Storytelling is one of the activities almost everyone experienced during their childhood. It is an enlightening and engaging way of educating children. Importantly, it allows instructors, caregivers, and parents to spend quality time with children.
Through stories, storytelling describes thoughts, philosophies, and occurrences in a vivid manner. Hence, this article expatiates the art of storytelling and its importance in early childhood education.
Table of Contents
What is a Story?
A story is also known as a narrative or a tale. It is a description of a sequence of occasions and experiences (fiction or nonfiction) which relate to one another. Specifically, stories have two major types, which are fiction stories and non-fiction stories.
A Fiction Story
A fiction story is a type of story that presents narratives on imaginative events, inventions, and creativity. However, some types of fictional stories include;
These include works of art that are produced mainly for children. They consist of poetry, books, magazines, and stories. They are works that have explanations that can help children to better understand what they read and also find it interesting. Such include;
Lullabies are also known as cradle songs. Generally, they are songs that people sing to children to give them knowledge, get their attention, regulate their behavior, or make them sleep.
Fairytales also mean magic tales or wonder tales. Similarly, they are stories that often portray mythological characters like unicorns, mermaids, animals that talk, witches and wizards, magic or sorcery, dragons, goblins, elves, and dwarfs.
Fables are stories that specifically present objects that are non-living, creatures that are legendary, plants and animals, which are personified to convey moral messages.
Folk songs, also known as folk music, are songs that portray cultures, norms, traditions, and customs. Specifically, these songs deal with oral transmission and go mostly with instruments that are traditional.
Picture books are books that present stories in narrative and pictorial or graphic format. Moreover, the imagery conveyed in such books arouses the interest of children and helps them to understand the narrative better. Examples of picture books for children are;
- The Very Hungry Catapillar
- The Tale of Peter Rabbit
- The Rainbow by Marcus Pfister
- Possum Magic by Mem Fox
- Diary of a Wombat by Jackie French
- Sulwe by Lupita Nyongu
The term comic refers to the communication of thoughts and concepts through images and written words or other graphic material. Characteristically, the images are in form of panels. Also, devices that are common to texts, like captions, balloons, and onomatopoeia can present discussions and stories.
- The following are some top comic books for children;
- All’s Faire in Middle School by Victoria Jamieson
- As the Crow Flies by Melanie Gillman
- The Shark King by Kikuo R. Johnson
- El Deafo by CeCe Bell and Dan Lasky
- Smile by Raina Telgemeier
This is a type of story that entails the acts of humans that are believed to have occurred in history. It is a form of folklore. Specifically, legend, as a type of story, illustrates human tenets and has some features that make its fictional exhibition believable. Examples of such stories are;
- The Legend of Christmas Tree
- The Children of Lir
- The Legend of the Black Sea
- Halum the Temple Tiger
- Pandora Boxed
A thriller is a type of story that arouses feelings of expectation, suspense, astonishment, curiosity, and excitement in audiences and/or readers. Typically, it is a story that offers a protagonist obstacles that he has to overcome. Moreover, a thriller is a form of fiction that has a lot of subgenres which include;
- Crime thriller
- Psychological thriller
- Action thriller
- Mystery thriller
- Legal thriller
- Political Thriller
- Science Fiction Thriller
However, some examples of children thriller stories are;
- Lord of the Flies by William Golding
- Good Girl, Bad Blood by Holly Jackson
- Suzanne Collins’ The Ballad of Songbirds and Snakes
- A Good Girl’s Guide to Murder by Holly Jackson
- Karen M. McManus’ One of Us Is Lying
The word novel originates from the Italian word ‘novella’, which means, ‘new’ or ‘news’. It is a narrative and literary work which usually comes in form of a book. It is a type of story that is lengthy, often fictional, and portrays the experiences of humans.
Some examples of children’s novels are;
- Alice’s Adventures in Wonderland by Lewis Carroll
- The Wonderful Wizard of Oz by L. Frank Baum
- The Railway Children by E. Nesbit
- The Wind in the Willows by Kenneth Grahame
- The Tale of Peter Rabbit by Beatrice Potter
- Winnie the Pooh by A.A. Milne
A nonfiction story
A nonfiction story is a type of story that specifies and illustrates data/information and realities about the world around an individual. The purpose of nonfiction work is to make people aware of circumstances, happenings, animals, businesses, professions, and individuals. Therefore, this differs from fiction works which are products of imagination.
