WITH the ongoing pandemic, parents must be running out of ideas to keep their children occupied and entertained.
Even story-telling sessions would have become stale with the same old stories going around the loop.
To offer a new take on storytelling and to bring families together for fun story sessions, the International Storytelling Festival 2021 might just be the event that everyone needs.
Held throughout this month, the free sessions made available on social media will be featured in multiple languages — English, Bahasa Malaysia, Tamil and Mandarin.
Hosted by Segi College Penang, Penang Women’s Development Corporation and WhyteHouse Education Group, the festival will feature professional storytellers from Taiwan, New Zealand, United Kingdom, India and Singapore among others.
WhyteHouse Education Group founder and executive director Jery Yeoh said the festival would include a storytelling workshop titled ‘Narrative Learning – Using Story to Educate’ by Andy Wright, a well-known storyteller from New Zealand.
“The workshop will offer insights into simple techniques to enhance storytelling in classrooms and at home.
“You can see how you can engage with children when sharing a story.
“We believe stories are a way to teach children values and lessons.
“The workshop is suitable for parents and teachers, ” he said during a press conference at Tech Dome Penang in Komtar recently.
Yeoh said the sessions will be in English, Bahasa Malaysia, Tamil and Mandarin.
“The sessions will be broadcast live in Malaysia, United Kingdom and Hong Kong.
“We chose to have the sessions at night as we want families to sit together after dinner and watch it with their children.
“The dates of the sessions are spaced out to ensure the children have something to look forward to and can be a topic of discussion at home.
“As this festival is in conjunction with Family Day and Mothers Day, the stories will be family themed, ” he said.
Penang social development committee chairman Chong Eng commended the organisers for creating an avenue for families to spend time together.
“This can help them improve communication skills while creating memories.
“Stories are a way to teach children values about friendship and honesty.
“Sometimes it is hard for a child to grasp a life lesson when we tell them what is right and wrong.
“Through stories, it helps them process the value and better understand it.
“Sharing stories about the pandemic and difficult times can help children develop better coping skills, ” she said.
The workshop will be held today from 8pm to 9pm while the storytelling sessions will be held tomorrow, May 15,16 and 22 from 8pm to 9pm.
For further details and to join the session, visit WhyteHouse Education Group’s Facebook page.