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Once Upon A Time...

A WebQuest on Fairy Tales, Fables, Myths, and Legends

Created by
Mary B. Reid

 Introduction |The Task|The Activity Scrolls|Internet Resources | Resources|Learning Advice|Evaluation|Conclusion|Extension 


Fairy Tales. Fables. Myths. Legends. These types of stories have always fascinated and entertained us. In every culture, in every corner of the world for millennia, parents have been spinning tales and weaving the narrative web- in Eskimo families in the Arctic Circle, in the jungles of Africa, among Native American tribes, throughout Oceana, and at all points of the compass in between.  Storytelling is basic to every culture, whether it flourished 100,000 years B.C., or is heading into the 21st Century A.D.


The Task

Once upon a time... You and your friends are at an amusement park having a good time.  In the far back corner you find a roller coaster you have never seen before.  It looks safe enough so you decide to get on.  You don't notice that no one else is around, except for the little man at the controls...

The ride starts out great with several twists and turns and then you are in a dark tunnel.  When you come out on the other side, the ride stops.  You look around and realize something is not quite right.  You get off the roller coaster and notice that the amusement park is gone.  You walk a few steps and find yourself in a dense, dark forest.  You turn around and the roller coaster car is gone, as well as the tracks!  You see a gingerbread house off in the distance and begin to panic.  "Are we in one of those fairy tales we read in class last week?  How are we going to get home?"

Your group begins walking and notices that scrolls appear to be nailed to trees.  The first one your group comes to reads:  "Greetings!  In order to return home, you must respond to what is written on all of the scrolls that are in your path.  To determine which path to take, you must roll these special magical dice which will take you to your next activity scroll.  You must complete the activity scroll and then seek out approval from the All Powerful Wizard to be allowed to roll the magical dice again.  Attached to this scroll you will find an explanation of how the All Powerful Wizard will evaluate your effort in completing all of the requirements on each scroll.  Help is available, if you know where to look...  Find the Internet Resources Scroll and The Resources Scroll.  Good luck, but beware!  Don't leave the marked path- Danger is lurking around every corner!"

The Activity Scrolls

Who... What... Where... When... Why...

The Internet Resources


Learning Advice

You will be on the computer on a rotating basis, so use your time wisely! Only look for what you really need and work on one project at a time. Don't forget you can also find information in the textbooks listed above.


You will be evaluated on each activity that you complete.  Final draft quality is expected on every written assignment and word processed document.  A 6 point rubric will be used to score written work.  Multimedia presentations will be evaluated according to the multimedia presentation rubric.  All activities will be evaluated for completeness, neatness, and literary content and accuracy.


The All Powerful Wizard has one more task for you to complete.  The selections in this unit focused on storytelling as the passing on of oral histories and traditions as a means of preserving cultural heritage.  As a concluding project, your group will examine several folk tales and determine some of the traits they have in common.  You will use this as a starting point for writing a set of guidelines about how folk tales should be told.  You will compare your list with that of other groups who have come through this forest and develop one comprehensive list of common traits.  Each group will then write a guide to storytelling based on the list of common characteristics developed by the All Powerful Wizard's Subjects.

Extension Activity Scroll

Now that you are back home, work with a family member to tape record or video tape a family member telling a personal story from their family's personal history.

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Content by Mary Reid

Last revised Wed Oct 27 21:36:46 1999