Teach Kids Greek Mythology: Five Reasons Why
When we say “Mythology” we generally mean all the mythical traditions that a nation presents. The “myth” is essentially a short narrative of real historical events, that is, a kind of narrative.
What was a myth according to Ancient Greeks?
For the Greek ancestors of ancient times, “myth” was “reason” or “history”, synonymous with the words “reason” and “epic”. In particular, the father of History Herodotus Alicarnassus (c. 484 BC – 425 BC / 410 BC) used the word “myth” in the sense of incredible history.
Later, the father of modern historiography Thucydides (c. 460 BC – c. 399 BC) separated his story from the mythical which is a simple storytelling.
Rhetoricians, on the other hand, defined myth as “a fictional story that explains the truth.“.
The ancient philosopher Plato (427 BC – 347 BC) in his work “State” proceeds to a substantial distinction regarding the myths, dividing them into two categories. In the first category are the major myths told by poets, while in the second category are the minor greek myths for kids told by mothers, grandmothers, and nurturers.
In any case, the “myth” is an oral historical narrative related to the origin or creation of natural, supernatural, or cultural phenomena.
The “myth” is simply not a fairy tale. Instead, it is a true story or a tradition, a narration of real historical events, which belong to Greek cultural heritage.
In particular, “greek myths for kids” that contain historical truths are allegorical narratives or stories that concern people, situations, and actions and which were passed down from one generation to another, but without anyone knowing who created them. In this article, we will explore some crucial reasons why teaching kids greek mythology is so important for them and for their culture.
According to experts, by reading children a greek mythology book::
1. Kids mature faster emotionally
With a greek mythology book for kids, the child’s psychic world is enriched and strengthened. In fact, the way of narration, the feeling, and the style of the narrator is especially important. Mythology gives children a basis for thinking. Each age has its own pedagogical challenges in approaching mythological, literary, or historical analysis but the different approaches often converge and are consistent.
Teaching kids greek mythology is by nature didactic. More specifically, Greek mythology teaches through the examples of Greek myths, which are full of simple moral lessons that are applied in our daily lives.
The high values and ideals contained in these myths, the moral principles that are projected in conjunction with those great symbolisms of the myths that need further analysis, have a beneficial effect on the formation and education of young people, contributing to the manifestation of present and future behavior in the future.
Indicatively, some of them can be mentioned, such as doing the right thing, piety, noble rivalry, kindness of spirit, prudence, courage, justice, respect for God, respect for parents, respect for the laws, etc. So, teaching children greek mythology can be very beneficial for them and for their surroundings as they grow up.
2. Kids learn how to manage difficult situations
Any book with Greek myths can help the child to manage difficult situations, such as death, separation, or an illness.
Kids do not have the mechanisms to manage tough situations so review the list of the best greek mythology books, choose any book, ask your child to read it, and rest assured that this will be of great help for your child to manage tough situations. Children are very sensitive and there is no better tool to help them grow a defensive mechanism in order to manage a possible loss or other difficult situations than a greek mythology book.
One of the lessons that children learn from greek mythology is that you can achieve everything with a lot of effort and of course with your mind and way of thinking, which often proves to be the most valuable tools of the heroes, even against the gods. The protagonists, after all, are usually mortals who use their perspicacity and abilities to overcome the obstacles in front of them and achieve their goal.
3. Kids become advanced learners, readers, and writers
Children who grew up with greek mythology books have been observed to learn to read faster as well as write. They have also acquired a rich vocabulary and handle writing skills with greater skill.
In most American universities, students take a humanities course, where mythology is one of the most popular courses. They come seduced by myths that they think they know, often with a cloudy view of Greek antiquity, some with the illusion that it is an easy lesson. That’s when the analysis begins, beyond the stories. And the analysis of the myth is as deeply a human adventure as life itself.
Many students say that this has been their favorite lesson because it puts them in the process of thinking about the depths of human existence and its limits, relationships with others but also entrenched social structures, imperatives that shape behaviors beyond personal will. From an anthropological, historical and often psychoanalytic point of view, students take strong life lessons that they do not find elsewhere and develop a critical attitude in exploring other scientific or professional fields.
The student, by reading greek god books, acquires the possibility to understand that the present is a continuation of the past, because the past in itself is not history. Instead, it becomes history when it is connected to both the present and the future. In order for a student to achieve this, the existence of historical thought and historical consciousness is required and these virtues are only obtained from greek god books.
4. Kids become creative: role-playing and retell stories
Kids see Greek myths as creative fairy tales, which are full of important life lessons about family, friendship, love, etc.
The dilemmas and different emotions of the heroes are a key feature of ancient Greek myth for kids and the main reason that makes them so special. The children take the place of the protagonists and imagine what they would do. In fact, if you ask them “what kind of hero would you like to be in this story?”, most likely their answer includes some of the Twelve Gods of Olympus, mainly because of their unique abilities.
For parents to make the process even more fun, they can roleplay the stories with their kids, and of course, the protagonists cannot be other than the Gods of Olympus themselves. With the figures of Zeus, Hera, Aphrodite, and the other gods they can set the scene of your story and bring to life the favorite myths of the children.
Children can use their imagination and change the outcome of the story, giving it a different ending each time. At the same time, it is an opportunity to repeat the key learning as the figures are accompanied by information cards. Even if you are confused and not sure if Hera was the protector of the marriage and Estia the protector of the family, you can confirm it at that time without the children knowing!
5. Kids identify life values
Greek Mythology helps the child to learn about important values of life, such as family, friendship, and more. It also learns from a very early age about love, solidarity, help, the meaning of giving.
People, heroes, gods, demigods, legends and even monsters star in the myths of the ancient Greeks. Reality is intertwined with the imagination, resulting in the creation of a new separate world that does not always look completely false. On the one hand, we meet the passions, weaknesses and ingenuity of people and on the other hand we see what are the plans and the real will of the gods.
The stories of Greek mythology automatically put the children and the parents in the process of imaginatively creating the images that are created for us by reading or listening to them. Unconsciously, we travel with our minds to ancient Greece, we create with our imagination the image of the heroes we know in each myth and we direct as we want the scenes around which each story unfolds.
Myths hide unspoken truths that can help the course of self-knowledge for each of us. Wisdom comes from within us; it is not conquered. The goal is to be able to see oneself. Not only others and especially not to think that wisdom is something that is conquered and then becomes a permanent property. The myth of Oedipus, which discusses, among other things, the limits of knowledge and the trap of supposed knowledge and wisdom, underlines the delusion hidden by the feeling that one can become wiser without being able to “see” oneself.
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