Folk tales: Universal values, individual differences

Paper

By Hilary Cooper, published 10th February 2009

This paper is about using folktales to introduce young children to the past. It examines the ways in which folk tales reflect the different types of people found in the past and now, in all societies and how folk tales reflect universal values as well as differences between societies. It considers how folk tales can encourage young children to find out about past times, using processes of historical enquiry: concepts of time and change, similarity and difference; making inferences from sources; understanding why accounts may differ. Turkish and English folk tales are taken as examples. Finally, a case study demonstrates how a folk tale was used to help a class of English 8 - 11 year olds to understand that traditional values in Turkey still apply to their own lives today.

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