While teaching in Japan, I told stories about perseverance using Wayne Gretzky, endurance using Terry Fox, and politeness using the pervasive Canadian “sorry”. The stories fell flat because my Japanese audience couldn’t connect. What did they know about these topics? Nothing. My point never hit its target so I started using Japanese examples. At the time I didn’t know I was practicing narrative pedagogy, but it was very useful when I connected culturally, experientially, and generationally with my students. How have you used narrative pedagogy in your classroom? How do you know your point is hitting its target?
by Ken Harmel