The Arts for the Heart: Story

The whole world is full of unworked joy mines. Everywhere we go we find all sorts of happiness-producing material, if we only know how to extract it.” -Orison Swett Marsden


Continuing on with the series of posts about the arts and our hearts.

Last but not least is Story.

Boy Reading by Thomas Pollack Anshutz


“The normal [child] demands a story. The Bible does not open with a scientific disquisition upon the evolutionary hypothesis of anthropological origins–it begins with the story of Adam and Eve. Even the Great Teacher did not speak without a parable.

“This is the law of life. It is more; it is as vital as breathing.”  (Everett Tomlinson)


Stories are powerful.  When taught through a story, the message is felt more deeply and remembered longer.  The more good stories I put into my mind and heart, the more faith, hope, and charity I am persuaded to experience in my own life.  I draw on the power of uplifting stories to move me onward and upward.  I want the same for my children.   


In thinking about story, here are some ideas that we try to incorporate into our home:


  • Learning and sharing His story – God’s hand throughout history – both the history of the world and nations, and the history of families and individuals
  • Reading uplifting, inspiring, and imaginative, and educational stories (fiction and nonfiction)
  • Creating/telling/writing stories (fiction and non-fiction)
  • Acting out stories (plays, bringing history to life, etc.)
  • Library full of good books


We read a lot at our house.  Because having our own home library is important to me, we have collected quite the book collection over the years.  And besides food, books are definitely the thing that we buy most frequently. 

Every time a new (to us… most of our books are used) book gets delivered, it’s like Christmas at our house.  The house gets really quiet for a while while the kids sit and look at the new book(s). I love it. 🙂



The kids like to write and illustrate their own stories.


Another thing that we love to do with stories is act them out and bring them (and the people involved) to life through hands on experiences.  We especially enjoy doing this with family history stories.

We have done this in our Pioneer Unit, our Swedish Unit, Philippines Unit, a couple of Fikas (Pilgrims and Revolutionary War), and Christmas and Easter/Passover celebrations.

Pioneer Unit


Swedish Unit



Philippines Unit
Pilgrim Feast


Revolutionary War time period


Bethlehem Dinner




For even more about Story for warming the heart, this is a great resource.

1 Response
  1. Estelle

    You’re definitely speaking to me about a love of books. I’ve always loved reading from a very young age and my happiest memories are being curled up with a book or book shopping. I need to be more intentional about encouraging a love of books and reading with my kids. I struggle with wanting to keep their books ‘perfect’. I’m the kind of reader that can’t crack the spines of my paperbacks haha so letting the kids go loose on their books gives me anxiety haha. I love how you act out stories, that sounds like such a fun way to bring them to life

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