Narrative Skills

Narrative Skill refers to a child’s ability to describe things, events and tell stories.


Strong narrative skills will help your child’s reading comprehension when they begin reading independently.

An example of a narrative skill is a child's ability to tell what happens at a birthday party or on a trip to the zoo. Help your child strengthen their narrative skills by asking them to tell you about a book you're reading to them, instead of just listening to you.

Fun ways to learn narrative skills:

  • Ask open-ended questions that encourage conversations rather than yes, no or right, wrong answers.
  • Give your child time to respond. The average time needed for a young child to formulate a response to a complex question is 10-15 seconds.
  • Have children describe what is happening in a picture.
  • Read stories without words or wordless books, and once they are familiar with the book, ask your child to tell you the story.
  • Ask children to make predictions about the story.
  • Ask your child to tell you about things they have done or will do that involve a regular sequence of steps: getting ready for school, what your family did/will do on vacation, how to play a particular game, etc.