Topic: Education

National Storytelling Week, starting Saturday 27th January, is an annual event designed to celebrate the age-old tradition of storytelling. Storytelling is an essential part of our Growing Readers programme which is designed to inspire a love of books and to nurture the desire to be a reader and creator of stories.

Storytelling is a unique way to allow children to develop an understanding about life, about ourselves and about others. Scientists have found that regularly reading fiction to children makes it easier for them to understand and empathise with other people, ultimately giving them a better developed theory of mind as well as shaping those vital early literacy skills.

Here’s a short video of one of our nursery nurses reading ‘The Bear and the Piano’ by David Litchfield to children at our Didsbury Nursery. Take note of her voice, facial expressions, body movements and level of involvement with the children:

We’ve put together a list of pointers to make a successful storytelling session:

  • Consider your tone of voice. Using different voices for different characters can be very effective.
  • Use facial expressions to express the emotions of the characters.
  • Involve the children by stopping to ask questions.
  • Get creative with the use of your body movements, this will help to keep the children’s attention.
  • Use eye contact to draw children into the story.
  • Have fun! If you demonstrate a positive approach to storytelling then children are more likely to develop that same attitude to books and stories too!

Top Tip: Choose books which are both bright will illustrations and include lots of rhymes. This will help your child understand and absorb sentence structure and the rhymes required for reading, whilst also sharpening their listening skills. Why not take a look at our book gallery for some inspiration!

For more information on our Growing Readers enhancement programme, please click here.