elisaSchool and Library Programs

“Ms. Pearmain is a gifted storyteller!”
Cheryl Nelson, President West Suburban Arts Council.

“Elisa’s Trunkful of Tales program
was a librarian’s dream come true!”
Katie Baxter, former Librarian, Hingham Public Library

“Your Halloween Tales from Around the World were perfect
for our diverse middle school population.
The students talked about the stories long after."
Teacher E. Ezolt, Lynch Middle School, Holyoke, MA.


Pre-K – 4 Favorites

For All to Share: Participatory, multicultural folk tales to join-in on

With positive messages of cooperation, friendship and earth stewardship this fun and engaging program can be tailored to focus on a specific culture, or a theme. Young audiences sharpen their oral skills and deepen their love of stories as they join in the telling with singing, movement, and repetitive responses.

I Wonder Tales: A Multicultural, Science and Language Arts Storytelling Program and Workshops

In this program Elisa tells folktales from around the world that encourage students to wonder about many aspects of nature and human behavior. The stories encourage students to be environmentally conscious, to explore their interests in natural phenomenon, and to seek answers through scientific exploration. The program also helps students to understand the role that folk tales have played in making sense of nature. An appreciation of culture, and literature is also increased as students hear fun stories from around the world.  

Wonder, is the parent of curiosity, appreciation and research.

How did the cat get its purr?
How did the bear get its short tail?
Why do people have different skin color?
Why is the strawberry shaped like a heart?
Why is the sun brighter than the moon?

What do your students wonder about? What aspects of the science curriculum would you like your students to hear a story about?

Follow-up workshops for story making and storytelling skills are popular, as students are lead to create and tell original tales that explain natural phenomenon. This program is a great adjunct to the natural science curriculum, earth day celebrations and Native American studies. The follow-up workshops also teach oral skills and build self-confidence as students express themselves in short simple and highly structured storytelling exercises.

“Your 'I Wonder Tales' storytelling program was spellbinding…”
Katie Baxter, Children's Librarian, Hingham, MA.

Drum, Dance and Sing

Dance or drum with Anansci the Spider Drummer. Dance and sing to help save the animals in the rainforest.  Play the cat drum…  In this highly participatory program (a library favorite) Elisa tells stories from around the world that involve drumming, singing and dancing. Elisa invites the audience to join in singing, dancing and percussive sound making. (Depending on the size of the group they may dance in their seats or on stage.)


Elisa PearmainPrograms reaching grades K-8

Once Upon a Caring Classroom: Bullying Prevention Through Storytelling

This is a 50-60 minute performance/interactive program. See Bully Prevention Program full description here.

Once Upon a Caring Classroom: Character Education Through Storytelling

This is a 50-60 minute performance/interactive program. See Character Education full description here.

Once Upon a Calm Classroom:
World Tales interspersed with short mindfulness exercises for Grades 3-8

More and more young people today are experiencing elevated levels of stress and anxiety, interfering with their ability to learn, to be happy, social and healthy. Mindfulness exercises have been clinically shown to reduce anxiety and symptoms of stress, and to improve mood and attention.
Elisa tells fun and wise world tales to build awareness about stress, anxiety and mindfulness, and to help children remember to practice simple exercises for calming the mind and body. The exercises are practiced during and between the stories. Teachers can easily integrate the short exercises before tests, and during the day to refresh tired minds and bodies. Students can practice them during the day or for sleep.
In addition to being an award-winning author and storyteller, Elisa is a licensed mental health counselor who has professional training in Mindfulness for Stress Reduction and other therapeutic applications.

Halloween Tales From Around the World

Elisa offers Halloween programs for children ages 9 and up.  Appropriately scary, but not violent, with positive messages.  50 minutes, ages 9+.

  • An audience participatory Welch tale in which a girls’ loyalty to her dogs saves her from the Hobyhans.
  • A ghost story from the American South in which generosity wins out.
  • A Native American witch tale in which cleverness and working together saves the people.
  • A Japanese ogre is defeated by a boy’s creativity.
  • And a variety of other tales from near and far.


The Calabash of Wisdom: World Folk Tales and Legends for Grades 5-8

Age appropriate folk and fairy tales, legends and fables are shared, highlighting common themes and character types found in many cultures. Schools can request a specific cultural focus.

Follow-up workshops can include creating and sharing original folk, fairy tales and or legends. In these highly structured workshops student creativity soars and oral skills are developed building self-confidence.


School Performance Fees: (Libraries please call)

I prefer smaller groups, and believe that students get more out of performances when they are closer to the performer, and are with students who are close in age. My preference is to group them roughly by PreK–3, 4–5, 6–8.

  • 1 performance of up to 249 students (I don't count them as they come in!) = $500 plus travel if over 60 miles roundtrip
  • 2 performances of up to 249 students each = $600.00 plus travel as above.
  • 1 performance for more than 250 kids = $550 plus travel if over 60 miles roundtrip

Are my fees negotiable? Of course! I want to bring my stories to your school, so let’s talk.

Follow-up Workshop fees:
Day 1 – As above.
Day 2 & 3
Usually about $75 per classroom, with up to four classrooms in one day.

I hope you will call to discuss your school's needs in person: or (781) 259-0492.