Unlike the other stories on my website, this is neither a traditional tale, nor one which I tell. Instead, it is a story created by my class of 11-year-old German children in our English lessons.
The class had been learning English for less than 18 months yet the storytelling had helped many children to absorb a lot of the language, as this text, written with virtually no adult assistance, shows.
Text and the pictures are © Arlette Otterbein (2001) and are reproduced here with her kind permission.

The Woman and the Skeleton

Picture 1

Picture 2

Picture 3

Picture 4

How the class created their tale

Together we decided the who, what, where and when of the story. The only rule was that whatever was suggested by one of the class had to be incorporated into the story, no matter how much contradiction this involved!
The children worked very hard to write and illustrate their own version of the story, all of which were proudly exhibited in the school. This particular story is just one of many wonderful pieces of work.

My grateful thanks for this technique go to Andrew Wright.
For many more ideas of using storytelling in teaching English as a foreign language, read Andrew Wright's two books: Storytelling with Children (OUP, 1995)
Creating Stories with Children (OUP, 1997)

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You are a teacher? Read this: Telling stories in the classroom: basing language teaching on storytelling

Want to record your own performances? Here are some suggestions