A Native American Cinderella
  1. Strand PHIL.II Philanthropy and Civil Society
    1. Standard PCS 02. Diverse Cultures
      1. Benchmark E.2 Discuss the importance of respect for others.
    2. Standard PCS 05. Philanthropy and Government
      1. Benchmark E.3 Discuss the importance of personal virtue, good character, and ethical behavior in a democracy.

In this lesson, the children compares a Native American version of the Cinderella story with other versions. 

PrintOne 45-Minute Session

The learner will:

  • describe and compare character traits of the main characters.
  • read-aloud copy of The Rough-Face Girl by Rafe Martin 

Martin, Rafe. The Rough-Face Girl. Putnam Publishing Group, 1998.

  1. Anticipatory set:

    Sit on the floor and beat softly on a drum while you call the children to quietly sit with you on the floor. Explain that the drum represents the heartbeat of the people. There are different nations of Native Americans; one nation is called the Algonquin. The story you will read today comes from an Algonquin legend. Like other stories it started with an oral tradition, now it is written down for us in this version called The Rough-Face Girl. Tell the children to listen for similarities and differences between this book and the other Cinderella stories.

  2. Read The Rough-Face Girl  and then ask what was the greatest strength in the story—the thing that was most valued. Listen to their ideas and encourage them dialogue about the meaning of good character.

  3. Contrast the setting of this story with the Cinderella stories read over the past few days. Discuss what qualities of this story make it uniquely Native American. Discuss the symbolism of the animals and the Great Spirit.

  4. Discuss the fairy tale details: What events were magic and which could really happen? Did anything happen three times? Did good win over evil? What is the lesson/moral of the story?

  5. Discuss the idea that the moral or lesson of the story is found in stories from different cultures because it is an issue that all cultures face.

  6. Review the progress of the clothing drive and wrap it up and donate the clothing. Reflect on the experience and its value to the community.