I have been working on teaching my Kindergarteners the following Standards:
With prompting and support, retell familiar stories, including key details.
With prompting and support, identify characters, settings, and major events in a story.
I always try to teach Curriculum Standards in ways that promote, not only the content, but important skills such as creativity, collaboration, and communication. I also want to teach my students in meaningful, integrated ways that encourage investigation. So in order to teach these standards I have set up a few stations that can teach story elements through play.
First, in my dramatic play center I set out some open ended story telling cards I found from eeBoo along with puppets, costumes, and a collection of books. My challenge for the students was to choose three of the storytelling cards, one for the beginning, one for the middle, and one for the end. Then they were to act out the story, with costumes or puppets, making sure to tell the story from beginning to end.
In another center I set out wooden blocks with a variety of characters mod podged onto them (I got these characters from Wendy's kids meals last summer but you could use fairy tale clip art). I made name tags for the students that said: Beginning, Middle, End, Characters, Setting, and Camera. These were the jobs that the students could pick from at the center. For example, if a child chose the name tag that said "beginning" he/she would be in charge of telling the beginning of the story. If a child chose "characters" he/she was in charge of picking the characters for the story. The child who chose "camera" was in charge of using an iPad to record the story as the other students told it from beginning to end.
In the final center I used Lakeshore Learning's Fairy Tale problem stem kits to encourage the students to retell familiar tales while solving STEM challenges such as, "can you build a sturdy chair for the three bears?" or "can you build a bridge that will hold the three billy goats".
I also introduced another STEM challenge that I learned at professional development this summer. In this challenge the king and queen are traveling around their country. They've told you that if there are any problems at the castle to blow a feather high into the air so they can see it. Can you build a castle with a feather alert system? Here are my students trying out the challenge.
After all of these activities I assessed my student's abilities to retell a story using characters, setting, beginning, middle, and end and they all did so well! The power of hands on learning truly is incredible! Would you like more resources to help teach fairy tales or folk tales in your classroom? Here are some resources for you: