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Classic Myths to Read Aloud: The Great Stories of Greek and Roman Mythology, Specially Arranged for Children Five and Up by an Educational Expert

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The most complete collection of Greek and Roman myths specially arranged to be read aloud to children aged five to twelve. Line drawings.


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The most complete collection of Greek and Roman myths specially arranged to be read aloud to children aged five to twelve. Line drawings.

30 review for Classic Myths to Read Aloud: The Great Stories of Greek and Roman Mythology, Specially Arranged for Children Five and Up by an Educational Expert

  1. 4 out of 5

    Nicola Mansfield

    Reason for Reading: I first read this book to my eldest son approx. ten years ago and it became my favourite retelling of myths to read aloud to children. I had always planned to read it to my 9yo and I've been reading a story a day to him every M-F. Comments: This is the best book of Greek and Roman myths especially written for reading aloud to children that I have come across and we've read a lot in our household. This book is written in the storyteller format. Each story starts with a brief sy Reason for Reading: I first read this book to my eldest son approx. ten years ago and it became my favourite retelling of myths to read aloud to children. I had always planned to read it to my 9yo and I've been reading a story a day to him every M-F. Comments: This is the best book of Greek and Roman myths especially written for reading aloud to children that I have come across and we've read a lot in our household. This book is written in the storyteller format. Each story starts with a brief synopsis for the storyteller and a list of words with phonetic pronunciations. These words also are shown with phonetic pronunciations the first time they appear in the story. After each story is a short paragraph or two called "A Few Words More" which is for the benefit of the storyteller and tells the Greek or Latin roots or word history of certain words that come into play in this particular story. This is not meant to be read aloud but gives the storyteller options to weave them into a post story discussion if time permits. The book is divided into two sections. Part I is recommended for ages 5 and up and concentrates on the well known Greek Myths such as Athena, Echo, Marathon, Damocles, Pegasus, Io, Orpheus, Pygmalion, Theseus and Jason. Part II is recommended for ages 9 and up and primarily tells in chapters three tales, The Trojan War, Ulysses and Aeneas. Do not let the age recommendations fool you into thinking this is a baby book. Five year olds listening to these stories are five years old who have grown up on Pinocchio, Peter Pan and Hans Christian Andersen (the originals, not Disney-fied versions). The vocabulary used right from the beginning is rich literature, as you would expect to find in Hawthorne's own tales of the myths. The violence of the original tales remains, in the first half perhaps the blood is not quite so red yet gruesome death does abound and in Part II the blood and gore flow freely. The only 'watering down' found in these tales is in the s*xual aspects of the original tales. Words like 'lover', 'friend' 'maid' and 'met' are used instead of the actual s*xual situations that occur when reading from original Greek sources. I'm being quite blunt here as I do want readers to beware that these are very real renditions and don't expect a tenderhearted Teletubbies five-year-old to have a cutesy fun time with these tales. But then, this is exactly why I love this book so much. When your child is ready to really meet the Greek Myths this is my recommended book to start with. We've met some of these tales in our reading before but these versions really bring out the glory of the Greeks' mythology and the final Trojan War and Ulysses chapters are amazingly well told for this age group. The author even makes Aeneas (in a brief retelling) exciting. I sold my original copy of this book and had to buy another copy to read it this time. You can bet I'll be keeping my copy now and saving it for the day I (hopefully) can read it to my grandkids.

  2. 5 out of 5

    Tanya

    Our family worked through this book sloooowly as a read-aloud. It was great but a very challenging book for younger children. However, we all really loved it! We often looked up artwork online of the different myths since there are no pictures in this book. It was interesting to see how different artists have depicted the various myths in their work.

