Teachers and Homeschooling Parents! A Remote Storytelling Unit for grades 4-6

Dear Teachers and Homeschooling parents, We understand that emergency remote teaching and learning is a challenge.  We want to help.  My student, Sarah Freeman, and I have prepared a remote unit for you based on the Ontario curriculum expectations for Language and Drama. It features personal and traditional storytelling as a means of building community, self confidence and self expression. This 10 module unit includes 16 original videos, many hyperlinks to sites and traditional stories from around the world, and 3-4 activities for each module. You can assign the entire unit or pick and choose whichever modules you think are more suitable for your students and children.  All modules are student friendly and can be read by them independently.  The unit was designed for students in grades 4-6 but the unit is very family friendly so siblings and parents can also be involved.

We know how much you care for your students and how hard you are working. Parents, we know how hard this is for you, especially if you are also working from home while trying to cope  with disengaged children. We hope this unit relieves you of some of this enormous burden. We also sincerely hope your students and children love doing this.

Click on the Junior Storytelling Unit page at the top right to get started! (Menu top right on a smart phone). Primary unit is yet to come.

Please, stay safe. Be positive. And smile.  We are getting though this together.

Dr. Cathy Miyata and Sarah Freeman


International Literature and Storytelling

I was asked to present to the students in Brock University’s International Course last week.  These students are taking this optional course because they intend to teach abroad:  China, England, South Africa etc.  I endeavored to introduce them to the international literature through the folklore from around the world.  We traced back the illustrated fables of Eric Carle, to Marie de France, to Aesop to the Jataka Tales of India.  They had no idea this tiny little collection of moral stories went back so far or were shared by so many cultures.  It was fun to watch them make connections. We explored a Bengali folktale (one of my personal favourites) that depicts talking poop (Eastern humour- we North Americans are a bit too uptight to put this kind of hilarity in our picture books) and looked for characteristics in other cultural stories that would make that story worth sharing.  There was a lot of laughter and they asked a lot of questions- always a good sign.  Most had not heard storytelling before.  And there lie the magic.  They all want to tell now.  I hope the students in the countries they travel to, are delighted with their selections and efforts.  I wish them much happiness in their journeys.