- Pooja Marshall
Storytelling for toddlers: Which Story to tell?
So many tales of wonder, kindness and love, stories that talk of good and bad, adventures and discoveries.How do you pick a story appropriate for your child?
Here are a few ways to help you choose the right one for your child...
From stories huddled next to grandma to the ones we pass on to others, the oral tradition of storytelling has stood the test of time and is perhaps one of the simplest yet remarkable ways of educating little children. But for a story to make the maximum impact on a child and help advance their learning, we must consider certain criteria.
So which story to pick?
The primary criterion to select a particular story is the age of a child.
For a 2 year old, try a short, simple story that narrates one particular scene or activity. Make sure to have no more than 2 or 3 characters, so your little toddler can follow through.
You could try - Mama, Dada and Baby , Sister, Doggy and Baby. Including a familiar relation or person in the story delights the little child and eases them into letting their curiosity play out.
For a 3-4 year old, try a sequential story (with a clear beginning-middle and an end), with a repetitive element. Repetitive elements in the story strengthen memory and build concentration.
For example : the story of Goldilocks and the 3 bears has only 3-4 characters that interact over the same scene, allowing the child to focus, learn and pick up on small lessons, be the different sizes of chair or the porridge in the bowl.
Overcoming an obstacle
It’s important for the story to have a distinct beginning, middle (involving a crisis that needs to be overcome) and a finish (which should ideally end well; avoid endings with ambiguity).
The crisis that the story tackles should be age-appropriate, i.e. the younger child, the milder the problem should be. Children need to be able to relate to a problem that they feel they might be able to tackle too.
For more ideas on where to find the right story, Storytelling for children: Where to find interesting stories?