The Trojan War began with the kidnapping of Helen of Troy, often referenced as the face that launched a thousand ships. Paris of Troy took Helen from her husband in Sparta. The artists Epeius created the Trojan Horse. It was a hollowed wooden horse used to smuggle Greek warriors into the unsuspecting city. It is unclear how many warriors the horse contained, but key historical warriors apparently waited inside, including Odysseus. The horse was a gift to the people of Troy and accepted as a gesture of peace and surrender. Troy celebrated and when its defenders stopped paying attention to the horse itself from either drunkenness or other distractions, the Greek warriors emerged and seized the city, enslaving the women and killing the men.
"Beware of Greeks bearing gifts"" Posters
This is a common phrase associated with the story of the Trojan Horse. A possible project creation would be illustrating or painting the moments surrounding the presentation of the Trojan Horse: its inspection at the gates to the city, or images depicting the inside of the horse with its waiting solders.
Model horse with miniature warriors
Students can create a model Trojan Horse with a hollowed inside and miniature Greek warrior figures in a variety of ways by using papier mache, light balsa wood or Popsicle sticks to create the horse structure and warriors. To make a detailed model, shape the horse around an empty plastic bottle or container to allow you to actually insert the wooden figures into the horse.
You can use a cardboard base to create a model battlefield depicting the walled city of Troy and the battlefield of the Trojan War. Creating miniature warriors and landscapes can allow you to stage a miniature interactive model of the implementation of the Trojan Horse strategy or battles and events from the 10 years of the Trojan War.
Re-enactment or Production
Students can create costumes and mock swords and weapons to re-enact the kidnapping of Helen and the battles leading up to the Trojan Horse strategy and seizing of Troy. Developing a stage production of these events can allow students to create more lifelike landscape scenery and detailed costumes for the stage and experiment with dialogue and arts skills.
Students can create flow charts similar to "6 Degrees of Separation" to connect the main characters involved in the Trojan War and the Trojan Horse strategy. Use these connections to create a timeline of events based on the characters' actions leading up to, and after, the presentation of the Trojan Horse and seizure of Troy.
Illustrated Profile Pages
Students may find that creating portraits of key figures based on descriptions in the Trojan War myth a great project idea. Figures like Aphrodite, Zeus, Helen, Paris, Odysseus, Achilles and other warriors appear in various Greek myths. Create small biographical summaries of their roles in the Trojan War and use of the Trojan Horse. Students can create profile pages similar to those seen on popular social networking sites along with decorations such as symbols associated with the gods and goddesses involved in the Trojan War.
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