Tuesday, January 28, 2014

Storytelling...is magical

I am currently reading, "Healing Stories for Challenging Behavior" by Susan Perrow.  I came across this book at the Pasadena Waldorf School Store.  It's not that D has any challenging behaviors, I just wanted to read more about storytelling and this particular book had actual stories to address certain behaviors.  Through Waldorf education, I have been made aware of the transformative quality of storytelling.  I think it was about a year ago that I attended  a workshop of an author who wrote a book on Play and how through play (and storytelling), one could change a child's behavior.  It was really interesting -
so simple it would seem but really quite difficult in that one has to be very purposeful and thoughtful in execution.  Unfortunately, I cannot recall who the author is now!

Nancy Mellon is also a wonderful author of storytelling books.  One famous one in Waldorf circles is Storytelling with Children.  Here is a good blog post from the Magic Onion about storytelling.

In Susan's book, she tells of the time when her youngest son hated baths.  Just hated getting wet.  She thought and thought and came up with a story about Shampoo-the-Bear.  She made up a tale about him and his adventures and that got her son into taking baths!  So much so that he wanted them all the time.

I thought I'd give it a try.  My D does not like getting her hair washed.  Mainly because she doesn't like getting her face wet.  I mean, literally, she goes into a fit if I just accidentally drop one drop of water from my hand onto her face.  It's crazy.  She's a bit crazy, yes.

Yesterday, I did not make up a story but I did call her shampoo bottle, Shampoo Bear.  I said something like this (while pretending to listen to something), "What?  What's that you say Shampoo Bear?  Ooh, you said you'd like to wash D's hair?  Well, I don't know...she might not want her hair washed.  She doesn't really like that."

D immediately pipes in, "Yes!  I want my hair washed!"  Then we continued to Conditioner Bear and then Soap Bear.  Then she called our large bottle of soap, Big Soap Bear.  Asked what he was doing, etc.

That was yesterday.  Today, she gets in the bath again and we go through the same routine, me talking for the bottles.  And she announces, "I'm going to take a bath again tomorrow!  And wash my hair!"
To which I responded (as Conditioner Bear), "Nooo, I need to sleep.  You always only bathe every other day. I am going to sleep for two days!"   D says, "No!  I am going to shampoo and condition my hair tomorrow!  You cannot sleep."

By the way, our D also has this weird thing about not wanting anyone to ever sleep.  EVER.  So that was kind of a good reverse psychology thing, right?

Now I'll just need to figure out how to keep D from OD'ing on shampooing and conditioning!

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