To help students understand the purpose of literary monsters like Grendel in Beowulf, this project requires them to address how fears of a society become part of folklore, movies, and literature. Students consider why Anglo-Saxons would have believed in monsters or what troubles they could have symbolized, and then they design a monster of their own that taps into a fear that's common in our modern society.
In the first part of the project, students analyze what literary monsters like Beowulf's Grendel may have represented in ancient times. They also identify the possible reasons why monsters continue to be popular in today's media.
In the second part of the project, students write the origin story for a new monster that represents modern fears and draw a picture of it.
I've enjoyed this project because it combines literary analysis with a fun, creative element, and it creates a clear link between ancient literature and today's media. It's always worthwhile to have the students share their work with the entire class and observe the various modern fears they highlighted.
I also offer this product as part of my discounted Beowulf Bundle
. Also, make sure that you download my free Anglo-Saxon Riddles
for a fun and challenging Beowulf filler activity!