Storytelling Icebreaker

I used Rory’s Story Cubes with my Speaking/Listening ESL students, and they loved it!

Rory’s Story Cubes are a set of nine dice with various icons on each side. Roll the dice and make up an impromptu story that connects all nine icons facing up. Simple, creative, and fun.

I learned about Rory’s Story Cubes from EdTech.tv. I watched his tutorial on YouTube and decided to buy a set of physical dice from Amazon for $7 (here).

I used them as an ice breaker at the beginning of class to get everyone focused and engaged. I have a small class, so I asked everyone to sit on the floor in a circle. I introduced the dice and demoed the first story. My students watched and listened attentively.

Next, the class broke into pairs and small groups. The first group received dice with the instructions to roll them and take up to 5 minutes to create a short story. Each person in the group had to have an opportunity to speak.

The groups without the dice were tasked with listening to their peers’ story and retelling it afterward. This worked phenomenally well, and my students thoroughly enjoyed it.

One student even said, “We could do this the whole class period.”

Have you tried using Rory’s Story Cubes with your class? What kind of variations do you use? Please let me know in the comments section below.

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