We all love a good story. Whether it’s by someone reading to us or reading ourselves, a book can take us away to far off places. From the 28th January to the 4th Feb the whole country is celebrating National Storytelling Week.
Stories have the power to make us laugh, think or cry. We fall in love with characters and despise evil figures. The fact that good always triumphs over evil gives us hope that even in hard times things will get better. We can be whisked away to outer space and back to a witch’s castle in a blink of an eye. Fantastic creatures like dragons and giants roam the landscape.
Time can just disappear when we read a good book. We imagine ourselves as a hero, taking us away from real life as we read. We can picture what the world is like that the story creates. The amazing thing though is that to each person that world looks slightly different, meaning that the story is specific to each person. We live in a time of television and mobile phone screens often create these worlds for us, reducing our need for an imagination. This electronic media can be brilliant, but there is something about creating worlds ourselves, and having a physical book with pages that cannot be beaten.
Children love to read and be read stories. A group reading time can turn in to a social event, leading to role play after finishing the book, acting out the various plots in the story. Someone can be a knight. Someone can be a dragon and someone can be a princess. It is vital that children are encouraged to think creatively and use their imagination as it’s what drives the world forward later in life. Without having the creativity there would be no innovations and the world would stand still.
Below is a great illustration of how storytelling affects the brain (www.yourstory.com)
It is because of all of these reasons that National Storytelling Week is being celebrated. So take time to give yourself an hour or so and dive into a good book. Read to children and take part in one of the most enjoyable hobbies you can do.