We all can remember our childhood days and how much we used to like listening to stories from our grandparents, parents, and other elderly members in the family. Those stories would mesmerize us a lot and took us to a fantasy journey with the characters of the stories. The fairy tales, the stories of the Ramayana and the Mahabharata, Betal, Akbar and Birbal everything seemed interesting to us. We used to get so engrossed in the characters that in our subconscious mind, we had conversations with them. Now we can realize that our thought pattern, value system, the perception of good and bad, everything has been greatly influenced and shaped by these characters and incidents. But in this age of technology and nuclear families, the art of storytelling has vanished from our lives. Busy parents have forgot the benefits of storytelling to their children and replaced it with gadgets. Even in the present situation, there are so many factors that can explain why storytelling is important for our children.
BENEFITS OF STORYTELLING:
STORYTELLING IMPROVES THE VOCABULARY:
Studies have shown that storytelling can enhance language and vocabulary learning skills. It improves listening ability that is important for learning new things. If we read books and tell stories to our babies and toddlers regularly, they can learn a lot of words and sentences very quickly. It enables them to use meaningful languages, and they can memorize a considerable number of words also. Children become motivated to read books when we read books to them. The narrative of the story helps to build strong communication skills. The value of storytelling increases by many times when children participate in questioning, guessing, and telling. It becomes a funfilled learning experience for them. If they cannot understand a new word, they insist on the explanation and this eventually enhances their knowledge and vocabulary.
DEVELOPS THE IMAGINATION AND CREATIVITY:
Storytelling for preschoolers is very beneficial as it ignites their imagination. Effective storytelling can encourage the children to visualize the incidents narrated in the story. Their creative thinking skill improves as it makes them curious and inspires to think. If the storybook is filled with images, then children try to associate them with the story by their imagination. Our grandparents used to ask questions about the possible upcoming twist while telling a story. This kind of interaction is thought-provoking and encourage a child to explore the world of imagination.
MAKES CHILDREN EMPATHETIC TO ALL CULTURES:
As long as elderly persons are concerned, they select stories that are generally rooted in their cultures. It helps the children to get informations about their rich cultural heritage and gradually a sense of association and respect to the root grows among them. The most important benefit of storytelling is that it helps a kid to be well versed with his mother tongue. At the same time, stories make children familiar with different cultures in the world. Knowledge of customs and rituals of different societies around the world makes children empathetic to other people, cultures, and situations. Their experiences of diverse cultures, help them develop compassion and appreciation of others, and they become more acceptable to new ideas.
BUILDS GOOD MANNERS:
In our childhood, Aesop’s fables, moral stories, and fairy tales were of great interest. The stories used to teach moral values that were just inscribed in our minds. Actually, these morals play an important role in a child’s emotional and mental development by moulding his thinking. Most of the time it cannot be achieved by just giving some instructions. As children love to listen to the stories, parents can instill good behaviors and manners in children by creating stories about something they want their children to listen to. The mythological characters influence the children’s minds greatly and inspire them to follow the path of truth and wisdom.
As stories are a favorite form of recreation, children engage in it with full attention. Instead of keeping them engaged in gadgets, we can involve them in listening to stories. This is the most relevant factor that makes storytelling so important even in this digital era. We can easily notice that children have become very restless now. Listening to every detail and waiting patiently for the story to come to an end improves the concentration and attention span of children.
DEVELOPS READING HABIT:
If we make storytelling for preschoolers a routine, it develops reading habit in them. Reading books with children, questioning, guessing, and laughing together while doing all these can strengthen our relationship with our children. Generally, children who develop reading habit from an early age, love to go through all kind of books and this way become better learners in the future.
Another important benefit of storytelling is, it stimulates curiosity and inquisitiveness in children. An inquisitive mind does not allow a child to sit idle and makes him remain engaged in exploring new things and new possibilities.
GREAT WAY TO BOND WITH THE CHILDREN:
If we read stories with our children or tell them stories regularly, it helps to improve our relationship with them. A strong bond with your baby is very helpful to raise a happy child. Storytelling creates a cozy atmosphere around and builds a positive relationship with the children.
So, to instill values, culture, and historical knowledge in our children, storytelling is the most powerful way. It helps to develop not only a child’s brain but also his social skills and communication skills. It promotes a positive attitude towards the world and its people and creates magic in young minds. To teach our children about ourselves, as well as others, and give an insight into life, we must emphasize the value of storytelling.