Story workshop is a playful approach to literacy in early childhood (especially ages 3-8) that prioritizes opportunities for making meaning, sharing stories, play, and the arts. The approach, initially articulated and developed in classrooms in Portland, Oregon, now flourishes in programs around the world. This course, led by two of story workshop’s earliest advocates, introduces educators to the approach and its rationale, strengthening their capacity to explore new practices in their unique context alongside children and colleagues.

Using a combination of active discussion, reflection, images, and video, participants will:
  • Deepen their practical understanding of the ways humans use story to navigate experience and the importance of story to learning
  • Extend their commitment to the role of documentation to strengthen the relationship between practice and theory
  • Explore the power and influence of environment and materials to create conditions for making meaning and community building
  • Embrace the critical role of play and the arts to early literacy development
  • Design action plans to grow a practice of story workshop in their own setting
Required text:
Story Workshop: New Possibilities for Young Writers by Susan Harris MacKay (Heinemann, 2021)
Anticipated Section Focuses:
Day 1: Preparing for Story Workshop
What are the relationships between play, literacy, and the arts?
As we consider the “educational Copernican revolution” neuroscientist Mary Helen Immordion-Yang calls for, we’ll discuss the nature and nutritional value of story in the development of healthy human beings and the aesthetic quality of environments that promote mindsets conducive to learning, relationship, and creativity.
Day 2: Getting Started
How is story workshop organized? What practices make a successful story workshop?
We’ll explore the geography of Story Workshop and consider what supports the kind of compass necessary for navigating the terrain. We’ll observe Story Workshop in session through video documentation.
Day 3: Story Creation
How can we create entry points for writing that support all writers to feel confident and motivated to invent their stories?
This week, we’ll build a shared understanding regarding the kinds of tools, strategies, materials, and adult facilitation that encourage children to engage in story creation.
Day 4: Story Sharing
How can we establish a classroom community of beginning writers where equity, empathy, and compassion are part of the process and vital by-products of writing?
We’ll reflect on the reasons that sharing stories has the potential to build strong classroom communities and share strategies for supporting groups of children to listen, respond, and find themselves in relation to and solidarity with others.
Susan Harris MacKay and Matt Karlsen have guided thousands of educators to embolden the alignment between their values and practices. With particular attention to the role of play and the arts in deepening cognition and collaboration towards creativity and beauty, their courses, presentations, and the online Studio for Playful Inquiry (www.storyworkshop.studio) have supported joyful teacher inquiry. Susan is the author of Story Workshop: New Possibilities for Young Writers.

Learn more about Susan and Matt at www.centerforplayfulinquiry.com

6th, 13th, 20th & 27th November 2024

Each Session is for 2 Hours

PST/PDT 8:00 am | New York 11:00 am | Zurich 5:00 pm | Dubai 8:00 pm | India 9:30 pm

Please click here to check your time for the workshop
USD 500 Per Participant
INCLUDES: Certificate of Participation for 10 Professional Development hours.