Fun Ideas for Storytelling

Since the very beginning of time, the Story of God and His story of man has been told verbally. It has been handed down from generation to generation via the personal telling-and-receiving of the spoken word. Storytelling is an art of communication that remains as viable today as it was in the Garden.

Research verifies that the greatest learning takes place where we can be involved in the story experience itself. The storytelling format can include both passive listening/watching, and active participation in the telling of the story. The listeners can have opportunity for hands-on portions of the telling. This is not a new approach. It is a time tested, effective way of telling the Story of God; where some of the greatest internalizing and processing of the essence of God’s story is possible.

Utilizing the broad skills of many in creating of the script, and props, and in the telling — an entire audience can be deeply involved in the storytelling experience.

Fun Ways of Storytelling

  • Make up a modern-day parable.
  • Use a folk tale with a similar theme.
  • Create imaginary characters and put them in the story.
  • Group telling - Have several people add “what comes next”.
  • Monologue - tell the story from the point of view of someone other than the main character.
  • Team tell - Have two people tell the story.
  • Interview characters from the story.
  • Story theater - Have several people read their parts.

Fun Props to Use

  • Costumes
  • Pictures
  • Felts
  • Puppets
  • Food
  • Shadow Story
  • Chalk
  • Story boards
  • String
  • Fabric
  • Stuffed animals
  • Cards
  • Paper and scissors
  • Illusions or tricks
  • Blacklight
  • Masks

Fun Music to Use

  • Mood music
  • Sound effects
  • Instruments
  • Songs as part of the story
  • Audience sound effects
  • Made-up songs

Fun Ideas for Audience Involvement

  • Chants Rhymes
  • Sound effects
  • Group refrain
  • Chorale responses
  • Cue cards for responses

Group Storytelling Presentation Method:

Instead of having yourself or a single person be the teller, consider using a group of tellers for the story telling. Here are a few ideas for organizing a group of tellers to tell any Bible story or parable.

Tabletop Object Storytelling

  1. As a group, decide your Bible story or parable.
  2. Write out the story section-by-section.
  3. Determine and assemble objects to use for telling each section. These can be common everyday items; items from nature or items you create. For example, a tall saltshaker might be a tower. Children’s alphabet blocks might be the Jericho walls, a cup might be Nehemiah’s cup. A small loaf of bread, a cup, a towel, pitcher, a small basin and 30 coins might be used to tell the story of the last supper.
  4. Prepare a small table center-stage for telling the story (perhaps covered with a plain color cloth).
  5. Place story objects in a container off stage or behind the table.
  6. Rehearse telling your story several times scene-by-scene.
  7. Have each team member remove objects from the container and place them on the table for the story section they will tell. Then tell the story in section sequence with each presenter placing, using, then removing, their tabletop objects.
  8. Develop 3 questions to ask your audience at the completion of your story presentation.

Costume Storytelling

  1. As a group, decide your Bible story or parable.
  2. Determine the story characters.
  3. Write out the story section-by-section, as told by various characters.
  4. Determine a single costuming article or prop for each story character.
  5. Place costuming items and props near the back of the stage on a table. 
  6. Go through the story scene-by-scene and identify which costume items/objects each character will use to tell each section of the story. Place them in order. For example, a poster board sword for Goliath, a slingshot for David, a crown for King Saul.
  7. As each character’s part is told, the teller turns around and selects that character’s item. Then, he/she continues to turn in a circle until facing the audience, then tells that section. When finished, that character turns around and faces the table, replacing their prop. 
  8. The next character turns in the same direction for their object or costume piece for the next section, etc.
  9. Rehearse telling your story several times. 
  10. Develop 3 questions to ask your audience at the completion of your story presentation.

You can access this entire magazine for free here: Edition 37

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