"Sister of Story" Starts Telling Stories

During extracurricular activities, the school playground is full of children's laughter, being quite lively; in a small corner in the teaching building, it is as quiet as another world. If you listen carefully, you can hear a melodious voice “Do you know what is told in the story?” The little girl sitting in the crowd asked. Then, the students sitting around raised their hands. The little girl smiled happily as she saw everyone participating actively,

The little girl is Xiaohui. She is 10 years old and is now in third grade. She lives in a small village in Jinxiu County, Guangxi Zhuang Autonomous Region. She has enjoyed reading books, especially story books since she was a child. Her mother used to tell stories to her when she was young. But she hasn't seen a new storybook or heard a new story for a long time. The school library facilities are outdated. Although there are many books, most of them are text books as thick as a brick. It is difficult for Xioahui, a grade 3 student, not to mention students of grade 1 or 2, who have just learned little characters.

In April this year, a batch of new books arrived in the library. The new books are colorful and beautiful picture books! They said that these were called picture books. These picture books surprised Xiaohui. It turned out that the World Vision cooperated with local organizations to carry out reading activities at the school Xiaohui attended to improve the reading ability of rural children and enrich their extracurricular life. After a field investigation, staff of the project learned that the school lacked books suitable for children in the lower grades, so it donated a batch of picture books to fill the vacancies of books for the children in the school.

The project staff also designed and led many children's favorite reading activities according to the reading characteristics of children of different ages and genders. Xiaohui loved these activities very much and she got actively involved in each activity. She shared with the project staff: “My mother used to tell stories to me, and I used to tell stories to my brother and sister in the neighborhood.” The project staff encouraged Xiaohui to participate in the "Sister of Story" activity and tell stories to younger students in her spare time, which not only helps younger students to read, but also exercises herself. Xiaohui replied timidly: "I dare not. There are too many people. I am afraid that I can't speak well."

In order to help Xiaohui and other “Sisters of Stories” improve their self-confidence and the ability to tell stories to lower grade students, the project staff trained them. Xiaohui was reluctant at the beginning, but gradually, she participated willingly. She and her group partners chose books, listed questions to be asked, and gave lectures, making active preparation for the "Sister of Story" activity. Xiaohui also put forward her own idea to make an interactive mini-game with the children who come to listen to the story before telling the story to bring them closer together while increasing the interest.

The project staff conducted story-telling training for "Sisters of Stories", training students in picture book selection, picture book problem setting, book holding methods, storytelling voice and tone, etc. After the training, the "Sisters of Stories" group regularly carried out storytelling for young children at school. The picture shows Xiaohui (middle) and friends in the same group are trying to tell a picture book story.

The day finally came. As the storyteller, Xiaohui was a little nervous at first, and was a little awkward. She constantly looked up to ask the project staff for help. The project staff responded to her encouraging eyesight. Soon, she adjusted her state and began to lead the children to play interactive games. In the storytelling session, she also added a lot of interactive questions that attracted the attention of many children.

Before the beginning of the storytelling, Xiaohui and the team members played an interactive game "Clip the nose" with children.

Xiaohui (the book holder) is devoted to telling stories. The storytelling is very popular. People who listen to the story have formed a multi-layer crowd.

Xiaohui shared after the end: "It was very tense at first, but gradually it got better and I have found that it is not so difficult to tell the story in front of so many people." Later, Xiaohui and other "Sisters of Stories" told stories to the children in the school according to the activity plan they made. This year, they held 7 story meetings in school. The activity was warmly welcomed by the students.

I believe that in addition to the stories they tell to the children, their story of becoming a "Sister of the story" will also affect other children on campus.