A Writer's Playground

Monthly Activities for Kids by Linda Martin Andersen

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Archive for July, 2015

Top Ten Recipients of August 2015 Happiness Happens Awards

Posted by lindamartinandersen on July 30, 2015


A Writer's Playground Fotosearch_u17996074 “Top Ten Recipients of August 2015  Happiness Happens Awards” by Linda Martin Andersen

August-2015-Happiness

 

Poster created at http://www.quozio.com  Happiness Happens Awards (selected by me for this site only)

August is…

Special Days in August:

  • Respect For Parents: 1–How do you show respect for your parents?  Name ways they show respect for you. 
  • Sandcastle Day: 1–What memories come to mind when you hear “sandcastle?”  Write or draw about that memory.  Where have you built sandcastles?  Have you ever built one in your backyard?  What materials would you need?
  • Take A Penny/Leave A Penny Day: 2–Have you ever left a penny in a dish at a store or restaurant?  Have you ever taken one?    https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Take_a_penny,_leave_a_penny
  • Watermelon Day 3:–Do you eat watermelon with a fork, spoon, knife, or by biting into the slice?  Where do you like to eat watermelon?  Inside, outside, at a picnic, or anywhere?  Does your family buy watermelon by the slice, half, or whole melon?
  • National Chocolate Chip Day: 4  What would you do with melted chocolate chips?  Sometimes people say, “It’s hot enough to fry an egg on a sidewalk.”  What image comes to mind if chocolate chips melted on the sidewalk instead?  Would you want to turn it into a cookie, sidewalk art, etc.  Would you taste it?  (not recommended, but then neither are mud pies)
  • Hiroshima Day: 6–When I read of this special day, I thought of an author friend–Kathleen Burkinshaw.   Check out her website and you’ll know why.   https://kathleenburkinshaw.wordpress.com/
  • Lighthouse Day: 7–Name three or more lighthouses.  Where are they located?  What lighthouses have you visited?  Which is your favorite and why?  Where have you seen lighthouse art?  On a mug?  On a keychain, on earrings, etc.  List three or more examples.
  • Tomboy Tools Day: 7 I don’t hear girls called “tomboys” much anymore.  Do you know what the word means?  Why do you think the word might not be used so often today?  Write about a time you or someone you know was teased for “acting like a boy.”
  • Twins Day: 7-9  How many twins do you know?  Do their names rhyme?  Are they identical or fraternal?  Name a favorite story, book, poem, or memory about twins.  
  • Middle Child Day: 8  What’s it like to be in the middle of a huddle?  The middle of the car?  Other middles?  What do you think it would feel like to be a middle child in a family?  Are you a middle child?  Name some advantages and some disadvantages of being a middle child.
  • Skyscraper Appreciation Day: 10  What cities do you think of with skyscrapers?  Have you ever ridden an elevator to the top of one?  What skyscraper stories can you tell?
  • Smithsonian Day: 10  Where is the Smithsonian?  Name some of the buildings or displays found there.  What would you like to visit there?  How far is the Smithsonian from where you live?
  • S’mores Day: 10 Have you ever eaten S’mores?  Have you ever prepared them to serve?  What makes this food special?  Is it one of your favorites?  Why or why not?
  • Sewing Machine Day: 12 What is a treadle machine?  What is a portable sewing machine?  Name three items that can be made on a sewing machine.  Name five supplies used when sewing.  Have you ever sewed anything by hand?  On a sewing machine?  Tell about it.  Do you know what a Cricut machine is?  Name items it can create.
  • Vinyl Record Day: 12 What is a vinyl record?  What is an album?  What piece of equipment is needed for these?  Have you ever seen any of these things?  Write about it.
  • International Lefthander’s Day: 13  What is a” leftie?”  Who do you know who is one?  What might be more difficult to do if you’re a “leftie?”  Do you anyone who was forced to do things right handed?  Name a famous “leftie” if you can.  What does it mean to be ambidextrous?
  • Cupcake Day: 17  Cupcakes have become popular recently.  Why do you think that might be so?  Have you ever seen cupcakes served instead of a wedding cake?  Tell a favorite cupcake memory.
  • Senior Citizen’s Day: 21 What joy can you bring a senior citizen today?   How can you show a senior respect?  How can you give a senior recognition today?  What way can you share love and caring for a senior today?
  • Be An Angel Day: 22 If someone says, “Be an angel and get me a glass of water,” what does that mean to you?  If someone says, “Be an angel and sit down,” what does that mean?  Give other examples.  See the definition for this idiom here:  http://www.merriam-webster.com/dictionary/angel
  • International Tongue Twister Day: 22 What is your favorite tongue twister?  Name others.  If I begin one, can you continue it?  Peter Piper picked a…   For more check here:  http://www.grandparents.com/grandkids/activities-games-and-crafts/tongue-twisters-for-kids
  • Tug-of-War Day: 26 When was the last time you played tug-of-war?  Have you ever played at school?  Maybe for Field Day?  Can you name a TV show, movie, book, or story with a game of tug-of-war?  Tell about a time when you played this game.
  • National Toasted Marshmallow Day: 30  Name your favorite toasted food.  What way do you like to eat marshmallows?  Do you like them in hot chocolate, on top of sweet potatoes, melted in rice krispie treats, tossed in fruit salad?  Other ways?  Name a favorite memory that includes a marshmallow treat.
  • Pony Express Day: 30  Imagine you received a letter delivered by Pony Express.  Who do you think might have sent it?  How long do you think it would have taken to receive it? For more information check here:   http://www.nps.gov/poex/learn/historyculture/index.htm    Would you have wanted to be a Pony Express driver?  What caused the end of Pony Express delivery?

