This resource contains tried and tested ways your class can work with oral stories. It was created in 2019/20 by storytellers, artists and young people aged 9 – 13. The exercises and activities used can be easily adapted for different age groups. Mix and match them to suit your pupils’ needs.

CLICK BELOW to download a booklet containing precis’ and postcard illustrations of eighteen traditional tales from Montgomeryshire together with a map and Ordnance Survey map references of the story sites, or a facsimile version of the original 1947 book.

How to create: A story in a day

During a day you should be able to:

Introduce the story and its location and embed the story in the minds of the pupils.

Select and develop vocabulary that may be used when retelling, choosing words to create atmosphere and reflect the main characters.

Decide on any movement to be included.

Create ancillary artwork.

Construct the retelling.

Rehearse and Perform.

How to create: A story in a session (an hour or an afternoon)

During a session you should aim to:

Introduce the story and its location.

Generate words that reflect the atmosphere / main characters / scenes.

Create ancillary artwork.

Construct the retelling.

Rehearse and Perform.

How to create: A story over a more extended period

Over a longer period of time you can help your pupils experiment with:

The story – can they find other versions / similar versions to use in with their telling?

Exploring the location and seeing how this can be incorporated into the tale.

Thinking about the main characters, their lives and possible motivations.

Finding their preferred way to tell the tale – sequentially, in flashback, with narrative, dialogue etc. etc.

Generating descriptive words.

Creating related artwork and songs.

Two experienced Young Storytellers use their skills to tell their Welsh Language versions of tales…

How this resource was created

In 1947 the Montgomeryshire History Teachers Committee commissioned A. J. Bailey Williams to write a book of site-specific tales passed down through Montgomeryshire communities for generations as a local history resource for schools. ‘The Enchanted Wood and Other Stories’ was the result and the book was circulated to all Schools in Montgomeryshire to pass on to their pupils.

During 2019/20 Mythstories was funded by The Heritage Lottery Fund in Wales to turn the 1947 book into this on-line resource.

Mythstories commissioned storyteller Amy Douglas and visual artist Helen Kozich to work with young people in Newtown, Powys and help them re-interpret the tales for their peers. Videos of the young people telling the stories in many different ways are embedded in this resource.

Storyteller Tamar Williams ran two day-long stagecraft workshops for young people at Theatr Hafren, Newtown.

Artists Ed Fisher and Imogen Phillips were commissioned to produce black-and-white illustrations of each location, for this resource and for a series of postcards.

Ashley Thomas edited the videos of the storytellings.

Artist Kate Johnston stepped in to run workshops with young people at Abermule, Caersws and at the celebratory event.

Many volunteers helped:

Members of Bangor University Storytelling Soc. produced the English précis of the stories for the postcard series.
Fiona Collins, Alison Layland and Tamar Williams produced the Welsh précis of the stories for the postcard series.
Members of Caffi Stori Llangollen visited each of the sites, took photos and reported back to the artists on the locations.
The stories were shared by young members of Llandudno Story Circle at their monthly meetings.

And organisations leant their support:

Newtown Library and Newtown High School hosted the storytelling club.
Theatr Hafren hosted the stagecraft workshops and the final celebratory event.
Newtown & Llanllwchaiarn Town Council funded storytelling performances to school children in Newtown to help promote the project.

Thank You All!