Skip to content

How To Turn Storytime Into A Super Dramatic Table Read

Get into character and make storytime an activity that your whole family can do together.

Megan Baldwin and Sarah Burns

Thanks for checking out our product recommendations! Just a heads-up, Camp may make some money if you shop from any of the external links on this page. Pricing and availability may have changed since this page was published.

With most kids spending their school day in front of a screen, there’s a lot of tech happening at home right now. That said, if you’re looking for ways to get your kid off their device, you’re not alone. There’s the obvious route: Be a fun-killer and hide all the devices in a locked closet. Or you could play it cool, channel your inner Disney Channel star and turn TV time into a super-dramatic table read. At CAMP, we’re here to help families be at their coolest, so we’ve put together this simple step-by-step guide for your next family table read.

Step 1: Choose a Story and Script


blackCAT / Getty Images

Story selection is key! Make sure you select one that has enough characters for your whole family to participate. We like the idea of ordering a few family friendly plays for your family to try out. Here are two suggestions:

Step 2: Get Into Character


Westend61 / Getty Images

Gather basic props, wigs, and costumes from around the house. While the table read format doesn't technically require a costume, it’s a fun way to make the night more fun and entertaining — so your kids forget all about whatever they’re missing online.

Step 3: Gather Your Personal Sound Effects


PeopleImages / Getty Images

Look around your house for fun noise-makers and simple sound machines. Lay out a few options on the table, so you can create fun transitions and set a vibe for spooky moments.

Step 4: Warm Up Your Acting Chops With a Few Improv Games


vgajic / Getty Images

Once the table is set, warm up your kid’s imagination with improvisation and acting exercises. Books like Bob Bedore's popular “101 Improv Games For Children and Adults” guide you through the basics with simple games like On Your Toes or Yes And.

Step 5: Make Sure You’re Recording This Thing


Willie B. Thomas / Getty Images

Okay, rewind … that should have probably been Step 1. But there are a bunch of new, screen-free devices, like the Toniebox — a smart speaker made specifically for kids — that let you record your table read so your kiddos can play back your favorite parts and listen together.