Saturday 10 September 2016

Pratham Books Champion : Book Lovers' Program for Schools

The Book Lovers' Program for Schools sent us this heart-warming account of the storytelling session they conducted at the St Louis Institute for the Deaf and Blind on 7th September, 2016 in Chennai.

As soon as we read about the event this year, we—at The ilovereadin’ Library—decided to conduct a session at the St Louis Institute for the Deaf and Blind, Adyar.

We began a correspondence with the school to fix the date in August, 2016. It was fixed for September 7, 2016 at 2.30 pm, a day when there would be no school functions or exams.

Our storytellers Karthika and Banu settled on using voice, visuals, actions, and textures as the core of their performance.

When we reached the school, headmaster John Xavier immediately made arrangements for us to conduct the session. We were ushered to class VI in the block reserved for the visually challenged students. Karthika did a telling of The Elephant Bird followed by getting students to hold a textured metal vase, to help them imagine how heavy and coarse the feet of the elephant bird must have been.

A few students found the gap at the top of the vase and wondered what it was! The teller told
them that was where the elephant bird’s socks went.

Banu performed a story about Anansi and the Pot of Stories, followed by getting students to hold a calabash that featured in the story. We also donated four English storybooks in Braille that we procured from the Indian Association for the Blind in Madurai to the school.

Mrs Delsy, a teacher for the hearing impaired children, was kind enough to depict the story for the children in sign language as we narrated the tale of The Elephant Bird. The students identified with Munia’s cause and cheered as she saved the elephant bird. They enjoyed seeing the pictures immensely after hearing the story. The joy on their faces when they saw the image on paper that connected to the image in their head was a sight to behold.

Banu did a storytelling of Plop! that the students enthusiastically participated in. We left behind our copy of The Elephant Bird, in English, for the students to read. This was sent to us by Pratham Books for the event. We also left a copy of The Elephant Bird in Tamil that we had printed out for the students to reconnect with the story.

It was an incredible experience. We can’t wait to do it again.


Thank you Karthika, Banu and the Book Lovers' Program for Schools for spreading the joy of stories.

In its fifth edition of the 'One Day - One Story' campaign, Pratham Books was joined by 3000+ storytellers who conducted 3200+ storytelling sessions. Many, many steps towards a 'Reading India'! 

What started as a small step by Pratham Books to spread the joy of reading has become a movement. In 2012, Pratham Books initiated the One Day-One Story initiative on the occasion of International Literacy Day . We will be sharing the stories of all our volunteer storytellers (Pratham Books Champions) through our blog. View more stories from the International Literacy Day Celebrations held in 2016. 

This blog contains stories sent in by all our champions. Browse through the blog for more stories. You can also go through the tags on the right side of the blog to find stories happening in your own city. 

Note : If you want to be a Pratham Books Champion and join us on our journey of getting 'a book in every child's hand', write to us at champions(at)prathambooks(dot)org.

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