Once upon a time ... a story: tradition and fantasy

"Once upon a time ..." Who among us does not yet resort to this curious formula with which all the stories of the world begin? We hear it countless times in our most tender childhood, and even today we find great pleasure in repeating it when our children - following one of the most ancestral human customs - require and demand us: "Come on! Tell me a story!"

Little Red Riding Hood, Snow White, Hansel and Grettel ... then arise from our memory, along with a never-ending list of eternal stories that continue to live thanks to the purest oral tradition. But the stories that have come to us thanks to grandmothers, great grandmothers and grandmothers, however, are not the only ones we can tell our children: the universal art of storytelling It also includes the no less worthy talent of inventing them or reforming them to our liking. Do you dare?


The unique world of children's stories

"There was once a sad child, a selfish stepmother and a beautiful fairy godmother ..."
If you want your imaginative effort to be successful, first of all you should know what this storytelling adventure consists of. A story is a story for children, a recreation of the world appropriate to them ... a particular way of showing them the reality. In short: a test of fire in communication between generations.

After the "erase one time" we have to develop a story with good and bad, with heroics and mischief, full of real elements - emotions, fears, joys - that the child is capturing as he knows the world around him.


But they can not miss either fantastic elements, magic, fairies and witches with more or less extraordinary and limited powers. Each child will demand a different combination, varying the proportion of these elements as their ability to assimilate the real world around them evolves. All a fatherly challenge.

A 'serious' story

"There was once a country in which lived a princess who sang very well with her father the King, it happened that a witch passed by and wanted to seize the voice of the maiden ..."
Telling a story is not a game. Rather it is something very serious, that we must do conscientiously.

A story must have, by definition, its start or presentation -the characters are framed in a situation-, the knot or plot -when "things happen", the protagonists make their decisions, etc.- and the outcome, which must be coherent and logical for the mind of our son.
Every story must have its end. And it must be good, defined, to clarify what happened with each character in the story.


"... and then the lumberjack arrived, who began to whack the bear until it ran away, and when he left, the bunny came out of the hole and apologized to the woodcutter for his mischief, and since then both were good and inseparable friends. , And colorin colorado this story is over."

Abra Cadabra

"... but the bear Pelusón did not know that the magician Aldano had a magic wand that his fairy godmother had once given him, a little" tap "of the wand on the slow mule Cecilia so that she became a brio and swift mare, who led them to the palace ... "

The intervention of magic, the fairies or any other fantastic character can be of immense help, because they will not detract coherence from the story in the eyes of the child, but they will give a magical note that is very stimulating for him. We must not forget that, at the time we create the stories, these in turn are a source of inspiration for the imagination of our children.

If we invented a witch with a broken broom or a redhead fairy, once the story ends, they will continue to live in the child's imagination. Our characters will have a life of their own, from which the children themselves will invent new stories. Or perhaps someone does not remember the impact that the magic formula "abracadabra" caused in his childhood?

Good good, bad bad

"... the dog Miguel had happened to him like you, he had lost a sock, he knew that Mama would get angry, so instead of telling him, he hid the sock he had left ..."

If we want to tell a story to our 4-year-old son, the 7-year-old or the 3-year-old, we will have to dive in his head in order to outline an imaginary world with a structure similar to his: a forgetful and affectionate grandmother, a father with authority and All powerful, a naughty brother ... and a good-natured protagonist but with a weakness for chocolate and antics, identifiable with himself. Of course, not all the characters that make up your world have to appear, but there must be simple and simple parallels.

The story will be an unparalleled and very effective instrument to instill in the child the difference between Good and Evil. The characters of the stories do not admit ambiguities: either they are good, or they are bad, but there is no mixture of defects and virtues, so as not to confuse.

What we must include in all the characters are weaknesses, small tendencies such as laziness or gluttony. It is important that the child can identify, that he learns to discover himself in them. The characters full of virtues, which are only good, are not advisable, because if the child can not identify himself, he feels "bad" and grows deluded.

Little romantics

"... when the little bear Robin knew that his father was looking for him in the forest, he ran to find him and he received him with such an embrace that he left his bones crushed." Then they went to the little house in the woods, where mama osa with a cake, and Robin promised that he would never escape from home again. "

What do we tell in the story? Love's stories, of course, that is what the children understand. In our stories can not miss the simple and pure love they know, parents, children, brothers and schoolmates.

As much as we adorn the story with accessory details, we can not forget that for them the fears, anxieties and joys always revolve around love: the tragedy is not to be loved, and the joy to find who loves you. Based on that idea, we can let the imagination fly.
Our best reward will be that, soon, our son will pull the leg of his pants and begin to recite the chant: "Tell me the story about ..."

Carmen Bassy

Video: The Story of Jack and The Beanstalk - Fairy Tales for Kids


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