Comments & Sharing
Dr. Barbara Ruch, Director
Judith Rubin, Librarian
I first have to tell you that I haven't seen my kids this excited about something since I first introduced them to the Internet in the 1990's! They were spellbound and couldn't WAIT until that time during the day when they got to do "Kamishibai." I used my high-level 3rd grade skills class (about 21 students) to do a unit on kamishibai. I first introduced them to the country of Japan and the culture there. Next, I began reading several kamishibai stories. You can just imagine the curiosity and wonder about what was in that "little brown box!" Students paired into groups of 2, picked their own kamishibai story, practiced it several times, and then read it to some of the kindergarten and 1st graders in our school. These children were SPELLBOUND listening to the stories and waiting for the cards to change. My 3rd graders also tried their hand at writing and illustrating their own kamishibai stories and performing them for each other. I must say that this is a unit I will do every year.
Thanks for working so hard and bringing Kamishibai to students who would otherwise never know it existed!
The following are comments from my students:
Keaton: "I liked the way you used the stage box and the cards to tell the story."
Sharreah: - "I love the kamishibai stories. They are wonderful."
Alyssa: "I thought it was very, very neat! Thank you for sending this to us!"
Callie: "I thought kamishibai was really fun, and I wish we could do more!"
Kelsey: "It was the coolest thing that we did in skills!"
Alexis: "I love the kamishibai stories and I wish we could do them again!"
All the staff finally had a chance to see the DVD. The viewing was very helpful as the power of the voice, timing and storytelling technique relative to the movement of the kamishibai cards becomes quite evident.
We used Little Chick in the Reading Readiness session on Wednesday and met with much success and an unusual amount of acknowledgement from the patrons. Our preferred audience for this session of stories, songs, finger rhymes and crafts is 3-5 years but inevitably, the crowd contains infants and older children as well as fatigued caregivers who, despite their best efforts, can barely sit through another round of Eeensy-Weensy-Spider.
There was an instant response! The hyoshigi clappers broke through the creative chaos of such a mixed age grouping and the theatre structure itself had a magical way of focusing attention and framing the story.
Staff members watched in admiration as all eyes followed the cards and a quiet hush fell over our patron. At the end, several parents spoke about their delight in this new technique. We look forward to making kamishibai a regular part of our story-times and are already conferring among ourselves as to which titles the next order should contain.
Thank you for introducing kamishibai to us!
"One of the things I most enjoy about the kamishibai is the interactive, participatory aspects. The children love repeating the chants and acting the stories out!"
Susan Howard, Librarian
"I enjoy telling stories to students. The kamishibai are special because they combine aural learning with visual learning to convey a great story. At first glance, one might mistakenly guess that these stories are only for young children - but my 16 and 17 year old students love them! A major project for my Japanese History students is to design their own kamishibai to tell the story of some aspect ofJapanese history."
Kamishibai for Kids ~ Cathedral Station ~ PO Box 629 ~ New York, NY 10025