Breakfast with a Centaur

story by Jenny Blackford , illustrated by Greg Holfeld

Learning intention:

I am learning to draw on my own knowledge, research and imagination so that I can combine fact and fiction when creating aspects of my own stories.


Success criteria:

  • I can use my understanding and knowledge to research mythological creatures
  • I can use information gathered through research to brainstorm appropriate food items
  • I can combine factual and imaginative ideas to create a menu for my creature.


Essential knowledge:

More information about identifying aspects of a genre can be found in the English Textual Concepts video Genre.


After reading the title of the story, ask students if they know what a centaur is and allow those with prior knowledge to share it with the class. Explain that they may be familiar with centaurs from the mythology genre. If nobody is sure, allow students to learn what a centaur is (half human / half horse creature from Greek mythology) as they read through the story and look at the illustrations.


Following the story, ask students to recall the food the centaur ate for breakfast. This should include:


  • Leftover pizza
  • Pineapple
  • Mangoes
  • Apples


Ask students to discuss with a partner what they would feed a centaur who showed up in their backyard and encourage them to be as creative as possible. They may wish to incorporate some of their own favourite foods, things that they think horses may like to eat, or even foods that they imagine would have been popular in Ancient Greece. Ask pairs to share their ideas with the class.


Explain that they are going to choose another mythical creature to plan breakfast for. To do this, students should work with their partner to research other mythical creatures. If possible, make books on Greek mythology and mythical creatures available to them to use from the library (Dewey Decimal number 398.469). Otherwise, allow them to conduct online research using sources such as Ducksters – Ancient Greece: Monsters and Creatures of Greek Mythology.


Students should read through descriptions and view pictures of mythical creatures, then choose one to plan their breakfast for. They should come up with a breakfast menu suitable to their creature, taking into account the type of creature they will be feeding (e.g., the Sphinx is the combination of a woman, a lion and an eagle, so students may research what lions and eagles eat), as well as the size of the creature when deciding how big the meals should be. Explain that students can use real food in their menu or use it as inspiration to make up their own (e.g., mouse guts smoothie, scrambled legs).


Students should present their menu in a professional way by either using design software or creating a neatly handwritten and decorated menu on paper. If time allows, each pair share their menu with the class, explaining which creature they chose and why they created the menu that they did for them.