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Getting Started

*A Storyteller's Vocabulary List
*Basic Creative Tools
*Raw Material
*First Steps to Retelling Plot

A Storyteller's Vocabulary List

The sequence of events from which a story, play, song, puppet show, song, etc. can be made

To restate in one's own words

One of many possible presentations of the same plot

People, animals, or other communicating entities in the tale

The presenter of the tale

Basic Creative Tools

Spoken text created by memorizing or improvising language of the tale

Nonverbal Communication:
Body language, gestures and facial expressions that contribute to the meaning of the communication

An interior creativity that generates language and physical expression in the storyteller

Raw Material

Learn a plot to tell as a story:
Find a folktale plot to retell in the folktale collections (398.2 section) in the library

Other possibilities:

First Steps to Retelling a Plot

Picture the plot as a movie in your imagination. Start off retelling it by "chatting" it in your own words to make sure you remember what happens in the plot. Create your own version by retelling it over and over to different listeners until it starts to feel like a story. (Story is the art form; plot is the raw material from which it is made.)

Have a strong beginning and end by creating an enticing first and last sentence. Improvise the middle.

Using descriptive language, add detail to your basic "chatting" of the plot. Try to help your listeners see what is in your mind. Pretend to be all the characters by letting some of the characters speak dialogue. When you are the narrator, make sincere eye contact with the audience.

Stand up and tell the plot as a story. Let your imagination make your body and face respond to the tale as you imagine it. Tell the tale to a partner or a few people. Ask a friend to offer you some coaching (Ask them to listen to you and then give you some practical comments). Practice helps to reduce stage fright. As you gain confidence, try telling the story in front of a larger group.

Have Fun!

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