can we get those resources in the United States?


    Research Questions Set 3:  Culture and Customs

    What is the official language spoken in your country?  What other languages are spoken?

    Do we speak that language in the United States?

    Describe the family life of people in your country. Who lives with them?  What do their houses look like?

    Do most people in your country follow old traditions or more modern customs? What changes are taking place in your country's culture?

    How do the people get their food? What are the popular food dishes? How do they dress?  Where do they live?  

    What religious groups are found in your country?

    Can you say "hello/good bye" in their native language?

    Each group must select one (1) Culture Project below to be added to their research part with the country they have selected to present to the class.  

    For example:  Group A: Selected Culture Project I and Research Question Set 3 to create and plan on the country of ________. 

    Culture Project I -Students will design and create a musical instrument from the country of their choice that reflects this unit of study. The student will use recycled products from the home or school for musical instruments.  

    Culture Project II:-Students will design and create an electronic presentation, short video clip about the country they chose and share facts on the customs, art, food, language and dance.

    Culture Project III: -Students will design and create a folktale game or arts & crafts lesson and present to the class.


    Technological Engagement

    Videos of reading texts for educators to view- free of charge with no login required


    Collecting and Documenting Evidence of Learning

    The culture projects will be a reflection on how well the student's grasped each countries culture and was able to implement their customs and culture to become globally aware citizens. Through completing the culture project the student's will learn to respect other cultures and countries that are different then their own culture.   


    Extended Learning Opportunities 

    This lesson can be integrated into a variety of 2nd grade content areas and not just the ones mentioned in this Instructional Unit. The lesson is used to measure the students comprehension of the overall folktale instructional unit.  

    Did the students' gain more respect for other people and their cultures?  Are the students able to locate the countries using the tools (globe/maps) provided in the lesson?  Did the students' gain an understanding of what folktales are and can they find the central message of the story? 


    Teacher Reflection of Learning

    If I had more time available during the planning week, I would have integrated Science and more Social Studies lessons into this unit.  Every child learns differently whether it is through visuals, auditory or kinesthetic hands-on projects.  I felt with the students that I have this year that are EC and ESL, I should have created more "hands-on" activities since the workload was mostly auditory-visual.

    Google Earth: Folktales from Around the World-,-37.19366233,57.45191966a,15184446.26941681d,35y,0h,0t,0r/data=CjsSORIgZDEyNzAzMDVmYzZmMTFlN2JlMmIyMTNhYjBmYzk2YmIiFWVmZWVkX3JpZl9mb2xrdGFsZXNfMA

    While students research folktales from around the wrold, they will find similarities and differences in the stories. Students can choose to research a folktale from their country of origin. An example of a folktale with similarities and differences across cultures is Stone Soup.

    Books available include:

    Stone Soup by Marcia Brown (French version)

    Stone Soup by Jon J Muth (Asian version)

    Stone Soup by Heather Forest and August House (African American version)

    Cactus Soup by Eric A Kimmel (Hispanic version)