Students learn Greek mythology in creative ways

Fourth grade students at Golden Hill had a cross-curricular lesson in Greek mythology that they just loved!

In English Language Arts (ELA), the students learned about Greek myths, themes and allusions. They learned about Pandora’s box and Achilles heel. They made Olympic torches from cardboard tubes and paper, and even learned a Greek dance.

An elementary scool girl wearing a blue sweatshirt, mask and a gold leaf wreath around her head, holds a torch made of cardboard tubing and orange paper.

In art, they made posters of the gods. There were opening ceremonies as is done at the Olympics.

A group of elementary students and a teacher run holding torches made of cardboard tubes and orange paper.

Students participated in an escape room, where they decoded four Greek myths for clues to escape ancient Greece. There was lots of critical thinking going on!

In social studies class, students had the opportunity to program small robots so they would go in a paperclip pattern. He put tape on the floor showing the students the pattern. The students were in teams of two – while one programmed the robot on the other used Legos to create a unique look for their robot. Suggestions for the robot designs included, what else, chariots and horses that were popular in ancient Greece. The students took turns coding and designing their robots before trying out the finished program.

Two elementary age girls sit on the floor. Both are wearing gold leaf wreaths in their hair. One girl closest is wearing a yellow sweatsuit. She has classes and has a chromebook on her lap, that she is working on. The girl in the back has long hair and is using Legos to build a robot.


A student with long blonde hair watches as a small robot moves along the floor. Another student wearing a green shirt is watching.In another class, students in groups of two and three were given 10 pieces of paper, a roll of masking tape, a solid base and a piece of construction paper. They were tasked to build their own Parthenon. However this paper Parthenon must hold a hard-cover textbook on top when complete. On a screen in the classroom, there was a photo of the actual Parthenon in Greece.

A girl wearing a ponytail, mask and red, white and blue jacket with hood puts tape on a column made of white paper. Another child places a piece of construction paper on top of it and a boy stands in the background.

A girl wearing a mask places a large textbook on top of 10 columns made of white paper. A boy stands and watches.

The teams got to work, rolling their paper into columns like the original. They taped them to the base, placed the construction paper on top and then gently placed the textbook to see if their structure would hold up. It required planning, engineering and team work and some of the teams were hugely successful!

A huge thank you to our fourth grade teachers – Colleen MacFarlane, Kate Riehle, Holly Aftel, Maggie Kruger, Bill Papula and Jill Dawydko – for coordinating all of these learning activities.