Stories live in your blood and bones, follow the seasons and light candles on the darkest night – every storyteller knows she or he is also a teacher. – Patti Davis
Push, pull, twist, drop and lift. The east and the west, above and below. Bees, birds, fossils and rockets. Dealing with the world around us and the world within us, both science and storytelling offer us new insights into life and the universe around us, suggesting unpredicted possibilities to us.
When teachers show up in class equipped with science and stories they are in a powerful position to stimulate their pupils’ curiosity and ignite a passion for knowledge that may be life-changing. Understanding how to deliver scientific content in a vibrant and personal way is a valuable resource and transferrable skill. Through storytelling, children and young adults develop a greater sense of CARE for the content of the story, engaging with it on a deeper and more meaningful level.
Whilst each of us can be a storyteller we must first understand the bones and maps of stories, how stories work and how to tell them in appealing ways. This workshop focuses on two central questions:
1) How do I show up in class as a storyteller?
2) What skills and resources do I need in order to capture and awaken both the interest and imagination of children and young adults alike?
The workshop ‘Teaching Science through Stories’ is designed around a four skills model that encourages direct engagement with the work and allows teachers and, in turn, their students to observe, remember, question and imagine both the stories and their scientific content. These four skills are developed through discussion and drills practised throughout the workshop, which is divided into three parts:
Grab Attention (establishing effective communication practices based on a deep understanding of how people listen and remember as well as what they listen to and remember best)
Master a Structure (exploring different narratives that allow for new questions and possibilities to be raised and debated through the reworking of old stories and the creation of new ones)
Be Understood (telling stories that combine fact and fiction to capture and awaken children and young adults’ interest and imagination)
At the end of the workshop, participants will be able to use storytelling as a resource that enriches their teaching and allows them to build a stronger bond with their pupils. They will also be able to channel the storyteller present in each of the children they work with, fostering a sense of community and shared understanding in their classrooms.
For more information or to express your interest please contact us firstname.lastname@example.org
In July 2018, Giuliana Fenech and Giovanna Conforto ran this workshop for Esplora Interactive Science Center. It was partly funded by Valletta 2018.