The Tales of Beedle the Bard

Chapter Book, Transmedia Post

Bibliographic Information: Rowling, J. K. The Tales of Beedle the Bard. New York: Scholastic, 2007.

Plot Description:
This book exists inside the Harry Potter universe as a collection of folk tales that wizarding children grow up with. The most important story is The Tale of the Three Brothers. The three wizards used magic to build a bridge over a treacherous river. Death felt cheated, so he figured out another way to get his souls. He offered each brother a boon. The oldest brother demanded an undefeatable wand, the second brother wanted a stone that could bring the dead back alive, and the youngest brother asked for a cloak that would hide him from Death itself. The first brother bragged about his unbeatable wand, and someone slipped into his room at night and killed him, stealing the wand. And so Death took the first brother. The next brother returned to his home and brought his beloved back to life, but she was only a mockery of a living human. He killed himself in his depression. And so Death took the second brother. Death didn’t find the third brother again for a very long time. It was only when the man was old and ready to die that he passed on the cloak to his son. He greeted Death as an old friend, and went with him gladly, as equals.

Quantitative Reading Level: Lexile: 1290; Accelerated Reader: 8.3

Qualitative Reading Analysis:
This book is written in third-person, focusing on the misadventures of each tale. It teaches many morals: to be kind, to believe in yourself, to love, to not be greedy, and to be humble. The text is 6th grade reading level.

Content Area: English

Content Area Standard:

  • CCSS for Literature for K-5: #2 Determine a theme of a story, drama, or poem from details in the text, including how characters in a story or drama respond to challenges or how the speaker in a poem reflects upon a topic; summarize the text; #4 Determine the meaning of words and phrases as they are used in a text, including figurative language such as metaphors and similes; #10 Read and comprehend literature in grade level text complexity range.
  • CCSS for Informational Text for K-5: #5 Compare and contrast the overall structure (e.g., chronology, comparison, cause/effect, problem/solution) of events, ideas, concepts, or information in two or more texts; #8 Explain how an author uses reasons and evidence to support particular points in a text, identifying which reasons and evidence support which point(s).
  • CCSS for Foundational Skills for K-5:  #4 Read with sufficient accuracy and fluency to support comprehension.

Curriculum suggestions:
This is a great chapter book to use in English Language Arts Curriculum. It is best suited to 5th grade through 7th grade. It explores themes like mystery and adventure.

Note: The Tale of the Three Brothers is critical to the seventh Harry Potter novel, and was beautifully animated in the movie.

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