Celebrate Read Across America (RAA) on March 2! March so happens to be National Reading Month and why not bring the reading fun to your classroom. RAA offers reading tools, including 12 months of recommended books, authors, and teaching resources. The RAA program empowers young readers by bringing diverse stories, characters, and authors to kids, families, and educators across the country. Here are some event activities to inspire kids and teens with the art of storytelling and to create joy in your classroom, school, and community.
- Begin with Books – Hearing books read aloud can help provide a model of how students could share their own stories. Everyone has stories that should be shared! It is important to help kids tell their own stories and to encourage adults to share their own family stories with the children in their lives. Hearing and telling stories of their family helps kids learn from the experiences of those closest to them and helps them better understand who they are and where they come from.
- Unpack a Storytelling Sack – To make a storytelling sack, get a fabric drawstring bag or a pillowcase. Fill the sack with small, interesting items that you or kids have collected—toy animals, LEGO figures, toy tools, craft items, and other random objects. To start the storytelling, unpack the sack! Each person takes a turn taking out one object at a time. The first person uses the object to start a story. As more objects are removed, they are used as prompts to add to the story. Or you can let each person take 4 or 5 objects from the bag and then take turns telling stories that use all the items selected.
- Sharing Wordless Picture Books – Wordless picture books are told entirely through their illustrations—they are books without words, or sometimes just a few words. Sharing wordless books with a child provides an opportunity for literacy-rich conversations. Each “reader” listens and speaks, and creates their own story in their own words. Sharing wordless books also reinforces the idea that, in many books, the story and the pictures are connected. Elementary-aged students often enjoy writing down their original story to accompany a wordless book. Find more ideas at readacrossamerica.org.