The power of storytelling

The next stop on my Culture adventure was learning about storytelling power. It is a pedagogical resource to integrate culture in the EFL classroom and promote intercultural awareness.  According to Malo and Bullard (2000), the benefits of storytelling are:   storytelling-1.jpg

– To develop literary competencies

– To develop a love of reading

– To promote creativity and imagination

– To develop language awareness and language skills

Storytelling can be the basis of our didactic unit or project. As I’ve experienced during this Postgraduate degree, the Calm Down, Boris! story by Sam Lloyd was very useful for teaching daily routines to younger students. I had the chance to try it with my 5 year-old students, by reading it a several times andreproducing some of the pre/while/after-reading activities and games we suggested in our Didactic Unit. Some of them were as basic as chants to review the learned vocabulary; some others were more complex as role-playing, to promote students use the new language and apply it in a real context; or a quite simple one that was ordering some pictures according to what Boris does in the book, as a review of the daily routines. That was, with no doubt, a great experience. I really recommend you to use this type of books in class, there are endless possibilities, read and play with the puppet, students love it, or even invent your own story using the puppet as main character. Here you have a tutorial video on How to explain Calm down, Boris! 

calm down

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Literal Lyrics Video as a teaching tool

After being browsing in many different Education and resources websites for a while, I’ve ended  in this ESL project ideas site, where I’ve been surprisingly inspired by a really good activity to work on music lyrics. The activity consists on creating a literal lyrics video with and for students; instead of printing the lyrics for all the class to read while listening to a song (which is not a bad activity, but it is no longer an exciting activity for students), they suggest to create a short video including students’ pictures to depict what lyrics mention. This could be a hard work, considering the limited time class that we have, but their suggestion is to work all together as a whole group, in which each student has to create a  picture out of a sentence from the lyrics. The result is a nice and easy to understand video clip. I definitely have to try it with my older students! Have a look at the website here, I’m sure you’ll find other interesting resources!