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KS2 Literacy: The Adventures of Robin Hood (1955-59)

Introducing legends using a well-loved folk hero

Main image of KS2 Literacy: The Adventures of Robin Hood (1955-59)
AuthorPoppy Simpson, BFI
Topic Robin Hood - Myths and Legends
Curriculum linksPrimary Literacy Strategy - Engaging and responding to texts

The long-running and popular series from the 1950s charting the adventures of Robin Hood and his band of merry men.

This activity uses a short extract from The Adventures of Robin Hood (1955-59) to get students thinking about the common characteristics of folk heroes as well as explore the key features of legends.

This starter could be used to introduce a longer lesson or scheme of work looking at myths and legends.



Begin by showing students the extract from The Adventures of Robin Hood in which the hero is trying to escape from the Sheriff's castle. Ask students to list the adjectives that they associate with Robin Hood - as he is portrayed in the clip.

Looking through the collective list as a class, ask students whether these agree that these descriptive words that they associate with other 'heroes'. Why?

Having established a basic checklist of adjectives for a hero, introduce the term 'legend'. What do students know about the story of Robin Hood? Why do they think it is described as a 'legend'? Students may need some help here, but the aim is to lead them to a basic understanding of some of the key features of legends - namely, they take place in human history, involve mystery, draw on tradition, involve a hero and some sort of villain etc.

This will allow you to segue into a more detailed activity around legends, or the story of Robin Hood itself.


Some more ideas

  • Alternatively, use this extract to encourage students to think about narrative. A simple 'what happens next?' activity might lead nicely into an lesson that explores the way in which legends tend to be structured.
Video Clips
Extract (5:01)

Related Films and TV programmes

Thumbnail image of Adventures of Robin Hood, The (1955-59)Adventures of Robin Hood, The (1955-59)

Read more about this programme

See also

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Heroism with sword, bow or pistol