  3. 4 out of 5

    Διόνυσος Ελευθέριος

    This collection of myths taken from the ancient Greek and Roman world is an ideal collection to be either read to, or even by, young children. Unlike some mythology adaptations, the stories in Classic Myths to Read Aloud are surprisingly faithful to their originals (with the one exception of favoring Roman names in wholly Greek stories). If you endeavor to supply your children with a classical education—to the degree that that is even possible in today's most modern world—then you will find this This collection of myths taken from the ancient Greek and Roman world is an ideal collection to be either read to, or even by, young children. Unlike some mythology adaptations, the stories in Classic Myths to Read Aloud are surprisingly faithful to their originals (with the one exception of favoring Roman names in wholly Greek stories). If you endeavor to supply your children with a classical education—to the degree that that is even possible in today's most modern world—then you will find this book to be very helpful. I greatly enjoyed reading all of these stories to my children over the course of several months, and highly recommend it.

  4. 4 out of 5

    Emi Bevacqua

    Thank goodness for this guide, otherwise I'd never know how to pronounce any of these characters at bedtime for going on three years. Great explanations given for each selection. This book has fostered a love of Greek mythology in one of our girls especially, and even inspired their dad to tackle the Iliad and the Odyssey! Thank goodness for this guide, otherwise I'd never know how to pronounce any of these characters at bedtime for going on three years. Great explanations given for each selection. This book has fostered a love of Greek mythology in one of our girls especially, and even inspired their dad to tackle the Iliad and the Odyssey!

  5. 5 out of 5

    Joel Everett

    My family and I - including our 5 and 6 year old - thoroughly enjoyed this collection of tales during lunchtime. The "A Few Words More" section at the end of each adapted myth was delightful and educational. We highly recommend it as a great way to get a jump start on Classical Mythology and to prepare for later classical allusions used in literature. (i.e. Shakespeare among others) My family and I - including our 5 and 6 year old - thoroughly enjoyed this collection of tales during lunchtime. The "A Few Words More" section at the end of each adapted myth was delightful and educational. We highly recommend it as a great way to get a jump start on Classical Mythology and to prepare for later classical allusions used in literature. (i.e. Shakespeare among others)

  6. 5 out of 5

    Megan

    This is a pretty decent book, with faithful retellings from mythology in lengths that are good for reading aloud -- as advertised in the title. I found the pronunciation guides in the middle of the text to be annoying, but I'm not sad to have this one. This is a pretty decent book, with faithful retellings from mythology in lengths that are good for reading aloud -- as advertised in the title. I found the pronunciation guides in the middle of the text to be annoying, but I'm not sad to have this one.

  7. 4 out of 5

    Isabel

    The book layout makes it easy to use as each myth contains a synopsis of the tale, approximate reading time, vocabulary and pronunciation guide. It is a good supplement to studying Greek and Roman myths.

  8. 5 out of 5

    Jillian English

    this book is great for at-night reading before you go to bed and you don't ndeed to have a lot of time to finish a story because the storys are short but not too short. and you also don't need too be religious to read these because they're myths and just plain fun to read! this book is great for at-night reading before you go to bed and you don't ndeed to have a lot of time to finish a story because the storys are short but not too short. and you also don't need too be religious to read these because they're myths and just plain fun to read!

  9. 4 out of 5

    Sonja

    Great read aloud for the kids!

  10. 5 out of 5

    Athena

    Me likey <3

  11. 5 out of 5

    Seobin Baeg

    Fun to learn the origins of numerous vocabularies in the english language but in some ways to edited to be an accurate collection of myths- but probably for the young age group of the book.

  12. 5 out of 5

    Daniel Joshua

    Loads of good stories...

  13. 4 out of 5

    Rebecca Ray

    Used this with my nine-year old for read-aloud and written narration work. I've actually used it with all my children now because, while not the best set of myths I've ever encountered, it is perfect for upper elementary school children and perfectly segmented for reading aloud. Used this with my nine-year old for read-aloud and written narration work. I've actually used it with all my children now because, while not the best set of myths I've ever encountered, it is perfect for upper elementary school children and perfectly segmented for reading aloud.

