World of Story
World of Story is an ongoing collection of folk tales developed by the Edmonton Mennonite Centre for Newcomers in collaboration with community partners to support language and literacy development in families. The materials developed encourage families to read together and maintain first language fluency with their children. Through storytelling, we validate and celebrate the use of diverse languages in our community.
Although the primary goal of the initial project was to support language and literacy development in families, along the way other discoveries emerged.
Sharing of folk stories builds intercultural understanding. Although the folk stories may take different forms, the key values that the stories express are the same and these values can serve to connect diverse cultures.
Storytelling builds relationships in the family, community and inter-community level. Storytelling gives families, schools and communities opportunities to learn and celebrate together; to honour and appreciate diverse languages and together discover the value of
Learning through the arts engages new ways of knowing and makes knowledge accessible to a wider variety of people. Through story, song, art and dance the creative process is ignited. Learning through the arts also has the ability to bridge gaps across generations, and indeed across cultures.
Shortly after the first celebration, a young child recently arrived in Canada listened to the story the Enormous Turnip in her home language and with a big smile reported, “I understood every word!” It is our hope that through this project children and parents can listen to the story and together say, “We understand.” May families also be inspired to share their stories, songs, and games in their home language and enhance the oral language skills of their children interconnected with culture, identity and literacy.
As you use the World of Story resources and share them with families in your program, school or community, we invite you to embark on a journey of learning and discovery together with parents and children from diverse cultures.
World of Story Online
- The Treasure in the Orchard
- Toad is the Uncle of Heaven
- Enormous Turnip
- A Bundle of Sticks
- The Stranger Who Snored
- The Song of the Adarna Bird