Storytime is a fun and educational family tradition. The more you enable your children to contribute, the more they’ll get out of the occasion. Enjoy these helpful ideas on how to create a sharing story with your kids and get the most from it.
Creating a Sharing Story
- Give your child a leading role. Reading to your kids is great, but the experience is even better when you let them share in writing and telling their own stories. A sharing story will help your child develop social skills and feel more accomplished.
- Develop the plot together. Take turns composing your tale. Assign each child one part of the story to formulate. Give one child the beginning, one the middle, and another the end. If you have fewer children, you can take one part. For younger kids, you can supply much of the language and let them fill in the blanks.
- Be enthusiastic. Narratives may take surprising turns when kids lead the way. Working to make everyone feel appreciated is more important than worrying about whether the details of the story make sense.
- Weave in events from real life. Add to the excitement by making the story about your child. Incorporate references to their pet guinea pig or Little League games.
- Focus on constructive themes. You can even make the story about sharing. Ask them questions about letting a friend play with their toys or dividing up household chores.
Getting the Most From a Sharing Story
- Design opening and closing rituals. Establish your own routine. Put the most special stuffed toys into a circle for your audience or wear funny hats. Take a bow when you’re done.
- Assemble your own books. Preserve your masterpieces. Staple together colored paper or lace the covers from old books around a pile of blank pages.
- Draw the characters. Sketching your characters is a great way to bring them to life. Some kids will find drawing to be an easier way to express thoughts that they have difficulty putting into words.
- Select accompanying images. Even the smallest children can help search for pictures that will go along with your text. Use magazines or catalogs. You can even browse online.
- Move around. Kids can only sit still for so long. Take a break to stretch or change positions. Walk around the room or dance a while.
- Act out the parts. Stage a performance. You can play the roles yourself or do it with finger puppets.
- Talk things over. Discussion is an important part of any reading exercise. Ask your kids to tell you what the story is about. Find out what parts everyone likes best. Try to figure out why the characters make certain choices.
- Plan related activities. Have follow-up plans handy that’ll reinforce the fun and learning. Go on an outing or view other materials on relevant subjects. If your story is about ice skating, watch the Winter Olympics on television and visit your local skating rink.
- Build a story bin. Put together a collection of your best works and the materials you need to make more. A big colorful tote bag or wooden chest works well. It will save time searching for supplies, and you can build on old favorites if you get stuck coming up with a new topic.
- Hand out gifts. Presents and prizes will teach your kids how much fun sharing can be. Use the books you make as birthday presents for grandparents. Offer small treats to thank everyone for contributing.
Your children will love coming up with their own sharing stories and taking part in all the activities that go along with them. Encourage their creativity and show them the value of collaboration.
As you enjoy your time together, you’ll be creating cherished memories and forging a bond that can bring all of you joy for years to come.