NATIONAL TELL A STORY DAY
National Tell a Story Day on April 27th each year in the United States encourages people of all ages to share stories. The stories can take many forms, too. You can read from a book or create one from your imagination. Stories recreated from childhood memory leave an indelible imprint on both the storyteller and the listener. No matter what story you tell, the day supports gathering with friends and family to share those stories.
The ancient practice of storytelling handed down knowledge from one generation to the next. It is a wonderful way to pass on family traditions, histories, and long-told tales. It can also be entertaining as well as educational. Any good storyteller will tell you, some of the very best stories come from real-life experiences.
When is World Story Telling Day?
The celebration encourages every generation to tell stories. That includes the youngest storytellers to most experienced. Gather grandparents and children together to swap tales. Pick a topic and let the tales spin. Bring favorite books or well-remembered fables to tell. Spending time telling stories with family, friends, and loved ones is a time for all to learn from each other, remember, and grow closer together.
Besides creating a bonding environment, oral storytelling provides rich opportunities to reminisce. While connecting the past to our present, oral storytelling also fosters creativity. It encourages the use of imagination that lasts a lifetime.
HOW TO OBSERVE NATIONAL TELL A STORY DAY
Libraries around the country participate in the day. They offer special storytelling times for children. Do you have a story to tell? It does not matter if the story is a short story or a long story, fiction or nonfiction, a tall tale or folklore. Seek the storytellers in your life and encourage them to regale you with stories. As you listen, record them in some way. This is a day for them all.
- Tell a story. While you’re practicing your storytelling skills, try these tips to make your tales come to life:
- Engage your audience. Invite them to participate, too!
- Be sure to give your characters their own voice. Would Kermit the Frog or Daniel the Tiger be the same without their own voice?
- Get physical! Body movements give your stories extra impact. You will capture your audience’s attention. You will also bring your story to life.
- Ask your audience questions. How will the main character get out of trouble? What will happen next? Who do you think did it? What would you do?
- Use misdirection to surprise your audience. Sound effects, small magic tricks, and props all add elements of surprise to your stories.
- Facial expressions punctuate your words. Use this powerful tool to drive a character’s emotion home.
- Read a story aloud.
- Ask others to join you in the storytelling adventure.
- We encourage you to tell your stories and even share them on social media using #NationalTellAStoryDay.
- Educators and families, visit the National Day Calendar® Classroom for lessons designed around National Tell a Story Day.
NATIONAL TELL A STORY DAY HISTORY
National Day Calendar continues researching the origins of this storytelling day.
Q. Do I just make up the story as I tell it?
A. That’s one way to tell a story, and the best storytellers are very good at that. However, there are other methods for storytelling.
- Memorize a short story and tell it in your own words.
- Relate a story from your life. You know the details better than anyone, so who better to tell it than you!
- Read a story aloud. Some of our favorite books come to life when read aloud.
Q. Can anyone participate in the day?
A. Yes! Everyone has a story to tell. Whether you write it down or speak it aloud, the stories we tell are a part of us and are worth telling. So, go tell a story!