Story Workshop

Susan Harris MacKay

Story Workshop

By Susan Harris MacKay
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Susan Harris MacKay
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Even our youngest students have lots of stories to tell, whether real or imagined. How can we create entry points for writing, so that all writers feel confident and motivated to share their stories? How can we establish a classroom community of beginning writers where equity, empathy, and compassion become part of the process and vital by-products of story writing?

Enter story workshop, a structure for early literacy that amplifies the relationship between play, art, and writing. Children develop ideas and stories through choices of art materials. By creating images through play, story workshop invites children to explore the "amazingness" (Nisa, age 10) of their ideas in a variety of art forms. “Through their stories,” Susan writes, “students share the meaning they make of their experiences in the world.” Children in every classroom environment feel empowered to transition from play to pencil as they add words to their stories.

Story Workshop includes an abundance of classroom videos, photos, and student samples that illustrate what is possible when children use words, colours, textures, shapes and all kinds of materials to create the stories they want to tell. Watch how students’ imaginations soar, their love of writing blossoms, and their connections with one another become the focal point of your classroom.
Table of contents
  • Ch. 1: The Case for Story Workshop
  • Ch. 2: Preparation
  • Ch. 3: Provocation: Presenting Content to Be Learned
  • Ch. 4: Invitation and Negotiation: Setting Expectations and Inviting Children to Create
  • Ch. 5: Story Creation
  • Ch. 6: Story Sharing
  • Ch. 7: Living and Learning