Sleuthing the Snow Queen: Classroom Project

Karen Foxlee's lovely middle grade fantasy novel, Ophelia and the Marvelous Boy is based on the myth of the Snow Queen. This mythologem can be traced far back in our history, sometimes as an ice queen or ice princess.

A fascinating project for kids would be to take this myth and trace it back in history. We find it in recent literature—the White Witch in Narnia, Hans Christian Anderson's Snow Queen, of course Disney...with its free-wheeling reinterpretations with all things marketing in mind.

Those stories have their antecedents in older mythologies. Like the myths of the Norse goddesses Skadi or Hel. Robert Graves' The White Goddess also explores the myth.

I'm no scholar, but I've read enough of Carl Jung's work to recognize a powerful archetype in the Snow Queen. And powerful archetypes ignite imagination. So turn your students loose into an exploration of the Snow Queen archetype. Then challenge them to write their own version.