  14. 5 out of 5

    Anna

    Once upon a time, there was no such thing as television. After the horror subsided, and my 6-year old son processed the notion that there was life before Diego, Thomas the Tank Engine and The Backyardigans, I began to explain about how children listened to stories, specifically fables and mythology. And that was his introduction to this book. This is a GREAT book for parents to introduce their children to the world of mythology. As the author says, "The great myths...are valuable in their own rig Once upon a time, there was no such thing as television. After the horror subsided, and my 6-year old son processed the notion that there was life before Diego, Thomas the Tank Engine and The Backyardigans, I began to explain about how children listened to stories, specifically fables and mythology. And that was his introduction to this book. This is a GREAT book for parents to introduce their children to the world of mythology. As the author says, "The great myths...are valuable in their own right, not just because they provide the mental 'hooks,' or shemata, that enable us to gather and understand new material. These myths have survived through the centuries because they had something important to say, and because people of widely disparate ages and cultures have found in these tales lessons and inspiration for their own lives." The author recommends practicing and reading each story alone BEFORE reading them aloud to your child, and that for the most part, do NOT make good bedtime stories. He's right; very few of the stories have a traditional happy ending, and most of them are designed to elicit follow-up questions - the last thing you need if you're trying to get your child to go to sleep. But they are excellent weekend stories, or for that "20 minutes a day" reading block of time after school. One of the other things that I really liked about this book was that the author carefully sets up each story for the parent. He has: * an "about the story" brief synopsis, * the approximate reading time for each story (the shorter stories run 6-12 minutes, and the longer ones 15-20 minutes), * a vocabulary and pronunciation guide (for example, Athena is pronounced [uth-EE-nuh:], and * follow up discussion for after the story (for example, with the story that describes how Athens got its name, you can point out Athens on a map, explain how Poseidon's trident means "three teeth", and how "tri" and "dent" for the basis for so many modern words like tricycle, triangle, dentist, etc.) (Note: I'd also add to make certain to let your child know that it's okay to interrupt the story if they don't understand something or have any questions) My son is really enjoying the book so far, and he's also realizing that his television shows actually reference these stories (The Backyardigans have an episode about gods who live on mountains, some of the Thomas the Tank engines have gods' names, etc.).

  15. 4 out of 5

    Carissa Wong

    I grew up loving Greek mythology, and all the Greek Gods. Classic Myths to Read Aloud by William F. Russell is one of the most entertaining books I have ever read. It presents the most famous and “need to know” Greek and Roman myths that contributed to the Greek and Roman polytheistic religion. Even though this book may seem like a book only for the younger audience, I assure you it isn’t. Since the myths are authentic, they don’t particularly leave out the more disturbing parts; but William F. I grew up loving Greek mythology, and all the Greek Gods. Classic Myths to Read Aloud by William F. Russell is one of the most entertaining books I have ever read. It presents the most famous and “need to know” Greek and Roman myths that contributed to the Greek and Roman polytheistic religion. Even though this book may seem like a book only for the younger audience, I assure you it isn’t. Since the myths are authentic, they don’t particularly leave out the more disturbing parts; but William F. Russell does a terrific job in censoring it. The best part about this book (other than the actual writing), is that the stories are kept short. Also, before every story it shows you the approximate reading time which ranges from 10 minutes to 30 minutes. It shows you how to pronounce all the Greek and Roman names. And the most helpful part is that it explains the confusing parts of the myth in more detail at the end. My personal favorite since I was young was the story involving Medusa and Perseus. In this particular book, the story is named “Perseus and the Gorgon’s Head”, I recommend this story, although it may be a little gruesome and scary for the younger kids. Overall, this book is a really good introduction to Greek and Roman Myths. And although the title says it’s for kids, don’t let it fool you! I highly recommend this book to anybody who wants to know more about Greek and Roman mythology and the Greek and Roman Gods.

