Lesson Plan

Once Upon a Time - Lesson

Lesson Plan

Level: Grades 2 to 6

Author: MediaSmarts


In this lesson, students become aware of the idea of stereotyping and the role that stereotypes play in the stories and movies that they enjoy. Students are introduced to stereotypes by brainstorming the characteristics that are associated with stock characters from fairy tales and Disney films. For younger students, the book The Paper Bag Princess is used to illustrate non-stereotypical portrayals of princes and princesses. For older students, The True Story of the Three Little Pigs provides an opportunity to discuss how different types of animals - and people - are routinely stereotyped in children’s stories and films.

Learning Outcomes

Students will:

  • understand that the representations made by the media are not always accurate
  • understand the concept of stereotyping
  • identify their own perceptions of various stereotypes
  • recognize that the media construct reality

This lesson and all associated documents (handouts, overheads, backgrounders) is available in an easy-print, pdf kit version. 

Lesson Kit: