Do you use Twelve Little Tales and sometimes get stuck after reading one of the prompt cards? I hear from many storytellers that these prompts are helping inspire the stories to come but I also know that some of us struggle a bit (me included when I was first starting to make up stories! :) Lets talk more about telling stories using this card 😊
This card talks about these sweet little beings floating in their shell boats down the rushing river toward the pond. The hope is that they will get to the island by nightfall where they will celebrate with all the others during the rising of the full moon. Soon, they pass by some mice (pictured not here but in our imaginations) rowing in their own little boat. “Hullo!” they say and then “PLOP!” the mice throw something in their boat. It is a...
What would you say?
There’s a lot here (not all the cards have this much going on ;)
1. First, what did the mice throw in the boat? I think I might say a bundle wrapped with green cloth and tied with a bit of twine. There’s no time now to open it as we need to pay attention to our swiftly moving boat!
2. And island gathering: meeting friends they haven’t seen for some time, there’s undoubtedly a magnificent feast.
3. A full moon celebration - celebrations can always bring in talk of dancing and singing and games. And the MOON - the cycles of the moon maybe something you pay close attention to or this could be a good time to look at the calendar and see where the moon is today - when is the full moon? This month, the full moon is called the pink moon or the grey goose moon for little flowers in the meadows or the geese flying away after the long winter. So many stories to tell..
4. Where are the mice going? Do we see them again or are they off on a quest of their own? Maybe there’s a clue in that bundle?
5. Do they visit the island every month for the full moon or just after the winter is over to see everyone again in the spring?
As you can see there is a lot to work with and many stories can come out of each card (and these are just the tip of the iceberg of possibilities)- even when the card only has one sentence and a simple image. It’s ok to take some time to think about what you would like to say. I find that if I think too much my stories aren’t as fulfilling. Do you find that? Or do you enjoy thinking and planning what your stories will be?
When I started Twelve Little Tales my son was three and I would make up very simple stories about family members and small adventures. Now that he’s seven we get quite a bit more complex and he helps a lot. It can take days for the story to unfold all the way - and sometimes there’s no hard ending leaving room to come back later if it happens or not if it doesn’t. I have to leave some of my attachment to it going a certain way behind - which is really true for much of everything when it comes to doing things with young children, isn’t it?
Think about this. Are you telling stories to tell an amazing story or are you spending some amazing time with your child or children creating something for and/or with them? Or both? ✨ I think that the less it’s about an amazing story and more about being present and engaged in such a pure and true way the more amazing your experience - and your story - will be.
I would love some questions that will guide guide this conversation in the way YOU want it to go. I would like very much to not only offer you these story-starters (that I put so much love into) but to help you use them and to have fun with them as well!
Twelve Little Tales is a project to spread the art of storytelling far and wide.