How to Use Stories to Boost Multicultural Literacy

This article has been written by storytelling specialists, Tonya and Natasha, from Little Creative Days

It doesn’t matter where we’re from or what our cultural background is a story has the power to unite us and help us understand one another.

A story helps us celebrate our cultural diversity and to teach children respect and tolerance for others.

A story can help children learn about the world they live in and the different cultures. If you are telling a story from a different country, eg. a different version of a fairytale or may be a story like Handa’s Surprise which helps children learn to count in Swahili, the you can build on that story.  For instance, you could get a map out and find out where in the world the place is. You could talk about what the weather is like in that country, is it hotter than the UK or colder? You could talk about the culture in that country eg. do the children go to school and how do they learn? Do they have a national dress?

If you’ve got children of different nationalities in your setting then choose stories from their countries and talk to them about the story, it will help them develop positive attitudes about their own ethnicity and to feel part of a community as well as help the other children learn about where their friends are from.

Stories help children to develop their emotions as they have so many layers that can be adapted for a variety of developmental levels and can act as a stimulus to think about moral issues so they are a great conversation starter.

If you really want to bring the story to life then you could get the children to make puppets of the characters, or things from the story so that they can retell it with you. This boosts inclusivity because they play together to make the puppets and work as a team. They also learn more from the story because they will be so much more engaged.

To find out more about how to use stories from around the world, come along to our next workshop ‘Tales from Around the World’ on the 27th January 2020 and get some practical hands on advice and some fresh ideas.

Learn more and book here.

Written by Little Creative Days
Tonya and Natasha, the storytelling sisters, are authors of a series of books about a little dog called Pojo who gets itchy paws and goes off on adventures.

They have won multiple awards for their puppet making kits that accompany the stories including Teach Early Years Excellence award for Communication and Language Resource.

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