Using Props to make Storytelling Fascinating

Have you ever tried using a prop to demonstrate a story to a kid? If not, it is a miracle worker. Anything used to help in telling of a story is a prop. Tell the story in such a way that the audience believe. Props for a story can be anything from a ball to a piece of clothing. It is better if the pieces used as props are handy. Props make a story come to life, when we use colorful objects such as ribbons or hats it becomes more enigmatic for a kid. They start paying more attention to the story, as it becomes more engrossing for them. The colors play a happy dance in their eyes. This blog by Podium School “Using Props to make Storytelling Fascinating” is a window towards the various benefits of using props and what good it does in the lives of children.

Props for storytelling at home

Story telling is a fascinating form of art, but when a story is told by using different props it becomes an art form of a mighty form. It becomes an act, a performance. We are making the characters in the story come to life. The children are being given a picturesque image of the story. We give the kids a vision they can tend to in their young minds.

Questions to ask yourself before selection of props

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Props are powerful substances. They have a great impact on a story. It either lifts a story or works as a bullet kills it completely. They sometimes become physical metaphors in a story. Moving on, coming to the questions to be asked, please read on.

How old are my listeners?

This is a vital question. The props to be used will help the story materialize in the minds of the listeners. Therefore, we need to be very careful of the props we use. It should not have a negative impact on the minds of the children.

How many props shall I use?

Too many props can be confusing to a child. Too little however would be boring and may lead to repetitions. So, you need to be sure of which prop you can use and which you can leave out. Use the props which would have a heavy impact on the story. For example, if you are telling the story of Cinderella, a glass sandal is a mandatory prop. Or for that matter the story of Snow White, then an apply becomes a necessity.

Is this a two-person job?

Sometimes a story requires an additional teller. It may be for effect or just for the fun of it. It brings an element of surprise. For example, if you are telling the story of the rabbit and turtle. One of you can be the rabbit and the other can enact the turtle. It will be fun for the children to watch the enactment and also they may be prone to participate as well. If two storytellers are required then it is always better to have another to experience the total benefit of using props to make storytelling fascinating for a kid.

Benefits of using props for storytelling

For teaching actions or expressions

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Props can be used to teach expressions

When storytellers use props to demonstrate a story, they also use several different expressions to exhibit various emotions like joy, sadness, confusion, boredom, pain etc. These help children understand the emotion the characters in the story are feeling and they also get acquainted with them. It helps children become empathetic. The actions used help in the brain development of children and also help with language development in children.

Kicks off imagination in children

Imagination and Children's Literature-using props
Kicks off imagination

Imagination is the gateway to a vast, enormous, and happy life. Happiness is what humans strive for. It is the most important of all. When we illustrate a story using props, it triggers imagination in them. They start to see the characters as living, breathing beings. The story plays by in their minds as a reel of a film. It gives them the power to dream, to strive for greater things and not be cooped up. It gives them wings and the belief that they can fly. If we can’t make our children believe in the impossible then what the point of using props to make storytelling fascinating for our kid.

Helps children with hearing problems

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Child will be a better learner as it fixes the problem

Some children are more special than others and have a hearing problem. When we only use props rather than words to demonstrate a story, it makes them feel like a part of a larger group. They feel like they belong. Not all kids with hearing problems are good at lip reading but they almost always are pretty good with actions. So when a storyteller uses nothing but expressions, actions and props to tell a story to kids they understand the story well and do not feel so different sine all the kids are being told the story in the same way.

Encourages involvement with books

Reading books enrich children. It provides a world full of knowledge. It helps us travel all over the world while sitting at the comfort of our home and helps us in learning different cultures. The story becomes more eye-catching with the use of props. We can use a small toy gondola to help a child sail through Venice. Which in turn may help the child to read more books about Venice to find out more about it or read books of authors from Venice. It enriches the experience of the child.

Watch this video to know how props can be used in storytelling

Final words

We at Podium School encourage storytelling to kids. It truly helps in the development of a child. We would encourage parents to read to their children whenever and wherever they can and if you can please use props to do it. Keep a bag full of props at you home and encourage your child to demonstrate a story using those props. Appreciate your child, clap, nod, smile, do whatever it takes to show them that you care. It brings about a positive air around your child. If possible, dress up as the character in the story or make your child dress up as one of the characters to make them feel like a part of the story. And that bring us to the end of this article of using props to make storytelling fascinating for your child.

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