21st November 18
In YR2 the children have been working on storytelling using trays of natural objects. Children love to tell stories and this teaching method allows them to develop their stories more fully before they try to write them down.
YR2 teacher Caitlin explains, “We’re trying to capture the creativity children use naturally when they play. Children are excited about story telling but translating all their ideas into writing can be very difficult for them. Within Story Studio we help them to develop and rehearse their story through play, before they write it down.”
To begin with, children are presented with a tray of beautiful objects. In the case of this YR2 class they objects were all natural to tie in with their topic of ‘habitats’. The children are encouraged to play with the objects and make up stories around them. Staff prompt the children with questions like ‘What stories can you find in these materials?’ but don’t guide their story making.
Once children have a story in mind, the staff guide them to think about characters, setting and creating stories with problems and solutions and the children tell this story out loud.
By telling the stories to their peers, to staff and parents, they rehearse the story, cement it in their minds and draw it out as a story map.
Only when the story is familiar to the children are they encouraged to write it down. Because they know what they want to say, they can focus on their writing skills.
The children have enjoyed their story journeys as well as crafting their storytelling and writing skills.
“Capturing the joy and fun of children’s imaginations is difficult,” says Caitlin, “but through Story Studio we’ve been able to take the children on a journey which has led them to being better storytellers while also having fun.”