Storytelling is the play and art of children. Children use playful stories and daily narratives to provide insight into their life, psyche, trauma, hopes, fears as well as possibilities. Within that, we have an obligation to help them create narratives that include choices and options, to share with us their ideas! The concept of narratives that include multiple choices and alternatives, is not only a futures tool, it is also very helpful for children to gain confidence in narratives as a process as opposed to a trajectory with an outcome.
To solicit narratives from children that include alternative directions within the story itself, I’ve found that simply asking, “what else could happen?” or “if (repeat their narrative) doesn’t happen, what else could happen?”
Here is an example of this in action, as told by one of my new four-year-old friends, Oliver:
A story about the future, told by Oliver, age four. [ ] <-- numbered brackets represent an alternative
"  I think the Earth might get sucked into a black hole or near to a black hole. Aliens will be involved (not evolved, he made this very clear) on the planet. I don't know when this happens.
 The Sun could explode and the planets expand in their place. People would then fall off.
 The Earth could get sucked into the Sun. Because the Sun has a lot of gravity. The people would burn up. Me and you too.
 The Earth could stay in its regular place. It would stay there until there were no more humans on Earth.
[4a] Humans will die because they live too long (ie been around on Earth too long).
[4b] Humans could also get sucked into a blackhole with aliens.
[4c] They could also have a party. They would be celebrating the day they blast off into space. [4d] They could go into space to exploring the universe.
[4e] The humans could also give everybody food (to survive).  But the Earth might expand or !pop! if we use all the food.
[4f] Humans could also survive by drinking everyday.
[4g] Or they could make shooter guns to keep the aliens from involving (gestures at shooting the ceiling).
[4h] The humans could build a peace-machine. It would make them only peace.  It would be too heavy (the machine), so it (the Earth) would fall to space ground.
[4i] Humans could also hammer the Earth together so it won't explode.
 The Earth could also become cold because the coldest planet would come near us and make us cold. [4j] We could make a popper to pop that coldest planet away.
 If everyone was nice on Earth, we'd just eat pepporoni.
 The real truth is that the Earth will be involved with aliens (shows a peace sign with his hands)."