The Traditional Storyteller – How the Elephant Got His Trunk is one of a series of apps from the Traditional Storyteller that I have previously introduced to readers as these wonderful and engaging applications tell stories from around the world which are very easy to recommend for all age ranges.
Elegant in its simplicity, this app, as does the others within this series, consists of a video featuring a master storyteller telling tales in ways that are most captivating. I am impressed by how my son is mesmerized by these apps, focused on every word and deeply entrenched by the performance of these storytellers who are wonderful at their craft.
I really enjoy that these videos do not contain music, sound effects or interaction – only relying on the talents of these included storytellers, gazing directly into the camera as if talking to the viewer directly.
This specific story, How the Elephant Got His Trunk – not to be confused with the Rudyard Kipling story with a similar title – tells the tale of how an elephant, gloating over his cute little button nose is not very nice to the other animals, and is put in his place when a monkey plays a trick on this elephant, ultimately leading all the elephants of the land to have their noses stretched into what is now known as a trunk.
I enjoy this story a great deal, as does my son. It is interesting to see an elephant portrayed as a mean, unfortunately recognizable character teasing other creatures about their noses, creating a chance for families to talk about cruelty among children and how to treat one another.
It is also open to interpretation if this elephant known as “elephant” is one specific rude animal, or if he represents elephants in general, creating an open-ended conversation about whether the trick that the monkey pulled on all the elephants of the land, even those who presumably had nothing to do with the bullying, is acceptable, thus creating a tale that does include some moral ambiguity, which I appreciate.
Other sections of this app exist as well, such as Map Game, where children use their cognitive skills and memory to re-arrange tiles consisting of illustrations based on this story in their correct order, learning about the dramatic structure commonly found among stories in a creative and fun way.
Listen and Repeat allows children to tap on specific moments that together make up this tale, listening to passages of this story, then repeating this story in their own way. Likewise, Tell Your Story lets children re-tell this story from their point of view, using illustrations to help keep their minds focused on the tale being told.
Best Bits replays the favorite part of this tale again, a nice touch that kids will want to listen to over and over again.
Parents as well as teachers will genuinely appreciate how these tales not only highlight storytelling as an art form, but are also excellent for teaching the structure of storytelling, an important lesson for children to learn early as they develop their ability to tell stories of their very own.
I am pleased to announce that this series of applications won the very prestigious Best Educational Resource Award for Early Years from the U.K. National Education Awards, akin to winning an Oscar for education.
To celebrate, Traditional Storyteller apps will be half-price for a limited time. I encourage parents and teachers to add these apps to their collections, especially special needs educators as their students may get a special benefit from watching these videos with the storyteller looking directly into the camera as if making eye contact with the child viewing the video.
I recommend these applications not only as lovely, calming tales for toddlers and preschoolers to relax with, but for older children as well – anyone really who enjoys a great story told marvelously.
The Traditional Storyteller - How the Elephant Got His Trunk
Developer: Day Two Productions Ltd
Released: 2011-12-09 00:00:00
Description from the Developer**** WINNER!! UK Best Educational Resource Award 2012 ****
**** WINNER!! Gold and Overall category winner for Practical Pre-school Awards. Awarded a perfect score of 100%! ****
Winner of 2 prestigious UK Education Awards and perfect for use at home. Give your kids a head start in speaking and listening skills which are proven to lead to better writing.
**** WINNER!! Silver Medal in Parent's Choice Award ****
**** Golden App Award - 5/5 Apples. Apps for Homeschooling ****
**** Editor’s Choice - 4.5 stars. ‘Excellent App’ - Best Apps for Kids ****
“Take a look at the Traditional Storyteller apps - they're brilliant! Kids LOVE them!”
Review from Teachers with Apps.
“The Traditional Storyteller apps are completely irresistible, engaging, vibrant …We spent an entire afternoon sharing these stories with each other – laughing, singing, recording narrations...’
Overall Rating: 5/5 : Mom’s Rating: 5/5 Kids’ Rating: 5/5
Review from Apps for homeschooling
“It was an entirely different experience than we normally have with applications. The kids got very still, and very quiet and they paid attention. Once the story was done the kids were practically frantic for the extras. Each activity helped drive the story home.”
Review from Best Apps for Kids
So, what is a Traditional Storyteller? It's someone who has mastered the art of telling a story so well that the words come to life and transform themselves into pictures in a child's imagination. It's the way we've learned for millennia and it's absolutely captivating.
It's also highly educational. Children’s early knowledge of stories is one of the most important indicators of later educational achievement.
With the Traditional Storyteller you can access the very best traditional storytellers on your iPad, iPhone or iPod whenever and wherever you like.
This app features Peter Chand and tells the traditional Indian story of how the Elephant Got His Trunk. Once Elephants were very proud of their cute little button noses... until a cheeky monkey decided that they should be taught a lesson.
All the Traditional Storyteller apps feature a master storyteller talking directly to the child. No gimmicks, no sound effects, just the storyteller enrapturing the child through the expressive use of words, gestures, facial expressions and direct eye contact.
As well as the story, there are three games within the app that have been developed by teachers and use proven classroom techniques to develop children’s listening, understanding, speaking and literacy.
Each App includes:
• A classic tale from around the world, told by an Internationally renowned storyteller.
• Map Game. Rearrange the illustrated audio tiles into the right order – a fun way to understand the structure of the story.
• Listen and Repeat Game. Children listen to a short section of the story and record themselves re-telling it.
• Tell Your Story Game – builds on the other games and allows the child (or parent) to record their own version of the story and email it to relatives or friends
• Best Bits. A short selection of ‘best bits’ chosen by our little testers.
To give this app as a gift, click on 'Gift This App' in the top left hand drop down menu next to ‘buy app’ and follow the instructions.
Other Apps in The Traditional Storyteller series include:
* The Three Little Pigs, told by Cat Weatherill
* Too Much Talk, told by Effua Daniels (Winner, BFFTA best TV personality award 2011
* Anancie And The Drum Of Common Sense, told by Tuup
* The Giant Turnip, told by Katrice Horsley (UK Storytelling Laureate.)
Requirements: Compatible with iPad and iPhone. Requires iOS4.3 or later