[EF#16] Why Story Telling?

It is said that child is like a piece of white paper. What we draw on it, it will become what they are. That means how we teach them will affect to how they will be in the future. Parents have to tell them about moral value of human to make sure that they will become a good person when they already grown up.

There are many ways of parents to built up moral value in their child. They can teach their child in everyday conversation. The more interesting way of teaching will attract their attention, so parent can choose games or story telling for their children.

Why Story Telling?

We already discussed about games and now we would like to discuss about story telling. Dr. Bruce Perry , the expert of brain development and children in  crisis said that,

Human beings are storytelling primates. We are curious, and we love to learn.

Human, especially children is best learn with a “story-telling” system. When we give only factual information or the moral value in a sentence, without inserting anecdote and another concept related, the brain will easily fatigue. Story telling system means we give the factual information -in this case: our moral value- with the insertion of anecdote, concept and a novelty-seeking element of brain. All of those things are provided in a form of tale that we can deliver it to our children.

How to Deliver it Well?

1. Attract their attention

As Dr. Perry said, “learning need attention”, firstly we have to make our tale-telling interesting. Use any equipment like dolls, drawing, tablet with visual effect or your hand’s shadow can complement your tale-telling.

2. Be Enthusiastic

Deliver your story with a good intonation, changing your voice for every character and a drop of tear for sad situation will enhance and inspirit your tale-telling. Be enthusiastic and children will be more concern to your tale. Give your children a role, or a sensible touch to them when the tale have a catching part is another example that you can apply.

Information is easiest to digest when there is emotional “seasoning” — humor, empathy, sadness, and fear all make “dry” facts easier to swallow. Give a fact or two; link these facts into related concepts. Move back to the narrative to help them make the connection between this concept and the story. Go back to another fact. Reinforce the concepts. Reconnect with the original story. In and out, bob and weave, among facts, concept, and narrative.- Dr. Bruce D. Perry, M.D., Ph.D.

3. Repetitive not continuous

Choose a time to deliver our story and scheduled the amount of time to deliver it. It is better to have a tale-telling repetitively than continuously for long hours. The brain can memorize the information by registering it first, retention (save the information) and recall (remember it again). Repetitively telling the tale will activate the recall system.

Are There Any Tales from Bali?

Every country, every region must have their own folklore. When I was child, my father was someone who was feeding me with Balinese folktale. These are some Balinese folktale I’ve remember:

1. Pedanda Baka

Pedanda Baka by Ida Bagus Wiri
credit for : The tricky stork disguise his self as a priest and ate the fish

This is a fable that tells about a stork who disguise his self as priest. He told to all fish in the pond that the pond would receded that they had to move soon. But the tricky stork was lie, when in spite of helping them to move from pond, he ate the fish one by one. Unfortunately, the crab detected it and then cut the stork’s neck by tweezers. The meaning behind the story is : don’t be a greedy ones that it can bring bad luck for you.

2.  I Siap Selem (The black hen)

This is maybe the most popular fable when I was child, tells about a black hen named Siap Selem and her 7 chicks. The youngest chick named Doglagan (means have no feather) and he couldn’t fly because he had no feather as wings. The chicken family were trapped in storm situation that they decided to settle in weasel’s house. But, as we know the weasel want to eat them. But, the black hen was cleverer that they could run away from weasel’s house.

Unfortunately, the youngest Doglagan was left behind. Like his mother, He made many clever reasons to make the weasel won’t eat him (he said that his body is bitter and won’t satisfy the weasel) until he had grown his feather and then runaway from weasel’s house. The meaning of the story : be a smart one, so you can overcome your problems.

3. Cupak and Grantang

This story tells about two brotherhood, Cupak the elder and his brother: Grantang. This story almost like Kesuna and Bawang. There is one (Grantang) symbolized the good and another (Cupak) symbolized the bad. Grantang is the diligent one, hardworker and honest and his elder brother was the contrary. Grantang always get bullied by his brother until he decided to go away from home. Cupak, altough bad but did not want to lose Grantang so he went for Grantang.

They walked away untill they arrived at Kediri kingdom and there was announcement that the princess of Kediri was kidnapped by Benaru, the giant one. Everyone who could save the princess could marry her and would be the next king in Kediri. Cupak and Grantang attended the competition. Grantang was the brave one, he fought the giant and defeated him at the deep cave.

But unfortunately, Cupak tought that Grantang was dead in the fight. Cupak brought the princess back to the kingdom and left Grantang behind. The king was glad to see His daughter and as he promised to them who could save his daughter, the King of Kediri than replaced by Cupak.

By the time, Grantang used the Benaru’s bone to climb up the cave. He saved by an old person who didn’t have child. Grantang became their son. When the old person vend in the market, the Princess of Kediri suddenly remember about the one who had saved her from Benaru and wanted to go to the old person’s home, to meet Grantang. And then they met.

The princess take Grantang along with her to the Puri (kingdom) and in short Grantang replaced Cupak as the King in Kediri. The most part I love : They live happily ever after. The story’s value : Be the honest one, diligent, hard worker, brave and always follow the right path then you’ll be a great person. This story is so popular until one of music band in Bali make a song about it. Triple X with Cupak Grantang, available at youtube.

Something to Think About?

Like games, the folklore of Indonesia is also a part of our culture from generation to generation. Beside as a way to teach moral value, a tale-telling before sleep could become our effort to save that treasure.


Finally, I can post at the right time : Friday and accomplished my third submission for BEC weekly challenge 🙂 To dear admin, Thank you for this opportunity. Maybe when I have a child, I can read this again to remind me how to tell a story and what story to tell and thanks to my father for every good story including jokes which made me remember it last longer.

with love, eka cahyanidwy


Cogito Ergo Sum, que sera sera.

16 thoughts on “[EF#16] Why Story Telling?

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