  16. 5 out of 5

    Heather

    Love this book. It takes a number of the Greek and Roman myths and shortens them to be read aloud to the little ones. The author does this without harming the story in any way. After reading many books on the ancient myths, I found these to be the best written. And he even included pronounciation helps. That being said, there are no pictures. That's both good and bad. It forces them to listen carefully and use their imagination. But my very littlest ones get all cranky. A large section of this book Love this book. It takes a number of the Greek and Roman myths and shortens them to be read aloud to the little ones. The author does this without harming the story in any way. After reading many books on the ancient myths, I found these to be the best written. And he even included pronounciation helps. That being said, there are no pictures. That's both good and bad. It forces them to listen carefully and use their imagination. But my very littlest ones get all cranky. A large section of this book deals with the Trojan war and journey of Odysseus. We very briefly touched on that with a picture book and will deal with it more indepth in middle school. But I will use Sutcliff's books for that. I think this has an excellent, but limited, use in the study of ancient cultures.

  17. 4 out of 5

    Emily Brent

    If you are a fan of greek and/or roman mythology, then i'm pretty sure you will like this book. This book is all about retelling the classic greek myths, some of which you have probably heard, and some you may have not. I like this book because it keeps true to the original myths, but also puts them in a format where they can be read aloud to any people of any age. Some of the greatest and most epic poems in history are retold in this book, like the Illiad, the Odyssey, and the Aeneid. I loved t If you are a fan of greek and/or roman mythology, then i'm pretty sure you will like this book. This book is all about retelling the classic greek myths, some of which you have probably heard, and some you may have not. I like this book because it keeps true to the original myths, but also puts them in a format where they can be read aloud to any people of any age. Some of the greatest and most epic poems in history are retold in this book, like the Illiad, the Odyssey, and the Aeneid. I loved this book, and I could not put it down. I guarentee that even if you are not a fan of greek mythology, you will like reading about the epic battles and lessons learned through storytelling of these ancient myths, and I really recommend it. Whenever I read this book, I feel like i'm reading history, yet who knew history was fun to read?

  18. 4 out of 5

    Penny

    My oldest son and I are reading this book. I like that we can read it out loud or he can read it independently. It is geared to read to multiple ages, which works great for this homeschool mom. in addition to reading these classic myths, I also like that each story gives a brief summary, pronunciation guide, estimated reading time, and a section explaining Greek root words. It's a wonderful book and reading tool! My oldest son and I are reading this book. I like that we can read it out loud or he can read it independently. It is geared to read to multiple ages, which works great for this homeschool mom. in addition to reading these classic myths, I also like that each story gives a brief summary, pronunciation guide, estimated reading time, and a section explaining Greek root words. It's a wonderful book and reading tool!

  19. 4 out of 5

    M L

    Hmm. These are indeed classic myths directed toward young children, but I've ultimately and reluctantly concluded that it may not serve its purpose very well. The stories include descriptions that are just too challenging for many young children. I used this book with my daughter, but it proved to be a fairly frustrating and unpleasant experience. Ultimately, she and I both agreed that the stories were just too graphic. Hmm. These are indeed classic myths directed toward young children, but I've ultimately and reluctantly concluded that it may not serve its purpose very well. The stories include descriptions that are just too challenging for many young children. I used this book with my daughter, but it proved to be a fairly frustrating and unpleasant experience. Ultimately, she and I both agreed that the stories were just too graphic.

  20. 5 out of 5

    Jessica

    This book is great because the stories are pretty short and well-written with an additional educational note, usually on etymology, at the end of each chapter. For example, after a story which figured the Greek herald Stentor, there is a brief explanation of the English word "stentorian." My son particularly likes these stories. The only story I didn't want to read aloud was that of Oedipus. Go figure. This book is great because the stories are pretty short and well-written with an additional educational note, usually on etymology, at the end of each chapter. For example, after a story which figured the Greek herald Stentor, there is a brief explanation of the English word "stentorian." My son particularly likes these stories. The only story I didn't want to read aloud was that of Oedipus. Go figure.

