Storytelling and Family Values
Storytelling is one of the first connections that a parent makes with his or her child. Parents read to their children to entertain them. Children want a story before they go to bed. Parents encourage their children to read. Reading is the key to success in school and for that matter in life. Being an efficient reader assures success in school. So what do parents do? They buy lots of books with stories.
Now before the printed work stories were told by the fireplace or on the front porch. Stories consisted of family tales. Maybe there was a favorite aunt or uncle that was a funny character in the family. The storyteller in the family would tell about the aunt or uncle and embellish the tale so it was entertaining. Children longed to hear those tales because it was their main means of entertainment. It was also a cultural process by which the spoken word was passed down from generation to generation.
Next, the radio created shows that enlivened the imaginations of the listeners. People were held in suspense listening to murder mysteries. They also listened to comedies and shows like the Prairie Home Companion with Garrison Keillor. It was a time for family gathering just like storytelling is today.
Today storytelling is a national and international event. Storytellers are networked throughout the world. There is a National Storytelling Festival each year in Tennessee. And each state has storytelling events. People hire storytellers for school assemblies and special community events. Storytellers are considered a profession that can provide storytelling help whenever needed.
Gather around my friends, I have a story to tell……