Kindergarten · Learning Ideas · Preschool

Elements of a Story – Creating Stories in Preschool and Kindergarten

Pensive schoolboy

My kids (as I imagine most are) seem to be natural born story tellers.  They are constantly creating stories on their own as they play and love to tell me stories throughout the day.  Some are reiterations of one’s they’ve heard or read and some are completely original.

Since M loves to tell stories, I knew she’d like to see her words put on paper.  So one afternoon while the boys were napping, we sat down and she told me a told.  But before we started, I explained to her the elements that are in every story.  Even though she may not memorize each element, I think she is able to grasp the general concept of each one.

The basic elements in (almost) all stories are:

  • Setting – where and when the story takes place
  • Characters – who are the important people in the story
  • Problem – the conflict in the story
  • Solution – how the conflict is resolved

Just like with the scientific method, I think kids provide us with such wonderful opportunities to teach them.  We just need to notice the moments when they’re happening.  M’s love of story telling was a great opening to explain how stories are created and what is usually included in them.

After we talked about the elements of a story, M was excited to come up with a story and have it written down.  She talked about a mile a minute and I kept having to go back and have her repeat things since I couldn’t write fast enough!  Luckily for my hand, her story was pretty short.  I wrote it down on blank pieces of paper folded in half, leaving the top half open for illustrations.

After M’s story was written down, she took out her crayons and drew pictures to go along with the story.  Once it was finished, she was so proud of it and immediately put it on our bookshelf with the rest of our books.

Since M is just learning how to write the letters, she dictated and I wrote the story out.  However, if your kids are older, encourage them to write the story out themselves.  (These are awesome for early writers!) Depending on the age, they may still need you to sit there and help with spelling.  Either way, spending those moments together with your kids engaging their imagination will be such a blessing.

To help to get started story telling with your kids, I created a basic chart that reminds kids what the basic elements of a story are, it’s free to download below.  I hope it helps you create stories and memories!


Elements of a Story




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