ERIC Number: ED405962
Record Type: RIE
Publication Date: 1997-Feb
Lessons in Living: Incorporating Folklore into Young Children's Lives.
McLean, Deborah L.
One avenue for authentic exploration of different cultures is to incorporate folktales and folklore into early childhood curriculum. Universal themes are found as common threads in the folklore of many cultures, and folktales and folklore contribute to learning about each culture's rich heritage. Folklore and folktales teach young children about the values, celebrations, histories, traditions, and art forms of cultural groups. Examples of the folklore that allow more than a tourist look at the experiences of different people is that of Yup'ik-speaking people, the Eskimos of western Alaska. A close look at the content of Eskimo folktales can reaffirm a child's own heritage, introduce another child to an indigenous culture, and provide real "lessons of life." Themes of great importance to the Yup'ik culture are parts of the "Yuutait," or the rules and regulations of child-rearing. Some themes of the Yuutait include love of children, knowledge of the family tree, and cooperation. More common in contemporary society is the use of picture books in place of traditional folklore. Although it is difficult to know and understand diverse cultures, using folktales and stories can provide more than a cursory explanation of differences. (Contains 10 references.) (WJC)
Publication Type: Speeches/Meeting Papers; Guides - Non-Classroom
Education Level: N/A
Authoring Institution: N/A
Note: Paper presented at the Meeting of the Southern Association for Children under Six (Tulsa, OK, March 23-28, 1992).