This text is excerpted from Becoming the Story in the Joyful World of “Jack and the Beanstalk” by Kathryn F. Whitmore (Language Arts, Sept 2015).
Imagination, as part of play, allows children to conceive of things they have not yet experienced for themselves, including defining themselves as literate.
For children who are viewed by deficit mainstream school discourses as “less than” more “normal” children, a view of literacy as embodied and multimodal opens the door to local understandings of children’s participation (Kliewer, 2008; Collins, 2011) and, therefore, children’s identities.
In process drama . . . , all children can imagine new places, whom they might become in those places, and ways to solve problems in those spaces (Catterall, 2009).
Explore the world of pretend and how it can afford young children “the space and encouragement to take on additional literate identities” in an inspiring new article in the September Language Arts: “Becoming the Story in the Joyful World of ‘Jack and the Beanstalk.’ ”