Progymnasmata for the High School Student – Year One, Week One

Background Reading for Parents (and interested students)

“A Short History of the Aesopic Fable” in The Fables of Aesop (1894)

Introduction to the section on “Fables and Symbolic Stories” in Children’s Literature: A Textbook of Sources for Teachers and Teacher-Training Classes (1921).

“Introduction” to The Talking Beasts: A Book of Fable Wisdom (1922).

Instruction for Students

Day 1 – Read the following fables.

The Dog and the Shadow

The Lion’s Share

The Ass and the Lapdog

The Woodman and the Serpent

The Fox and the Mosquitos

Create a list of elements common to all the fables. Write a paragraph explaining the purpose of a fable and how that purpose is achieved. Finally, the last fable lacks a moral lesson at its end; what should its moral lesson be?

Day 2 – Rewrite this fable in your own words and without direct speech (speech presented in quotations).

The Man, The Boy, and His Donkey

Day 3 – Rewrite this fable with direct speech.

The Man and the Wood

Day 4 – Over the next several weeks, you will write a fable in a style of your choosing with the same moral lesson as “The Hare with Many Friends.” This week, decide whether you will write a story about animals, humans, or human(s) and animal(s). Brainstorm the types of humans and/or animals you will include in your story, the characteristics of each, where the fable will take place, and a basic outline of the story.

The Hare with Many Friends

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