Friday, October 12, 2012

Halloween Round-Up Or: Kids Like Repeats Or:It's Never The Same Twice

Kids don't mind repeats. When I read a book at a program like, say "The Very Hungry Caterpillar", the cry of "I KNOW this book, Miss L!" is a cry of joyous recognition, not blase boredom.  Even the moms and nannies who come year after year seem to enjoy a re-reading.

This applies even more to telling a story--and if I've said this before, well, it's worth repeating too and perhaps even more applicable.

Even if you follow a script word for word, each time you tell a story--and that applies to any form, flannel board, puppets, etc--it's going to be different. You will have a different audience--or if it's the same one week to week, they will be in a different mood each time you deal with them. You will react differently. You will read/tell differently.

I will tell these stories again this Halloween. I will do most of them 7-8 times. And yet, each time it will be a completely different experience.

Without getting boringly New Agey about it, telling a story is an organic process and each time you bring something new to the story.
And you'd better--otherwise you will get bored quickly. And so will your audience!

I have read/told most of these Halloween stories for years--and I don't mean 2 or 3 years, I mean 20 years--and over time the stories have gotten better because I've had time to play with them. I've found new ways to tell them.

If I read these stories from books, it wouldn't be as much fun for me or for my audience. A reading to a group is a performance that differs completely from reading to that beloved child or two on your lap. I've come a long way from that.

And yet, it's because these are such good stories, so well told by their authors, so well illustrated, that they work year after year after year.

Click on the pictures to go to the links for my Halloween line up. There are slideshows or videos for each.
Enjoy and have a wonderful time this Halloween!

"The Big Pumpkin" by Erica Silverman
Classic flannel board. But it's the telling, with audience participation that makes this so much fun.

"The Ghost's Dinner" by Jacques Duquennoy
Slide out sheets of paper let the ghosts change color

"The Witch's Hat" by Tony Johnson.
Told with props and magnet board pieces

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