Storytelling is an art that demands interpretation and relies on both creative and critical thought processes. Sharing our stories connects us with others, gives more meaning to our relationships, and provides more context in our work. Listening to each other’s stories helps us to show empathy, connect better to one another, and better understand complex thought. Storytelling is universal and multi-cultural, involving a process of ‘give and take’. Stories can reveal personal power as well as personal identity.
Storytelling is a powerful pedagogical tool. Therefore, to foster curiosity among the students, the French Facilitator of MYP Ms Sunita Goyal chose storytelling to engage the geckos actively. Since time immemorial, stories seek to communicate their message in the most compelling and provocative way possible. As author Gail Goodwin says, “Good teaching is one-fourth preparation and three-fourths theatre!”
Storytelling engaged the students in a unique way. The magic of storytelling not only changed the atmosphere in the classroom but also, in so doing, enhanced the learning environment. The geckos were so excited to hear the story. They participated very enthusiastically. They learnt the targeted French vocabulary effortlessly. Moreover, they easily understood the key concept for the new unit which they were about to start. Then, they sketched their understanding of the story on a piece of paper. Seeing their learnings reflected through their drawings, the teacher could understand that the objective of the activity was achieved.
Stories serve to open the mind so that the student is ready to take things in. Stories improve verbal skills, develop a love for the language and encourage active participation. Moreover, it improves imaginative skills. In short, stories appeal to the heart, and, once the heart is won, the mind is open to learn!