Library Digital Content Access


American Literature - Native American Stories


Created By: Marty Sierra-Perry, Centennial High School (Champaign, IL)


Checklist


Title of Text: ________________________________________________________

Author: ____________________________________________________________

Identify the type of story:
_____ creation myth _____trickster _____transformation
_____ culture hero legend

* NOTE: Some tribes place restrictions on who may tell the story and when the story may be told. This may not apply to your example.


Creation Stories

These stories tell how something has originated or how animals received certain physical characteristics.


Trickster Tales

These tales contain common components across cultures. Identify the following:

  1. Name of the Trickster
  2. Culture of Origin
  3. What the trickster wants. . .
  4. Why the trickster is playing the trick.
  5. The Trick
  6. Highlights of the plot
  7. Who is being tricked?
  8. Explain the outcome

Transformation Tales

These are stories that show physical or emotional transformation or "change" in a character.

If your story is a Transformation Tale refer to the following to complete your analysis:

  1. What (or who) is being transformed or changed? Why? Do you think another transformation will happen I this story? What and why?
  2. Is there an enchanter, sorcerer, or other person with magical powers? How does this character use his or her powers?
  3. Who is the main character, the "good guy," the one we are empathizing with or following? What does this person want and need? Why is this person acting the way he or she is? Do you think this person can achieve hts or her goals? How would you feel right now to be that person?
  4. Are there powers of "good" and "bad" in this story? What or who are they?
  5. How do other characters influence the main character?
  6. When there is long winding plot ,or a series of significant events or transformations, it may help to ask: Where have we been, and where are going with this story?
  7. At the end of the story: What other kinds of transformations do you think the magical person could perform? Why would he or she do this?
  8. At the end of the story: Did any of the characters learn anything this story? Do you think someone could tell this story and hope someone else would learn a lesson from it? What lesson?
  9. At the end of the story: What do you think is the most important thing to the main character? What does he or she value most?