Journal of Basic Education

Stories and Storytelling in Teaching and Child Psychotherapy

1993.第3卷第2期(Vol. 3 No. 2).pp. 27–31

Stories and Storytelling in Teaching and Child Psychotherapy


David W. CHAN(陳維鄂)


Classic stories and fairy tales have a universal appeal to children. However, the utilization of stories as an effective medium for teaching and therapeutic communication has not been fully appreciated by teachers and child therapists. As a didactic teaching device, apart from the function of cautionary tales, stories provide for children a familiar context through which language items such as vocabulary can be acquired and linguistic features reinforced through repetition. The well-known "Little Red Riding Hood" is used to illustrate an instance where the communicative approach in English language teaching can be operationalized. As a therapeutic metaphor, stories activate a child's specific but latent abilities and resources by generating positive attitudes in overcoming disappointments and frustrations as well as suggesting creative options for coping with problems in development. Andersen's "The Ugly Duckling" is shown as an example of how therapeutic communication for self-esteem enhancement can be achieved.