Becoming the Story Teller: Welcome to Mamoko

An Everyday Story

An Everyday StoryAbout six months ago we bought Jack (5.5 yrs) a small CD player for his room. We bought a few audio books and borrowed a few more from the library. Jack took to it straight away; spending large chunks of his day in his room drawing and listening to his stories.

These audio books though have had an unexpected outcome; Jack started telling very detailed stories. He started narrating his imaginary games;

” ‘That’s a shame’, Terry said disappointedly”… ”

‘The night was dark and calm. There was no sound. Suddenly Batman came out of the dark…'”.

It’s incredible to listen to.

At first his narrations seemed quite out of context, but over the last couple of weeks Jack seems to have really mastered the art of story telling. He has become a story-teller.

I want to really nurture this so I sought out some wordless books and came across Welcome to Mamoko. This beautiful wordless book really encourages kids to become the storyteller.

I’ve always loved wordless books and used to use them all the time in my English as a Second Language classes when I was teaching. They really allow the child to have full creative control over the story.

Welcome to Mamoko is a beautifully illustrated book which intertwines the adventures of twenty different characters as they go through their day. Each character is on their way to their town carnival.

An Everyday StoryOn each page you have to search for your character and see what adventure they are up to; telling the story as you go. The pages are a thicker board style and each is gorgeously coloured as the day slowly turns to night. It’s also a nice big book, perfect for pouring over.

Here’s the adventures of Old Mrs. Full-Wool. What story would you tell?

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Welcome to Mamoko has quickly become one of our favourite books. It’s written by the creators of Maps; another exquisitely illustrated book which I know you would love to add your collection.


13 Replies to “Becoming the Story Teller: Welcome to Mamoko”

  1. We love maps from the same authors! I love that the book encourages making up their own stories. I checked the other mamoko books in the series out and they look equally amazing. This will make a great gift for the holidays, thanks Kate.

    1. It’s really beautiful, isn’t it? I am thinking about buying a couple more copies for friends’ kids for Christmas too.

      Maps is still one of our favourites. That book is a definite keeper.

  2. How wonderful! I love the storytelling clip detailing the exploits of Batman! Fun. It reminds me of the time I used to aide a child with speech issues. By the time our session was in completion, and from all the speech therapy and practice we’d done together, he was a regular little storyteller and poet! This is really lovely.

    1. I love it too. That’s just what Jack and Sarah were like when I first showed it to them. There are just so many interesting stories to follow throughout the book and some of the characters are quite quirky, so it’s really fun to watch the kids as they turn each page to see what the character is up to next.

      That does sound really lovely. I am not sure if I have mentioned before, but Jack did speech therapy for a while because he wasn’t creating his own language (he would mimic others). It’s lovely to think of that now, when I listen to him creating such beautiful and detailed stories.

  3. Hi Kate, what a lovely gentle way to encourage story telling. Can I ask what Jack’s favourite audio books are? The book looks wonderful. Books without a story and stories without a book. Simple but clever!

    1. He pretty much adores all the audio books we have borrowed from the library. I never really expected him to enjoy listening to them so much. I think they might calm his very busy mind because his body becomes quite still when he is listening and drawing; almost meditative.

      There are a few that he has really enjoyed and so I have bought a copy of them. He loves the Wizard of Oz, the Narnia series, Charlie and the Chocolate Factory, Fantastic Mr. Fox, The BFG, a couple Winnie the Pooh ones which I picked up at an op store, and the Treehouse series by Andy Griffiths (I think they would be his absolute favourites).

  4. Thanks Kate, I have a storyteller (4.5 years) and think she’d really enjoy an open ended book like this one to spark her stories though she’s pretty good a coming up with stuff all on her own!

    1. Jack is too 🙂 And Sarah! Gosh can that girl spin a tale… a very LONG tale. 🙂

      I do love wordless books though for their ability to place the story back into the child’s hands. It’s great listening to Jack and Sarah tell stories from Welcome to Mamoko. They take turns and ad lib little bits here and there. It’s very sweet.

  5. Thanks so much for posting about this. We just ordered the Maps book for our daughter’s bday present (on your recommendation, so thanks!) and when I was buying it I saw the Mamoko books listed. I didn’t know anything about them but the illustrations caught my attention. I think this might need to go on a list for future gift.

    1. Oh you will love the Maps book. It’s quite big and the pictures are so interesting. Jack and Sarah just pour over it. They have learnt so much about culture and world geography just from that one book! (and so have I)

      The Mamoko series are really lovely too. This is the only one that we have but just like the Maps book, it’s a definite keeper 🙂

      I love gorgeously illustrated books.

  6. Alison - The Way He Plays says:

    What a fabulous find and such a great way to develop storytelling whilst not relying on reading and writing skills. This will go on my wish list!

    1. I think that (and the illustrations of course) is what I love most about it. I love that there are so many different stories in there for the kids to discover. And then as they become familiar with each character, they can create new stories, as the characters interact. It’s such a wonderful book.

  7. Wow! As a polish mom, who reads foreign blogs I’m sometimes jelous and frustrated that it’s almost impossible to buy some books or materials that other moms recommend. What a surprise, to find polish books (which we have and love) on your blog 🙂
    greetings from Poland 🙂

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