Explorations are central learning experiences at The Northstar School. We explore deep and meaningful topics in multi week projects. One such Exploration was Stories which we conducted with our 3rd and 4th graders.
Humanity has always inherently known that people crave and seek out great stories as much as they seek food and water. Stories communicate meaning and help form connections and perspectives. At the outset, learners were exposed to the history of the stories and storytelling. They read stories and watched films. They learnt to gain insights on the myriad feelings and emotions these stories evoke, and the value they bring to our lives. The idea was for them to understand stories and analyze/interpret them through basic story elements.
Based on their previous understanding of analyzing a story through story elements, the learners were then exposed to the process of developing/crafting an effective story. The sessions were dedicated to developing stories through effective story mapping/planning followed by crafting a story on a story prompt. As an end result/outcome, learners developed their own picture story book.
At last, learners were exposed to learning different ways and means (media) through which stories are created and shared. The sessions were dedicated to understanding stories through newspapers, images (in form of paintings, photos, photo essays) and moving images (in form of movies, documentaries, TV commercials, and TV serials). Also, we also discussed stories being told through plays, radio as well as through emerging narrative practices on digital platforms such as Facebook, Twitter, Instagram, and YouTube. The objective was to acquaint learners with several media through which stories are shared and to understand and observe the differences between the nature of stories shared through these media.
All in all, the topic aimed at engaging learners in meaning-making activities surrounding the topic of stories to render a joyous and meaningful learning experience.