The Jolly Postman or Other People’s Letters

In May Elvis the postman puppet came to introduce the story in the library at Sant Pol de Mar.

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He said hello and listened while everyone introduced themselves.

Copia de storytelling may 2013 (10)We then had fun telling the story of The Jolly Postman and reading all the letter inside the book.


We then had a creative time designing new stamps!

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The older children wrote their own letter to a fairytale character. We also had a chance to look at Who’s Afraid of The Big Bad Book?

Who's Afraid of The Big Bad Book

I love the illustrations in this book but due to the amount of text it’s difficult for young English language learners.


However the children enjoyed spotting the different fairy tale characters and remembering their names in English!

Who's afraid

I’ll be back in Sant Pol in July with some sessions on the terrace in the meantime I’ll be in storytelling in schools in Argentona, Mollet de Valles, Sant Fost de Campsentelles and Barcelona. And also in a new library in Santa Coloma. Watch this space!



Little Red Riding Hood – November 2012

Meeting the wolf

Hello, I’m back again in the library in Sant Pol de Mar just outside Barcelona in Spain. We have started a new season of storytelling sessions. This year we are continuing with the two groups but in the first group we have some new young listeners who are all keen to learn English and in the second group are the children who have been coming to my storytelling sessions for a few years now.

The idea will be to look at a familar story for the first group and mix it up a bit for the older children.  I decided to start with Little Red Riding Hood which has some great aspects for young learners and after putting the illustrations by Pau Estrada (see above) in order we were soon chanting “what big eyes “. For the older children I told the story Lon Po Po a red-riding hood story from China by Ed Young.  I was very impressed with my group who now have enough English to be able to tell me the differences between the classic story and this one from China.

Lon Po Po

After all the storytelling we did some worksheets from the British Council Teaching English Website

The older group loved working on My Little Red Riding Hood Story and here are some pictures from the younger ones who followed my comands by drawing a big head, two small eyes, two big ears, one big nose, one big mouth and lots of small teeth.

Lucia Maria Pau Unknown artist Unknown artist 2

Eugeni Judith Kerala


Charlie Cook’s Favourite Book

Charlie Cook is reading a book about a pirate captain, who is reading a book about Goldilocks, who is reading about a knight, who is reading about a frog . . . From kings and queens to aliens and ghosts, there’s something for everyone in Charlie’s amazing book!

Entertaining, original and it is the book we read yesterday in the library in Sant Pol de Mar. Afterwards we did some work about our favourite  books and stories and here are the results.

Top Three Favourite  Stories in Sant Pol Story Time.

Number Three: Tina Superbruixa

Number Two: Bat Pat

Number One: Geronimo Stilton

Click on the titles to go to their web pages. The Geronimo Stilton one is in English and has some great activities.

Other favourite stories were St George and the Dragon, Puss in Boots and Goldilocks and the Three Bears.  Click on these stories and you can listen to an audio version at the Storynory website. A great web to learn English through stories.

Let me know your favourite stories!

The Twelve Dancing Princesses

For the January storytelling session in the library I told the story of The Twelve Dancing Princesses. I used the version by Rachel Isadora which is a simple retelling of the Brothers  Grimm fairy tale with the location changed to Africa.

The illustrations in this book are described here by Rebecca Zerkin for the New York Times. ” Isadora uses ornate textiles as cultural symbols. Some dancers wear detailed, realistic renderings of African fabrics in a range of styles: yellow, blue and brown zigzags; delicate, interlocking purple diamonds; thin stripes in brown and black. Others wear bold gowns painted with thick, textured brushstrokes. Their radiant faces, often shown in perfect profile, have dramatic skin tones, complicated striations of brown, yellow, orange or black. Isadora’s dynamic, crowded scenes, often mounted on simple white backgrounds, spill over the edges of each two-page spread.”

As part of the activity we also made some collages using wrapping paper. Here are the results.

Clapping in the Castle

We also sang a song by Nancy Stewart “Clapping in the Castle” click on the title above to go to her page and sing along.

Stories for 9-12 year olds

Please find below a selection of stories available for Story Time for children aged between 9 and 12.


Jim and the Beanstalk

Themes: Fractured fairy tales, helping the aged and measuring.

Story Description: Jim woke up early one morning to find a plant that was very like a beanstalk growing outside his window. Climbing to the top of the beanstalk, he found a castle and a giant, but with very modern problems that only Jim could help solve.


