Does your child have strong narrative skills? Does he or she have trouble recalling the sequence of events in a story? Here are some helpful tips for parents that can encourage your child to retell any story, but these are specifically for The Monkey Balloon. Retelling stories is an important part of language development and can improve a child’s comprehension and expressive vocabulary. To check out my post about retelling stories, click here. According to the research, using specific characteristics during reading can help a child recall information about the story.
According to Carl J. Dunst, Andrew Simkus & Deborah W. Hamby (2012), these are the characteristics below that help our children retell a story. I added how to use these characteristics with The Monkey Balloon.
Story Introduction: Show your child the cover of The Monkey Balloon and ask your child what he or she thinks the book is about.
Repeated Readings: Reading The Monkey Balloon several times.
Story Review: When you are done reading the book, review the story of The Monkey Balloon (e.g. First Mimi got a balloon, then she lost it, etc)
Relatedness: How does the book relate to your child’s own experience? Ask your child, “Did you ever have a balloon you lost?”, “How did that feel?”
Prompts child responses: Ask your child to make a comment or ask questions about The Monkey Balloon.
Open ended questions: Ask questions that require a more in depth answer such as “How does Mimi feel when she loses the balloon?”, “Where do you think the balloon went?”
Asks for Prediction: Ask your child what might happen next as you are reading a book. As you are reading the book, ask your child “What do you think happens next?”
Manipulatives: Using props or toys related to the book. Find some appropriate manipulatives at home or make your own!
Visual Aids: Using picture sequencing cards or some other visual aid that can help the child retell the story. These will be soon available on our website!
Adult Prompting: Prompt your child by asking questions about The Monkey Balloon and using other strategies besides questions. Check out this post for more ideas!
Elaborations: Ask your child to elaborate on The Monkey Balloon. “What do you think happens after the story?”
Book Access: Let your child hold the book and use the pictures as visual cues to retell you the story.
Dramatization: Act the book out! Pretend you are Mimi and you lost the balloon!
Visual Aid: The child has access to the picture sequencing cards to help retell the story.
Manipulatives: Child is given prompts or toys to help facilitate retelling of the story. Be creative with this!
Carl J. Dunst, Andrew Simkus & Deborah W. Hamby (2012) state that using 5-6 characteristics (in total with combined child and adult reading is optimal). The characteristics that had the most effect were relating the book to the child’s interest, introducing the book, asking open-ended questions and making predictions, using visual aids and prompting child retelling (Carl J. Dunst, Andrew Simkus & Deborah W. Hamby, 2012).
Dunst, Carl, Andrew Simkus, and Debra Hamby. “Children’s Story Retelling as a Literacy and Language Enhancement Strategy.” Center for Early Literacy Learning 2nd ser. 5 (2012): 1-14. Web. 7 Nov. 2014. <http://earlyliteracylearning.org/cellreviews/cellreviews_v5_n2.pdf>