3 Tips to Become an Effective Storyteller

Telling stories is one of the most effective ways to make a child understand or learn a lesson. While there are lots of stories to tell, not everyone can tell them effectively especially to children whose attention span is short. Most experienced day care workers and teachers know this all too well.

Below are tips on how to engage a child or your students to your stories.

Use your voice to bring the story to life

There’s nothing more boring than listening to a story in a monotonous voice. Children are more likely to listen attentively to your stories because they hear different sounds. Remember Kuya Bodjie, the famous children’s storyteller of the former TV program “Batibot”? His voice gives and brings out the characters in his story. Changing voices to portray your character stimulates emotion and effectively makes a child “feel” the story and remain encapsulated in it.


Show and not just tell the story

A children’s story must have a good illustration. “Adults can endure reading a novel without drawings or pictures but young children can’t. So, it is important to give your story a good visual that children can see. The more colorful it is, the better,” Lorraine Montejo, World Vision’s Education Specialist for Luzon, shares. Montejo assists teachers in creating their own story through the use of Bloom software. “Bloom Software has pre-installed pictures, drawings, and book templates, which help the teachers in creating their own story/ies for 6-11 years old children easier,” Montejo adds. For teachers with no computers, World Vision provides colorful big books.


Engage the children

Teacher storytellers oftentimes get too absorbed with their story that they forget to engage their young audience in the storytelling activity. “You may ask them questions at the start or during the storytelling session and not just in the end, which is commonly done. Some teachers also start with singing or dancing related to the story,” Montejo shares. Interact with your audience and make them part of the experience.

Teachers from a local school in the Philippines practice effective storytelling during a World Vision literacy workshop. Storytelling is one of World Vision’s approach to promote literacy among young children in its communities.