Outdoor storytelling

By Chris Holland

For the vast majority of our history we have used a language of sounds, songs and pictures to connect with each other before any word was written down. 

When we humans eventually learnt to tame fire we gathered around it. A hearth. So often a place of stories and connection.

It’s in our DNA to tell stories that spark imaginations, tell of dangers, invite playfulness, share wonders and celebrate harvests, to express joy and reflect on what things mean.

Our stories form and frame our perspective. They are like seeds.

Now, many of us, would like the courage to tell stories, not only our own stories, but also ones that inspire connection, wonder and hope.

I like to tell stories that are up to 15 minutes long, to the accompanment of music when possible. 

Everyone has their own way, their favourite stories.

What would you tell around a fire?

While there are so many wonderous story and picture books… it is often the oral story which fires up the imagination most.

With a few simple words like “Once upon a time…” we know that something magical, mysterious or interesting is coming.

A story. A storehouse of wisdom. To land in each persons being in a slightly different way. 

It could be a funny and silly tale that gets everyone laughing.

Or a deeply moving and scary one, touching the hidden soft self and moving it to tears.

Stories can educate us on many different levels.

To help us marvel and the amazing creations and connectedness of nature.

To help us care for ourselves, each other and the rest of nature we are part of.

To help us all learn from the past and better deal with changes to come. 

To remember that what choices we make now will affect many generations to come.

We need to keep alight the possibility of a sustainable future for our children’s children.

I think we need to re-store our connection to the glorious outdoors, with its maggots and marigolds. 

One of the best ways we can do that is through the stories we tell.

Because stories can help us to imagine futures and dare to create them.

What stories will you choose to tell?

Here’s a link to the about Chris Video intro: https://youtu.be/ifsA5QUDLQgAnd here’s the one more about the storytelling for outdoor learning course: https://www.facebook.com/watch/?v=1608152765992930

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