What's The Story

The Background:

What's The StoryWhat’s the Story? began as an all age Deanery storytelling event in 2005. Listening to stories of Bible characters, finding their story in the Bible and a time of worship were integral to the event. In 2007 the principle was adapted to look at the Easter story and a storychain was developed as an aid to remembering the story. In 2009 the story of Pentecost and the early church was told, with a jigsaw developed as an aid to remember the story.            

What’s the Story? in schools

In 2007 What’s the Story? was adapted for use in schools. Following two years of successful storytelling through Open the Book six primary schools accepted the invitation to attend their local church for What’s the story about Christmas? The Christmas story was told in six stages and a story chain was commissioned with six symbols. A charge was made for the project to cover the cost of the chains and additional material required to set up the project for schools. Six schools and almost 1000 children took part in five different churches over a period of two Story Chainweeks.  Three of these schools asked immediately if the deanery were able to do a similar project for Easter 2008. Using 7 stories and a newly commissioned story chain we welcomed back these schools into our churches and have subsequently extended the project into a further six schools at Christmas 2008.

Interest in What’s the Story? for use in schools is growing and we are pleased to be able to share this project across the area.

What is ‘What’s the Story?

What’s the Story? is made up of three important parts:

The balance of all three components make the project a unique experience whereby participants hear, discover, reflect and respond to God’s story. Our task is to allow that story to speak for itself. We seek to be faithful to the biblical account, tell it with skill and integrity, directing listeners to its written source, the Bible, and provide an appropriate environment in which they are able to respond to what they have heard and experienced. A unique story chain is provided, which the children take home as a permanent reminder of their Christmas or Easter journey.


The stories used for  What’s the Story? are written by Bob Hartman and published in ‘The Lion Christmas Storyteller Book’, ‘Stories from the Stable’ or ‘EasterStories’. Bob is a gifted writer and theologian. He has a life time of experience of working with children and believes passionately inthe power of storytelling. All of his stories are written to tell aloud and work exceptionally well with large groups.  Many are interactive. 


The purpose of the final reflection, using the storychain, is to bring children (& staff) intoa sacred space where they can think and reflect on the story they have heard. Experience tells us that this can be a very special time of stillness and quiet when children respond to an atmosphere of wonder and reflection.

The Bible Base

Bible BaseThe bible base provides children with an opportunity to talk about what they have heard, handle bibles, bible storybooks and pictures, and engage in an activity. It gives children time and space to talk and explore the world’s best selling book for themselves. However long you have, use it well and above all pray that God will use this time to introduce children to the world’s best selling book. Bible work sheets and other activities support this time.

Archbishop of York visits OCRHFor further details of how to organise a ‘What’s the Story?’ event and how to order story chains, please contact Mandy.

Pictured left is the Archbishop of York looking at a story chain on his visit to The Chestnuts.

An information pack is available at a cost of £3.00. This gives fuller details of how to grasp the vision and the practicalities of setting this up as a schools project.

More Information

Open the Book
Open The Book Story List (pdf)
What's The Story
Schools Project Work