Make your storytelling session come alive!

Resource Info

Basic Information

Stories are meant to be enjoyed! Dissecting a story like a surgeon is not the main objective. Children need to be encouraged to create stories on their own so as to develop creativity, curiosity and a host of other learning skills in a joyful manner. How do teachers make this happen? Here is a list of activities to make stories fun and challenging for learners.

(All day)

Story Bag

Materials required: A bag filled with familiar objects.
Objective: To imagine a story around real objects and improve one’s speaking and writing skills.


Procedure: The teacher puts familiar objects inside a bag such as a toothbrush, a pencil, an eraser, a sharpener, a ruler, etc. Each student is asked to pull out an object from the bag with eyes closed. The student then observes the object for a few minutes and begins telling a story about it.

Variation: As a creative writing exercise, students could also be asked to write a story about the object instead of just narrating it.


Ball of Wool

Materials required: A large ball of wool with knots tied at intervals of 3 to 5 centimetres.
Objective: To develop imagination and narrative skills.

Procedure: The teacher sits in a circle along with her students. She begins telling a story by disentangling the ball of wool that she holds in her hands. When she reaches a knot, she pauses and passes on the ball of wool to the person sitting next to her. The neighbour (student) continues telling the story by doing exactly what the teacher did-untangling the ball of wool till a knot is reached.

The teacher meanwhile explains to the class that a story has to have a good beginning, an exciting climax and a great ending. The students are also encouraged to use effective story-phrases such as:

  • “I was walking back from my tuition class one evening when…
  • A large dilapidated mansion towered in front of me. It looked empty and since no one was around, I decided to get in but suddenly…
  • A loud explosion rocked the countryside and then a gigantic figure appeared through the smoke…


Story Sounds

Materials Needed: Objects that make noise such as spoons, bangles, drums, small bell, musical instruments etc…
Objective: To explore how sounds impact a story.


Procedure: The teacher reads out and writes on the board a few onomatopoeias (words that imitate the natural sounds of things) such as gurgling, babbling, whoosh, boom, jangle etc.

The teacher then picks up the objects she has brought into the classroom and describes the sounds they make such as the jangle of bangles, the tinkling of bells, the clanging of vessels, the strum of a guitar etc…The students are encouraged to write a sound-filled paragraph or a  story by using onomatopoeias.

Variation: Children could also say aloud part of a story by using sound-words instead of writing a paragraph.


Guess What?

Materials Needed: Objects from a story the teacher wants to recount.

Objective: To develop predictive skills and motivation in students.

Procedure: The teacher wraps objects related to a story in a cloth and brings it to class. She then asks her students to guess what’s inside the wrapping. The children are encouraged to ask questions about the hidden objects. The teacher reveals each object bit by bit and children are asked to guess once more. Once the guessing game is over, the teacher recounts the story to the class.

Variation: The teacher asks the children to stand in a circle, facing the centre with their hands behind their backs. The teacher then puts a number of objects into each student’s palms and asks him/her to feel the objects and pass it on to their neighbours. The children identify the objects and predict what the story might be.

This activity is usually done as a pre-listening exercise to arouse the curiosity of children at the start of a storytelling or story reading session.


Messy Mimes

Materials Needed: Blackboard and chalk pieces or a white board with marker pens.

Objectives: To help children develop non-verbal communication skills.

Procedure: The teacher reads out a story to her class and then writes down ten sentences from the story on the blackboard. The teacher then asks a child to choose a sentence written on the blackboard and mime it. The rest of the class has to try and guess which sentence the child is miming. If the guess is correct, the ‘miming child’ gets a point.

Variation: The teacher divides the class into smaller groups and gives each group a sentence from the list on the board. The whole group has to come together to discuss and then mime the sentence. The rest of the class sees the mime and has to guess which sentence is being mimed.


Stories are a genre by themselves but when presented through games or activities they assume an ever expanding role and make children more attentive and motivated. It is therefore useful for teachers to come up with creative exercises to make stories an integral part of their students’ lives.




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