  21. 4 out of 5

    Ruth

    For the past month or so, I've been reading a story a day from this book to my charges (with the exception of the Oedipus Cycle, which I skipped over because a few of them are of tender years). These versions are nicely concise without feeling rushed. I like that each story comes with an estimated read-aloud time and handy pronunciation keys for the names. Recommended for parents and educators who want to expose their kids to mythology and don't know where to start. For the past month or so, I've been reading a story a day from this book to my charges (with the exception of the Oedipus Cycle, which I skipped over because a few of them are of tender years). These versions are nicely concise without feeling rushed. I like that each story comes with an estimated read-aloud time and handy pronunciation keys for the names. Recommended for parents and educators who want to expose their kids to mythology and don't know where to start.

  22. 4 out of 5

    JeHee

    I love greek and roman mythology more than any other historical stories. This book is a collection of the Greek and Roman mythology and all the stories they contain are very fun and easy to read. To choose one of the best stories I liked, I would say it is 'Icarus and Daedalus'. This story gave a moral that being too greedy might bring you bad luck. The other stories were also fun to read. Overall I want people who loves greek mythology to read this book. I love greek and roman mythology more than any other historical stories. This book is a collection of the Greek and Roman mythology and all the stories they contain are very fun and easy to read. To choose one of the best stories I liked, I would say it is 'Icarus and Daedalus'. This story gave a moral that being too greedy might bring you bad luck. The other stories were also fun to read. Overall I want people who loves greek mythology to read this book.

  23. 4 out of 5

    Lonette

    My young boys are really into mythology right now, how crazy is that??? They loved it. I did re-word a few parts that I felt were a little excessive in the dirscription (battle sceenes, that kind of thing). But they loved the stories and there a serveral that I had never heard that were very interesting.

  24. 4 out of 5

    Susan

    This is a great book to read aloud with kids. The beginning of each story lists a brief pronunciation/vocabulary guide for some of the words/names that may be difficult, as well as an estimated length of reading time (usually 5-15 minutes).

  25. 4 out of 5

    Mbishop012

    Informational, accurate, and EASY to read! A great shortened version of classic myths that helps the reader with pronunciation and making real world connections. Great for teachers, parents, or mythology newbies.

  26. 5 out of 5

    Michelle Taylor

    This is a great book with Greek and Roman myths. The book is written for adults to read to children. After each story, there is A Few Words More that tells the origin of some words. I find this book fascinating. Enjoy!

  27. 4 out of 5

    E.J. Cullen

    If anyone's looking for a book to read to a kid that will forever, even if only to a minor extent, change his/her intellectual and literary life for the better, this is it. If there's no kid around, it should work for adults, too. If anyone's looking for a book to read to a kid that will forever, even if only to a minor extent, change his/her intellectual and literary life for the better, this is it. If there's no kid around, it should work for adults, too.

  28. 4 out of 5

    B

    not sure if I can get behind anything that cites an "education expert" in it's title... but I LOVED mythology as a kid (middle/high schooler) - look forward to re-reading these stories and introducing the kids. not sure if I can get behind anything that cites an "education expert" in it's title... but I LOVED mythology as a kid (middle/high schooler) - look forward to re-reading these stories and introducing the kids.

  29. 5 out of 5

    Christina

    What a great book to read with your kids to learn about mythology. My son started getting interested in Percy Jackson and wanted to learn more about the greek gods. Now he's a self-proclaimed expert. What a great book to read with your kids to learn about mythology. My son started getting interested in Percy Jackson and wanted to learn more about the greek gods. Now he's a self-proclaimed expert.

  30. 5 out of 5

    Carey

    These are well written and engrossing for a child discovering Greek myths. The ones written for older kids have some gruesome parts, so I found myself frantically trying to skip over things with my 7-year-old looking over my shoulder.

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