A Writer's Playground

Monthly Activities for Kids by Linda Martin Andersen

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Archive for the ‘goal setting’ Category

Your Thankfulness Rubs Off on Others

Posted by lindamartinandersen on April 20, 2017


A Writer's Playground Fotosearch_u17996074

 

A Writer’s Playground–a place to find wordplay, writing prompts, reasons to celebrate, and monthly calendar activities for kids and those young at heart  “Your Thoughtfulness Rubs Off on Others” by Linda Martin Andersen

 

 

 

Linda Martin Andersen. Copyright 2017.

I saw four turkeys in my backyard last week.  Oops, it’s turkey season.  I hope no hunters are reading this.  Turkeys, Thanksgiving, and giving thanks go together, but I’d like to encourage you to think of thankfulness all year long.  I’m convinced your thankfulness rubs off on others. 

What does the expression “rubs off on others” mean? Check here for clarification:  http://dictionary.cambridge.org/us/dictionary/english/rub-off

An example:  A bad mood can rub off on you, but so can a good one, especially when the person shares their thankfulness.

Recently, I spoke to an employee at the gym I attend.  When I asked her how she was doing she said, “I am thankful.” When I asked her to say more, she said she was thankful for every day.  Just hearing her thankfulness made me feel a little more joyful.  In other words, her thankfulness was rubbing off on me.  The next thing I know I was writing a blog post about thankfulness.

Another place I’ve observed thankfulness was on Facebook.  Yes, Facebook.   Someone who was sick posted pictures and updates about kind deeds received.  Two examples:  There was photo of a meal brought to the home and words of thanks.  There were also post updates giving thanks for errands run, a chore completed anonymously, and other acts of kindnesses.  These posts and photos could be seen by friends other than the person responsible.  Posting such thoughts on social media could cause thankfulness to rub off on even more people.  That’s pretty amazing!  I wonder if Facebook predicted this positive influence?   It’s another version of a thank you note and it’s one that many can read and comment on.

I’d love to hear your thoughts on the topic of thankfulness.  If you’re a parent with children at home, I hope you’ll use this post as a springboard for family discussions.  If you’re an educator, brainstorm writing prompts or teach lessons on friendship and courtesy.

Here are a few sample writing prompts:

  1.  Name a time when someone’s actions or attitude rubbed off on you.
  2.  What examples of thankfulness have you seen today or within the last week?
  3.  Name a special way you show your thankfulness.  Give a specific example of when you’ve done this.

I look forward to your comments!

Thank you for visiting “A Writer’s Playground.”  Come again soon and bring a friend. Please leave a comment.  Remember that children 13 and under need an adult to comment for them.  For more fun, sign up to follow my blog.  Thank you!

Posted in Activities for teachers and parents, Character Traits, Family Discussions, goal setting, Homeschool Activities, Posters, Uncategorized, Writing, Writing Prompts | Tagged: , , , , , , , , , , | 7 Comments »

Let’s Get Our Priorities Straight

Posted by lindamartinandersen on April 4, 2017


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A Writer’s Playground–a place to find wordplay, writing prompts, reasons to celebrate, and monthly calendar activities for kids and those young at heart  “Let’s Get Our Priorities Straight” by Linda Martin Andersen

 

 

 

This week, I posted on Facebook that I intended to reduce my online presence.  I felt I was spending too much time there.  Shortly after that, I noticed a sticker on the front page of my day old newspaper.  A photo of the sticker is below.  This sticker is another  reminder of “getting our priorities straight.”  Saying that and doing that are two different things.

Sticker created by Army Community Services (ACS)

 

Create your own Writing Prompts or ideas for Family Discussions based on this subject:

Samples:

  1. What does it mean to get your priorities straight?
  2. What makes this poster/sticker an example of getting your priorities straight?
  3. Who do you trust to help you get your priorities straight?  How can this person help?
  4. How do you go about getting and keeping your priorities straight?
  5.  Saying that you are going to get your priorities straight and actually so are two different things.  What does this statement mean?
  6. What priorities do you need to evaluate or re-evaluate in your life?  Who can help you with this?
  7. What are good ways to keep communication open in families or with friends?
  8. What are some ways to practice safe communication?
  9. Does your family have rules about texting, talking on the phone, etc?
  10. What do you imagine the child in this photo might be thinking or feeling?  Do you think she will tell anyone?  Why or why not?

