Passing Down Wisdom: Hispanic and African American Folktales

Lesson 1

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Recount what happens in “The Bird of One Thousand Colors.”

Readings and Materials

  • Book: Tales Our Abuelitas Told, A Hispanic Folktale Collection by F. Isabel Campoy and Alma Flora Ada  — "The Bird of One Thousand Colors"

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Target Task


Writing Prompt

Recount what happens in “The Bird of One Thousand Colors.”

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Key Questions


Pg. 27 Describe the bird. What made him unique? 
Pg. 29 Why does the Turkey think that he should be king? Are those the qualities of a good king? (Then spiral back… is the Turkey fit to be king? Why or why not)
Pg. 29 Why does the little bird decide to offer Turkey her feathers? How does Turkey respond? What does this reveal about each character? 
Pg. 29 Read the sentence from the story below. “But the Turkey, now king, did not heed him.” What does the word heed mean as used in this sentence? What does it reveal about the king? 
Pg. 30 Why do the forest birds use the words unheard of and injustice to describe what happened to the little bird? What do those word signify? 
Pg. 30 How does the little bird respond to the forest bird’s gift? Why? 
How do the little bird and the forest birds show the value of friendship? 



splendid     (adj.)

impressive and beautiful

injustice     (n.)

unfair treatment

strutted     (v.)

walked in a confident way

mused     (v.)

thought carefully about something

neglected     (adj.)

not given enough attention or care

heed     (v.)

to pay attention to and obey a direction

Enhanced lesson plan

Enhanced Lesson Plan

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Common Core Standards

  • RL.3.2 — Recount stories, including fables, folktales, and myths from diverse cultures; determine the central message, lesson, or moral and explain how it is conveyed through key details in the text.

  • RL.3.3 — Describe characters in a story (e.g., their traits, motivations, or feelings) and explain how their actions contribute to the sequence of events.

Spiral Standards