Educators and psychologists recognize that it is important to help children develop problem-solving, analytical and analogical thinking skills. These skills encourage a lifelong love of learning and the habits of mind that enhance children’s experiences and potential as they continue their schooling and become young adults.
To help children develop these skills, we need to use tools that encourage higher-level and critical thinking; foster empathy and conflict resolution; and promote social and emotional intelligence, which studies now show play a critical role in academic success.*
The teaching-story is just such a tool. Hoopoe’s stories, combined with best-practice strategies provided in the Activity Guides and Lesson Plans that accompany them, ensure that this critical learning can take place.
The free booklet “Learning that Lasts” describes the unique qualities of the teaching-story and how current brain research views this genre as beneficial. The booklet explores higher-level thinking skills, such as analogical and contextual thinking, and describes how these are improved by the careful use of these stories. It looks at the value of open-ended questions and shows that social and emotional, as well as empathetic, benefits can be reaped when we use teaching-stories. And, finally, “Learning that Lasts” examines strategies, such as the use of meaningful repetition, that will help us ensure children’s successful use of this material.
*No Emotion Left Behind, August 16, 2005, New York Times. Timothy P. Shriver chairman of the Collaborative for Academic, Social, and Emotional Learning and of the Special Olympics, and Roger P. Weissberg professor of psychology and education at the University of Illinois at Chicago and president of the collaborative.