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Hello! Welcome to our learning resource page dedicated to all things fairy tale and legendary!

If you’ve discovered this page, you’ve probably got our hands on one of our fairytale colouring gifts, packed full of characters, creatures, stories and legends…and this is the place where you can find out a bit more about all of the things you’re colouring! While you’re here, why not try some of our fun creative writing activities as well…

As you’ll see, the colour your own fairy tale illustration is full of familiar faces, so our first questions is:

How many story book characters do you recognise? Count and name as many as you can!

You probably spotted these two characters in the drawing who, as you might know, are Robin Hood and Maid Marian, known for being brave and heroic outlaws from English Folklore. Together with his team of Merry Men (a band of brothers including characters like ‘Little John’, ‘Much’, ‘Friar Tuck’ and ‘Will Scarlet’), Hood is portrayed as someone who steals from the rich to help the poor and his partner, Marian, who fights the same cause, if often celebrated as one of the earliest strong female characters depicted in English literature.

The story of Robin Hood is an old one dating back to the 14th century and perhaps even earlier, and as with all old tales, it’s evolved over time, absorbing new characters and plotlines, resulting in many, many thousands of different adaptations. There are a few things though that remain constant in most Robin Hood stories and that’s the setting, Sherwood Forest, which is a vast forest in Nottingham filled with wildlife. (If you’re ever in Nottingham, look out for sign posts that reference Robin Hood – they’re everywhere!) The other constant is Robin’s nemesis, the Sheriff of Nottingham, an unjust tyrant unaware of the town’s poverty who enforces unaffordable taxes. Typically in the tale though, Hood comes out triumphant having overcome the Sherriff and saved the poor people of Nottingham! The roots of stories like this often lie in the political events of the day – another aspect you might like to investigate as it’s a fun way to learn history, too!

Can you write your own story about Robin Hood? You can include the familiar setting and characters we know of, or you can make up your own new ones!

Do you recognise these two? They’re brother and sister, Hansel and Gretel, two imagined characters dreamed up by German brothers Whilhelm and Jacob Grimm from the eponymous tale ‘Hansel and Gretel’. The story goes that the siblings are abandoned in a forest where, feeling tired and hungry, they discover a house made entirely of gingerbread and sweets. Lured by the treats, the children fall into the hands of a cannibalistic witch who lives inside the house. The witch intends to fatten the children before cooking and eating them, but cunning Gretel outsits her and pushes the witch in the oven, allowing the two children to escape. A rather scary story, the authors seem to match their own surname: ‘the Brothers Grimm’.

Think about your favourite fairytale and write your own version.

Unicorns are mystical creatures that have been spoken of since Antiquity – they’re even written about in the Bible! Because they’ve been around for so long it’s and very difficult to know exactly when, where or why they first came into the public imagination but what is clear is that over time unicorns have taken on some distinct characteristics. They are usually depicted as horse-like, white animals with one single long horn in the middle of their foreheads and they are commonly associated with purity, grace, rarity, magic and beauty.

Can you create your own mystical character? Draw and write about them!

These characters here I’m sure you recognise as Cinderella from a very popular fairytale of the same name and her fairy Godmother. The story first began as an oral tale, which means it was told from person to person and because of this, it was added to and altered many times, resulting in thousands of variations told and heard all over the world!  

Castles often appear in fairytales. Can you design your own castle and write your own story about it?