Transportable curriculum to encourage families to share stories around themes that are significant in their lives.
4-6 children check out the backpacks on a rotating basis for one week to share with their families at home.
Each backpack contains 3 books (1 nonfiction and 2 fiction books), 1 related artifact, and a family journal. The purpose of the artifact is to encourage the family to share oral stories around the theme.
The journal can take two forms. Each family can have their own journal that is moved from backpack to backpack so they can keep adding to the same journal, or each backpack can have a journal on the theme that stays with that backpack and each family adds an entry and reads past entries from other families.
Entries in journals can be a family story related to the theme, responses to the books, or descriptions of what the family did with the backpack. Any member of the family can add to the journal and the entries can be drawings, writing, photos, etc. Families can make multiple entries related to each backpack.
A digital recorder to record the family’s stories can be included in the backpack.
The child should have a chance to share briefly about the family’s interactions around the backpack with the teacher or the class when the backpack is returned.
Examples of Family Story Backpacks
1) Time for Bed Artifact: Baby blanket or lullaby gloworm
Henderson, Kathy Hush, Baby, Hush! Lullabies around the World,