Jennifer presented her workshop, The Hero’s Journey: Storytelling in the Language Art’s Classroom, at the National Storytelling Network Conference in Kansas City, Kansas.
Workshops and Keynotes - Fees Negotiable
- Title: Taking Humor Seriously
Proposed Audience: Storytellers of all levels of experience/faith/business/educators/librarians
Description: At its best, humor brings us to a deeper understanding of ourselves and life; therefore, it is an essential tool in the storyteller’s toolbox. In this highly interactive workshop, participants will answer the question: what makes things funny? They will laugh, analyze, perform, and learn about theories that explain how effective humor works. Through demonstration, participants will learn how these theories can be utilized to enhance story creation. Participants will then develop and share a short story in which they apply some of these skills.
- Title: Exploring the Storyteller’s Art
Proposed Audience: Beginning/intermediate storytellers, librarians, educators, faith
Description: The storyteller’s art includes myriad skills: actor, mime, dancer, comedian, and musician. In this highly interactive and collaborative workshop, those new to storytelling will explore more fully the instruments they have at their disposal. In groups, they will play with short selections from fairy and folk tales, practice intentional movement, and explore their unique repertoire of facial expression, voice, and movement. They will also practice their skills in short solo performances.
- Title: Storytelling in the Classroom
Proposed Audience: Teachers
Description: In this highly interactive workshop, teachers will discover what it takes to tell a good story and why storytelling is an essential component in the language arts classroom. In groups, they will play with short selections from fairy and folk tales, practice intentional movement, and explore their unique repertoire of facial expression, voice, and movement. They will also discover a variety of oral activities, word play and story games they can use with their students.
- Title: Storytelling for Students
Proposed Audience: 3-8 Grade Students
Description: Engaging in a variety of spoken word exercises, students will discover the power of their own voices. They will play with poetry selections, word and story games, and explore the full range of voice, movement, and facial expression. Working collaboratively in small groups, they will co-produce a well-known fairy or folk tale to share with the class.
- Title: From the Personal to the Universal: The Art of Creating Personal Stories
Proposed Audience: Storytellers, educators, faith, business
Description: Everyone has a story to tell, but not everyone knows how to craft a story that has universal appeal. In this hands-on workshop, participants will explore simple techniques that help them mine the rich depths of their own personal experience, to find connections among the memorable moments in their lives, and piece them together into a cohesive whole that has a satisfying narrative arc. Participants will also play with techniques that create vivid images and bring their characters to life.
- Title: The Hero’s Journey: Storytelling in the Language Arts Classroom
Proposed Audience: 6-12 Teachers
Description: Using the hero’s journey motif as described in Joseph Campbell’s book The Hero with a Thousand Faces, participants will discover a powerful tool that not only enhances middle school students’ oral presentation skills but also teaches them important values that prepare them for life. After a brief overview of the journey motif and how it can form the basis of a yearlong unit of study, we will focus on one component only, Virtues and Vices, which includes a powerful storytelling and technological component, and contains opportunities for differentiation.
Bringing together her skills as a storyteller and educator, Jennifer’s keynote address pays tribute to the teachers who constantly go above and beyond the call of duty to meet the needs of all their students. In her keynote, Jennifer shares the inspiring and hilarious story of a teacher who changed her like. After attending a keynote address, one high school teacher wrote, “Year after year, whether here in Madison or in New Haven where I have previously taught, we have to endure “inspirational” speeches that do not inspire. We have to hear about statistics, objectives, goals, standards, life-long learners, global economies, assessment pieces, etc, etc. We heard none of that with the tale of Miss Turner. Thanks so much for making the “welcome back” day bearable, even enjoyable.”