You’ll see examples of more of Mary’s residencies by visiting the residency page of her website: www.maryhamilton.info?Programs/residencies.htm.
Here are a few examples of past residency projects:
Kindergarten and Early Literacy
A 10-day project with preschoolers or kindergartners which includes:
1. Telling them folktales to develop listening and imagination skills.
2. Leading them in informal reenactments of the folktale.
3. Soliciting and writing down tales dictated by individual students.
4. Student informal dramatizations of the student-authored tales to use listening skills and, most importantly, to help establish for students the connection between the stories they dictate, the “marks” written on the paper, and the actions of the actors on the “stage.” This project uses storytelling for literacy development – a very appropriate preschool activity.
Telling to Write & Using Peer to Peer Artistic Response Process
Ten-day projects with fourth and sixth graders that involve using telling to develop and revise personal narratives (fourth) and memoirs (sixth).
1. Informal oral storytelling is used to develop the students’ stories.
2. Rough drafts are written in my absence.
3. Through modeling and artist-led practice, students learn how to effectively respond and question one another about “the work” to help classmates discover what really mattered to the writer - the heart of their story - and identify ways to improve it.
4. In small groups, students use the modeled artistic response process (which includes oral discussions, supportive artistic critique and documentation of the critique sessions) to provide peer critiques of each other’s written drafts to arrive at possible revisions for writers’ rough drafts.
Variations of this project for younger grades have incorporated informal story mapping, lots of “storytalk,” and have culminated in dictated or written rough drafts. These projects involve integrating the art of storytelling as an ongoing partner in the writing process.
Retelling Folktales - Multiple five-, ten-, and twenty-day projects with many age levels focusing on student retelling of folktales
Depending upon the length of the project and the goals of the teachers, my involvement varies from in-depth exploration of a single story over multiple meetings with a class (each student could certainly retell it after!) to projects in which each student in the class learns a different story to tell. Teacher involvement in my absence must be high to accomplish this goal. Steps include story selection, story learning without memorizing the words, and story presentation along with modeling of effective story coaching so students and teacher can help one another when I am gone. These projects involve students in an in-depth exploration and practice of the art of storytelling.