Special Weeks in August:

  • Simplify Your Life Week: 1-7 Name a way to simplify your life.  Is it something you can do?  Why or why not?
  • Exercise With Your Child Week: 2-8  Name a time you and your parents exercised together.  What were you doing? Did you enjoy it?  Would you do it again?
  • National Farmers’ Market Week: 2-8  Does your town have a local Farmer’s Market?  Do you buy fresh fruits and vegetables there?  Have you learned to eat something new from the market?
  • Weird Contest Week: 10-14 Name a weird contest.  I was in a $1.98 Beauty Pageant once as an adult at a school fundraiser.  Contestants were not supposed to spend over $1.98 on their costumes.  The object wasn’t to be beautiful.  It was to have fun.
  • National Aviation Week: 15-21  Orville Wright’s birthday was August 19.  This celebration falls on the week of his birthday.  Do you remember what this famous person did?  Two hints:  he had a brother.  Check the name of the special week for your second clue.

For more August celebrations, check here:  http://www.brownielocks.com/august.html

I hope you’ll leave a comment.  Thanks for stopping in.  Come again soon and bring a friend.  Please remember that children 13 and under need an adult to comment for them. Thank you! 

For more calendar fun, sign up to follow my blog.  Thanks so much.

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Posted in Activities for teachers and parents, Calendar Events, Family Discussions, Games, History, Homeschool Activities, Monthly Activities, Reading, Sewing, Social Studies, Uncategorized, Writing, Writing Prompts | Tagged: , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , | 8 Comments »

Who or What Inspires Your Story, Art, Career, Etc.?

Posted by lindamartinandersen on July 23, 2015


A Writer's Playground Fotosearch_u17996074  “Who or What Inspires Your Story, Art, Career, Etc?”

I’d like to give a shout out to Melissa Barr, a zoo keeper who inspires me. 

If you’ve never met Melissa Barr, a zoo keeper at the North Carolina Zoological Park in Asheboro, NC learn about her here:  https://lindamartinandersen.wordpress.com/2012/07/14/meet-melissa-barr-a-zookeeper-at-north-carolina-zoological-park/

       Melissa Barr,

  • Happy Zoo Keepers Week (July 19-25)
  • Congratulations on a recent promotion to lead keeper at the zoo.
  • Thanks for agreeing to interviews on my blog, not once, but several times. I expect you’ll return again.
  • Thanks for inspiring my current work-in-progress–a zoo story.

 

I’d like to give a shout out to Roxanne Hannah, a fellow blogger who inspires me. 

       Roxie Hannah,

  • Thanks for posting your recent spider photo.  It inspired me to write a manuscript which includes a spider.    https://roxieh.wordpress.com/2015/06/28/lifes-garden/
  • Congratulations.  Your publishing dream is a reality:   Sunscribe is a traditional publishing company founded by me, Roxanne Hanna, a writer with over 30 years experience as an assigned ghostwriter or editor of custom writings and projects for individuals and corporations.”

       Check submission details here:  http://sunscribe.net/submissions/

  • Chapter Books July 20 – 24, 2015
  • Short Story First-person Nonfiction Narratives July 27 – 31, 2015

I’d like to give a shout out for blogging.  It inspires me. 

