The purpose of this activity is that children recognize the importance of words within a context. It is about presenting a paragraph so every child can cut out what he thinks is unnecessary, without changing the meaning of the text.
The activity is directed to children in the last years of primary school or the first years of secondary school. The number of children should not be too high, because every participants will have to write and read his own text.
- To reach a good understanding of written language
- To value the esthetic quality of the text
- To give importance to the way of expressing an idea
Once the story is read or told, every child will be assigned a different paragraph. Each one should then assume the role of a writer who has been asked to summarize his text. A time limit of 15 to 20 minutes is set. Afterwards, the participants should read the original paragraph and their own version. The others should give their opinion about which work they prefer and why.
It can range from 50 minutes to one and a half hours; it all depends on the size of the group and the diversity of opinions produced by reading the text.
The purpose of this game is to find a new title for the story.
It usually works well with children from eleven years old. It is best when the group is not larger that 15 participants.
- To understand a story in depth.
- To communicate and defend an own idea.
- To think about what was read or heard.
- To participate by voting.
The participants can know or not the true title of the story. If they know it, it will be discuss whether the title is appropriate or not, and why. Other options will be considered.
The children will be given paper to write down a new title, once they have read or heard the story. As they give new possible titles, they will be written on the board. Finally children will vote for the two or three favorite ones, also based on the reasons they have presented.
The session can be extended indefinitely at the moment of voting. The interventions can be controlled so everyone can be heard.
There are children’s books authors that put a lot of emphasis on imagination in their story, and make up words. This activity is about discovering in a book the words created by the author and figuring out the intended meaning for each of them.
There is no age limit, but in this case the size of the group is important; it shouldn’t exceed 10 to 12 children.
- To figure out the meaning of words in their context.
- To develop curiosity and attention.
- To discover imagination in the written language.
It is necessary to have a board or flip chart where one can write the new words that appear. The narrator or storyteller tell the children that throughout the story there will be new or created concepts.
At the end of the story the children say the new words they can remember. The words are written in the board, leaving some space to write on the side and explain them. The activity can be complemented choosing more usual words that could be used to replace the new ones.
When children say common words, these should also be written and discussed, looking for possible synonyms. To end the activity one can talk a bit about which words are more meaningful or beautiful, etc.
This will be determined by the mental alertness of the children and the number of words found. One hour could be a good average.
The purpose of this strategy is to find the main and secondary characters of the story.
Children from 8 to 10 years. Twenty to twenty five participants as the limit.
- To understand a story that was read or told.
- To encourage the selective selection of information within a story.
- To exercise the memory.
There can be two ways of carrying out the activity:
1st. Giving every child a list with the name of the characters he needs to find.
2nd. Writing the list of characters in the board or in a flip chart.
The game is about introducing the children to a list of characters that are in the story and others that are created just to distract them. Children should be given some time to read the list of characters. The story is read. After reading it, one asks them which characters from their list are in the story and which are not. One can also asks them to describe the passage or moment in which the character appears on the story.
The only condition for the activity is to choose a story with a minimum of 6 to 8 characters.
It is possible that the activity last about 50 minutes; this will depend on the number of interventions by the children and the amount of characters of the story.
It is about discovering the character from a very short description.
They can be young or older children, depending on the story. Regarding the number of children, it shouldn’t be larger than twenty.
- To understand the story and identify its elements.
- To exercise the attention.
we need some cards to write down a short description of every character of a story, without naming it; we can write down the feelings, attitudes and psychological characteristics, making as many cards as children (there can be various descriptions, about different aspects of the same character).
Once the story is read or told, the cards will be distributed (facing down), and everyone can read them silently. The session starts. Every child will read his card and will answer the question “who are we talking about?”. The session can end with a discussion about which character is more attractive or the more generous, or envious, etc., and the reasons.