Historical Storytelling📖

In my latest history input we spoke a bit about storytelling in a historical context. A video clip of this being done in a primary class was shown to us, it was quite inspiring.

In the clip the teacher would put on a ‘special’ jacket when we was about to tell this history story. This transformed him into this character and it helped to engage the children in this characters experience.

I think this approach is a great way of teaching history as you are not reading to the children but rather telling the children the knowledge in a more interactive and engaging way.

The use of storytelling means we can; speak straight from the past, use powerful eye contact, use movement and gestures in relation to the speech and use different voice for characters. Through storytelling we can transport children’s imaginations through time into different worlds and places in time.

The purpose to storytelling is to:

  • Convey information, ideas, and technical language through engaging children’s imagination.
  • Create a context, providing a mental map and a visualisation of a past situation.
  • Serve the need for wonder.
  • Help children to understand human situations and the human condition, and thus connect the past to the present.
  • Empowering lessons making them exciting and motivating to learners.

(The Historical Association, 2018).

How do you create stories?

  1. Choose a topic, and find out as much detail as you can – you will be conveying information through painting word pictures.
  2. Identify a problem and its solution – this gives the story its shape.
  3. Build your descriptions, flesh out your characters and the context they lived in. How did they think, look, feel and act? What motivated them?
  4. Rehearse the story to yourself – run a mental video of the story unfolding.
  5. Tell the story to the children, living and acting it by using appropriate voices and gestures and moving round the room.

(The Historical Association, 2018).



n.b. (2018). The Historical Association. Website. Available at: https://www.history.org.uk/primary/categories/793/module/3657/primary-teaching-methods/3667/story-telling. [Accessed 22/09/18].

Click to access ecaw_storytelling.pdf

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