Black History Month stories

Wooden staff for Anansi storytelling

Today I spent time with a Year 5 class at Campsbourne Junior School to run an oral storytelling workshop.  I’d prepared Black History Month stories which the children could take part in.

Wooden staff for Anansi storytelling

Some of them had heard the tale of Ananse and the Unknown Assignment by Peggy Appiah from her book ‘Tales of an Ashanti Father’. As we know with oral storytelling, every version is unique and I’d prepared my own version for their age-group.

One of my warm up exercises was based on Pie Corbett’s ‘speed whispers’.  I created tongue twisters using characters from the Ananse story and got two teams to race to the end. It was so much fun, that the pupils begged for more tongue twisters.  Luckily I’d prepared a few and we laughed ourselves silly at the versions that were created in the end.

Storytelling with a painting of Anancy the spiderman

The entire workshop was focused on everyone developing their characters through word play and drama.  All of the children were keen to join in and take part in the story using costumes and props.

Holding a wooden shaker

Lastly I led through my story map template where each child created their own story board of the story.  Using symbols, drawings and writing, everyone created their  own version of the ending.  I told them the ending of the story from Peggy’s book once they had all written their versions and shared it.  The room was silent as every child hung on my words eagerly awaiting the end of the story.  A perfect end to a wonderful afternoon.