(L-R) Sheila Brush (Record-Keeping); Julie Toepper (Chair); Karen Green (Meeting Snacks/Storytellers Coordinator/Meeting Notetaker); Denny Thompson (Past Chair); Kay Landers (Past Chair); Kathy Daniels (Librarian/Program Committee); Janis Lievens (School Liaison/SC Notetaker). Other Steering Committee Members not pictured are Nancy Bradfield (Program Committee); Cathy Lichty (Trainer/Liaison to Spellbinders National); Wynn Montgomery (Lead Trainer/Newsletter Editor); and Vicki Tiedeman (Data Collection)
To learn more about the Broomfield Spellbinders program, click on the following to read our latest newsletters:
Program Impact 2022-2023: Each year, Broomfield Spellbinders® Storytelling Volunteers take the time to ignite imaginations, build literacy skills, and strengthen our communities.
The statistics presented below reflect our efforts:
22 Active Storytelling Volunteers
20 Schools and 90 Classrooms Visited
12 Other Venyes (Senior Living Facilities, etc.)
28900+ Teller-Listener Interactions
Broomfield Council on the Arts & Humanities
When: 3rd Friday of the month (no meetings in June, July, or December)
Time: 12:45 p.m.-3 p.m.
Where: Brunner Farmhouse, 640 Main St., Broomfield, CO 80020
Broomfield Spellbinders® is one of 11 local Colorado organizations licensed to use the accredited Spellbinders® storytelling tools and techniques. After our volunteer storytellers complete the required classroom training and "shadow" an experienced storyteller, they share stories in elementary school classroom(s). We return to the same classrooms (usually once per month) and the young listeners are always glad to see on hear us. They welcome us as if we are rock stars!
Our Steering Committee helps support and encourage our members in the art of storytelling by planning fun monthly meetings with time for fellowship, shared stories, and ideas as well as help in becoming better storytellers. We would love to have you join us for our monthly meeting and meet our Spellbinders® community! Before your first visit, please email our Julie Toepper (firstname.lastname@example.org) to let us know that you are coming.
Covid resiliency: Members of Broomfield Spellbinders thrive on face-to-face interaction with young listeners—seeing their faces light up as they experience the joy of oral storytelling and being greeted like rock stars when they enter the classroom. After the schools' response to COVID prevented our presence in classrooms, a few brave souls shared stories using video conferencing and quickly learned that there are significant differences between live storytelling and virtual storytelling. So, the program focused on preparing our members to be effective and comfortable with virtual storytelling. These efforts began with monthly story circles in 2020 that allowed members to meet with other storytellers (via Zoom) to share stories and get feedback. Working with other Spellbinders organizations, Broomfield’s chapter leaders developed a four-hour training session that focused on how to adapt techniques and stories to address the unique aspects of virtual storytelling. This training consisted of two 2-hour classes a few days apart. It included a brief “homework” assignment and gave participants the opportunity to demonstrate what they has learned and received peer feedback. The training ensured that Broomfield Storytellers could continue to support local teachers by sharing stories with their students using the available technology until life returned to normal. It is great to be back telling face-to-face.
Broomfield Spellbinders is a program of the Broomfield Council on the Arts & Humanities (BCAH). It is part of a Statewide network of similar organizations dedicated to sharing and preserving the ancient art of oral storytelling. For more information about Spellbinders, please visit https://Spellbinders.org.
For more than 15 years, our Spellbinders® Storytelling Volunteers have shared stories with school children and seniors in adult care facilities. While Broomfield itself does not have a local school system, we share stories in schools and other venues in the City of Broomfield and many neighboring communities-Erie, Lafayette, Northglenn, Thornton, and Westminster. Our library in the Brunner Farmhouse contains a wealth of storytelling materials and is available to our storytellers to add to their "repertoire." To "meet" some of our storytellers and hear a sampling of stories, please visit these YouTube channels: “Spellbinders-Broomfield” and “Wynn Montgomery” (Pop Tales). The "Compendium of Favorite Stories" provides descriptions and sources of our tellers' typical tales.