Dispatches from the Moth · Posted On: Nov 10, 2020

Storytelling School with The Moth: Storytelling Activity #31

by Moth EDU

Lesson #31: MOMENT IN TIME "Pool Party"- David Lepelstat

Did you miss us? We’re back with more Storytelling School with The Moth! As we all adjust to the new normal, we hope these posts have been something to look forward to and given you a burst of joy and empathy. The Moth’s EDU team is here for you! For this month’s blog, we’re taking a look at a story about redefining family.

This month’s Storytelling School story is:

“Pool Party” by David Lepelstat

You can read the transcript of David’s story here.

After you’ve watched and read the story, you can do the following activities: 

Talk to each other about David’s story. 

For each post, we’ll highlight a different crafting strategy for how to make your story compelling. For this post, we’ll focus on a MOMENT IN TIME. Stories are like time capsules that preserve a piece of the past (as remembered by the storyteller). When a storyteller can describe who they were and what their world was like at the time of the story, we feel like we’ve been transported there with them.

  • How does David describe himself as a five year old? How does that description affect our experience of the story?

  • What details do we learn about David’s world and his family and how does that help us understand what matters to him? 

  • David also slows down time in the scene where he almost drowns. What is the impact of that slow motion technique?

Let’s Play “Have You Ever”

Raise your hand if … 

  • You’ve ever had a ‘phase’ 

  • You’ve ever had a theme color

  • You’ve ever felt like you were visiting a new world

  • You’ve ever had an annual party with your friends or family

  • You’ve ever waited for a family member because you knew when they got there, you’d have more fun

  • You’ve ever believed you had a superpower

  • You’ve ever dived in the deep end

  • You’ve ever lost contact with someone important to you 

  • You’ve ever changed your definition of family 

Did you raise your hand? If you raised your hand even once, that’s a story you could tell! Find someone to tell it to and try out a draft!



  • Family, chosen or biological, is so important especially during these tough and stressful times. Take a moment to give a hug (in real life or via the internet) and check in with them. 

  • If you’ve been missing going to parties or other large gatherings, plan an imaginary party! Where will it be located? What snacks/drinks will you serve? Who’s invited? What’s the dress code? What else will there be?

    • Try using Pinterest to create a board with all your ideas or make a real life board with drawings and images from magazines!

    • OR plan a virtual party! Even though we might not be able to see each other in person, we can still have fun in the virtual world!

Share this post with a friend!

And check back the second Tuesday of every month for another story.

Storyteller bio

DAVID LEPELSTAT was a member of the All City StorySLAM team his junior year in High School and a teaching intern for the team during his senior year. The Moth Education Program was a home away from home for David in high school and he is overjoyed to continue to do shows with them in college.

The Moth Education Program works with young people and educators to build community through storytelling workshops, performances and innovative resources. To learn more, visit themoth.org/education

The Moth Education Program is made possible by generous support from The Kresge Foundation, the Hollywood Foreign Press Association Charitable Trust, the Kate Spade New York Foundation, and Alice Gottesman. 

Additional program support is provided by Bloomberg Philanthropies, the New York State Council on the Arts, ConEdison, and the New York City Department of Cultural Affairs.