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Why using stories is a powerful way to coach kids

Stories are powerful! Stories have been used since the beginning of time, in every country and every culture, to pass along traditions and to teach morals. Stories are powerful learning tools because they make us think...and they make us feel. They imprint a picture in our mind and a feeling in our heart. This creates an experience and helps us understand.


Stories have the power to transform, inspire, and to shape how we feel about ourselves and what is possible for our lives.


Stories give us another perspective, and a door into deeper understanding. And they are a powerful way to connect with children!


●  Stories stimulate multiple centers of the brain — which leads to deeper learning. When reading or hearing facts, only the center of the brain that turns words into meaning is engaged. However, when reading or hearing a story, not only are the intellectual centers of the brain engaged, but the emotional and physiological centers of the brain are engaged as well. This creates an experience, which leads to deeper learning.


●  Stories are a great tool for starting important conversations with kids. Storieshelp children get in touch with thoughts and feelings without putting them on the spot or embarrassing them.


●  Stories enable children to “learn without lecture” and allow coaches to “teach without preaching.” Through the stories, children get to see the skills in action. That opens the door for them to apply the skills to their own situations, under a coach’s guidance.


●  Stories are a wonderful refresher tool when kids are learning a new skill. As a coach, you can reference the characters and the situations from the stories you’ve shared during your coaching.


For example, the story that teaches kids about self-confidence is called, “Canville and Can’tville – A Tale of Two Towns” It is a powerful story that helps kids understand the impact of having an “I can do it” mindset versus an “I can’t do it” mindset.

If you’ve already worked with a child using this story and you see him getting down on himself (thinking he can’t do something), you could ask him, “What would this look like if you were living in ‘Canville’?”


That question immediately takes him back to the story and remembering how he can approach the situation more powerfully.


●  And, of course... stories are FUN!


WISDOM Coaches use stories to teach mindset skills in a way that kids understand them. In the stories, kids hear about real-life problems that they might experience: earning a bad grade, getting in trouble at school, not being invited to a birthday party, being teased by other kids, doing poorly in a sporting event, messing up at a recital, and dealing with peer pressure.


After sharing the story, WISDOM Coaches use the discussion questions and activities from the curriculum to give the kids a more “hands on” experience with the skills, and to help them apply the skills to the situations in their own lives.


Photo by Aaron Burden on Unsplash

 

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