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Stagebridge’s 2004-2005 Storybridge Program
by M. Parks and D.S. Rose, 2005
Keywords: elementary education, language arts, listening, teacher education
Stagebridge’s 2004-2005 Storybridge Program, part of the U.S. Department of Education’s Arts in Education Model Development & Dissemination Program, provided direct instruction and teacher training to eight 4th and 5th grade classes in three schools in the Oakland Unified School District.
Senior storytellers modeled storytelling for students and teachers in these classrooms once a week for six weeks. Next, professional storytellers worked with the students and teachers biweekly for eight weeks to help them gain an understanding of storytelling principles and skills.
At the end of the program, students were given the opportunity to tell a story on stage in front of peers. Additionally, three teacher workshops were held during the program to further develop the teachers’ knowledge and skills in storytelling and its use as a classroom tool.
Conclusions: Students showed improvement in language arts and listening comprehension skills as a result of the program. Participating teachers gained a deeper awareness and understanding of storytelling as an art form and its impact on the core subject matter curriculum.
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