The secrets of our playground The fairytale about a tree

Short description of the topic

The teacher uses photography as a basis for developing linguistic competencies and fostering narrative and artistic skills. Children create their own fairy tale based on photographs they took on the playground.

Learning outcomes

  • Competencies
    • Digital and media competence
    • Artistic competence: active artistic creation, developing imagination
    • Visual competence: distinguishing details
    • Linguistic competences: expanding vocabulary, practicing narrative skills
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    Target group
    structure.template.344 years and up
    • Individual work
      Work in pairs
      In groups
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    Required materials
    • Camera
    • Photographs
    • markers
    • Scissors
    • Glue
    • wooden colored pencils
    • office paper (A4 format)
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    • Photographs of nature with a prominent or highlighted object that the teacher shows to the children before the actual activity
The secrets of our playground

(.pdf 383.78 KB)

Description of the activity (step by step)


Talk together about fairy tales. What kinds of creatures can live in a fairy tale? Where can we find inspiration for fairy tales? Can our surroundings inspire us? Show to the children the examples of photos of nature which you can find in the materials or prepare your own examples.


Out on the playground, invite the children to take photos of anything that feels special and important to them. Children can take pictures alone or in small groups. Download the pictures on the computer and watch the photos with the children. While watching, encourage children to talk about what they photographed and how they could turn the subject/object of the photograph into a character for their fairy tale. While watching the pictures, children imagine and experience the imaginary world. They choose a photograph they like, cut it out, paste it on a piece of paper, and then draw on the different parts of the photo to create their selected motif. Children can use markers and colored pencils as desired.


When their picture is finished, children make up their very own fairy tale based on the picture. They tell their tale to other children.

Variations and additional ideas

If there is not enough time or resources for the children to shoot their own photographs, the teacher can offer children to choose photos from the already printed photographs.

Children can tell stories together. One of them starts telling his or her story with his or her fairy tale character. Then the next child continues and introduces his or her character. This can go on for some time.

You can create a picture book with the children’s drawings and make it available to the children in the book-area.

Children could also draw their character with the help of a computer drawing program, such as TuxPaint.

Background information and didactical perspective

Photographs offer an ideal opportunity for creating stories. They ignite children’s imagination and offer starting points for many interesting discussions. In this activity, children learn that inspiration for artists and writers lies all around them and that the extraordinary can lie in the everyday and ordinary. They learn to observe their surroundings more carefully and develop scenarios.

The main purpose of the activity is to foster the development of language competencies through the use of photographs as visual aids. The activity motivates children to observe, compare, create, imagine, and narrate. The teachers should encourage children to talk about their ideas, describe their character, and tell their tale to other children.

Photos of the activity