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Storytelling Fun - Five Ideas To Bring Books to Life

What's better than reading a story? Well how about playing with one? Sharing stories in a variety of creative and imaginative ways can really help children with their early literacy skills and speech development. Here are just a few of our favourite ideas for storytelling fun.

1. Story Stones or Story Spoons
There are lots of different versions of story stones about - just take a look on Pinterest!  There are beautifully decorated ceramic pebbles and even stones that have been decorated using magazine pictures. If you create the stones yourself they can be as versatile or as specific you wish.  Our own very basic stones were created from pebbles we collected in the garden. We then decorated these using acrylic paint before sealing them with varnish. They are great for playing with in a group or alone. We usually put them in a basket, take them out in turn and as we do, we each add a little to the story.

<img src="story stones.png" alt="diy story stones on floor">

<img src="story stones.png" alt="diy painted storytelling stones in basket">

We also recently created some chalk board story spoons as I had some left over blackboard paint from another project! What is brilliant about the chalk board spoons in that they are so open ended and can be used to retell any story from a book or for making up your own tales Here is a great post from Early Impact Learning with 10 ideas for using Story Spoons, which is well worth a read. Also if you don't fancy making your own story stones or spoons, stunning sets can be purchased from The Story Spoon Company. This is not an affiliate link, we just think they are lovely!

<img src="story spoons.png" alt="diy chalk board storytelling spoons">

2. Story Cubes
Similar to story stones, story cubes can be used to get your creative storytelling juices flowing. We have been playing with the Rory's Story Cubes for a few months now. As The Mini Reviewers are still very young, they just interpret the pictures how they wish and we have found the best way to play is to create stories together. The sets of Rory's Story Cubes can be purchased from Amazon (affiliate links below) but if you fancy making your own then check out this great post from Red Ted Art.

3. Storytelling Baskets
Storytelling baskets are such a fantastic way to play with stories. We recently had fun with this little basket of goodies to help us retell the traditional tale of The Three Little Pigs. As well as a set of finger puppets, the basket contained shredded paper for straw, lollipop sticks for the wood and Duplo blocks for the bricks. We had fun building the three houses as we shared the story together.

<img src="story basket.png" alt="storytelling basket three little pigs">

Story baskets are again very versatile and can be adapted to suit any age. Here are two very simple story baskets suitable for older babies and toddlers.

<img src="dearzoo.png" alt="diy storytelling basket role play">

<img src="noisy day story basket.png" alt="musical instruments basket">

4. Take to the stage (well sort of!)
Why not grab a puppet or a mask and practice your best voices before acting out your favourite story? We find costumes, masks and props really do help to bring books to life. All three Mini Reviewers love getting into character so we've had lots of storytelling adventures including: hosting a "The Tiger Who Came to Tea" tea party; making a shoe box theatre; taking a trip around London; and exploring some twisted tales with puppets.

<img src="storyteliing fun.png" alt="puppets for storytime tea party">

5. Finally - Get arty!
Not everyone's cup of tea, but grabbing your craft supplies and getting messy can be a great and fun way of exploring stories together. We have been taking part with some of the #KidArtLit challenges on Instagram where we have chosen a book and accompanying craft activity to fit a particular theme. Below are a few of our photos (1. Penguins 2. Diversity 3. Snow 4. Chinese New Year). Do take a look at the #KidArtLit community on Instagram as some of the choices are so inspiring!

<img src="storytelling through art.png" alt="painted art projects and books">

We do hope you feel inspired to enjoy some storytelling fun of your own! 
Please do share any storytelling activities with us, we'd love to hear from you. 

Until next time... HAPPY STORYTELLING!
Kate & the Mini Reviewers xx

Please note that this post contains Amazon Affiliate links, you can learn more about what this means here.
<img src="storytelling fun.png" alt="storytelling art ideas"><img src="storytelling fun.png" alt="story spoons tree book">

<img src="storytelling fun.png" alt="music basket instruments noisy day book"><img src="storytelling fun.png" alt="story stones in basket"><img src="storytelling fun.png" alt="storytelling with props">


  1. I just love story stones, they are wonderful for sparking little one imaginations aren't they. We have some story cubes and they get used so much in our house.

  2. Great ideas Kate! I can't wait to make some story stones when I have time. And love your story baskets too! #readwithme x

  3. Some fantastic ideas, love telling stories to my girls :) thanks for sharing with #ReadWithMe

  4. Fab ideas Kate! I love the story baskets, I'm going to have a go at setting some of those up at home. #readwithme

  5. There are certainly some fantastic suggestions. I want to try these now. #KLTR

    1. Thanks Helena. Let me know how you get on if you try them out! #KLTR

  6. This is so awesome. I love story baskets and these ideas are fantastic. I bet if you created a pinnable image for this, it would do well on pinterest. :) Thanks for sharing and now I am insipred to make some resources. :) Thanks for linking up to #KLTR and apologies for my delay in visiting your blog.

    1. Thanks Angela. Off to make a pinnable image! #KLTR

  7. There are some really wonderful ideas here! I think the stones and the baskets might be my favourite. Thanks for linking up to #kltr

    1. Thanks Laura. We've had some great fun with these! #KLTR