When I first discovered eeBoo after reading about them online last December, I was instantly impressed. Their games, puzzles, flash cards, and wall art are exactly the kind of toys we like to have in our home. They are colorful, educational, and made of high-quality recycled materials.
One of the many products eeBoo produces is an award-winning early literacy product called Tell Me a Story Creative Story Cards. These cards are my “secret weapon” I use when I want an alternative to reading books and they are perfect for honing my storytelling skills. Recommended for ages 3 and up (although I use them with my 1 & 2 year olds), the deck of 36 beautifully illustrated cards assist children in creating their own stories.
An endless number of stories are possible by placing any number of the cards in any order. Short stories, long stories, kids create a new story every time they shuffle the deck. The whole family can make a game out of the cards, by taking turns picking cards and telling a story together. Parents, grandparents and teachers will find the cards useful as an aid in their own storytelling. Brilliant!
Here’s the basic breakdown of how the story cards work. You lay out all the cards. Then you choose, or have your child(ren) choose, the cards they find interesting. Choose as many or as few cards as you like, and lay them out in an order that tells your story.
Then you go through the cards, describing them in any way you or your child(ren) wishes to tell the story of your making. And that’s it! Super simple and a really fun way to work the imagination and gain better understanding of the process of storytelling.
eeBoo offers four different sets of story cards: Circus Animal Adventures, Fairy Tale Mix-Up, Mystery in the Forest, Volcano Island, Animal Village and Little Robots Mission. Sized small at about 4″ x 5″, the cards pack easily in a bag, perfect for travel and come in a sturdy sliding tray box. Because the set is priced reasonably at $9.95, we plan on buying a few of the other sets for more storytelling possibilities. I imagine you can even mix the sets together and make up some pretty wacky stories!
These open-ended card sets allow for endless variations on games and activities based upon storytelling. The simplest activity is for a young child to choose three cards from the deck and then tell a story (or a sentence) that incorporates the three items shown on the card. As a child begins to gain confidence in telling stories, the number of cards may be increased, or additional players may be added to take turns to create a cooperative story, a fun social group activity.
My 2 1/2 year-old daughter has a pretty awesome imagination already, and I’ve really enjoyed listening to her tell me some excellent stories. I’ve been particularly pleased because the set encourages her to speak her mind and become a little more vocal, skills that she needs to practice before she starts Pre-K3 this fall.
I hope you found this helpful.