Thank you for visiting “A Writer’s Playground.”  Come again soon and bring a friend. Please leave a comment.  Remember that children 13 and under need an adult to comment for them.  For more fun, sign up to follow my blog.  Thank you!

Posted in Activities for teachers and parents, Character Traits, Family Discussions, goal setting, Homeschool Activities, Posters, Uncategorized, Writing, Writing Prompts | Tagged: , , , , , , , | 11 Comments »

Life with Beauty

Posted by lindamartinandersen on February 10, 2017


A Writer's Playground Fotosearch_u17996074

 

A Writer’s Playground–a place to find wordplay, writing prompts, reasons to celebrate, and monthly calendar activities for kids and those young at heart  “Life with Beauty” by Linda Martin Andersen

 

 

 

 

Copyright 2017. Linda Martin Andersen. Poster template from Quozio.com

Copyright 2017. Linda Martin Andersen. Poster template from Quozio.com

 

Create your own Writing Prompts using words from the poster above:  believe, hang, and through.

Sample prompts:

  1. I believe in…
  2. Hang on to faith.  Hanging in there…
  3. Ways to go through life

Thank you for visiting “A Writer’s Playground.”  Come again soon and bring a friend. Please leave a comment.  Remember that children 13 and under need an adult to comment for them.  For more fun, sign up to follow my blog.  Thank you!

Posted in Activities for teachers and parents, Character Traits, Family Discussions, goal setting, Homeschool Activities, Posters, Reading, Uncategorized, Writing, Writing Prompts | Tagged: , , , , , , , , , , | 16 Comments »

Joy in the Morning–Who Brings It?

Posted by lindamartinandersen on December 31, 2016


A Writer's Playground Fotosearch_u17996074

 

A Writer’s Playground–a place to find wordplay, writing prompts, reasons to celebrate, and monthly calendar activities for kids and those young at heart  “Joy in the Morning–Who Brings It?” by Linda Martin Andersen

Earlier, I posted that my creativity was returning, which brought me great joy.  I included a photo of a few purchases for my kitchen coffee station–a simple joy.

https://lindamartinandersen.wordpress.com/2016/09/21/nothing-says-joy-in-the-morning-like/

A friend recently gave me a gift for my coffee station.  The dish towel’s message turned my focus from what brought me joy to who brought it.  Please compare the original coffee station set up to my latest one, featuring the new towel.

My earlier post :  What brings you joy in the morning and throughout the day?
Bamboo Coffee Station. Copyright 2016. Linda Martin Andersen.

Bamboo Coffee Station. Copyright 2016. Linda Martin Andersen.

My latest post:  Who brings you joy? (See photo below)

img_0961-2Copyright 2016. Linda Martin Andersen

Who brings you joy?

Writing Prompts:

  1. Who are the special people in your life who bring you joy?  Name as many as you can.
  2. Sometimes, when I see a young child I smile for no special reason.  Who gives you that kind of joy?
  3. Who lifts your spirits, makes you snap out of a bad mood, and helps your joy return?
  4. Name people who would say you bring them joy.
  5. Who do you believe causes you to feel joy?  The towel in my coffee station states our need for a whole lot of Jesus.   Do you agree?
  6. I praise and thank Jesus for the joy in my life.  How about you?
  7. The towel’s message reminds me of the quote, “Jesus is the reason for the season.”  What does it remind you of?

Thank you for visiting “A Writer’s Playground.”  Come again soon and bring a friend. Please leave a comment.  Remember that children 13 and under need an adult to comment for them.  For more fun, sign up to follow my blog.  Thank you!

