Saturday, May 22, 2010

Flowers, Fairytales and Folklore


Today I received a lovely surprise from a storytelling friend Georgy Rock.  She bestowed upon me The Sunshine Award. Not only did it make me smile but it gave me the idea to share some stories about flowers, who need the sun to grow, and more stories about the sun.

So thank you Georgy, not only for the award and ideas, but for the smile. We can never  have enough!

"Peace begins with a smile."
                                       ~Mother Teresa



THE MYTH OF PERSEPHONE
Based on the Greek Myth - An original story and interpretation by Laura Strong, PhD

It was a beautiful day like all the others in this land, the sun shone brightly in the sky, the hills were lush and green, and flowers blossomed from the earth. The lovely young maiden, Persephone, frolicked with her friends upon the hillside, as her mother Demeter sat near by, and her father Zeus peered down from the sky above. Laughter could be heard in between the young girls' whispered secrets, as they gathered handfuls of purple crocuses, royal blue irises and sweet-smelling hyacinths.

Persephone thought to bring some to her mother, but was soon distracted by a vision of the most enchanting flower she had ever seen. It was a narcissus, the exact flower her father hoped that she would find. As she reached down to pluck it from its resting place, her feet began to tremble and the earth was split in two. Life for Persephone would never be the same again...Read the rest of the story here:  http://www.mythicarts.com/writing/Persephone.html


WHAT CAME OF PICKING FLOWERS

From the Grey Fairy Tale Book, collected by Andrew Lang

There was once a woman who had three daughters whom she loved very much. One day the eldest was walking in a water-meadow, when she saw a pink growing in the stream. She stooped to pick the flower, but her hand had scarcely touched it, when she vanished altogether. The next morning the second sister went out into the meadow, to see if she could find any traces of the lost girl, and as a branch of lovely roses lay trailing across her path, she bent down to move it away, and in so doing, could not resist plucking one of the roses. In a moment she too had disappeared. Wondering what could have become of her two sisters, the youngest followed in their footsteps, and fell a victim to a branch of delicious white jessamine. So the old woman was left without any daughters at all. Click here for the rest of the story:
http://www.childrensnursery.org.uk/fairy-grey/fairy-grey%20-%200193.htm


THE STORY OF THE QUEEN OF THE FLOWERY ISLES
From the Grey Fairy Tale Book, collected by Andrew Lang

There once lived a queen who ruled over the Flowery Isles, whose husband, to her extreme grief, died a few years after their marriage. On being left a widow she devoted herself almost entirely to the education of the tAvo charming princesses, her only children. The elder of them was so lovely that as she grew up her mother greatly feared she would excite the jealousy of the Queen of all the Isles, who prided herself on being the most beautiful woman in the world, and insisted on all rivals bowing before her charms.

In order the better to gratify her vanity she had urged the king, her husband, to make war on all the surround­ing islands, and as his greatest wish was to please her, the only conditions he imposed on any newly-conquered country was that each princess of every royal house should attend his court as soon as she was fifteen years old, and do homage to the transcendent beauty of his queen.

The Queen of the Flowery Isles, well aware of this law, was fully determined to present her daughter to the proud queen as soon as her fifteenth birthday was past. Click here for the rest of the story:
http://www.childrensnursery.org.uk/fairy-grey/fairy-grey%20-%200241.htm

HOW SUN, MOON, AND WIND WENT OUT FOR DINNER
From Indian Fairy Tales by Joseph Jacobs

ONE day Sun, Moon, and Wind went out to dine with their uncle and aunts Thunder and Lightning. Their mother (one of the most distant Stars you see far up in the sky) waited alone for her children's return. Now both Sun and Wind were greedy and selfish. They enjoyed the great feast that had been prepared for them, without a thought of saving any of it to take home to their mother--but the gentle Moon did not forget her. Of every dainty dish that was brought round, she placed a small portion under one of her beautiful long finger-nails, that Star might also have a share in the treat.

On their return their mother, who had kept watch for them all night long with her little bright eye, said, "Well, children, what have you brought home for me?" Then Sun (who was eldest) said, "I have brought nothing home for you. I went out to enjoy myself with my friends--not to fetch a dinner for my mother!" And Wind said, "Neither have I brought anything home for you, mother. You could hardly expect me to bring a collection of good things for you, when I merely went out for my own pleasure." But Moon said, "Mother, fetch a plate, see what I. have brought you." And shaking her hands she showered down such a choice dinner as never was seen before... To read the rest of the story click here:
http://www.sacred-texts.com/hin/ift/ift28.htm


Flower Fables - From the gentle hand of Louisa May Alcott, nine lovely, short fables.

How the Sun Was Rescued - Siberia
http://windows2universe.org/art_and_music/hsr.html

Solar Folklore - http://tinyurl.com/7syur

Sun Folklore - Activities, lesson plans and stories.
http://tinyurl.com/34blrj

Why Cats Sit on the Doorway in the Sun - Romania adapted by storytellery Barry Eldrbarry
http://www.eldrbarry.net/rabb/folk/noahcat.htm


CURRICULUM

Cross-Curriculum Flower Activities - An Elementary Gardening Theme Unit
http://lesson-plans-materials.suite101.com/article.cfm/crosscurriculum_flower_activities

Spring Theme Activities for Young Children
http://www.preschoolrainbow.org/preschool-spring.htm

Fast Facts on Persephone - http://gogreece.about.com/cs/mythology/a/mythpersephone.htm

Flower Week Theme Lesson Plan
http://www.adaycare.com/PreschoolCurriculumSample5.html

Early Childhood Sun Protection Curriculum
http://www.cdph.ca.gov/programs/SkinCancer/Documents/skin_sunproteccurriculum.pdf


CRAFTS

Enchanted Learning Flower Crafts http://www.enchantedlearning.com/crafts/flowers/

Flower Crafts for Kids  http://www.dltk-holidays.com/spring/crafts-flowers.htm

You Are My Sunshine Crafts for Kids
http://www.dltk-holidays.com/mom/msunandflower.html



Karen Chace  2010 ©

This blog post was researched and compiled by Karen Chace. Permission for private use is granted. Distribution, either electronically or on paper is prohibited without my expressed written permission. For permission please contact me at storybug@aol.com. Of course, if you wish to link to my blog via your website, blog, newsletter, Facebook page or Twitter please feel free to do so; I greatly appreciate your support and personal integrity.

3 comments:

Cathryn said...

Beautiful collection of tales at just the right time of year. And who better to receive a sunshine award!?

TheNote said...

You are such a gift to all of us.
Thank you for the spectacular stories and ideas.
My life is much brighter because you're in it.
love & love,
g

Granny Sue said...

Wonderful post, Karen, full of information and ideas. Thank you for sharing!