Storyteller Days engage residents of all ages in El Valle in telling stories about family traditions, history, crafts, foods, and holiday events. The Villanueva Library held its first annual Storyteller Day on April 18, 2015, Children made their own costumes and interacted with the stories while reading and speaking at the microphone. Storyteller Day in 2018 focused on “Preserving Cultural Traditions in El Valle.“ Families made tortillas and the demonstrations of spiritual drumming by local resident provided opportunities for children to play instruments. Lessons in traditional Baile Folklorico, including the "Broom Dance," were enjoyed by many.
The tradition of storytelling continued in 2021 with the "Storytelling in the Schools" program, through which the library provides weekly sessions for each grade at the local Elementary School. Children are exposed to stories from a range of cultures, immersing them in the perspectives of other people and other place. At the same time, they learn about books, internalize narrative structures, increase their vocabulary, and experience the excitement of writing their own tales. During the 2022 fiscal year, we delivered over 250 hours of storytelling in the school, reading 144 books to grades K-3 and over 800 pages to grades 4-5.
In addition to developing attention spans and memory, storytelling inspires young storytellers, encourages young writers, and creates lifelong readers.
Children are natural storytellers. You can encourage your child's pleasure in this activity by listening and engaging with the stories that they tell. Providing props that allow them to develop and embellish the story, such as drawing materials or puppets, encourages them and helps them understand narrative elements such as plot, action, and character, through experiential and hands on activities.