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National Storytelling Week 2024: ideas and classroom activities for storytelling

Added 12 Dec 2022 | Updated 24 Nov 23

Storyteller talking to children

National Storytelling Week Activities

To celebrate storytelling week, taking place from 27 January to 4 February 2024, we're creating a programme of events and resources to help you take your pupils on a journey from listening to stories to becoming young storytellers themselves.

Our flexible storytelling activities - designed for learners across a wide age range covering Early years, KS1, KS2 and KS3 - can also be used throughout the year to activate the power and magic of storytelling to build children's confidence and skills.

What is National Storytelling Week?

National Storytelling Week takes place at the end of January every year and is a celebration of the power of sharing stories. Stories teach us about the world, they allow us to step into someone else’s shoes and feel empathy, they help us to relax and escape and they can help develop essential literacy skills.

In 2022, nearly 2 in 5 (37.5%) children and young people said they enjoyed listening to audio either very much or quite a lot (find out more in our research report). Our suite of classroom activities for National Storytelling Week will help you to explore the power of listening to stories with your pupils.

National Storytelling Week resources for early years through to KS3

For 2024 we'll be updating this page with new classroom resources and online events to help you to celebrate storytelling - whether for National Storytelling Week or in lessons throughout the year - in your schools and settings. Resources will include practical ideas for learning opportunities that aim to foster a love of storytelling whilst developing pupils' speaking and listening skills through chances to explore and listen to stories, as well as tell their own.

Early years

  • Supporting early years children to tell stories - a range of practical ideas that you can experiment with and adapt to make the most of the space and resources you have available, exploring ideas such as: role-play, outdoor learning, use of technology and puppets.
  • Using story sacks - example guides on how to make and use a story sack.

Primary (KS1 and KS2)

New resources for 2024 will be available from early January 2024.

  • Become a storyteller (2023) - a teacher guide and learning sequence that can be adapted and delivered across the primary age range, taking pupils on a journey to become confident storytellers with a focus on developing oracy skills. Addressing the speaking and listening strands of National curricula, this resource will support you to host a storytelling event in your school, where pupils will explore, retell and perform traditional folk and fairy-tales.

Secondary (KS3)

  • Podcasts in the classroom (2023) - a detailed guide for secondary teachers that explores the benefits of listening to podcasts, including age-appropriate recommendations, along with a suggested learning sequence full of practical ideas to develop student's listening and speaking skills.

The primary and secondary resources can be downloaded from the available files section of this page.

Additional classroom storytelling activities

  • Explore 28 ways to turn children into storytellers - take a look at this fantastic StoryQuest resource, packed with original ideas and fun activities to turn children into storytellers - created by Kate Norgate of The Crick Crack Club.
  • Write an Alex Rider adventure story - if you have Alex Rider fans in your class, why not challenge them to write their own Alex Rider adventure story? Explore the resource to access a story writing kit and accompanying resources with lots of ideas for how the tasks can be incorporated into class time.
  • Enjoy stories across a range of themes and genres in our Young Readers Story Club.
  • Looking for a storyteller for your school? If you’re looking for a brilliant storyteller to bring the magic of storytelling to life, who is local to your school use our listings tool.
  • Free River of Stories collection - the A River of Stories anthologies can strengthen your pupils' imaginations, critical thinking, and their ability to participate in culturally diverse local and global communities. Each volume contains a story or poem from each of the 53 countries in the Commonwealth, great for sharing with your class.

Storytelling resources for families

We also have resources to help families enjoy the age-old tradition of storytelling and share their own stories, memories, and experiences.

You can download our community guide, which will give you some tips and ideas to help build excitement around Storytelling Week within your local area and community.

Explore family activities
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