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Historica Canada Education Portal

Storybook Legends

  • Indigenous History
  • Intermediate – Middle School

This lesson plan was created by members of Historica Canada’s teacher community. Historica Canada does not take responsibility for the accuracy or availability of any links herein, and the views reflected in these learning tools may not necessary reflect those of Historica Canada. We welcome feedback regarding the content that may be linked to or included in these learning tools; email us at


This project is designed to be an introduction to mythology utilizing local history and culture. The project will involve elders telling local legends to students and then collaborating with students on producing a storybook with illustrations of the legend as told to them by the elders. This project demonstrates the traditional working relationship of First Nations people – elders sharing their wisdom with the students in turn interpreting the history and culture taught to them. The students will present their stories to the class in the form of a reader’s theatre or drama skit.


The objective of the project is for students to produce a storybook with illustrations about a local First Nations legend or myth. The students will experience the tradition of oral history, through elders telling them local legends or myths. They will learn about the importance of myths and legends in all cultures and histories by looking at samples and interpreting one into their own storybook. The story will then be re-told or acted out as a drama as a presentation to the class.


Time Allowance:
Four (or more) 45 minute blocks


DAY 1 - Introductory lecture on ancient multicultural mythology. Read some examples and ask students to share any prior knowledge or experiences in a class discussion.

DAY 2 – Set up project. Explain expectations. Show geographical and cultural areas as they pertain to local history.

DAY 3 – Elders come in and share traditional oral legends. Teacher will guide elders and students to begin storybook.

DAY 4 – Complete project (if necessary). Students present to class as dramatic skit or reader's theatre.


  • Participation checklist
  • Grade final project
  • Student evaluation of project as an effective useful learning tool
  • Student evaluation expressing general interest and enjoyment with suggestions for improvements or changes
  • Student self evaluation (own participation, final product)

Required Materials:

  • Coiled Sketchbook (make or buy)
  • Art Supplies: coloured pencils, charcoal, paint and paint brushes
  • Costumes to present story as drama (optional)
  • Computers (for research; option of typing up storybook)
  • Tobacco to offer the elders in appreciation for their time and wisdom


  • Library resources and textbooks
  • 4 Elders from local First Nation community