Episode 19 — Greek Mythology for Kids
|Grades||K – 5|
|Podcast Series||Chatting About Books: Recommendations for Young Readers
See all episodes in this series
|Original Air Date||Published October 14, 2009|
Music credit test
- Pandora Gets Jealous by Carolyn Hennesy (Bloomsbury, 2008)
The story of Pandora’s Box has been passed down through the ages. Carolyn Hennesy invites us to re-imagine Pandora at age 13, feeling pressure about a school presentation and deciding to sneak her father’s famous box to school. If you are thinking that nothing good could come of a teenager carrying around the box that holds all the evils of the world, you can just imagine what happens next.
And so begins the first book in this seven-part series, in which a teenage Pandora and her friends must recapture the world’s evils. Carolyn Hennesy writes an upbeat, fun book for tween readers that addresses all the angst of being thirteen and brilliantly interweaves the context of Greek mythology. Pandora and her friends must overcome jealousy in this first book; with each succeeding book in the series Pandora tackles a new evil. Out already is book two, Pandora Gets Vain and book three, Pandora Gets Lazy.
- Mount Olympus Basketball by Kevin O’Malley (Walker & Company, 2003)
Imagine that a team of Greek gods (Zeus, Hera, and Hades to name a few) are playing a basketball game against a team of mortals (think Hercules, Achilles, and Odysseus). What would that look like? On one side might be Poseidon, the God of the sea, calling for a crashing wave to wipe out the mortals while he scores a basket. On the mortals’ side, perhaps Odysseus would crawl out of a wooden horse to trick and distract the gods. The narrators of this story are the sports announcers of the game, making the reader feel like they’re right up on the bleachers watching it all happen. Which side will win? You must read the book to find out!!
- Z is for Zeus: A Greek Mythology Alphabet written by Helen L. Wilbur; illustrated by Victor Juhasz (Sleeping Bear Press, 2008)
This book is the perfect companion to both Mount Olympus Basketball and the Pandora series. It gives the background information about Greek mythology in familiar alphabet book format. Kids can learn about Zeus, Pandora, Prometheus, the wooden horse, Olympus, and more — all things mentioned in the other books. A nice feature of this book is that there are two ways to approach the reading. There are sidebars of information that work well for more sophisticated readers and simple verses for either a quick read or younger readers.
After reading Mount Olympus Basketball and Z is for Zeus, Emily worked with Andrew and Cassidy to create two Character Trading Cards about Zeus. A lively discussion follows, in which they munch on Hershey Kisses while comparing the portrayal of Zeus in both books.
Listen in as Emily chats with multi-talented author and actress Carolyn Hennesy, author of the Pandora series. She discusses her inspiration for the series, Pandora’s most endearing character traits, and the upcoming release of book four, Pandora Gets Lust.