STAGING STORIES The three-day workshop organized to kick off the Inquirer Read-Along Festival helps foster children and adults to tell their powerful stories through body language and delivery techniques. EARVIN PERIAS
Kids, adults get training on art of storytelling
Philippine Daily Inquirer / 04:33 AM October 14, 2019
MANILA, Philippines — For three consecutive Saturdays, children and adults received intensive training on book-based storytelling through a workshop organized to kick off this year’s Inquirer Read-Along Festival Storytelling Competition.
The 9th Read-Along Festival Storytelling Competition, to be held on Nov. 22 and 23, will culminate with the crowning of the festival king or queen.
Participants learned the basics of book-based storytelling, body language and the delivery of appropriate questions, as well as storytelling techniques in eye contact, facial expressions, diction and voice modulation, poise and pacing from veteran read-along storytellers and festival competition judges Ann Abacan and Rich Rodriguez.
“The storytelling workshop fosters children to develop their own talents and styles in storytelling. It aims to give them learning experiences that are full of fun and creativity,” Abacan said.
“Mentoring children at the workshop was a fulfilling experience for me. I am just a facilitator of their learning processes. Being able to preserve their innocent and child-like qualities will definitely help bring out the best in them,” she added.
The Inquirer read-along, launched in 2007, aims to teach love of reading among children.
This is why more than 500 celebrities have read in the program as models for children to emulate.
“But a key learning from a focus group discussion we did years ago to assess the program is that children themselves are great influencers to other kids,” read-along coordinator Minerva Generalao said.
“Thus, through our storytelling workshops, we are training children storytellers who are not one-trick ponies. We hope they will become good and champion storytellers reading any storybook they like to other children even without a coach,” she said.
The last session was attended by 45 students age 7 to 12, accompanied by 24 teachers as their storytelling coaches, from different schools in Metro Manila and nearby provinces.
The elimination round of the storytelling competition will be on Oct. 26, followed by the semifinal round on Nov. 9. The finals will be on Nov. 23.
The grand winner will receive a medal, a stuffed Guyito doll and a cash prize.
Only workshop participants who have not won in any previous storytelling contest are eligible to join the competition and vie for the title of Festival Storytelling King or Queen.
Those interested in joining the festival may call Odeng Orolaza at (02) 8897-8808 extension 330, or e-mail [email protected] Slots are available on a first come, first served basis. —REPORTS FROM MARIELLE MEDINA AND INQUIRER RESEARCH