Incidental learning in storytelling

Telfer, Sarah ORCID: 0000-0002-6307-9735 and Turner, Amanda ORCID: 0000-0001-7180-6915 (2019) Incidental learning in storytelling. Research and Practice in Adult Literacy (RaPAL), 97 (Spring). pp. 41-53. ISSN 2054-5355

[img] Text
Telfer S IL and storytelling_9_2018 TL amendments.docx RaPaL 2019.pdf - Accepted Version
Restricted to Repository staff only until May 2021.

Download (870kB)
Official URL:


This article analyses trainee teachers’ experiences of incidental learning using storytelling in the English as a Second Language (ESOL) classroom in the Further Education and Skills sector. It comments on the reflections of trainee ESOL teachers using story activities in their practice and it explores their experiences of incidental learning within language teaching. The research focuses on the responses, evaluations and perceptions of trainee teachers on the effectiveness of storytelling as a pedagogic tool to enhance language and literacy skills development and explores the impact of incidental learning on trainee teachers’ professional development. The findings indicate that trainees experienced incidental learning whilst implementing storytelling in a wide range of contexts with various groups of learners from Entry Level 1 (beginners) to Level 2 (upper intermediate). Storytelling as a pedagogical tool was used in various forms, such as unplanned impromptu uses when demonstrating a grammatical or lexical point. The trainee teachers’ reflective accounts of incidental learning demonstrated a positive impact on their professional progress, which is mainly reflected in the components of attitudinal and intellectual change with some evidence of behavioural change too. The key findings of the study indicate that storytelling provides creative opportunities for teachers to develop their practice incidentally. It highlights the importance of unplanned and spontaneous anecdotal stories in engaging ESOL learners in language practice and suggests that stories can be used as an effective pedagogic tool in teaching and learning.

Item Type: Article
Uncontrolled Keywords: Incidental learning; Storytelling; Communities of Practice; Teacher Education, Further Education and Skills Sector, Trainee Teacher ESOL teachers
Divisions: School of Education and Psychology > Education
Depositing User: Tracey Gill
Date Deposited: 10 Jun 2019 08:51
Last Modified: 10 Jun 2019 08:51

Actions (login required)

Edit Item Edit Item


Downloads per month over past year

View more statistics