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Teachers as Storytellers

Think of the people we call teachers, not just in classrooms but in every facet of our lives. A quality they share is storytelling. They connect with our hearts and minds. We laugh, cry, yell, and carry on in every imaginable way with them. We remember them not because of what they taught us, but what they revealed about themselves and helped us discover about our self.

The best teachers are the best storytellers. We learn in the form of stories.

~Frank Smith

About ivonprefontaine

I am a retired educator who recently completed a PhD at Gonzaga University in Spokane, WA. My dissertation topic and research was how teachers experience becoming who they are as teachers, as human subjects. For me, teaching is a calling and vocation that allows me to express who I am as a person. Currently, I am waiting and listening to what will call me. We have begun a small consulting and leadership firm called Rocky River Leadership & Consulting Ltd.

56 responses »

  1. we adore stories, the way they paint the imagaination, the way they take us from a beginning middle and towards an end…..taking us on journeys

  2. Been there, Ivon, and always a storyteller. What a satisfying way we live our lives. Smiles.

  3. What else is education than involving students in the stories of life? A teacher’s enthusiasm for his/her subject is infectious. I even used storytelling as an agent of maintaining classroom order. If everyone was good for the week, I told stories for half the classtime on Friday. I had some pretty good stories, many of which they’d heard second-hand from older brothers and sisters. I found that after awhile the kids maintained the order for me. A chorus of “Shut up, or she won’t tell us any stories on Friday!” was usually enough to quench even the most disruptive student. I enjoyed your blog, Judy.

    • Thank you Judy. Students have a sense of the importance of stories and their connectivity. They value the openness teachers show when they tell their stories. Parker Palmer would say that when you told your stories you are were on the vulnerable intersection of public and private life.

  4. I was fortunate to have many great story tellers in my life~inside and outside of the classroom. Great post, Ivon! Shared. 🙂

    • Thank you for the comment and the share Bette. Storytelling connects people. I had the privilege of listening and watching an indigenous elder tell stories and the way students responded to the stories and the teller with such reverence.

      • Thanks for sharing. Storytelling is a gift that we need to share with young people today. They really do want to hear from us. I learned so much from ‘elders’ in my life. Stories and lessons I will never forget.

  5. Reblogged this on Bette A. Stevens, Maine Author and commented:
    Teachers are everywhere, not just in the classroom. I was fortunate to have many wonderful story tellers in my life. ~ Great post, Ivon Prefontaine! ~ Bette A. Stevens

  6. Hello Ivon! You are so write about stories…they are the windows to our world and we learn so much from them. Thank you so much for visiting my blog and following. I hope you find and enjoy quality and entertaining content there. I look forward to getting better acquainted with your work and am now following you too! Have a great evening!

  7. Oops…sorry…that’s “right’ about stories. But I guess ‘write’ still works if you look at it from a creative standpoint. 🙂

  8. Jackie Saulmon Ramirez

    Well, I never thought about it that way but you are absolutely right about that. I think this is true in the sense that art is in everything and we are all artists to a certain degree as well. Thinking about that allows me to look at and approach the world differently. Thank you for that! 🙂

  9. I can still fondly recall when I had a 3rd grade class and I was reading a book series to them. They gave me their complete attention as I would set the mood with pulling down shades, turning off some lights and putting my take on what the “voices” would sound like into the stories.

  10. Storytelling is a gift and we can all learn so much when it is presented well. Thankyou to you and all the teachers that help enhance life for our children and us.

  11. Ein schönes Wochenende wünschen wir. LG. Wolfgang

  12. I like these books as buildings. I am going to study ways I can do a take art
    with such medium.

  13. Thanks for following me. I looki forward from learning from your posts.

  14. The older I get, the more stories I have to tell. Stories always seem to have a little piece of us inside them.

  15. many thanks for reblogging “easy to be in love with a tree,” my! I have never had such exposure. – My blog is only tiny where viewing numbers are concerned, so i was thrilled you rebloged it.. Namaste Eve

  16. I wanted to stop by and personally welcome you to my blog, and while I was here I discovered that you have a pretty amazing blog yourself, so now I am your follower as well. I look forward to reading more of your posts, and hope to see you on my site often.
    Have a really great evening!

  17. Telling stories is the very good way to inspire people.

    I always compare the storytellers as the magicians as they can call actions.

    To be honest, it is like psychic power to lead someone do something.
    (You might check this out why:

    In this case, teachers should learn how to craft and deliver stories to give students ideas and passion

    not just throw them the boring theories and principles.

    Plus, they can add the moral idea in every story.

    I totally agree with you. Wish more teachers becomes great storytellers.

    Thank you so much for posting this.
    Jade the Mystic

  18. Reblogged this on Wanderlust and Wonderment and commented:
    We learn from the stories we are told and from the people we encounter. Parents, coaches, friends, media – they are all teachers.

  19. So very true. Thanks for posting this.

  20. I don’t think I’ve seen you for a while on my blog, Ivon, so I thought I’d drop in to see what you’re up to these days. Looks like your posts are supremely popular! This one rings the right note for me, as I like to use stories to get kids interested in healthy eating. Perhaps I’m doing something right after all :).

  21. Thanks for stopping by and reading my blog.

  22. This is great! I remember the first book a teacher read to me and I immediately knew that I wanted to write! There are just some teachers that make it seem like magic. From second grade on, I was so hooked.

  23. Reblogged this on Truth Troubles: Why people hate the truths' of the real world and commented:
    Cheers to the cherished few who can do this job and not totally lose their minds in the process.

  24. Beautiful post Ivon. I took up teaching strategy and management on retiring from the army and only when I started narrating stories of great business companies and their leaders did the students enjoy and learn.

  25. This is so true. The best teachers are storytellers they help us make meaning of our lives and infuse culture into our lives. Extremely thankful for all the teachers I had. 🙂

  26. Well said, Ivon. I love my teachers because of that factor. I have a lot to say about each one of them.

  27. We are not ourselves, when nature, being oppressed, commands the mind
    to suffer with the body. King Lear

    Storytelling at its best from Matthew Thomas the novel ‘We are not ourselves’ has filled me with dread with what may come to pass as i watch my Husband of 58 years slowly change from a lively joking fellow to an introspective quiet body who seems happiest in his own company.

    I am reverting to my role as a Teacher…a profession I loved and entered only after raising a family of four.
    My favourite time of day was ‘ Storytime


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