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Sunday, March 21, 2010

Story telling and skill development

Story telling is another skill development tool which teachers or parents can use effectively. Active learning and creativity are at the core of storytelling. It is about enabling children and young people to become good listeners, storytellers and storymakers. Storytelling is fun and stimulates the imagination.

Storytelling is engaging and motivates children to learn, as well as stimulating an interest and skills in writing and reading. Using stories of increasing complexity and length from a range of story genres encourages progressive learning through and between levels.

Storytelling and storymaking help teachers to meet the Listening and talking experiences and outcomes of Literacy across learning, Literacy and English and Health and Wellbeing across learning. They can also be used as tools for supporting learning in numeracy, science and other areas, and can lead to cross-curricular and inter-departmental collaborations.

Many storytellers, educators and researchers advocate that storytelling can contribute significantly to early literacy development.

Developing Literacy Skills Through Storytelling

Development of Imagination: When children listen to stories, they respond by creating images of the characters and places described by the words. This process of developing internal images and meaning in response to words is the basis of imagination. Researchers who study brain and behavioral development have identified imagination, not only as the essence of creativity, but as the basis for all higher order thinking.

Improvement of Reading, Writing , and Speaking Skills: Children who listen to stories are exposed to many new words. Storytelling can be used in a myriad of ways to improve students' oral communication skills. Once they have heard a story, children are usually anxious to discuss their understanding of the story and relate it their own experiences.

Strengthening of Critical Thinking Skills: A close look at traditional stories from any culture reveals stories dealing with death, loss, separation, abandonment, fear, and anger. The stories also show that love, compassion, understanding, and courage can be a part of stories as well. Students grapple with painful realities of life: parental divorce, poverty, substance abuse, the violent deaths of close friends--and stories can help them negotiate these difficulties of life and can be of inestimable value.

Stories are also effective in increasing tolerance and understanding of people from other cultures. Through the medium of story, the listener can safely explore what all human beings have in common as well as how they differ from each other.

Stories are not just incidental to the development of literacy in young people--they are essential. They are a powerful and indispensable tool to teaching literacy and critical thinking skills to students.

More at: 'National service'

* Storytelling also enhances comprehension skills.

* "When storytelling is combined with judicious questioning and retelling strategies, comprehension skills at the literal, inferential and critical levels can be developed

Useful links:

* 'Story Arts Online' says: As a learning tool, storytelling can encourage students to explore their unique expressiveness and can heighten a student's ability to communicate thoughts and feelings in an articulate, lucid manner.

* SHARING STORIES: A Storyteller’s Approach to Oral History

* The Role of Storytelling in Early Literacy Development

* The Development of Children's Story Telling Skills. Download PDF report
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