Saturday, August 6, 2016


These programs are designed for classrooms, and are focused on curriculum subjects. Each session lasts about 45 minutes (half hour for kindergarten).  I tell two or more stories, and bring props and costumes for acting out one of them.   The stories open up topics for a rousing discussion.  We have a lot of serious fun!

Paths to Peacemaking (Fifth-Sixth Grade)

Character-building Stories (Second-Fourth Grade)

Write Your Own Plays (Second-Sixth Grade)

Tales to Tell the World (Second-Fourth Grade)

Kindergarten Capers (Kindergarten)


The great moral teachers have always used stories. Stories quickly get to the center of human dilemmas -- right to the place where character qualities can be seen and used, appreciated and remembered. After we act out the story and discuss it, we end with some rousing discussions of the students' own lives. Sometimes we improvize the students' experiences. I invite guidance counselors to join me in teaching this class. There is a minimum of 8 classroom visits so that the students and I can develop a rapport. Stories focus on courage, deep thinking, respect, self-respect, responsibility, creative solutions, honesty, kindness, perseverance, fairness and peacemaking.

Friday, August 5, 2016


Conflict is a necessary, though often uncomfortable, component of change and growth.  But when conflict leads to fighting, it is destructive.   The goal of this residency is to explore the reasons, global and personal, that people resort to fighting, and to present a few simple techniques for managing personal conflicts.

The blind man knows that she has cheated him.  A story from Zimbabwe.

While the travelers were arguing, their donkey ran away.  An Aesop's fable.

Wednesday, April 30, 2008


     Children love to put on plays!   It's heartwarming to see how proud they are when they have created a story and can see it come to life as their classmates act it out. Some teachers ask each child to write a play, and others use the playwrighting as a group activity. The plays can be written on a current curriculum theme, or as a finale for any of my other topics. I will guide the writing process and provide direction along with simple props and costumes.

Sunday, April 27, 2008


Each weekly story/acting session focuses on a particular country. My goal is to help the children see the commonality of worldwide human experience within very distinct cultures. Here is a piece of a wall one class built, using pictures from each country we visited through stories. I usually bring music, food or souvenirs from the country so the children have sensory input beyond the stories themselves.

Saturday, April 26, 2008


Kindergarten children need lots of exposure to language and story structure. They also need opportunities to build their creativity and self-confidence. In my story sessions, I try to cover those bases. I bring folktales and modern stories to build literacy skills, and then we act out some part of the story to build verbal skills, imagination, cooperation, and public speaking skills. It's great fun!