Reviews

Storytelling Performance Reviews

“You share your gift so beautifully with the children!  They talk about their experience for days afterward.”

Patty, Jen, and Staff

Hosterman Elementary

“Katie is enchanting and magical with children. There was nothing like seeing my classroom full of students with emotional and behavior disorders so peaceful, enchanted, and in a complete state of wonder and awe. They felt free to be children again and talked about it for days. I will never forget the difference it made for them.”

Marcus Peterson

Special Needs Instructor 

District 287 Alternative School

"Katie does a fabulous job of keeping the students engaged with her expressive body language, gestures, facial expressions and voice dynamics!"

Cindy Céspedes

Kindergarten Teacher

Robbinsdale Spanish Immersion School

"Katie is a dynamic storyteller! I appreciated her ability to adjust her stories and technique depending on the specific class, the overall mood, ability, etc [of my students]. Her story choice was always right on point. The students appreciated that she chose a wide variety of stories, especially from different cultures. She is always "alive" on stage, and the students strive to be like her!"

Amy Wright

Fifth Grade ELA Teacher

Breck School

"I LOVE her commitment to using Spanish! I think the school assemblies are 100X better since she came and started telling stories."

Kally Carter

First Grade Teacher 

Robbinsdale Spanish Immersion School

“I love you Katie and Baby Bear for telling us stories at the TRF Library.  I want you to tell us another story.

Anika 

Young Listener

Thief River Falls Public Library

"Katie’s presentation included lots of participation and movement.  She has wonderful, expressive voices for her characters, and a very nice, friendly way with the audience.  The group was with her every step of the way."

Pam Wheeler

Children's Librarian

St Paul Public Library

"I wanted to let you know that the daycare kids enjoyed your stories! The following day the group was in the library and I asked them which story they liked best. Many started singing "Gecko gecko..." and another child said the spider helpers! Thank you for keeping stories alive!"

Tara Johnson

Children's Librarian 

Lanesboro Public Library

"Sra. Knutson is talented. She keeps the kids' interest. She finds ways to get them involved in the story. Teachers enjoy it just as much as the kids!"
Cathy Kurvers

3rd Grade Teacher

Robbinsdale Spanish Immersion School

"We got a lot of great feedback on your show. Thanks again for your excellent work!"

Joan Sand

Librarian

Pine Island Public Library

"Students enjoyed the stories. After [the performance], we were able to have some deep discussions about integrity. Students were very engaged. I have been able to pull them back to that activity and discuss what it means to have integrity since then in our daily activities."

Emily Nitti Macias

4th Grade Teacher

Robbinsdale Spanish Immersion School

 

Teaching Artist Reviews

"Katie works very well with kindergarten age students, realizing the importance of movement in all their activities. She's expressive, open to kids' differing learning styles, and used the Spanish language proficiently. I found the warm up sessions very beneficial. Teaching the kids the "neutral" position when she played the "Copy Me" game was ingenious. It gave them a starting point before each new pose or movement. She was very in tune to students' needs for movement and spoke to them at their level of understanding."

Cindy Céspedes

Kindergarten Teacher

Robbinsdale Spanish Immersion School

"This residency was uplifting, very positive. It served as a reminder of the importance of the arts in education. I was able to observe students while she led class, paying attention to engagement, participation, and comprehension. I also experienced the stories, games and activities. I look forward to using some new games that I learned.
 
"Katie not only shares the world with us through her story telling, she also invites us into the process. Through this generosity, she has positively impacted this lives of even more people. She takes story telling from passive listening, to active engagement, which has lasting outcomes. Katie is very effective, and I believe a part of it is that she practices and continually learns how to improve." 
Lisa Monson

Fourth Grade Teacher

Folwell School, Performing Arts Magnet

"Katie made our storytelling unit possible. Students found confidence in front of an audience. They are now able to apply these tricks to other oral presentations. They also learned to work so well with each other. Katie taught them how to give each other proper, constructive criticism. I have also found more confidence in telling stories.  The students felt very comfortable working with her, especially the shy or nervous ones! She was always patient and allowed each student to be in charge. I loved that I got "take-aways" with each visit. I learned a new lesson, approach, vocabulary, etc."

Amy Wright

Fifth Grade ELA Teacher

Breck School

"Seeing how Katie interacted with the students in the residency helped me become a better teacher. I appreciated the way Katie set up routines for the day and did student warm-ups. With her help, I am learning how to apply critical response for this age group -- third grade."

Kristin Johnson

Media Specialist

Folwell School, Performing Arts Magnet

"Katie was very easy to communicate with. She was flexible with scheduling, she had lots of ideas and creativity and was open to suggestions."

Marie Wivinus

K-1 Autism Teacher

Neill Elementary School

"The stories Katie chose for our residency were great! The way she used her voice to bring them to life helped my students visualize, which is sometimes very tricky for them. Katie was great with the students and me - it was easy to teach with her. Katie is vibrant, focused, and conscientious. We have used some of the drama strategies she taught in the classroom. I look forward to another residency with her!"

Mollie Brown

Sixth Grade ELA Teacher

Folwell School, Performing Arts Magnet

"Katie's lesson plans were amazing. Katie's work with integrating storytelling and drama within our first grade science curriculum/standards was really helpful. Thank you for sharing her Storytelling expertise!"

Sally Scott

First Grade Teacher

Folwell School, Performing Arts Magnet

"Katie made it easier and more fun to teach difficult students. She engaged them and kept them safe, and students were excited with her content and abilities."

