Story telling is an art. Children love stories at all times. The rhythm, alteration and repetition found in many childhood favourites not only appeal to children, they also help them to begin to recognise and identify sounds, an important component in emergent literacy.
Principles to be followed in Story Telling
- Start with a short amount of time.
- Choose several short books to start with.
- Use picture books with big sized illustrations.
- Pick up books with limited text.
- In between stories, ask open ended questions such as "What do you think will happen next"?
- In order to retain the attention of children, introduce gesture rhymes such as "Eency Weency Spider".
- Prior to story time, discuss appropriate behaviour in order to help children know what is expected of them.
- Allow children to ask questions.
- Communication or expressions from children must be encouraged.
- Enthuse the children to dramatise the story characters if they want to do so.
- Let the child choose the story book if he wants.
- Train the child to replace the books in the place allotted after story telling.
- Let the child talk about the story at other times than the story time if he likes to do so.
- Help the child to remember and repeat the story.
- Keeping a sense of humour during story telling helps the young child to be happy.
- The principal touch points in story telling are clear voice, tone modulation, eye-to-eye contact and dramatisation of the story teller. If gestures are clear, children understand almost everything you say.
- Stories become more exciting and engaging from two years of age. Hence parents should involve in story telling with preparation and commitment.
Books that appeal to babies and young children
- Pop-up books
- Wordless picture books
- Soft bound books
- Interactive concept books
These books range from counting and cloth boxes with laces, snaps and zippers. Books that are small enough for little hands to use and handle must be offered. The greater the sensory involvement, the greater the learning.