A few weeks ago I was fortunate enough to attend the National Association for the Education of Young Children annual conference in Orlando, Florida. My mind is still spinning from the take-aways from this incredible conference which hosts one of the largest contingents of early childhood educators in the country.
The opening keynote was by Vivian Paley - who is well known in the realms of early education. I was refreshed and inspired. Vivian shared her thoughts and ideas through the art of storytelling. One idea she shared was that of "doing stories". She shared an example of a students' dictated story and bringing it to life through theater. She simply gathered the author and a few players (actors) for the story. While she narrated, they acted it out. The entire process took only a couple of minutes. I was eager to use this technique with the kids. I modified it slightly by using stories that the children had already written. The results were magical.
I less time than it takes to make popcorn in the microwave, I was able to lift up and encourage the entire class through this process of "doing stories". It was so simple. The entire class - author, actors, and audience - was empowered by the physical act of sharing a story. Every child was engaged. Every was included. Awesome!
Here is an example of our class doing one of our young authors story.