Faith CoLab: Tapestry of Faith: Windows and Mirrors: A Program about Diversity for Grades 4-5

Activity 2: Story - Charles Dickens

Activity time: 5 minutes

Materials for Activity

  • A copy of the story "Charles Dickens"
  • A bell, chime, rain stick or other musical noisemaker

Preparation for Activity

  • Read the story a few times. Consider telling it dramatically, rather than reading it from the page. Practice telling it. The stories here are written for a Story for All Ages moment-part performance, part ministry.
  • For storytelling, be ritualistic. Create a mood and a time that is different from other moments in the session. For example, turn overhead lights off and use lamps. Position yourself where all can see and hear you. You may wish to wear a storytelling shawl.
  • Review the discussion questions. Choose some you think might resonate with the group and help these particular children interpret the story and relate it to their own lives.

Description of Activity

Tell the group you will tell them a bit more about Charles Dickens.

Ring the chime (or other noisemaker), make eye contact with each participant and read or tell the story.

Sound the chime (or other noisemaker) again at the end. Use these questions to facilitate discussion. Make sure everyone who wants to speak has a chance.

  • What do you think made Charles Dickens want to write about people who were extremely poor, after he was no longer poor himself?
  • If you lived at the time of Dickens, and you could read and had time for it, what would you think of his stories? Would you want to read them or not?

Conclude by affirming:

Charles Dickens was a good observer, a creative writer and someone who did not believe poverty should be hidden. He used his talent for writing stories to help everyone see things that were not equal and not fair in his world.