Origami Storytelling in Elementary School Education – Language and Problem Solving Benefits Reviewed

Storytelling in primary schools improves children’s language skills by providing students with a valuable opportunity to practice listening skills, an essential part of early childhood education. The ability to understand spoken language involves so much more than just hearing words and figuring out what the speaker is trying to convey with the words. Nonverbal cues of voice pitch, tempo, and tonality are essential for effective communication. In face-to-face interactions, the additional non-verbal elements of body language, gestures and facial expressions account for up to 80% of the expressive language. But how can teachers attract and hold the attention of their distraction-prone students in our screen-dominated, multitasking learning environments?

Why not try using the Japanese art of paper folding, origami, to draw students’ attention during language activities? Adding an unexpected curiosity like origami to a storytelling presentation increases the educational value for elementary school students. Origami models and other objects of interest provide visual stimulation and grab attention, keeping young learners focused and motivated to take a closer look. Another advantage of adding origami to stories is that origami is created step by step. As a story progresses scene by scene, an origami model can also be constructed fold by fold. When the story ends, the origami model is also created. This specialized technique of storytelling is called Storigami. Storytelling + Origami = Storigami.

Viewing and listening to stories illustrated through the progressive folds of origami models allows students to imagine the visual details of the scenes and characters described by the words, but also gives students experience in analysis the symbolic representations of the paired paper shapes and folds depict story characters or plots. The ability to understand how the shapes relate to the story and then imagine possible outcomes are key elements in successful problem solving, one of the most important goals of elementary education.

How can teachers and other educators learn how to use Storigami to build problem-solving and language arts skills in their elementary school classes? Luckily, a Midwestern educational publisher, Storytime Ink International, has published several collections of origami stories such as: Nature Fold-Along Stories: Quick and easy origami stories about plants and animals. This book and other collapsible picture books provide step-by-step instructions on how to use the technique. The Storigami books are available in most public libraries and from several online sources including and

Thanks to Christine Petrell Kallevig | #Origami #Storytelling #Elementary #School #Education #Language #Problem #Solving #Benefits #Reviewed

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