Studies have shown that storytelling enhances language skills and develops vocabulary. “Storytelling is a tool that can be used in any form of the language development curriculum” and has particular potential in urban settings. “Those who have observed children listening to an absorbing story have often been impressed with the quality and persistence of their attention, surely an important ingredient in any learning context”.
Story telling and Puppeteering is a tool in which people have found their deepest of interests since time immemorial. An interesting activity which can grab all age groups’ attention.
Prakashites too grabbed this wonderful opportunity of attending a story telling and puppeteering workshop with renowned puppeteer and story teller Mrs. Shreeedevi Sunil, founder Talking Turtles. Mrs Shreedevi Sunil created a magnificent aura of the world of folk tales, fables and talking puppets with Pero the chatterbox from Spain, the Snail ,baby dragon and many more puppets that took the children to that wonderful world of happiness and effortless learning.
Children were seen expressing their ecstasy while interacting with the puppets and narrating and retelling the enthralling stories.
Mrs. Shreedevi has also conducted an interesting workshop for parents wherein she could unleash their latent skills by making them to voice the puppets. Earlier in the workshop she emphasized on the importance of storytelling and the role played by stories in strengthening their bonds with the children. She stressed on the fact that parents should invest time and facilitate not only good books but also good reading atmosphere.
Mrs. Shreedevi has conducted a workshop for the teaching fraternity of Sri Prakash creating an experience to teach with stories, songs and puppets. The workshop also highlighted on the crucial techniques that can be adopted by teachers to facilitate learning.
She said “Practise your story several times by using voice modulation, facial expressions and appropriate body language. It is certainly a good idea to use refrains to repeat certain phrases and expressions that you want your students to remember or learn”. Children’s stories that have refrains, rhymes, songs, music and mimes are very popular amongst young learners.
Using a puppet to tell a story is a wonderful technique that can lead children to discover the joy of literature and learning. Puppets can be used ‘anyway, anywhere, and anytime’ to bring stories to life and to spark young imaginations. It doesn’t take a professional puppeteer or an expensive puppet to make storytelling with puppets “work.” Puppets can be made out of anything from catalogs to paper cups, and from envelopes to plastic straws. If you use your imagination, the possibilities are almost endless. Even the simplest, hand-made puppet can be thrilling for a young child. Telling stories with puppets can also be a terrific technique for new storytellers. Knowing that the audience is focusing on the puppet can help a beginning storyteller to relax and have more fun with their stories. The art of storytelling is about bringing stories to life, and puppets provide us with a great way to do just that.
The director of the school Sri Chitturi Vasu Prakash was also present and encouraged everybody to imbibe innovative thinking and adapt themselves to the 21 st century learners’ needs and added that stories can transform lives hence they should be told and heard.