One component of a Waldorf education that I have really struggled with, is oral storytelling. I have trouble memorizing stories and Dora won’t listen to them if I just read them from a book. The reason that Waldorf educators are so adamant about engaging our children in oral storytelling is that it is believed that this is a natural step in language/literacy acquisition process.So far, I’ve not been too successful with telling my own made-up stories, mostly because Dora begged me for more so soon after I told one story, I just didn’t have enough creative juices in me to satiate her needs. Also, the sad fact is that I have lost a lot of my abilities to tell children’s stories. It is not a skill that I have used much in my adult life, so the process does not come very naturally to me. So, the best compromise that I have found is to use stories from books and just do my best to memorize the story and wing it on my own. In addition, I have found that using props to accompany my story telling, really grabs Dora’s attention. She will often play a game with the props after a story telling session, bouncing off the story. All of the photos included in this post are prop setups I used for one story or another. I try to use a variety of props, as I don’t want to fall in to a rut. Props I have used thus far, include Ostenheimer wooden figures, Folkmanis hand puppets, shadow puppets, handmade beeswax props, and other little toys/figures that I make for Dora (needle felted figures, knitted animals, peg dolls, pompon animals, etc.).What about in your house? Do you have any good story telling props? Have you learned how to tell stories to your children (or did you never forget)?
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