Posted in Activities for teachers and parents, Family Discussions, goal setting, Homeschool Activities, humor, Reading, Uncategorized, Writing, Writing Prompts | Tagged: , , , , , | 16 Comments »

Look for Joy

Posted by lindamartinandersen on September 26, 2016


A Writer's Playground Fotosearch_u17996074

 

A Writer’s Playground–a place to find wordplay, writing prompts, reasons to celebrate, and monthly calendar activities for kids and those young at heart  “Look for Joy” by Linda Martin Andersen

 

Poster created at http://quozio.com/index.aspx

Last week, I shared a blog post about joy.  Check it out:  https://lindamartinandersen.wordpress.com/2016/09/21/nothing-says-joy-in-the-morning-like/

I write lists, mostly To Do Lists.  Whether you do or not, I have a different list suggestion.  Record your joys.  List them throughout the day.  A To Do List helps keep you organized.  A list of joys helps keep you positive. 

Yes, I’m suggesting keeping a Joy Journal.  Suggestions on how to begin:

  • Divide your day into segments such as Morning, Afternoon, and Evening. 
  • Name a joy from one or more of these time periods.  Small things count, such as seeing a hummingbird or getting a call from a friend.  Before long, your Joy Journal list may outgrow your To Do List. 
  • Give thanks for joy in your life. 

Do you have a joy you’d like to share here?  I’ll start:

Joy Journal List from a recent morning:  1.  Created and shared this blog post and poster about looking for joy.  2.  Spoke with my son on the phone.  3….

Thank you for visiting “A Writer’s Playground.”  Come again soon and bring a friend. Please leave a comment.  Remember that children 13 and under need an adult to comment for them.  For more fun, sign up to follow my blog.  Thank you!

Posted in Activities for teachers and parents, Family Discussions, goal setting, Homeschool Activities, Posters, Reading, Uncategorized, Writing, Writing Prompts | Tagged: , , , , , , , , , , | 6 Comments »

Nothing Says Joy in the Morning Like…

Posted by lindamartinandersen on September 21, 2016


A Writer's Playground Fotosearch_u17996074

 

A Writer’s Playground–a place to find wordplay, writing prompts, reasons to celebrate, and monthly calendar activities for kids and those young at heart  “Nothing Says Joy in the Morning Like…” by Linda Martin Andersen

Personal grief hit me hard in June.  It left me too sad to do some things I enjoy, such as making small home decorating changes.  Fortunately, my  creativity is returning.  This brings me great joy!

Yesterday, I decided to replace the coffee station in my kitchen.  I purchased a bamboo napkin holder and serving tray to hold my coffee maker and condiments.   This simple decorating change filled me with joy.  Now as I pour myself a cup of coffee, I’m reminded to start my day with joy.  I was also reminded of two Folgers’ coffee jingles:  “Nothing says morning like Folgers in your cup. ” Also:  “The best part of waking up in Folgers in your cup.”

These jingles influenced my writing and this blog title.  Writing and word play bring me joy.  Choosing to change my coffee station brought me two joys:  creative decorating and writing.

What caused this positive change?  Time for a moment of truth…I added too much water to my coffee pot which caused it to boil over and ruin my  tray.  Cause and effect.  That’s one accident I’m glad happened.  😉  It started positive wheels turning.

 https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=S7LXSQ85jpw

These jingles influenced my writing.  Can you recognize their influence in my blog title?  Writing and word play bring me joy.

What brings you joy in the morning and throughout the day?

Bamboo Coffee Station. Copyright 2016. Linda Martin Andersen.

Bamboo Coffee Station. Copyright 2016. Linda Martin Andersen.

Writing Prompts:

1.  Look around your bedroom and locate things that bring you joy.  Write or tell about them.

2.  Look for things that bring you joy on your ride to school.  Write or tell about them.

3.  Begin a Joy Journal.  Record things that bring you joy throughout the day.

4.  Write an acronym for JOY.  Here is a site for word suggestions:  http://www.enchantedlearning.com/phonetic/y.shtml

Example of an acronym for  JOY:  J–Jump  O–orbit Y–yell

5.  Write a phrase acronym for JOY.  Example:  J–Jump  O–over  Y–yokes (burdens).  Discuss the meaning of this phrase with an adult.

