Have you ever seen a professional storyteller perform?
When I was first introduced to this, as an adult, I was rather sceptical and didn’t hold out too much hope for an enjoyable evening. My first experience was in a little theatre in the UK, called the Bob Hope Theatre, Eltham. It is ingrained in my memory.
I was completely captivated. If you get the chance to see a storyteller live, in action, I urge you to take the opportunity. In the meantime, have a look at this quick story told by Jan Blake.
As a teacher of young children, storytelling became an important part to my teaching and the children’s learning. I adore storytelling and am still astounded by the positive impact it has on children’s reading and writing ability. There is a video below with Pie Corbett who has had a great influence on my story telling.
Reading a story from a book gives the ‘reader’ a bit of security. In a way, they hide behind the book. There isn’t a problem with this as long as they can captivate their audience. When you are reading a story, your focus has to be on the text rather than on the children (or adults). Looking at the expressions on their faces is not only a wonderful sight but it also helps to gauge the impact you are having.
I have heard the excuse ‘I don’t know any stories to tell’. Of course you do!!
Stories don’t have to be from a published book. We all have stories to tell and your children love to hear anecdotes from your life. Think about some of your treasured memories or funny episodes from your life (suitable for a child, of course!). These make the best stories and you can embellish as you wish.
If you are worried about missing out a crucial part of the story why not use some props to jog your memory and these also give you something to hold for security if needs be.
Nowadays children expect a book. The indignant cries of ‘Where’s the book?’, ‘I can’t see the pictures!’ and maybe even, ‘You’re just being silly’ (from the mouth of a 7 year old gifted reader). Once children realise that they are being entertained they soon begin to enjoy the experience and are eager to participate in the known or repetitive parts of the story, eg, ‘Who’s been eating my porridge?
I want to share this video with you. Pie Corbett is a British Poet, Storyteller and education consultant and I’ve been to see him on many occasions. He has been an inspiration to me as a teacher but also as a parent and grandparent.
The greatest benefit, from a storyteller’s point of view, is to be able to see your audience. This is a wonderful sight and I recommend that you try it at least for this lovely experience.
In the Top Tips section of this website there are some more ideas for helping improve your storytelling prowess.
Do you a story you love to tell?
What would be your favourite story to hear?
It would be lovely to hear from you.