September 26th, 2013

storytellerIt was the first session of  the new Storytelling program at the “Can Do” Recreation Center. The “Can Do” kids were so excited that they arrived 10 minutes early. Just as the clock  ticked to 3:30PM, a  tall man with white hair, a beard and a tall, black hat walked into the classroom. “Hi boys and girls,” he said; “I’m Storyteller Bill. I’ve been telling stories since I was your age. Why, I told stories to your parents, in this very room, when they were your age!”

Some of the “Can Dos” smiled, some looked surprised, while others looked like they just couldn’t believe what they were hearing. It was hard for them to think of their parents as ever being their age and sitting where they were sitting.  Wendy asked,” Can you teach us how to tell good stories? I want to be a writer when I grow up.”

“Why yes I  can,” answered Storyteller Bill” But before we learn to tell a brand new story, let’s practice on a story we know. The great thing about being a storyteller is that you can change how a story goes. You can take out the sad or scary parts. You can make it funny. You can use storytelling to teach a skill, or a lesson about being safe, or sharing, or all sorts of things.  You can take a story and make it into a play that you can put on in school. You can sit around a campfire and tell your story. You can use your computer to tell a story and email it to friends and family.”

By now, The “Can Dos” knew that storytelling was going to be fun.

“Let’s make the Three Little Pigs less scary and more fun,” said Storyteller Bill.”I will tell the original story, then I will share how I retell the story so it is less scary and has a happier ending. The “Can Dos” nodded . Storyteller Bill cleared his throat and began to speak.

storyteller“Once upon a time, there were three little pigs who lived with their mother in a meadow. One day their mother said, “You need to go out into the world and make your own way.” So they waved “goodbye” and went out into the world. The little pigs decided to build their houses in a meadow near the woods. The big bad wolf lived in the woods nearby. The meadow was big enough for all three houses and none of the pigs was afraid of the big bad wolf!

The first little pig was very lazy. He decided to make his house out of straw from the meadow. Sure enough, the big bad wolf trotted out to watch him build the house. When the house was finished, the big bad wolf knocked on the door and asked to come in. When the first little pig refused, the big bad wolf huffed and puffed and blew the house down.

The second little pig thought to himself, “I will be smarter. I will build my house out of twigs from the edge of the woods. That should be easy and safe.” But the big bad wolf came by and said, “You should not build a house with twigs from my woods. I will huff and puff and blow it down.” Sure enough, as soon as the house was finished, the wolf blew it down.

The first little pig and the second little pig ran to hide at the third little pig’s house. This house was made of bricks! “Oh,” they said, “you are the smartest of us all. Let us in, let us in, and we promise to buy all the food for a week.”

The wolf came by, knocked on the door, and asked to come in. “Not by the hair on our chinny, chin, chins,” said the pigs. So the wolf huffed and puffed and

THE HOUSE DID NOT FALL DOWN!

The big bad wolf said to himself, “This cannot be. I will climb onto the roof, go down the chimney, and eat those pigs all up.” He went down the chimney and landed in a pot of boiling water. He ran away and never came back.

The third little pig invited the first little pig and the second little pig to stay with him in his cozy brick house. The three little pigs visited their mother every Sunday for dinner and they all lived happily ever after.

Just as Storyteller Bill finished the original version of the Three Little Pigs, the clock on the wall ticked 4:30 PM. The storytelling session was over. The “Can Dos’ didn’t want to leave, but it was time to go; besides, there was next week to look forward to when Storyteller Bill would share how he changed the Three Little Pigs.

“Goodbye Storyteller Bill;see you next week,” the “Can Dos” cried out as they left. “Goodbye to you too,” answered Storyteller Bill. “be sure to be thinking about the stories you want tell when we see each other again !”

Pocket