The Importance of Narrative in Children and How to Support Them

St Fidelis Students Reading

Speech Pathology for Schools LogoHaving good narration skills is an important type of discourse that has clear ties to socialisation, classroom discourse, and early literacy’ (Gillam, 2018).

Engaging in narration skills at home with your child will help move them towards grade-level listening and reading understanding as well as speaking and writing story-telling skills. Narrative skills help children when talking with peers, being able to engage in classroom discussions and in their early reading skills.

How can I help my child with narration skills?

As parents, your role is important in helping develop your child’s narration skills.

    • Begin reading a story with your child
      • Ask questions about each page
      • Who is the story about?
      • Where are they?
      • What are they doing?
      • How does the person feel?
      • Talk more about what is going on in the picture than the words on the page
      • Once you’ve read the page and asked questions, have your child re-tell you what’s going on in the story
      • Do this with each page of the story
    • After you’ve finished reading the story ask your child to re-tell the story to you while looking back at the pictures
      • See if they can use the correct character, setting, action and feelings of the characters

Examples of how goals can be targeted during narration

Speech – if your child has a speech sound error, use narration skills to practice that sound. If you’re reading a book with your child, emphasise that speech sound. “The Lion is the king of the jungle”, “Lions hunt for prey.” Then when your child is re-telling the story they you can help them emphasise the speech sound they have in error.

Vocabulary – When working on narration skills and you’re are reading with your child, select 1-2 new words in the story and talk about they mean. Once you are done with re-telling the story you can look up the words/pictures for more understanding.

There are many opportunities to work on narrative skills with your child! Even telling them your own personal stories is incredibly important.

Here is a link to help work on narrative skills with your child:


Sandra L. G. (2018) Improving Narrative Production in Children With Language Disorders: An Early-Stage Efficacy Study of a Narrative Intervention Program. American Speech-Language-Hearing Association


St Fidelis is partnering with SPS for one day of service per week. Speech Pathology for Schools provides holistic school based speech pathology support. We work collaboratively with school staff to improve student outcomes. School data along with speech pathology data is used to target support and monitor student progress. If you have any queries regarding speech pathology services at St Fidelis, please contact Manuela Watson.