By Plamena Quintavalla, Bronxville School Reporter for Syntax
Jun. 21, 2017: Students in kindergarten through second grade at Bronxville Elementary School welcomed master storyteller Jonathan Kruk to their school for a series of interactive workshops. Kruk, whose visit was made possible through the Lecture Series, which provides students with educational and arts experiences that enrich the curriculum, engaged the students in the storytelling process.
He shared several fables with the kindergartners, including "Where Are Little Bear's Dancing Pants," "Rabbit and Turtle," the original story of "I Want a Pet," which challenged students to guess what animals appeared as a possible pet, and another original tale, "Wake Up Sun," which asked students to create their own versions of how to wake up the sun.
Through active listening, first-graders used their hands, faces, and voices to tell the stories of "Mouse and Lion," "Big Fish, Small Pond," and the original story of "Barkface and Rootnose," which is about friendship prevailing over fighting. The students discussed their favorite parts of the stories and how each story changed from beginning to the end. Students in second grade, who are studying fairy tales as part of the curriculum, were treated to a number of classic stories, including "The Frog Prince," "Puss in Boots," "The Girl Who Touched a Star," "Tom Tot Tat," "Giant No-Heart," and "The Tailor's Tale."
"He really helped them use their imaginations in a creative way to see how many different ways the same problem could be solved," said first-grade teacher Stacy Bilgoray, whose students have been learning how to use descriptive words in their own writing. "I hope they can use their experience with [Mr. Kruk] to implement some of these elements into writing their own fiction stories."
Chaired by teachers Dianne Aronson and Kendall Fousek, the Lecture Series programs are funded by the support of parents and made possible through the volunteer efforts of Bronxville faculty members.
Pictured here: Bronxville Elementary School students with storyteller Jonathan Kruk.
Photo courtesy The Bronxville School