Traditional Bulgarian Stories

Written by: Tanya Ivanova | shemie_bg@yahoo.com
Zhivka Yancheva | zhivka_yancheva2004@abv.bg

Because this writing uses advanced formatting, it’s also available for download in MS Word .DOC format

(Some ideas and activities based on Granddad’s glove and the Blackbird and the fox)

Ice breaking (introducing) greeting each other

Zh:  BC’s project and Zhivka’s participation in it (a few sentences)

T:  But why stories? Please look into your handouts and number the advantages of using stories starting with the most important one:

  • Provoke imagination
  • Evoke spontaneous reactions
  • Influence the intelligence
  • Bear specific cultural values and beliefs
  • Keep the melody and rhythm of the language
  • Offer meaningful context for teaching and practicing language and structures
  • Develop skills and learning strategies
  • Provide opportunity for various types of activities
  • Provide cross-curricular links
  • Other advantages (please name them)

Traditional stories create a special magic in the language classroom. These traditional stories:

  • Have proved that children love listening to them
  • Give children a possibility to concentrate on the use of language rather than try to understand a totally unfamiliar story in foreign language
  • Increase children’s motivation to participate
  • Make children feel more confident – traditional stories are part of each child’s own world
  • There is no need to use the mother tongue  – familiar story line help children acquire the new language from the context
  • Bridge child’s own world to the world of English making cross cultural links

Most of these stories are popular not only in Bulgaria. Most of them are popular all over the world – Goldilocks and the three bears, Little hungry caterpillar and many others.

Zh: Have you ever used a traditional story; story that children have known in their mother tongue in your language classroom? Which ones: . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . .

Zh: As I told you two years ago I had the chance to work with BC’s methodologists and experiment adapted by them “The Granddad’s glove” and “The Blackbird and the fox”. Please listen to the story and list as many topics as you can practice at different stages and levels of teaching young learners.

  • Numbers

-         Numbers . . . . stand up (1st grade) T.

-         Potato game (2nd grade) T.

-         Fizz-buzz (3rd grade)     T.

  • Animals

-         1, 2, 3, 4, 5 – once I caught (1st grade) Zh.

-         Word search – word snake (2nd grade) Zh.

-         Mish-mash animals (3rd grade)  Zh.

-         Guess the animal that’s written on your back asking Yes/ No questions (4th grade)   Zh.

  • Days of the week

-         Chant (2nd grade)         T.

-         Story book (3rd grade) T.

  • Polite requests

-         Robot game (2nd grade) T.

-         Pass word    (2nd grade) T.

  • Irregular verbs and word order

-         Sailor’s chess    Zh.

-         Alive sentences Zh.

  • Cross-curricular link with science. Make a project. Use: www.learningpage.com. Where do these animals live? What do they eat, etc.?
  • Create your own story

-   Choose and describe character (handouts T.)

-         Picture story (handouts T.)

-         Story wheel (handouts T.)

  • Dramatize the story. Zh.

All of us are familiar with the famous story about the Blackbird and the Fox. Please recall the story in your minds and suggest as many topics as you can practice using this story.

T: In the end we can add that all traditional Bulgarian stories could be adapted and be used effectively in the foreign language classroom. They can be used over and over again depending on our teaching objectives at different levels and ages.

Zh: At the same time they won’t become boring because of variety of suggested interesting activities and games; different topics that are practiced through them. In this way children acquire and remember the language in a natural way.

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