Old Monster Dog:YEAR 2-English-Explore

Little J is initially scared to approach the ‘monster’ in the back yard. Encouraged to face his fears, he vows to catch the frilly-necked monster and sets about building a monster trap with the help of Levi.

Explore - Identify aspects of different types of literary texts that entertain, and give reasons for personal preferences

Theme - QUESTS

Ask students to associate the story of Little J & Big Cuz, Episode 9 ‘Monster Dog’ to these three contexts:

  • Text-to-self connections - students link the ideas in the episode to their own lives (e.g. Students relate to being scared of something, and their need to confront it.
  • Text-to-world connections - students link the ideas in the episode to world knowledge (e.g. ‘Some scientists say that humans become fearful when they don’t feel secure or protected’).
  • Text-to-text connections - students link an aspect of the episode to another text, for example, a movie clip, a book or something else that has a similar quest story (e.g. ‘I remember the Frozen movie had a character who was afraid because of the unknown’).

Explore story elements within Episode 9 ‘Monster Dog’, and their familiar association with the students. As a class, view the clip and list the phases of the quest story.

Ask students the following questions that highlight the elements/stages of a quest story.

The hero or heroine:

  • Becomes powerless -
    • What happened to make Little J scared of going into the backyard?
    • How does the audience know that Old Dog was the ‘monster’ before Little J did?
  • Meets a mentor:
    • Did any of the other characters confirm/support the challenge for Little J or was he solely responsible?
  •  Accepts the challenge/confrontation (Self-discovery):
    • When did Little J turn from being scared to being determined to catch the monster?
  • Makes a plan for self-discovery:
    • What resourceful actions did Little J adopt to bring about a successful outcome? Therefore, ‘seizing the treasure’ of capturing the monster!
  • Reveals the moral: Myths/Fables – values, beliefs
    • What is the moral of the story? What can the audience learn from the actions of Little J?

Through this examination of the story, students can start to decipher the stages of a quest story. They can now use their hero or heroine character and create a quest story of their own.

Not all of the quest stages need to apply for this age group. Concentrate on a couple or combine stages so that they are manageable for individual students. Examples of short quest stories can be found at:

  • Showcase, Myths and Legends
  • Always, sometimes, never - 3: Legend of the Crane, (Scootle: TLF-IDM014008)
    ‘This is a web resource that includes four student activities focusing on chance and the language associated with chance events, accompanied by activity sheets and a detailed teacher guide for each activity. The activities cover words associated with chance and likelihood, fairness, luck and superstitions, and ordering chance events based on likelihood. The resource incorporates aspects of Asian culture, including a discussion about lucky numbers and superstitions; a Japanese story 'The legend of the crane', about the crane as a Japanese symbol of good health and prosperity; and an activity based on the game jan-ken-pon, the Japanese version of rock-paper-scissors game which originated in Asia.