Yesterday my oldest son and I handed my camera back and forth taking picture after picture, alternating the perspective from him to me. Little in life makes my heart warm more than learning the art of photography along side my sons.
As we gleefully continued this activity, I asked him “What is your story? Remember that the you're photographing, think about the story are you telling.”
He turned to me and replied, “We're creating this story together, Mom. What story are you telling?”
This kid. All kids. So darn wise. Six and telling me truth after truth.
Yes, of course. That is brilliant.
My son enjoys story telling. We try to find ways to do this activity together. Here are a few ideas for you to consider in your family.
Storytelling with Older Children
- Orally tell stories while snuggling up on the couch, or winding down for the day. No props. No writing tools. Simply your voices.
- Back and forth storytelling is loads of fun! My sister and I used to do this activity when we were younger. She would write a sentence then I would write a sentence. The twists and turns of a joint story never cease to surprise me.
- In silence storytelling simply means using your ears, your eyes, your nose, and your hands. Go on a hike and soak it all in. Take a moment to stop and reflect without vocalizing your thoughts. Write your stories of that moment together, then share at a later point.
- Journal storytelling is lovely and personal. To make journaling a family activity, my idea is to write a page in a journal and then leave it for my son to write the next page, connecting his words with my words. The next page can be written the same day, week, or even a month later. There is no time limit.
- Storytelling through drawing is a natural activity for my sons but not so much for me. So, I use this activity as an opportunity to step out of my comfort zone and get creative. I will admit that this one is my least favorite, mainly because my son always sweetly asks me, “Mom, what is that you're drawing?” or encourages me by saying, “Oh, mom, that's really great.”
- Take a chapter from a favorite book and rewrite it. We read lots of chapter books out loud. I love to ask my son which character is his favorite and how he would have changed the story (or what he believes might come next). So, I proposed that we rewrite one of his favorite stories. He is still trying to decide but I will let you know if I have to come up with some alternative to the Trojan War. I am going to need all the help I can get.
- Tell a story with images. I opened this post with this idea. I loved sitting with my son at the computer reviewing all the photos we had taken together throughout the afternoon. He was proud of his work explaining the “angle” of each photo.
Hope you enjoyed these ideas!