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Can you tell a good tale?  I have always thought being an amazing story teller would be a cool trait to possess.  (I’m totally not there yet!)  But, I can capture the intent gaze of my kids as I weave together a story.  And after all, I have no more important an audience then them.

So (for what it is worth), here are my two cent, Four Tips for Great Storytelling:  

* Create Space.  When I was in my college public speaking class, I remember the professor describing the trick of creating space.  For example, if I am going to talk about the tallest tree I had ever seen, I would actually look up into the air with wide eyes and even lean back a bit.  I would be creating the space of the gargantuan tree right before me with my body language.  If I was talking about what approached me on the right, I would actually turn my head and look in that direction.

* Use Animated Facial Expressions.  Is your hero excited?  Widen your eyes and smile.  Is he inquisitive?  Cock your eyebrows.

* Draw Your Audience in by Asking Questions.  Ask your kids things like, “And, do you want to know what happened next?” or “Do you know what they found?”  Create interest.

* Learn the Art of the Pause.  After you’ve asked them a question, pause.  Then lean in and continue as if you’re telling them the most important thing ever.

Whether you’re retelling an age-old tale or making up a story with your kids as the heroes, have fun!  They will love your attention and time.