Some examples of nonfiction are;
An Expository Story
This is a form of work that deals with the explanation and description of events. For example, expository stories for children can include topics like;
- Explain why you love your mother
- Why do you like your teacher?
- What type of animal do you like, and why?
A Descriptive Story
Descriptive writing is that which describes individuals, places, happenings, objects, circumstances, among others. Here, the stories are written in such a way that the 5 sense organs (eyes, skin, ears, tongue, and nose) are used to comprehend the work.
Words are selected carefully by the writer to give the reader a clearer picture. Some examples of descriptive stories for children are;
- Fox by Ron Brooks and Margaret Wild
- Owl Moon by Jane Yolen
- Crazy like a Fox by Loreen Leedy
- Winter by Mrs. Sutton
An Opinion piece
This is simply a type of article that portrays the idea of an author on a particular subject. They come in newspapers, magazines, and other editorials. For example, TIME Magazine have a special publication for kids in form of opinion pieces. Some topics they treat include;
- Children running businesses
- Summer reading
- School uniforms
- Plastic straws
An essay is a form of writing that portrays the argument of a writer on a subject. An essay can be formal or informal.
A biography is a detail of the personal experience of an individual, written by someone else. Some examples of children biographies are;
- The Oldest Student: How Mary Walker Learned to Read
- Buzzing with Questions: The Inquisitive Mind of Charles Henry Turner
- Turning Pages: My Life Story
An autobiography is a story about a person’s life, written by the person.
A memoir is a story that explains the memories of a writer. What makes a memoir different from biography and autobiography is the fact that it portrays the details of an event or time experienced by the author.
A journal is a form of publication that contains writing by a group of researchers.
What is Storytelling?
Storytelling is an important activity in the life of children. It is a form of art that uses verbal and non-verbal communication to unveil the properties and characteristics of a story to a listener. It helps to improve children’s comprehension of stories.
Also, it is the communal and social act of narrating stories to listeners.
The Importance of Story Telling in Early Childhood Education
- Storytelling helps children to develop their vocabulary and it exposes them to reading and pronunciation.
It help children build their literacy and vocabulary skills through learning alphabets, words, sounds, and languages.
The more they learn through storytelling, the more they appreciate stories and books.
Through pictures, symbols, and imageries that are packaged in a story, their level of imagination, creativity, and interest can develop.
Storytelling specifically develops a child’s cognition. For example, at perfect angels learning center, our instructors engage children in scheduled storytelling activities to develop their brain, focus, attention, social expertise, interaction, and self esteem.
Gradually, as they grow into their stage of adolescence, they will understand literature and its importance to learning. For example, they will know the differences between fictional stories and nonfictional stories.
Storytelling can help a child to know about trending events and the circumstances that accompany them. For instance, a child can learn about the ongoing pandemic, coronavirus through non-fictional stories.
It allows children to gradually understand the world, their country, their society, their traditions, and their cultures. This is because storytelling is not just about books, it is also about sharing experiences with children.
Storytelling also promotes a good bond between children and their parents, teachers, and caregivers.
Telling and Singing
Children do not gain the benefits of storytelling through reading alone, they can also learn when the storyteller sing and recite rhymes. This boosts the fun and the child’s literateness. Some children love stories and songs before they go to bed, while some love it while they are bathing, others may love it when they are in the car. This helps them to feel loved and become more intelligent.
Telling and Demonstrating
A demonstration is one of the ways to make storytelling fun for children. For example,
- Dolls and toys Box
- Complete the story games
- Card games like, ‘once upon a time.’
- Draw an image game
- Stories with family photos
- Telling stories with a map
The essentiality of storytelling in the life of children cannot be disregarded, as it contributes a lot to their cognitive development. Thus, at Perfect Angels Learning Center, storytelling is one of the major activates we incorporate into the day-to-day schedules of children. You can give this a trial by enrolling your child via our website today.