||This action research project examines storytelling by kindergarten children, and evaluates improving storytelling skill through focused mini-lessons involving basic story elements - characters, setting, problem and solution. Over a three-month period in Fall 2006, 20 kindergartners, 9 boys and 11 girls in a college preparatory private school, were audio-taped telling 197 original stories. The stories were analyzed for the influence of media and the impact of gender. Media influences were noted in both boys' and girls' stories. Gender differences were pronouncedboys' stories often revolved around high action and violent themes, while girls' stories usually depicted harmonious family themes. In Winter 2007, the students were involved in whole-group discussions of story elements in picture books using a story map. Four students were randomly selected to continue to tell weekly stories without additional instruction, while four others were given small-group and individual mini-lessons on story elements prior to recording their stories. Both groups included more story elements at the end of seven weeks, with the students in the mini-lesson group showing greater gains. Mini-lessons given immediately before storytelling were beneficial to most students.