Snow White in New York

Themes: Fractured fairy tales, Art Deco and Jazz.

Story Description: Pulsating with the rhythm and vibrancy of the Jazz Age, set in New York City in the 1920s. The story may be familiar, but the cast of characters will surprise you. Snow White is a beautiful jazz baby, protected by seven hot jazzmen. Instead of a wicked stepmother, her arch-enemy is the Queen of the Underworld. And her Prince Charming is a crack reporter from the “The New York Mirror”.


Rumpelstilstskin & Rapunzel

Themes: Tracing traditional tales and Italian Renaissance painting.

Rumpelstilstskin Story Description: The funny little man who spun straw into gold and helped the beautiful miller’s daughter marry the king gives her three days to guess his name or he will take away her child.

Rapunzel Story Description:  Trapped in a tower with no door, Rapunzel is allowed to see no one but the sorceress who has imprisoned her-until the day a young prince hears her singing.


The Thousand Nights and One Night

Themes: The storyteller and literary techniques.

Story Description: Welcome to an ancient world of enchantment and adventure where animals talk, genies grant wishes and sorcerers and sultans rub shoulders with men. Retellings based on the original nineteenth-century English translation by Sir Richard Burton.


Poetry Workshop

Using poetry in the classroom is a great way to teach English. Poems are often rich in cultural references, and they present a wide range of learning opportunities. This workshop concentrates on communicative speaking activities and pronunciation.

Stories for 6-9 year olds

Please find below a selection of stories available for Story Time for children aged between 6 and 9.


The Gigantic Turnip

Themes: Growing vegetables and weather

Story Description: A counting book, an animal book, and a book of the seasons all rolled into the one cyclical narrative.

Stone Soup

Themes: Sharing and food.

Story Description: Stone Soup is a popular folktale in many countries that has been told for centuries. I use a version of Stone Soup which is an imaginatively creative story with colourfully descriptive pictures that bring the plot about sharing to life.

Lazy Jack

Themes: Jobs and places of work.

Story Description: A mournful princess sits at her castle window. Meanwhile, Jack (probably the laziest person in the world) is sent out to work by his mother. On his first day he is paid a shiny coin, but he drops it on the way home. “You should have put it in your jacket pocket!” cries his mother. So the next day, having worked for a dairyman, he pours the jug of milk he is given in payment into his jacket pocket! In fact, he always follows his mother’s most recent advice when bringing home his day’s earnings: it results in the most ridiculous scenarios.

New Patches for Old

Themes: Kindness and clothes

Story Description: A traditional Turkish folktale. Poor Hasan! His trousers are too long and it seems that nobody will help him to shorten them. What will he wear on the holiday?

The Little Red Hen Makes Pizza

Themes: Kindness, cooking and ingredients.

Story Description: A spirited and quirky remake of the classic tale, about an industrious hen and the rewards of her hard work and self-reliance. Children will enjoy following the process of making a pizza as the Little Red Hen–who can get no help from the duck, the dog, or the cat–buys an appropriate pan, kneads the dough, cuts and chops vegetables (and other stuff) for a fabulous topping, and bakes a giant pizza.

The Magic Paintbrush

Themes: Selfishness and sharing

Story Description: As Shen draws pictures in the sand, a mysterious man gives her a magic paintbrush. She paints, fish, pots and ladders and watches them come to life for the poor people in her village. But when the emperor hears of this, how can Shen outwit his greedy plans?

Stories for 3-5 year olds.

Please find below a selection of stories available for Story Time for children aged between 3-5.

The Fat Cat: A Danish Tale

Themes: Friendship.

Story Description: A Danish folktale about a greedy cat who lives with a mouse and grows enormous as he eats everything in sight.

Brown Bear, Brown Bear, What Do You See?

Themes: Animals and colours.

Story Description:A big happy frog, a plump purple cat, a handsome blue horse, and a soft yellow duck– all parade across the pages of this delightful book. Children will immediately respond to Eric Carle’s flat, boldly colored collages. Combined with Bill Martin’s singsong text, they create unforgettable images of these endearing animals.

The Very Hungry Caterpillar

Themes: Nature and food.

Story Description:Eric Carle’s classic tale teaches children about numbers, days of the week and time as the newly hatched caterpillar munches his way through the pages.

We Are Going on a Bear Hunt

Themes: Nature and weather.

Story Description: Follow the family’s excitement as they wade through the grass, splash through the river and squelch through the mud in search of the bear.

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