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Finding the sparkle: storytelling in the lives of people with learning disabilities

Finding the sparkle: storytelling in the lives of people with learning disabilities Purpose – The ability to tell a story, whether personal or fictional, is a skill which can enable people to build a sense of identity, friendship, community and self-advocacy. However, narrative is rarely prioritised in services. The paper aims to discuss these issues. Design/methodology/approach – This paper describes two approaches to the development of storytelling for people with learning disabilities used by the charity Openstorytellers. Reflections from interviews are used to illustrate how individuals view their experiences as storytellers, and the benefits that come in the wake of learning to tell and listen to stories. Findings – Storytelling led to an increased sense of purpose, confidence, communication and value. The findings are based on subjective perceptions by the people concerned, and were not obtained through independent research. However, they represent a first step towards evaluating the impact of multidimensional interventions. Practical implications – Services need to consider how they enable their members to participate actively in the sharing of experience, and imaginative and creative activities. Storytelling, both mythic and personal, can help to develop social relationships and active participation in one's community. Originality/value – Both of the approaches described here (Learning to Tell; StorysharingTM) are innovative approaches which are new in the field of learning disabilities. http://www.deepdyve.com/assets/images/DeepDyve-Logo-lg.png Tizard Learning Disability Review Emerald Publishing

Finding the sparkle: storytelling in the lives of people with learning disabilities

Tizard Learning Disability Review , Volume 20 (1): 8 – Jan 5, 2015

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References (20)

Publisher
Emerald Publishing
Copyright
Copyright © Emerald Group Publishing Limited
ISSN
1359-5474
DOI
10.1108/TLDR-05-2014-0015
Publisher site
See Article on Publisher Site

Abstract

Purpose – The ability to tell a story, whether personal or fictional, is a skill which can enable people to build a sense of identity, friendship, community and self-advocacy. However, narrative is rarely prioritised in services. The paper aims to discuss these issues. Design/methodology/approach – This paper describes two approaches to the development of storytelling for people with learning disabilities used by the charity Openstorytellers. Reflections from interviews are used to illustrate how individuals view their experiences as storytellers, and the benefits that come in the wake of learning to tell and listen to stories. Findings – Storytelling led to an increased sense of purpose, confidence, communication and value. The findings are based on subjective perceptions by the people concerned, and were not obtained through independent research. However, they represent a first step towards evaluating the impact of multidimensional interventions. Practical implications – Services need to consider how they enable their members to participate actively in the sharing of experience, and imaginative and creative activities. Storytelling, both mythic and personal, can help to develop social relationships and active participation in one's community. Originality/value – Both of the approaches described here (Learning to Tell; StorysharingTM) are innovative approaches which are new in the field of learning disabilities.

Journal

Tizard Learning Disability ReviewEmerald Publishing

Published: Jan 5, 2015

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