MARILYN A. KINSELLA
firstname.lastname@example.org website: www.marilynkinsella.org
Why not read a story, listen to a tape or record, or let the students read it? BECAUSE...through storytelling the listener listens with the heart first. It is a case of heart to art communication. Once the story is felt, then it is ready to do some internalizing
HOW TO TELL STORIES IN TEN EASY LESSONS
1. Find a story that strikes a chord...your funny bone...your value system...your sentiments...your sense of aesthetics. Sometimes it's not for months later that you discover why a story appeals to you. You just know that it is a story that you have to tell. Listen to your inner voice. Avoid telling a story because someone asks you. Not all stories strike that chord in you, and those stories will come out sounding flat.
2. Memorize your prayers, your songs, your pledges, your lines for plays...but not your stories. Read or listen to a story all the way through several times. Read it aloud or talk along with a tape. Make a storyboard, an outline or story path. This is better than memorizing word for word.
3. Now put the story away and don't look at it until you are telling it in your own words. To do this, start by sequencing the story in your mind. See each scene like pictures on a filmstrip with lots of detail. Always review this sequence especially when first telling a story.
4. Next, make the story your own. Do this by reading different versions of the same story, deciding on the character of the characters, writing compelling dialog, adding a few clever word twists with some well-placed metaphors, and adding participation (if told to a young audience).
5. Practice a strong beginning and ending. All else can be semi-rehearsed.
6. Write your version down once it is a "keeper".
7. TELL IT!!...to the walls, your kids, the dog (I prefer telling the story alone in the car)
8. Talk to the audience (or class) before you begin. Let them know who you are or little about why you are telling the story. However, PLEASE keep this short.
9. Go ahead and make a mistake - make your day. Just remember to keep the ones you like. They won’t know it is mistake unless you tell them.
10. The best critique of the story is - the faces of those listening. But give your story some time to iron itself out and to find the right audience.
Bibliography of Easy Stories to Tell
by Marilyn Kinsella
"Handbook for Storytellers" by Caroline Feller Bauer.
"Children's Faces Looking Up: Program Building for the Storyteller" by Dorothy De Wit.
"Storytelling with Caroline Feller Bauer" videocassette.
Books by Gerald McDermott
"Zomo the Rabbit,"
Books by Eric Kimmel
"Anansi and the Moss-covered Rock,"
Anansi and the Talking Melon,"
"Anansi Goes Fishing."
Books by Paul Galdone
The Gingerbread Boy,
"Little Red Hen."
One Minute Stories:
"Favorite Fairy Tales,"
"Greek Myths" and
"Thirty-three Multicultural Tales to Tell" by Pleasant DeSpain.
"Twenty-two Splendid Tales to Tell From Around the World."
"Pleasant Journeys" ( an earlier version of the pervious titles.)
"Stone Soup," by Marcia Brown.
"The Baker's Dozen," by Heather Forest
Remember the 398.2 in the juvenile section of the library holds a gold mine of stories for telling.
Resources and information on storytelling is available through the National Storytelling Network 101 Courthouse Sq, Jonesborough, TN 37659. (1-800/525-4514.) Address: P.O. Box 795, Jonesborough, TN 37659
Office Hours: Monday–Thursday 8:00am-6:00pm (EST)
Phone: 800-525-4514 • 423-913-8201
Office Contact: email@example.com
Information on storytelling in Missouri is available through MO-TELL. Sue Hinkel, 2236 S. Hwy. N. Pacific, MO 63069 firstname.lastname@example.org
And, of course, I'll always be happy to answer any questions you may have regarding stories or storytelling. Marilyn Kinsella (618) 397-1377; email@example.com or visit me at my website: www.marilynkinsella.org