Story Telling Time
The beauty of storytelling isn’t just in the tales we weave, but also in the manner in which they are told. For young learners, storytelling time is not just an avenue for entertainment; it’s a crucial tool for teachers to gauge various soft skills in children.
Objective: The main aim is to gauge expressive (how children communicate their thoughts and feelings) and receptive (how children understand and interpret communication from others) communication.
Activity Description: During this activity, kids are encouraged to share personal experiences or create imaginative tales. You can get a full detail of conducting such activities in our Our Teacher’s Activity Book.
Traits to Observe:
- Observation: Look for kids who are eager to share their stories, those who raise their hand immediately or can’t wait to share.
- Introvert vs. Extrovert Inference: Eager sharers may lean towards extroversion. They enjoy being in the spotlight and have a natural inclination to engage with others. Introverted children might wait, take a bit more time to warm up, or might even need a gentle nudge. Remember, this doesn’t mean that introverts don’t have wonderful stories; they just have a different pace and approach to sharing.
- Active Listening:
- Observation: These are the kids who maintain eye contact, nod in understanding, or give reactions to their peers’ stories.
- Introvert vs. Extrovert Inference: Active listeners can be both introverts and extroverts. Extroverts might engage more vocally, perhaps by interjecting with comments or related anecdotes. Introverts might show their engagement through facial expressions and body language.
- Comfort in Sharing with Peers:
- Observation: Notice the body language. Are they speaking confidently, or do they seem nervous? Are they making eye contact with peers or just looking at you?
- Introvert vs. Extrovert Inference: While extroverts might generally seem more at ease while sharing, introverts might be more reserved or choose shorter narratives. However, with repeated opportunities, introverts can gain confidence and become equally comfortable.
- Observation: Here, it’s all about the content. Are their stories filled with imaginative characters, unexpected twists, or unique perspectives?
- Introvert vs. Extrovert Inference: Both introverts and extroverts can be equally creative. It’s crucial not to associate the depth or uniqueness of a story with a child’s disposition.
Questions to Probe Deeper:
- What inspired you to tell this story?
- How did you feel when that happened in your story?
- Can you imagine a different ending to your story or a sequel?
- What do you think your character was feeling during the story?
Tips for Teachers:
- Gentle Encouragement: Always remember that each child is unique. While some may be bursting with eagerness to share their story, others might need a bit more time. For those shy children, offer a gentle push, maybe by saying, “We’d love to hear your story when you’re ready.” But it’s essential to recognize their boundaries. If they prefer just to listen, that’s perfectly okay.
- Note Personal Experiences: Sometimes, storytelling can be a therapeutic outlet for children. If you sense that a story stems from a personal, especially emotional experience, keep that in mind. It may be beneficial to discuss it with the child later privately or bring it up with parents or counselors to ensure the child’s well-being.
- Celebrate Every Story: The aim isn’t to judge the quality of the story but to encourage the act of sharing. Whether it’s a short tale about their pet or an epic adventure in space, every story deserves appreciation. A simple acknowledgment like, “Thank you for sharing that with us!” can be incredibly uplifting for a child’s confidence.
After the whirlwind of stories, it’s beneficial to take a step back and reflect on what just transpired. Here’s a simple guide to help:
- Themes and Motifs: Did you notice any recurring themes or motifs in the stories? Maybe many spoke about family outings or magical creatures. Recognizing these can provide insights into what’s on top of the children’s minds.
- Surprising Stories: Every so often, a child’s story might stand out for its unexpected depth or perspective. Reflect on these stories. What made them memorable? Was it the content, the emotion, or the way it was told?
- Group Responses: Paying attention to the audience, in this case, the rest of the class, is just as important. How did they respond to the emotional highs and lows of a story? Were they empathetic, excited, or indifferent? This can give you a pulse of the class’s emotional intelligence.
Remember, the lines between introversion and extroversion aren’t fixed. Traits might overlap, and a child’s behavior can change based on the environment, mood, or comfort level. Use this activity as a tool for understanding and nurturing, not labelling. Each child is a unique individual, and each story is a window into their vibrant world. Happy storytelling!
Dive Deeper with Our Teacher’s Activity Book!
If you found the storytelling activity insightful and are looking for more such engaging classroom activities, you’re in luck! Our Teacher’s Activity Book is packed with carefully curated and guided activity sheets designed for the modern classroom. Each activity is structured to tap into various facets of a child’s development, ensuring a holistic learning experience.
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