Thursday, June 19, 2008

Good article!

Your Child, An Author/Storyteller
by Shari Harpaz, MS CCC-SLP, speech pathologist
As parents, you likely ask your children such questions as, “what did you do at school today?” or “how was your day at the zoo with grandma and grandpa?”
Your 2-year-old may reply with a one-word answer such as, “good” which doesn’t tell you as much as you’d like. Don’t get frustrated. Keep the conversation going with likely follow-up questions to gain more information. As your child becomes a pre-schooler and then school age, their ability to describe events in their life expands. As with everything else, some children will be more detailed in their storytelling than others.
This is an important skill for children to develop because the retelling of past events and storytelling is a window into your child’s thoughts, feelings and imagination.
Here are some things you can do to help your child become a terrific storyteller…
Take pictures of things your family does together: Print the photos and let your child pick several of the pictures, order them chronologically and then tell you a story about the day. You can write what they say for each picture and put it into a little book.
Pick a “title” to your story, then take turns telling the next sentence: By alternating sentences, you can help develop richer content. This is a great way to spend time together and expand your child’s imagination.
Make up a story with their favorite character: If your child has a favorite character from a book or show, help them tell/write a new story using this character. Perhaps they can go on a new adventure or change the ending of the book/show.
Write letters to extended family members: When your child is old enough to write (beginning around 6 years of age with 'exploratory' spelling), encourage them to write letters to extended family members and friends. They can tell all about their summer adventures. This is a wonderful way to keep relatives updated on their lives and will be a special keepsake for the recipients of the letters.
Remember, better storytelling skills is likely to mean better communication skills, so take advantage of daily opportunities to encourage your child to share their experiences with you and others.

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