Volume 21 Number 18 July 1, 2020

The Tale of Red Riding Hood and the Wolf as a Multi-literacy Tool for Reflection and Embodied Learning

Margareta Aspán
Stockholm University, Sweden

Citation: Aspán, M. (2020). The tale of Red Riding Hood and the Wolf as a multi-literacy tool for reflection and embodied learning. International Journal of Education & the Arts, 21(18). Retrieved from http://doi.org/10.26209/ijea21n18.


This article concerns how teaching artists, associated with the Swedish Royal Opera, provided aesthetic opportunities to students during a three-year school project. One intervention is scrutinized in which the storybook of Red Riding Hood was used as a starting point for further aesthetic learning, culminating in a shadow theatre performance. With an ethnographic approach, the study identifies how a folk story can act as a multi-literacy tool for learning. The children’s working processes and performance are interpreted under the inspiration of the Performance Cycle (Landay & Wootton, 2012) focusing on the reflective process.

Via a pragmatic discourse analysis, interview data from focus groups with children show that the interventions offer varied learning opportunities. Three themes emerge from the analysis of the children’s perspectives on the arts project, as learning opportunities linked to; (i) the material and the construction assignment; (ii) embodiment and emotionality; and (iii) social aspects and the importance of social interaction and friendship.

Visual Abstract

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