Last year we decided to go on daily walks together as a family, we’re usually out for about an hour, so to keep our daughter energized we started telling her stories. This was particularly helpful on the long hills! She would be so interested in the story that she didn’t realize she was making her way up the hills.
My husband and I would take turns adding funny and unexpected twists and turns to our tales. Building upon what the last person just said. Hannah, our daughter, calls these our “Walking Stories” and she loves them. After a few months we asked Hannah to join in and add her ideas. At first she found it a bit difficult so sometimes we’d give her a suggestion and then she’d elaborate. Having us start the story made it easier for her to run with it. Every time we make up a story together it gets easier and easier for her. We’ve created a couple of characters that we build new adventures around on each walk. For example one of our favorite characters is a mischievous panda named Uki that always gets herself and her friends into funny situations.
These days, creating our Walking Stories is a fun and easy thing for the three of us to that usually has us laughing for most of our walk! It’s also a great way to build imagination and communication skills. I think it’s really important to encouraging our kids to stretch their imaginations and come up with their own stories. Just like any other skill it takes practice so the more you create stories the easier it gets.
You might just have a budding author in your family!!
5 Tips to Get Kids Storytelling
1. Create a couple of characters together…it makes it easier to come up with adventures if you already know the characters.
2. Suggest a character, location and situation then let your kids run with it! For example, a cat named Carl, in Paris, wanting to become a dancer.
3. When it’s your turn – add a funny or unexpected twist to the story! This will keep your little story teller on their toes.
4. Keep it light…if your child is stuck make some funny suggestions or let them fill in at a later part of the story.
5. It seems easier to create stories together when you’re doing an activity. So rather than just sitting around (which can be fun too) go for a walk or crack open a box of crayons and color while you’re telling your story. You could even draw pictures to go along with your story!
Bio: Kia Robertson is a mom and the creator of the Today I Ate A Rainbow kit; a tool that helps parents establish healthy habits by setting the goal of eating a rainbow of fruits and vegetables every day. Kia is passionate about creating tools that help parents raise healthy kids!