Tuesday, February 5, 2013

Story Baskets ~ The Power of Retelling

We have definitely been stuck inside for a good part of January.  There has been sickness, snow days, rainy days, and a lot of time spent at home!  A few weeks ago, I knew that school was already going to be canceled, so I rushed around the house putting together some activities for us to do at home.  Ellie had been in LOVE with the The Three Billy Goats Gruff story for months now.  She will pull out our bar stools in the kitchen to create a blockade/bridge.  Then she will state that she is a, “grumpy old troll.”  She will make members of the family pay to get access to the kitchen.


I thought I would take it a step further and create a basket filled with all of the key players of the story and some simple props.  I had some left over felt lying around that I used for the grass and the river.  Then I scrounged up two definite goat figurines and one questionable goat/cow for the three billy goats. 


Lastly, I have piles of those city blocks that I used for the bridge and a funny looking stuffed animal for the troll.


First we read the book together and then I went through each of the items in the basket.  We laid them all out and performed the story together, with me prompting them with the major lines in the story…

“trip, trap, trip, trap”

“Who’s That Walking On MYYYY Bridge”


Then I let them try to act out the story on their own.  Once they felt comfortable I asked them if they wanted to have me turn their story into a movie for us to watch later.  Bradley was really excited about this part, Ellie was a bit nervous.  She surprisingly seemed to like the Three Little Pigs Story basket more than the Three Billy Goats.

Here is Bradley’s retelling of the story…


Bradley and The Three Billy Goats Gruff


I also created the same basket for another family favorite, “The Three Little Pigs.”  This wasn’t as hard to create, since I had the pigs and the wolf from a Melissa and Doug toy that we have.  I used leftover yarn for the straw house.


And the same blocks for the house of sticks.


And Legos for the brick house.


After listening to the story and looking over my basket Bradley felt that we needed a man for the pigs to ask for their supplies.  We found a random playmobil person that fit right in the storyline.


Ellie finally agreed to retell the Three Little Pigs if I would help her with the story.  I love her sweet little voice in the video and now she has done it a bunch of times.  Each time she retells the story she gets more confident with the lines and the characters.  We even took her little basket into school to share with her friends at preschool.  I apologize for the horrible video,  Bradley was behind the camera and a bit wobbly.  

Ellie retelling The Three Little Pigs

I hope to make some more baskets soon.  Bradley of course requested The Gingerbread Man which has a million characters.  I am going to have to think on that one.  There have to be some more simple stories to try first!

Love, Clare


amanda said...

so sweet mama! and so much fun!!

Jenny said...

Such a great idea!

Lindsay said...

I loved this idea.. Sammy watched Bradley's movie several times.. then he decided he too was going to tell a story and I needed to tape it!

I love Ellie's sweet little voice!