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A Travel Journal for Homer's Odyssey


  • Arts & Humanities
    --Visual Arts


  • 9-12

Brief Description

Students select their favorite excerpts from The Odyssey, type a first-hand account of the story, and add graphics and music from the Internet. This lesson uses Apple's Pages program and includes a completed sample for viewing.


Students will:
  • identify basic action, characters, and setting in Homer's The Odyssey.
  • summarize specific scenes in their own words.
  • locate, copy, and paste graphics (and possible audio) that support the details in the summary.
  • cite all graphics, text, etc. used.


Odyssey, setting, Pages, travel journal

Materials Needed

  • iWork's Pages.
  • the Internet.
  • a printer.

Lesson Plan

This lesson can be an excellent introduction to iWork's Pages program. Or, you might choose to duplicate the basic idea using another program, such as Microsoft Word or Publisher. Note that students need to have basic skills at opening and closing programs, saving work, printing, and so on.

Prior to the lesson, the class should read one or more of Odysseus' adventures. As an adventure is read, help students identify the action, the characters, the conflict, and the resolution. Also, ask what images might help them better understand or imagine the scene. You also might want to discuss with students certain high-interest scenes, such as Odysseus' encounters with Circe, the Cyclops, the Sirens.

The steps below can be completed as a class in a computer lab or in a 1:1 laptop setting, or individually or in groups on classroom computers. If appropriate or desired for your students, you might show them an example of a completed travel journal before beginning the lesson.

Provide students with the following directions:

  • Get Started! Open Pages in iWork, click Journals > Travel Journals > Choose. You'll see a travel journal on Italy. Your job today is to add new text to the template to transform it to a travel journal written by Odysseus about some of his adventures. Click the title "Italy" and change it to "The Odyssey." Change the subtitle to "The Journey Home is a Long One!" Click the Pages icon and select "Body Page with Photos side" to create a second page.
  • Change times (3:38 p.m. for example) to names of places Odysseus visited on his return to Ithaca. The details below each location will tell what happened to Odysseus when he was there, and how he escaped or left.
  • A tip on style: If you're copying and pasting text from a Web site, click Edit > Copy after you highlight the text (as you would normally), but when you're ready to paste, click Edit > Paste and Match Style to ensure that your new text has the same properties as the rest of the text on the Pages page.
  • Images are simple! Go to a Web page and drag an image to a placeholder (a place containing an existing picture) on the Pages document. Select images that show the location, highlight narrative elements (a triton for Odysseus' encounter with Poseidon, for example), or show archeological artifacts.
  • Insert video or audio too. Go to Homer Odyssey: Audio click CTRL and your mouse button, and then click Download Linked File. The audio now is in iTunes.
  • Sites: Consider using the following Web sites:
  • Don't forget to cite resources. Click the Pages icon at top left and select Text Page from the drop-down menu to add a third page. Type on that page all your sources. Include print as well as online sources. You can use the Citation Machine.


Students will be assessed on their ability to:
  • identify major story elements such as plot and characters.
  • summarize story elements.
  • select, place, and cite graphics found online.

Lesson Plan Source

Education World

Submitted By

Lorrie Jackson

National Standards

FINE ARTS: Visual Arts
GRADES 9 - 12
NA-VA.9-12.3 Choosing and Evaluating A Range of Subject Matter, Symbols, and Ideas
NA-VA.9-12.4 Understanding the Visual Arts In Relation to History and Cultures
NA-VA.9-12.6 Making Connections Between Visual Arts and Other Disciplines

NL-ENG.K-12.1 Reading for Perspective
NL-ENG.K-12.2 Reading for Understanding
NL-ENG.K-12.6 Applying Knowledge
NL-ENG.K-12.7 Evaluating Data
NL-ENG.K-12.8 Developing Research Skills
NL-ENG.K-12.9 Multicultural Understanding
NL-ENG.K-12.12 Applying Language Skills