Beacon Lesson Plan Library

Telling Tales

Lucille Andreu


Students share personal versions of fairy tales from their memories with each other. They listen, analyze and paraphrase the tales' differences and similarities in a Venn diagram while asking questions for clarification.


The student demonstrates effective listening behaviors for a variety of purposes (for example, using eye contact, note-making, appropriate posture).

The student asks appropriate, challenging questions for elaboration or clarification during activities such as interviews and discussion.

The student summarizes main points and supporting details orally or in writing.

The student uses information gained for a variety of purposes.


-One copy of the Venn diagram for each paired group (see Associated File)
-One copy of the "Careful Listener Checklist" for each student (see Associated File)
-One copy of selected fairy tales for each pair of students (see Associated File for example)
-Student groups with no more than two students per group


1. Familiarize yourself with the fairy tales you choose to present to the class. Cinderella, Beauty and the Beast, and Little Red Riding Hood are three tales that appear frequently on the Internet – see websites listed in the website reference section.
2. Make class sets of the fairy tales selected to assign to student pairs.
3. Make a copy of the “Careful Listener Checklist” for every student in the class. (see Associated File)
4. Make a copy of the Venn diagram for each paired group in the class. (see Associated File)
5. Assign students to groups of two before conducting the lesson.


1. Play a quick game of gossip. Student relates a secret to his/her neighbor. When the secret travels through out the classroom and stops with the last student, the last student shares the secret with the class. Note the ways in which the secret changes as it is passed orally from person to person.

2. Pass out one "Careful Listener Checklist" to each child and one Venn diagram per group. (see Associated File)

3. Model what the students will do in their pair groups. Choose a student to tell you a fairy tale. Listen to the student. As you are listening, the other students should be looking at the "Careful Listener Checklist." (see Associated File) When the student is finished telling the tale, turn to the class and let them evaluate your listening.

4. Explain to students that they are supposed to listen carefully while a person is talking. The person relating the story will fill out the checklist on the student that is listening to him/her.

5. Pair students in groups of two. Assign one fairy tale to each group. Make sure the students are familiar with the fairy tale that is assigned to them.

6. Next, students relate the fairy tale to each other. Students ask questions after listening to their partners’ renditions of the tales.

7. During the interview process, the Venn diagram is used by the partners to record similarities and differences. (see Associated File)

8. Following the interviews, students fill out "Careful Listener Checklists" on their partners. (see Associated File)

9. Conference with each student group. Offer corrective feedback after viewing both the -Careful Listener Checklists- and the Venn diagram. (see Associated File)


1. A student will actively listen to an assigned partner relate a fairy tale. He or she will then relate the same fairy tale to his partner. They will then paraphrase their work in a Venn diagram. Beneath the Venn diagram students will record questions used to clarify details gained through listening to their partners.

2. Circulate among the students as they relate their tales to each other. Offer verbal feedback, as it will reinforce their attentive listening. Offer corrective feedback. Let them repeat your feedback to you so that you may check their comprehension. Each student will also fill out the “Careful Listener Checklist” on his/her partner. (see Associated File)

3. Collect and assess student checklists and diagrams. Offer corrective feedback to students as needed.

Web Links

This site offers a version of the Cinderella story.
Grimm Fairy Tales

This is an exhaustive Beauty and the Beast site that has many cool links and versions of the tale.
Beauty and the Beast

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