Aesop's Fables in Easy English - Thor May
TABLE OF CONTENTS
|18. The Gods Help Those Who Help Themselves|
Large collections of Aesop's Fables are now on the Internet, and also in many published books. Therefore, the small group of stories here is only a sample. There is a reason they are here. Although the traditional Aesop fables are short, memorable, simple and wise (therefore good for language learning), many contain grammar or unusual words which are difficult for second language learning. The slightly quaint language in many fables adds to their charm and style for native speakers. For others it is a barrier.
I have therefore modified a handful of fables for teaching to fairly elementary students. The very simple language I have used sometimes comes at a price in style. Note also that I have committed a travesty for all true lovers of fables by embedding the moral of each tale in its title. Teachers may well want to re-conceal this. The particular students I am teaching at the moment are neither gifted nor conditioned to leaps of inference, even in fables, so I have made things very direct.
The fables chosen here have been rewritten from a number of sources, sometimes with fairly minor changes, but in other cases they are a complete retelling. The stories are really for my own teaching convenience ! However there is no reason that every teacher cannot rewrite any number of fables for the language level of her particular class. Also listed below are some classroom activities which I have found to be useful. Other suggestions are welcome.
ACTIVITIES TO HELP WITH LANGUAGE LEARNING
|a) Elementary & Intermediate Students
- use a story for intonation practise : first follow the teacher, then alone, or in pairs.
Note: mere grammaticality may not be enough. The actors in the story must be ordered in their proper roles.
This can be a game. For example, the teacher can speak a line of the story, and two teams of students can compete to ask a question about it.
- students tell a similar story in English, translated from the local culture
"Aesop's Fables in Easy English " © copyrighted to Thor May; all rights reserved 2009
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