Help Your Child Talk: Telling Stories Your Toddler Will Love

Welcome  to  Help Your Child Talk and Grow Smarter: this week’s extract from the SpeechContacts Kindle and your chance to learn more about the way your child learns to talk. 
This week, there’s more about making up stories for your child. It’s so easy. Enjoy watching as your child uses his own creativity to join in with your storytelling.

One of the great things about toddlers is they just love repetition. So use the same words and sentences in your story: the more you repeat, the more he’ll love it. 
Here’s a story designed to encourage short phrases. It’s built around the phrases “teddy eats” and “eats banana/cake/etc”. When you make up similar stories, just follow these rules:
  1. Keep the phrases short.
  2. Repeat the same words many times.
  3. Tell the story often.
Hungry Teddy
Teddy is hungry. Mummy gives him a banana. 

Teddy eats the banana.    Teddy is still hungry. 


Mummy gives him a cake. Teddy eats the cake. But Teddy is still hungry.

Mummy gives him a biscuit. Teddy eats the biscuit. But Teddy is still hungry…. 

And so on … Then make a big finish:    
Teddy is full right up and he isn’t hungry any more.

When you make up your stories about everyday objects, why not take photos of the objects, print them out and stick them in a book. Hey presto, your child has his very own story book. Or you can download pictures like the ones here, from 
More storytelling posts here:
Storytelling for Toddlers
Five Simple Ways to Improve Your Writing


Storytelling for Toddlers: Help Your Child Talk With His Own Stories

Twitter buddies have been tweeting about bedtime stories. Most toddlers seem to like the made up ones best. 

Sometimes,  mums and dads worry about whether they can make up ‘good enough’ stories. So to prove how easy it is, here’s one I prepared earlier.

Kids love repetition and it helps them learn language skills. This story is as simple as can be. Start it off, and your toddler will soon join in.

Go ahead and add your own variations, using your own child’s name. 

You’ll soon find your own stories are better!

Aunt Jemima’s Cakes

Nick woke up one morning feeling excited. His Aunt Jemima was coming to tea. 

“She likes cakes” he thought. “We’ll have cakes for tea.” Nick liked cakes, too! “I’ll go to the shops straight away.” 

And he ran off, forgetting to make a list of the things he would need. 

He ran as fast as he could, and bought some flour. He ran home again and put it in his mixing bowl. 

“Oh dear,” he said. “I bought the flour but I forgot the chocolate.”

He ran back to the shop and bought some chocolate. He ran home again and put it in his mixing bowl. 

“Oh dear, ” he said. “I bought the flour and the chocolate but I forgot the butter.”

He ran back to the shop and bought some butter. He ran home again and put it in his mixing bowl.

“Oh dear,” he said. “I bought the flour and the chocolate and the butter but I forgot the eggs.”

He ran back to the shop and bought the eggs… and so on. You get the picture!

Keep going, adding new items for the cakes and repeating them all in a list each time.

Finally, go for a big finish.

At last Nick was very hot and tired, but he had all the things he needed for Aunt Jemima’s cakes. He had the flour, the chocolate, the eggs, the milk, the sugar ….etc.

He made the cakes, then looked at the calendar.

“Oh bother” he said. “Aunt Jemima isn’t coming today at all – she’s coming next week.”

“Never mind, I’ll just have to eat all the cakes myself.”

And so he did. 


What stories do your toddlers like? I’d love to know. Use the contact me button to get in touch or just leave a comment on the blog.

Storytelling: A Christmas Thought for Families

No one managed Christmas better than Andrea. Her Christmas was a legend with children, grandchildren and friends.  Her cakes; her pies; her turkey: all were beyond compare.

Every year she invited a dozen or more people for Christmas dinner.

Every Boxing Day, exhausted but satisfied, she reminded herself how glad she was she’d done it.

Last year, with just two weeks to go, disaster struck. She broke her wrist. What could she do? Desperate, she wrote  an email full of apology with a list of tasks she couldn’t manage herself. She sent it round to everyone she’d invited.

Andrea spent Christmas Day sitting in an armchair, eating food cooked by other people. She hated every moment. She knew the Christmas arrangements she’d planned would have been so much better.

She watched, frustrated, as her guests washed up and put things away in the wrong places. She itched to do it herself.

She looked on as her grandchildren opened presents someone had swathed in clumsy homemade paper. She wished she’d been able to wrap them herself in tasteful perfection, as she’d done every other year.

The day dragged itself wearily to its end.

On Boxing Day, her youngest son stumbled downstairs just before lunch. Sighing noisily, he rubbed his stomach, settling down to another beer and a hunk hewn from the Christmas cake. A bought cake. He’d iced it himself, late on Christmas Eve after a trip to the pub, forgetting to use marzipan. It was yellowing already, Andrea saw.

She could stand it no longer. She breathed deeply, her apology on the tip of her tongue. She’d make it up to them next year, she’d promise. Everything would go back to normal. She’d outdo herself.

Before she had a chance to speak, her son leaned over and ruffled her hair.

“Thanks for everything, Mum,” he grunted. “Best Christmas ever.”

Merry Christmas. If this story made you think, come on over to the Speechcontacts website  to read more about the importance of storytelling.

Storytelling: The Globes

Every story tells another story.  I wonder what this one means for you?

In a tiny white house in the forest, lived a mother and her three sons. One day, the oldest child asked, “What will I be when I grow up?” 

His mother opened a black velvet bag. Out rolled a globe. It dazzled the boy, glittering blue and silver. He gasped.“It’s the sea,” he cried. He saw the ocean stretching out before him, meeting a distant horizon. He heard gulls cry and smelled the salty spray.

His mother put his globe away.“When you are grown,” she said, “you may look in it again.”

When her second son was five, he asked,“What will I be when I grow up?”

His mother opened a black, velvet bag. Out rolled a globe, pulsing with a deep light.“It’s purple,” whispered her son, “like the sky at night. Why, I can see the stars.” He shivered with delight in the cold night air.

His mother put his globe away. When you are grown,” she said, “you may look in it again.”

Her third son reached his fifth birthday.“What will I be when I grow up?” he asked.

His mother opened a black, velvet bag. Out rolled a globe. “It’s green, like the grass,” he cried, “and golden yellow like the fields at harvest.” He thought he heard the wind, rustling the ears of corn. He felt the warmth of the sun on his face.

His mother put his globe away. “When you are grown,” she said, “you may look in it again.”

Many years later the three sons sat around their mother’s table on her birthday.

“Do you remember,” asked the eldest son, proud in his Navy uniform, “the globe you let me see when I was five? It showed me I should be a sailor. How did you know you should choose a blue globe?”

“Do you remember,” asked the second son, the famous astronomer, “you let me see the stars in the sky in my globe. It showed me I should explore the universe. How did you know you should choose a purple and silver globe?”

“Do you remember,” asked the third son, smiling at his muddy boots by the door, “you let me see the green of the grass and the golden harvest in my globe. It showed me I should be a farmer. How did you know you should choose a green and yellow globe?”

“We’re grown now,” they said. “We have wives and children of our own. May we see our globes again?” Their mother showed them one black, velvet bag.

“Only one?” They were puzzled. “Which globe is it?” Out rolled one pure, crystal globe. For a moment it lay, flat and dull, until the light caught it. Then, all the colours of the rainbow spilled across the table.

“I could not choose for you,” their mother said. “How could I know which paths you would take? But when each of you looked in the globe, it showed you what you had already chosen.”