Re-Enacting a Story


  • To comprehend and respond to books read aloud
  • To dramatize a story; to use expressive language
  • To predict story events
  • To recall and retell parts of a selection in the correct sequence
  • To build vocabulary

Chart paper, story drawings
Prepare ahead of time by drawing simple pictures that show what happens in the story, step by step. Also prepare reduced-size photocopies of your pictures.

Literature Suggestion
Read Goldilocks and the Three Bears by Jan Brett, The Three Little Pigs by James Marshall, or any book with a strong plot that children can act out.


Tell children that they are going to play a game called "First, Next, Last." Make three movements.Then ask children to repeat what you did and say: "First, next, last." Examples: One arm up, second arm up, both arms down; tongue out, tongue in, jump; snap fingers, jump, snap fingers. To help children get the idea at the start, say, "First, next, last" as you perform the movements.


  • Read the book. Tell children that you are going to keep track of what happens in the story. As you read, post the pictures you drew to represent the events of the story onto chart paper. Ask children to predict what will happen next.
  • After reading the story, ask children questions about what happened and why. Make sure children understand the story events before going on to the next step.
  • Plan how to act out the story, asking questions such as, "Who are the characters? Where should the house be? Where should the walking path be? What can we use for bowls (or other props)?"
  • Help children act out the story, using the pictures on the chart to recall the order of events.
Make a small paper version of the chart. Have children cut out the pieces and paste them in order on another sheet of paper.

Observation Assessment

  • Proficient - Child demonstrates an understanding of a story by telling the main events, and can participate in acting it out.
  • In Process - Child shows some understanding of the story, but needs prompting to participate in acting it out.
  • Not Yet Ready - Child does not yet demonstrate an understanding of story events and has difficulty acting out the story.

Excerpted from School Readiness Activity Cards. The Preschool Activity Cards provide engaging and purposeful experiences that develop language, literacy, and math skills for preschool children.

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