Impact of Storyplay

Storyplay is Licketyspit’s imaginary play approach to child & family engagement. It is a children’s rights-based methodology that has an accelerated impact on confidence, relationships, emotional resilience and language/literacy. It has been entirely developed with children over the last 20 years and fosters friendship and belonging among diverse groups children aged 3-12 years and their families.

Storyplay Schools is a year-round collaboration between a primary school or a nursery and Licketyspit, which contributes to narrowing the attainment gap through creativity.

We first began to develop Storyplay Schools in 2016, as a substantial extension of our popular and successful immersive early intervention project, LicketyLeap . It also draws on Porridge & Play – our inter-generational drama-led play sessions based on the Licketyspit Playcard repertoire.

What is Storyplay Schools?

Storyplay Schools uses drama and play to nurture a rich shared culture across a whole school (or nursery) community. It empowers children to explore and express their thoughts, feelings and ideas, build confident relationships and develop a sense of self-worth, empathy and belonging. This results in a significant positive impact on children’s emotional and social development, and contributes to tackling the poverty associated attainment gap.

Storyplay is rooted in the power of language and stories, and in the principle that each child, indeed each person, is intrinsically creative, and being given the opportunity to realise this can enable each of us to best become ourselves.

The Licketyspit Playcard games are full of stories, characters and opportunities for invention that will fire the imaginations of your whole community, led by the children. They can be used as a stimulus across the whole curriculum, fostering a confident story-rich culture enabling children to grow, flourish and attain. Storyplay also develops drama and play-based skills for teachers, parents and carers, and makes it easy and fun for children, families and teachers to discover, reclaim and explore their imaginations through playing together.

Our timetabled sessions include dressing-up, blanket play, reflective drawing , story, song and rhyme creation and story-making. Sessions are also used as catalysts for creative writing, visual art and performance, and to support continuing child-led Playground Play .

Why does Storyplay work?

The key to the success of Storyplay is that it is underpinned by a strong children’s rights-based philosophy of fairness, inclusivity and mutual appreciation. This makes it easy for everyone to relax and dive into multi-sensory and creative child-led group play. This approach succeeds with all children and is especially successful with children with low self-esteem, additional support needs and English as an additional language.

In a Storyplay Residency at St Mary’s Primary, in 2019, 90-100% of children evaluated by their teachers showed an improvement or a marked improvement in confidence, social skills, emotional literacy and resilience and use & knowledge of language. (Further evaluation and case studies available on request)

90% of parents and carers also engaged in the residency at LicketyLeap or Porridge & Play sessions.

She came home and said I was in the story then an hour later when her Dad got home she started to speak. She talked without stopping for an hour and a half. She told us the whole story. And the thing is, she has speech and language problems so she normally doesnt like speaking. But she had so much to say she just had to say it! Mum

How to get Storyplay

STORYPLAY programmes and costs are designed in collaboration with your school to meet your needs and budget. For an initial discussion about how your school can become a Licketyspit STORYPLAY school, please contact Virginia Radcliffe on 0741 380 0342 or email