5/9/2013 - It's Elementary
Each week, I work with Nan Wilkinson’s 5th & 6th grade class at Arcadia Neighborhood Learning Center – Phoenix, AZ

Student Tellers Shine at Concert!
It is with great appreciation that I tell you about the Storytelling Concert on May 9th at Arcadia Neighborhood Learning Center. Six of the students I have been working with presented a variety of stories and held the audience's attention with delight!

Anthony (last year's standout) started off the night with his usual charm and a story about a world traveling on the back of a turtle. He never ceases to amaze me with his ability to create intriguing stories.

Natasha followed with her original "pourquoi" story of how the phrase "Rise and Shine" came into being. A well-crafted tale with several "call and response" sections that got the audience involved.

Next up was Violet, with a personal story about the day she first got her point shoes. She did a fantastic job of weaving story and movement to show us her excitement and joy with this new-found and cherished addition to her dance skills.

Donny drew in the audience with his historical account of Operation Hambone, a military ruse by the Allied forces in World War II. In the Q & A period after the concert, Donny revealed that one of his inspirations for the story, and his love of that period was a relative who fought in the war.

Zoey shared her family story that explained why her mother charges her fifteen cents for every salad she eats. The tale of mouth-watering vegetables from her Grandmother's garden; the relationship between her mother and her aunts and the lesson they learned whetted the appetite of the audience. A well-crafted and well-told tale that showed Zoey's passion for storytelling.

Luke's original story of "Luke the Talking Horse" revealed both his love of horses and his understanding of family relationships. His message of "Caring is sharing" was well received.

The final story of the night, The Paper Bag Princess, showcased Zoey and Natasha's talents as they told the tale in "tandem"! The girls had made their own decisions about crafting and how they would tell the story themselves! They worked together seamlessly, switching back and forth, with wonderful characterizations and great humor. Brava to both of them for ending the show on a very high note.

As for me, I could not have been prouder of them all. They did a splendid job of storytelling, and the audience showed their appreciation with rounds of applause at every turn. Thanks to Nan Wilkinson who has graciously assited me and allowed me to guide her students in the art of storytelling. Thanks too, to all the other students in the class who supported the tellers, listened to each practice session, and gave appreciations to them every time!

I had a bit of a lump in my throat listening to each story, and certainly, later on when I read the letters from each of the students in the class, telling me what they had learned from me. And I was awed when Donny got up said, "Oh yeah, I almost forgot, I wouldn't be where I am today if it weren't for Storyteller Mark."

A great way to end the school year - for the students and for me!

©Mark Goldman 2013

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For more information contact Mark Goldman - 602-390-3858 - Mark@Storytellermark.com


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