StoryWorld: Christmas Tales

Part of the StoryWorld series

Publisher: Templar

Review

StoryWorld is one of those ideas that, once you see it, you wonder why it wasn't done before: A pack of beautifully illustrated story cards with lots of detail that children can combine to make any number of new stories and connections.

The emphasis of the pack is on verbal storytelling, but children who prefer writing can also gain great inspiration from choosing three or five cards at random from the pack and combining them to write a new fantastical tale.

The pack also comes with a storytelling book full of great ideas for using the cards individually and in groups, and each card has useful prompt questions on the reverse of the picture to help children and adults engage their imaginations. What is the Queen looking at? Who is in the background? What is the weather like? What does she hold in her hand?

Often, the eagle-eyed child will spot that figures from other cards are featured in the background of others, making visual links to other stories and characters that you may have already thought about together. This attention to detail helps to create an interconnected web of stories in the mind of children and adults alike - an imaginary universe to explore together.

In the unlikely event that children (and adults!) get bored with one pack or feel that they have exhausted the story possibilities therein, there are a variety of themed packs that you can buy to supplement your original pack - Faery, Haunted House, Magical Toybox, The Mad Profesaor's Workshop, and especially topical, a beautiful Christmas-themed pack for those festive winter evenings.

StoryWorld is a fantastic tool for parents, teachers and children, providing the structure and inspiration for a shared voyage into storymaking and imagination. I will certainly be buying it for all the children I know this Christmas.

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