Storytelling for Young Adults: A Guide to Tales for Teens

Storytelling for Young Adults: A Guide to Tales for Teens

Storytelling for Young Adults: A Guide to Tales for Teens

Storytelling for Young Adults: A Guide to Tales for Teens


This annotated bibliography of stories for young adults-containing both reprints and original retellings- from around the world and throughout the ages, is the new second edition of the best selling Storytelling for Young Adults. Hundreds of story suggestions are organized by theme within broad genre categories: Tales of the Fantastic, Tales of the Folk, Tales of Life, Tales of the Spirit, Tales of Laughter, and Tales of the Arts and Sciences. Each section contains commentary, guidelines, and a bibliography of resources; sample ready-to-tell tales are also included. Indexed by author, title, and subject-including curriculum connections, this guide will be helpful to storytellers, school and public librarians, and teachers working with young adults, as well as to the teens themselves. Grades 7-12.


When first writing about storytelling to young adult audiences, I was emphatic about the importance of listening to stories for this select age group. During the intervening years, I can only repeat myself, perhaps with even more emphasis (repetition being a time-honored aspect of the oral tradition), that storytelling should not be an option, but a necessity.

When Storytelling for Young Adults was first published more than a decade ago, I stated that there was a resurgence of interest in storytelling for all ages. This revival is still slowly garnering steam, but the perception of storytelling for young children is still in the forefront. Because storytelling continues to be regarded as mainly an activity for young children, not many young adults have had the pleasure or privilege of being told stories (or of telling stories). Convincing both young adults and the adults who work with them that listening to and telling stories should be an integral part of their lives is difficult for several reasons. First, young adults are very aware of their position in the transition from childhood to adulthood and do not want to be reminded of bedtime stories or library story hour. Second, adults who work with young adults often think of stories as something frivolous and lightweight, something that is a filler for when all the serious work and learning has been done.

This book is designed to again demonstrate to storytellers, librarians, educators, and parents the importance of telling stories to young adults. The first chapter echoes the pattern established by the first edition. It discusses the values of telling stories to young adults and the criteria for story selection. The focus of the second chapter is on telling stories to young adults, including nonverbal and verbal storytelling techniques as well as tips for telling scary stories. Much of what is included in this chapter also pertains to storytelling for all ages.

Chapters 3 through 8 provide a guide to appropriate tales for young adults mat encompasses the world of literature from mythology to contemporary legends. Storytelling for Young Adults was written with the express purpose of helping storytellers and educators find good stories for the young adult audience. In the decade since its publication, a wealth of new material has been published for the telling, so the annotated stories in this volume have all been found in those books, the ones published in the 1990s and the early years of the new millennium.

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