oral language

The Living Library Project: Everyone Has A Story

The Living Library Project is a project designed to improve oral language skills for all grade 5/6 students at Central Elementary Community School in Chilliwack, British Columbia, Canada.  In the next 9 months, we plan to invite living books, local and global community members, into the classroom to tell their stories orally to our students.  Our hope is that through these stories each of our students will realize that they too are a Living Book with a story to tell.

Oral story telling has been practiced for centuries in many cultures.  For many of those cultures, such as the indigenous people’s, it is how traditions and beliefs are passed on to the next generation.  Sadly, this cultural gift of language is slowly beginning to diminish.  Our Living Library is an attempt at breathing life back into the gift of oral language by recognizing, maybe for the first time, that EVERYONE has a story to tell.


  1. Living Books will introduce students to a variety of worldviews and life experiences
  2. Living Books will help students realize them have stories of their own to tell
  3. Students will use speaking and listening to improve and extend thinking
  4. Students will increase vocabulary usage and oral language skills


We are inviting Living Books, local and global community members, into the classroom to tell their stories orally to our students.  Our hope is that through these stories each of our students will realize that they are a living book with a story to tell.  If you have a story to tell contact us at livinglibrary33@gmail.com.

This project is meant to be shared with others, just as oral stories have been shared among cultures in our past.  Check out the website often to hear our most recent Living Books.

Tech Integration Post # 5 of 10: Health and Career Education 2.0

Grade 5 Health and Career Education Learning Outcome: Safety and Injury Prevention

C7 – describe safety guidelines to protect themselves and others from abuse and exploitation (e.g., knowing their right not to be abused, being assertive, avoiding potentially unsafe situations, practicing safe Internet use, recognizing tricks and lures used by predators)

Use a Flip camera, a video camera, a digital camera, or a mobile phone to video small groups of students acting out how to be safe online.  Try these topics or generate your own:

  1. Never hide Internet usage from your parents.  Always let them know when your online
  2. Never reveal personal information such as telephone number, address, last name etc…
  3. Never arrange to meet someone you’ve met online and don’t know, without your parents permission
  4. Cyberbullying
  5. Digital citizenship
  6. Protecting reputations online
  7. Digital privacy
  8. Safe talking in Cyberspace
  9. Handling E-mail and IM
  10. Safe Social Networking

Your learners may choose a topic and research, in depth, based on the information you’ve share with them or from information they have found independently.  They form a small group of three or four and complete the following tasks:

  • Sketch out a storyboard of the Internet/Online safety skit
  • Create a script of dialogue for the skit
  • Collect any props needed for the skit and practice until comfortable
  • Record the skit and edit using JayCut

Note: This is a cross-curricular activity and can be used for oral language practice as well as a writing exercise.
My Diigo links on Internet/Online Safety

Once your videos are complete your learners can use JayCut to upload and edit them.  JayCut is a free online video editing tool.  There is no longer a need to download expensive video editing software.  You can use JayCut from any computer with an Internet connection and the basic package is free.

When the videos have been edited by your learners they may be showcased at assemblies or shown to learners in younger grades and used as a teaching tool.  Older grades tend to put more effort into their work when the audience is larger and they know it’s being used for a higher purpose.

Feel free to let me know how it goes…

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