Ok, by now hopefully you’ve gotten the chance to try storytelling with your kids. People always talk about how they missed their kids’ childhood by being too busy, but with storytelling, you get to have an incredible window inside their minds at their different stages. If you want a quick peek at the stages, look at the different cartoons that are offered and the stories involved: baby, toddler, child, pre-teen etc. Pay attention to the depth of plot and the various elements of life they explore. It’s even more helpful to pay attention to your own kids and what they are interested in for your stories’ plots.
My kids are really into frogs and toads right now. Whenever they talk about it, and it’s almost daily, I invariably get it mixed up. If I said “Frog”, they’d always correct me and say, “No, toad!” and vice versa. Honestly, I didn’t do it on purpose, but I started to suspect that they were. It became perfect material for a story.
During breakfast and lunch, my kids usually ask me to tell them a story. I’ve been getting into telling chapters which works pretty well for the meals. I’m going to try to get into that in greater detail for a future post.
For this one, I told about a frog and toad that always got called the other’s name by the different animals in the swamp and woods. And for doing this kind of storytelling, (picking a plot from their interests) it helps to know at least what your kids know. Or you can make your ignorance part of it too, but be prepared to get corrected.
The story went a little like this: The Princess (for my daughter) upon hearing of the confusion, invited everyone to a party where she would have Frog and Toad as her guests of honor. But as she invited them to speak, they came out in the wrong order! It got crazy as Frog and Toad started wrestling around to correct it, their name tags got switched, and everyone was even more confused. I just thought of whatever I could to make it worse and completed it with the Prince, who tried to help but ended up unintentionally combining their names and called them, “Froad” and “Tog”. By this time, my kids were all laughing which gets me laughing and the story became kind of muddled. I think we left it with the mess and everyone started using the new even-more-confusing names.
I told this story a couple days ago, and now when my kids talk about frogs and toads, they bring it up. It’s funny when laughter is a part of a memory because when the memory is remembered the laughter comes with it. Or sometimes the distance of time makes it funnier, like for my wife and I and the Grand Canyon- not funny at the time, but funny now that we’re in air-conditioning.
Take some time to make memories with your family everyone will want to remember. This isn’t supposed to add on to the ever-growing list of parental responsibilities. It’s all about having fun and laughing with your kids. If following me isn’t leading you there, figure out what will and give it a try. Once you find something that works, start your own blog and tell me about it. Be brave!