Greek mythology for kids is a favorite choice for parents as their kids love stories about heroes, monsters, spirits, and villains. This was not lost on Ancient Greeks who used myths to educate, entertain, and pass on timeless values. They used myths to pass down knowledge and timeless life-lessons from one generation to the next. Overall, they knew that imaginative and meaningful education is effective and they put that into action. More specifically, they knew what modern anthropology confirms today: humans are “wired” to tell and listen to stories. Storytelling helped humans bond together, survive, pass on knowledge to others, and ultimately build civilizations. To this extent, no one can know for sure just how ancient Greek Mythology is. The origins of the characters, plots, values, and lessons found in many sections of Greek Mythology may predate recorded history.
How does Greek Mythology benefit kids today? First and foremost, it’s great fun! Kids love mythology, and arguably, every type of modern-day witch, magician and ghost story novel and film is a reflection of Greek Mythology. Heroes, different types of spirits, gods, demi-gods, winged creatures and adventurous journeys leading to some sort of conquest, fascinate kids. The Minotaur, Pegasus, the Cyclops Polyphemus, the Sphinx, and the Medusa – all these mythical creatures never cease to fascinate, inspire, and entertain kids. Furthermore, kids have great fun in discovering how humans interact with the gods and these mythical creatures. In specific, they are excited to find out how these creatures try to trick humans and vice versa.
Greek mythology for kids Helps Teach Greek
Greek mythology for kids goes hand in hand with Hellenism and Greek heritage. By learning about Greek Mythology, kids also learn the Greek language and vice versa. Names, locations, and epic adventures unfold through exciting stories narrated in the Greek language. Furthermore, Greek mythology for kids helps develop a sense of wonderment and adventure about Greek words, names, and locations.
Promotes Critical Thinking
In contrast to other forms of entertainment and storytelling, Greek mythology for kids promotes critical thinking, an invaluable skill for future academic and professional success. Greek mythology for kids achieves this by making kids question the motives and decisions behind the heroes and monsters’ actions. This is so because kids are fascinated by heroes and heroines facing impossible challenges, protagonists facing moral dilemmas, a multitude of gods possessing distinct temperaments, strengths, and weaknesses. For instance, why is Poseidon giving Odysseus a hard time getting back home to Ithaca?
Greek mythology for kids ignites the Imagination
Both the Greek language and Greek mythology for kids ignite the imagination and the ability to “think out of the box”. In particular, the Greek language with its multitude of suffixes, cases, tenses, and word stems ignites reasoning and creativity in young minds.
Take for instance the name of the Cyclops who captured Odysseus and his companions. Why “Polyphemus”? Why is his name comprised of ‘Poly‘ (‘many’) and ‘phemus’- from ‘pheme‘ - (‘spoken about’)? Could it be because he was fearsome and everyone spoke about him? Is it because mothers would warn their kids to behave otherwise he’d come and eat them up? Could it be because he was famous amongst the other Cyclopes for being the most brutal? In addition, kids’ literary imagination expands when they discover the power of words over brute strength. In particular, how Odysseus told Polyphemus his name is ‘Nobody’, and how that was instrumental in escaping.
Teaches Lifelong Lessons
Greek mythology for kids teaches lessons kids can put to use at the right time later in life. For example, Odysseus teaches us that ingenuity and teamwork can get us out of the most difficult circumstances. Kids will see Odysseus doing this in building the Trojan Horse and in escaping the Cyclops Polyphemus. He also teaches us that persistence is tantamount in achieve long-term goals, especially in the face of obstacles and temptations. Older kids will learn more intricate, hidden lessons, such as the negative consequences of pride and an inflated ego. In particular, Odysseus’s taunting of Polyphemus after escaping, where he revealed his true name, resulting in Poseidon’s rage against Odysseus for blinding his son.
Gives Kids a Well Rounded Education
Greek mythology for kids can answer the question of why there are so many NASA space shuttles named “Apollo”. Furthermore, kids can learn about all the stories of the gods and heroes who lent their names to the constellations. They get to learn the meaning behind such expressions as “Herculean task”, “caught between Scylla & Charybdis” and “the Midas Touch”.
Ancient Greeks knew that myths have the capacity to teach allegory and archetypal stories resonating with higher meaning. For instance, the story of Daedalus and Icarus carries within it multiple lessons a child can learn. Such lessons could range from the more basic and straightforward “it pays to listen to your parents” to “carelessness and pride are dangerous” to “the passion of youth should be moderated by the wisdom of old age”. Another example of how Greek mythology for kids engages higher order cognitive functions is the myth of Oedipus and the riddle of the Sphinx. Kids will notice that Oedipus answers the Sphinx’s famous riddle correctly by analogizing the three stages of life (youth, adulthood, and old age) with the morning, noon, and evening. This analogy teaches kids the concept of “life stages”, a crucial concept for kids to grasp on their journey of maturing into teenagers and adults.
How We Integrate Greek mythology for kids
We incorporate beautifully colored Greek themed backgrounds, video series, and activities. Our content features the Odyssey, Aesop’s Fables, and other famous gems of Greek heritage such as the stories of Theseus, Jason and the Argonauts, and Achilles. Furthermore, our exclusive structured learning method - the “Learning Path” - is themed in the style of the Labors of Hercules. Just like Hercules proceeded from one labor to the next, so do young learners of Greek in their journey to master the Greek language.