Sometimes, I question:  Is blogging a wise use of my time?  

My answer:  Yes, keep blogging.  It inspires me to reach out and meet zoo keepers and poet pilots, forester artists, author publishers, and others.  Blogging broadens my world.  What about yours?

I could spotlight other people or things that have inspired my writing.  How about you?  Who or what inspires your stories, art, career, etc?

I hope you’ll leave a comment.  Thanks for stopping in.  Come again soon and bring a friend.  Please remember that children 13 and under need an adult to comment for them. Thank you!

 

Posted in Activities for teachers and parents, Careers, Homeschool Activities, Interviews, Reading, Science, Writing, Writing Prompts | Tagged: , , , , , , , , , , , , | 9 Comments »

I Love You to the Moon and Back

Posted by lindamartinandersen on July 20, 2015


A Writer's Playground Fotosearch_u17996074 “I Love You to the Moon and Back” by Linda Martin Andersen

“This Day in History” in 1969, Neil Armstrong walked on the moon. 

See here:  http://www.history.com/this-day-in-history/armstrong-walks-on-moon?et_cid=77874313&et_rid=724205536&linkid=http%3a%2f%2fwww.history.com%2fthis-day-in-history%2farmstrong-walks-on-moon

Today, we often hear the expression, “I love you to the moon and back.” 

I imagine you’ve seen it or heard it said recently.  Sometimes the expression is abbreviated: “To the moon and back.”  Wonder why?

Take time today to reflect on the beauty of our heavenly skies, their facts and mysteries.  I hope this post inspires you to read or write something based on this topic.  Brainstorm and choose fiction, nonfiction, poetry, related careers, space exploration, or other choices.

What do you “love to the moon and back?”

I hope you’ll leave a comment.  Thanks for stopping in.  Come again soon and bring a friend.  Please remember that children 13 and under need an adult to comment for them. Thank you!

 

Posted in Activities for teachers and parents, Calendar Events, Careers, Family Discussions, History, Homeschool Activities, Reading, Science, Writing, Writing Prompts | Tagged: , , , , , , , , | 12 Comments »

Take Your Poet to Work Week–I’ll take Joy Acey

Posted by lindamartinandersen on July 15, 2015


A Writer's Playground Fotosearch_u17996074

“Take Your Poet to Work Week–I’ll Take Joy Acey” by Linda Martin Andersen

I would like to feature Joy Acey here today.  Why?  It’s “Take Your Poet to Work Week.” 

Copyright Joy Acey

Copyright Joy Acey

Notice the setting above.

Joy is at home anywhere. 

Check her bio information to learn about her many adventures.  I’ve enjoyed reading poems inspired by desert, paradise (Hawaii), Rainforest, Carolina country, morning walks, and views from her window.  I hope you will visit her often too.

This is “Take Your Poet to Work Week”…

This is where I work and Joy is the poet I’ve chosen to feature.  To kick that off, here’s one of my favorite book characters.

 Frederick  (written and illustrated by Leo Lionni)

Here is a video reading of the story: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=SFCLWytjcUY

Like Frederick, Joy Acey is a poet. Joy reminds me of Frederick in that she gathers things she sees and hears and turns them into poetry.

Unlike Frederick, she creates and shares her poetry every day.  EVERY day.  Can you imagine?  I tried that for a full year once and I did accomplish it, but I wouldn’t share my poems.  Joy shares her creations on her blog every day.  Her poems brighten my life.

Joy’s post about idle hours inspired me to select her as my poet to take to work.

Even Joy Acey’s “idle hours” inspire: 

http://poetryforkidsjoy.blogspot.com/2015/07/idle-hours.html#comment-form

Keep writing and posting those poems, Joy.  I’m glad I can take you to work every day of the year!  Thank you for sharing poetry for kids joy, and those young at heart.

Please leave a comment and share the name of the poet you’d like to take to work with you today. 

You can take a poet with you in a book, a poem, or in your imagination, even if you can’t take them in person.  Have fun with your poet today!

I hope you’ll leave a comment.  Thanks for stopping in.  Come again soon and bring a friend.  Please remember that children 13 and under need an adult to comment for them. Thank you!

 

Posted in Activities for teachers and parents, Calendar Events, Careers, Homeschool Activities, Reading, Uncategorized, Writing, Writing Prompts | Tagged: , , , , , , | 12 Comments »

 
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