Thanksgiving time story telling with symbols in preschool

by Deborah J. Stewart, M.Ed. on November 10, 2011

in Story Telling, Story Telling with Symbols, Thanksgiving

We have been talking about symbols this week and how symbols can be used to tell a story…

During circle time, I drew some symbols on large chart paper and had the children tell me what they thought the symbols represented.  This was a fun story telling activity and the children asked to do it several times…

At first, I drew the symbols and told a story as we went along but by the second day, I would simply draw a symbol and the children would tell me what they thought the symbol was and what was happening in the story…

The children would make suggestions along the way as I made the symbols like “She needs a feather.” or “draw a bow and arrow.”  It was interesting because I didn’t suggest to them any thing ahead of time about the story, I just started to draw and they immediately had their own idea of what should be in each story…

During the second day of symbol story telling, I told the children that I would draw the symbols but not say any words out loud.  Their job was to tell me what they thought was happening in the story by looking at each symbol and tell me the story.  The children loved this and the further we got along in our story, the more the children began telling me what they wanted to happen in the story and the sillier our story got…

At the table, I set out some symbol cards for the children to organize into their own stories and then invited the children to interpret their stories for me or Miss Abby…

The children had some wild tales to tell with the symbol cards.  Some of the children felt the need to animate their stories for me as they told them to me.  They couldn’t just leave the cards on the table and interpret their stories, they had to pick them up and show me how the bear danced or the girl walked across the mountain.  It was interesting that many of the children needed to physically move the story cards to tell their stories…

Not all the children enjoyed telling the stories with the story cards but I think this may have also been because there were lots of other more artsy and creative things going on in the room at the same time so they were easily distracted and ready to move on.  I think we might try using the cards as a large group activity later on this week and see how that goes…

I also noticed that some of the children set their story cards out horizontally to tell the story while other children set their story cards out vertically to tell a story…

We have also been integrating symbols into our art and journal writing as well! Who knew creating symbols could lead to so much fun and learning!

This article is being shared with you by Deborah Stewart of Teach Preschool - Sharing the wonders of early learning in action!

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