Ashley Krohn

Media Specialist

Folwell School, Performing Arts Magnet

"Katie was a very positive teacher and animated performer. Students were excited and able to share their story [in front of the class] as well as retelling it [one-on-one]. Students who were not usually interested in writing, were interested when she prepared them for each story."

Wendy Meskimen

4th Grade Teacher

Neill Elementary School

"She is a very engaging performer and is terrific at taking on the voices of other characters. She makes the audience want to listen. Students did a great job of recreating and retelling their stories to other students, especially one-on-one. Students who often do not participate felt comfortable enough to share their stories. Students also brought up things they learned about character education, especially what things make someone a good friend, in other settings. All students were able to repeat the storyteller's tools and use a rubric to grade themselves on those standards."

Jane Graves

2nd Grade Teacher 

Folwell School, Performing Arts Magnet

"Our residency had incredible results! The students developed a better sense of self-awareness and how to contribute to group goals. Acting became one piece of a bigger picture/puzzle. Students who usually do not volunteer participated readily, raising their hands for a chance to share. Students' level of participation and creativity increased dramatically. Students retold stories in their own words with confidence and enjoyment. Students worked together to achieve a common goal / performance. I am now able to use the actors tools with the students in different settings and times of the day. The students have really learned how stories can teach us lessons, how patterns in stories help predict or anticipate what will happen next (just like patterns in math), and how stories can teach people to connect with one another.
"Katie is a wonderful artistic performer who believes in what she teaches and is gratified by what she produces with students. She is open minded, accepting of students where they are at, helpful to them, positive, and constructive. She is truly interested in creating a safe and intriguing experience for students. 
"Katie is an absolutely fabulous teacher: kind, firm, high level of energy that feeds to the kids level of excitement and interest, fair, clear, obviously very experienced, great raport with students, very age appropriate expectations and material."

Mary Malone

First Grade Teacher 

Folwell School, Performing Arts Magnet

"Katie was always patient and happy. I learned from her how to be encouraging with the class. It is great to be able to observe and encourage students from a "participator's" role rather than as a leaders role."

Nancy Erickson

Second Grade Teacher

Folwell School, Performing Arts Magnet

"Our residency had many benefits, including embedded staff development with Katie, the chance to co-teach, planning that let us really guide what we wanted to have happening in the residency, and the observation of student engagement with story telling and writing. Storytelling and drama in the classroom are active ways to engage students in our literacy work. I noticed great strides in speaking and listening skills for the ELL students. I use things learned in the residency in my class when Katie is not there. As a result of the residency, students are now doing high quality character circle maps about characters in the stories.
 
"This residency was a quality experience of integrating the arts into the academic standards we are teaching. I have experience in doing this, but my team not so much. It was great to have Katie's help to guide them through this experience and give them a successful experience to show them how powerful integration can be!
 
"Thanks! This was fun!!!"

Sara Lapp

Second Grade Teacher

Folwell School, Performing Arts Magnet

 

Workshop Reviews

"I will definitely be using the things I learned in this section. Katie really knows her stuff - excellent job. This workshop or something like it should be offered at all the conferences.” 

Pam Schweitzer

Teacher & Storyteller

Attendee at Northlands Storytelling Conference

"I took Katie Knutson's workshop at a Northlands Conference some years ago. The workshop was wonderful with many, many hands on activities that I used immediately with my work in elementary and middle schools. Katie is a charismatic leader who peppers her teaching with stories and humor. She utilizes an effective combination of lecture, participation, and research to arm educators and storytellers with a wealth of information and activities. I have been acquainted with Katie's work for decades and alway find her to be professional, prepared, and creative."

Jim May

Emmy Award-Winning Storyteller, Teacher, and Author

jimmaystoryteller.com

"Katie can listen a story out of anyone!"

Mary Hamilton 

Professional Storyteller & Teaching Artist

maryhamilton.info

"Katie Knutson has been a source of inspiration in my work. When looking to highlight her strengths, words like energetic, articulate, seasoned, practical and interactive come to mind.
Energetic: Katie is an active, dynamic presence in any room. Whether speaking passionately on a topic, demonstrating/performing a story or skill(s), or leading an activity, Katie commands the attention of participants in the room, stimulating their thoughts and ideas.
Articulate: Beyond her undeniable performance and presentation skills, Katie communicates ideas and information in a clear manner, with ease—making it easy for her audience to grasp the essentials she is putting across. Also, she is skilled at addressing questions as they arise during her workshop.
Seasoned: With her background in storytelling and theatre, coupled with a resume loaded with workshops and school residencies, on a variety of topics, Katie brings considerable expertise to bear. Her wealth of experience, coupled with her own curiosity-inspired research, assures attendees that they are learning from an accomplished professional.
Practical: Katie is knowledgable of and incorporates a variety of resources, as they best address the format and needs of the workshop. This includes everything from handouts and technology, to activities and exercises. She keeps to the topic and doesn’t waste time or get
distracted. 
Interactive: Katie places high value in engaging people in “doing”—actively participating in constructive “hands on” activities, exercises, demonstrations, performance. She recognizes how learning happens on a higher level and is more lasting when people leave their seats. Furthermore, she is an active listener—coaching and directing participants so they get the most from the experience."

Greg Weiss

Middle School teacher, Storyteller and Theatre Director

GregWeissStorytelling.com

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© 2018 by KATIE KNUTSON and RIPPLING STORIES.