What is storytelling?
But storytelling can be a lot more than that. The story may be a simple folk tale told for the sheer fun of it, but that story may work on many levels – it might also pass on cultural values, communicate morals, bind a community, inspire change, or comfort troubled minds. It’s not a passive experience either, storytelling at its best is a two way process in which the audience and storyteller work together. Engaging and memorable, a good story will stay with the listener; it’s like a message which has been passed to them. When written in the context of a story it is much easier to remember.
Sue’s storytelling is wide ranging in style and length. Depending on the audience age and interest, stories are chosen to fit the situation. Nursery and folk tales, urban myths and local legends, with stories ranging in length from ten minutes to half an hour
Storytelling for children
For families/youth groups
Sue is out and about on the Isle of Wight a fair amount throughout the year, at festivals and open days, but if you would like your own event for your family get together, or Brownie/Cub group, or home education group meet-up, contact Sue. She leads great storywalks, does superb birthday parties and will tailor her tales to your event.
For IOW schools
Stories and language acquisition go hand in hand for young children. They help children learn language patterns, develop their vocabulary, encourage prediction and support risk taking. There will be few British children who will not be able to join in with well known phrases such as ‘I’ll huff and I’ll puff and I’ll blow your house down’ from the nursery tale ‘The Three Little Pigs’. Sue’s renditions of all the classic nursery tales have children joining in and retelling these favourite stories.
Older children use the framework of early years stories to make their own narratives. They can be introduced to more complex stories,too, such as Greek myths, epic ballads and modern urban myths.
Sue’s workshops are an excellent way to develop children’s confidence in speaking in front of other people. In recent years she has run workshops for several Island primary schools helping children to prepare to enter the Isle of Wight Literary Festival’s storytelling competition ‘The Great Telling Off‘.
On a pedagogical level, the workshops help schools fulfil the requirements of the national curriculum for English which aims to ensure that all pupils: are competent in the arts of speaking and listening, making formal presentations, demonstrating to others and participating in debate.
For visiting schools
The Isle of Wight is a great place to bring children for an educational visit. After a day of water sports activities or visiting historic places, what better way to end a day than to listen to some stories.
Sue has a vast repertoire of tales, some true and some not-so-true, all engaging and entertaining. There might be local legends of smugglers and shipwrecks interspersed with myths about why the sea is salty or why a crab has no head.
Some schools choose to have a seaside storywalk in which stories are interspersed with looking for beach treasure. Or why not try beach bingo in which children have to complete various tasks such as writing a poem on the sand, creating a beach sculpture, or drawing a story.
Storytelling for grown ups
Stories are not just for children. Whether you need stories for a special occasion, an interlude in an evening of folk music, or a something different for a WI group, Sue’s repertoire includes local, global, folk and legend. She can find stories to fit.
Try ‘After the watershed’ tales; historical tales; stories about, and accompanied by, food; walks and talks.
Sue has had many thought provoking and hilarious sessions working in residential homes for the elderly, and with adults with additional needs. Her sense of fun and optimistic outlook are infectious. Contact her to find out what she can do for you.
Special events – A story for every occasion.
Sue has told tales in all sorts of different situations and loves a new challenge; so if you have an event that needs an extra special touch, contact Sue. She is adept at choosing stories to suit whoever is in her audience.
She has worked with the following organisations over recent years:
- Isle of Wight Literary Festival (telling stories in the Youth Zone and organising a storytelling competition)
- Isle of Wight Festival (Rock Music) (telling stories in the KidsZone)
- New Carnival Company, (telling tales to engage with local communities)
- Red Funnel Ferries (entertaining passengers on the cross Solent voyage)
- Ventnor Fringe Festival
- ARC (squirrel stories for opening new squirrel hide)
- Short Breaks (telling stories and leading interactive activities in local woodlands)
- Isle of Wight Cycling Festival (leading story rides)
- Isle of Wight Walking festival (leading story walks, treasure trails and fungi walks)
- Rhythmtree Festival (World Music) (telling stories in the children’s area)
- Isle of Wight Learning Zone, home education support group (leading workshops and telling stories)
- Tapnell Farm Park
- Lanesend Primary School (storytelling at the school fayre, leading storytelling workshops)
- Summerfields Primary School
- Barton Primary School