Myths and Legends for kids. Primary homework help in English. Find out what a myth, legend, folktale and a fable is.
What is a Myth?
A myth is a story that explains why people, animals or things are the way they are. They are normally set a very long time ago such as when the world was being created. Myths may have gods and goddesses who have amazing powers to make extraordinary things happen.
Examples of myths
- How giraffes got their long necks
- Hercules (Greek myth)
- Pandora’s Box (Greek myth)
Greek myths links
Listen to free audio stories on Greek Myths.
What is a Legend?
Legend – A traditional story based on truth but that has had bits added and which have been passed on from person-to-person.
A legend is about people and their actions or deeds. Stories about people mentioned in history are often told for a purpose and are based on facts, but they are not always completely true. The added bits make the story more interesting such as in the cases of Robin Hood, Queen Boadicea and King Arthur. For example, King Arthur was a man in the 5th/6th century but the parts about the round table and Merlin the Magician may be not true. There was a Robin of Loxley (Robin Hood) and he helped the poor but he didn’t have a band of robbers. Boadicea did exist but legend says that she escaped prison and carried on fighting, rather than dying there which is what really happened.
Myths and legends links
The British Isles is rich in myths, folktales and legends. Almost every town, city and village in Britain has its own special story, be it a Celtic Legend, Dark Age mystery, strange happening or fable.
These poems, about people and creatures from myths and legends, make excellent bedtime stories for young children, or fun poems for older children.
Watch videos of Myths & Legends and follow the suggested activities to explore the stories.
Kris Marshall reads two stories from Arthurian legend, reset into comic verse.
Stories from around the world. Explore them and find out how the Kangaroo got his tail, how Coyote made people and what happened to the ungrateful tiger.
Read the ancient myths & folktales. Stories from Africa, Ancient Greek, Native American, Ancient China, Ancient Mesopotamia, Ancient Rome, Egypt and more.
Feel your spine tingle when you stand in the presence of these myths and legends in truly awe-inspiring places.
What is a folktale?
Folktales are also known as fairy tales and they are stories that have been made up by people (or folk). Folktales have imaginative characters, happy endings and may contain magic. These stories have always been children’s favourite stories and many of them have been turned into well-known films.
Examples of folktales/fairy tales
- Jack and the Beanstalk
- The Three Little Pigs
- Beauty and the Beast
- Little Red Riding Hood
Links for craft downloads, fun games, word games based on traditional stories/fairy tales.
Read The Gingerbread Man, Goldilocks and the Three Bears, The Little Red Hen and The Three Little Pigs online.
What is a fable?
Fables are short stories that have a meaning. This meaning is called a moral. It teaches how we should behave and live our lives. Fables have animals as the main characters who can talk and act like humans. There is usually one animal who is weak and it often contains a hero or villain.
Examples of a fables
- The hare and the tortoise
- The wind and the sun
- The boy who cried wolf
Read the most famous fables.
40 of Aesop’s Fables are told by an all-star cast, including Lindsay Duncan, Richard E Grant, Jane Horrocks, Alison Steadman and the late Richard Briers.