6.  Do you know someone named Joy?  Tell ways this person brings joy to the world.  Example:  Joy Acey:  http://poetryforkidsjoy.blogspot.com/2016/09/sharks-and-minnows.html

7.  Do you know a song about Joy?  Change some of the lyrics to include things that bring you joy.

8.  Complete this writing prompt:  Nothing says joy in the morning like…

9.  Here are two Folgers’ coffee jingles:  “Nothing says morning like Folgers in your cup. ” Also:  “The best part of waking up in Folgers in your cup.”  Use these jingles as writing prompts to create your own personal jingle or slogan.

10.  What is your definition of joy?  Expand your definition with personal examples.

Thank you for visiting “A Writer’s Playground.”  Come again soon and bring a friend. Please leave a comment.  Remember that children 13 and under need an adult to comment for them.  For more fun, sign up to follow my blog.  Thank you!

Posted in Activities for teachers and parents, Character Traits, crafts, creative play, Family Discussions, Games, goal setting, Homeschool Activities, humor, music, Reading, Uncategorized, Writing, Writing Prompts | Tagged: , , , , , , , , , , , | 18 Comments »

Inspired to Create a Poster

Posted by lindamartinandersen on July 2, 2016


A Writer's Playground Fotosearch_u17996074

 

A Writer’s Playground–a place to find wordplay, writing prompts, reasons to celebrate, and monthly calendar activities for kids and those young at heart

“Inspired to Create a Poster,” by Linda Martin Andersen

Today, I read a note that inspired me to create a poster.  What has inspired you today?

 

 

 

Copyright 2016. Linda Martin Andersen

Copyright 2016. Linda Martin Andersen

 

Thank you for visiting “A Writer’s Playground.”  Come again soon and bring a friend. Please leave a comment.  Remember that children 13 and under need an adult to comment for them.  For more fun, sign up to follow my blog.  Thank you!

Posted in Activities for teachers and parents, art, Character Traits, crafts, creative play, Family Discussions, goal setting, Homeschool Activities, Posters, Uncategorized, Writing, Writing Prompts | Tagged: , , , , , , , , , | 21 Comments »

Y is for Yard, Yes, and Yesterday

Posted by lindamartinandersen on April 29, 2016


A Writer's Playground Fotosearch_u17996074

 

A Writer’s Playground–a place to find wordplay, writing prompts, reasons to celebrate, and monthly calendar activities for kids and those young at heart  “Y is for Yard, Yes, and Yesterday” by Linda Martin Andersen

This month I’m sharing photos and blog posts from A-Z.  I’m excited about trying something new.  I hope you’ll stop by often throughout the month.

Check out the participants for the April (2016) Challenge.  There are plenty to choose from http://www.a-to-zchallenge.com/

Y is for Yard

In an earlier post, I wrote about an experience in my back yard.  An elm leaf was suspended in the air and twirled in the breeze–one of nature’s windsocks.  I am thankful for all I see out our window.  I am also thankful for the wide open space and for the wildlife that visits too.

Check out the photos below and earlier posts about them.  I hope you enjoy them.

Tell about some of your pleasant experiences in the yard.

 

Copyright 2015 Linda Martin Andersen

Copyright 2015 Linda Martin Andersen

https://lindamartinandersen.wordpress.com/2015/06/25/where-are-you-hanging-out-this-summer/

Copyright 2015 Linda Martin Andersen

Copyright 2015 Linda Martin Andersen

https://lindamartinandersen.wordpress.com/2015/08/28/its-show-and-tell-friday/

Photo by Jim Martin. Copyright.

Photo by Jim Martin. Copyright.

https://lindamartinandersen.wordpress.com/2015/02/02/jump-back-jack/

 

Y is for Yes

Are you a writer and hoping for an acceptance from an editor or agent and rejections show up instead?  Stick with it.  Your “Yes” is out there somewhere.  It might be closer than you think.  See…

Yes. Yes. Yes. Yes. Yes. Yes. Yes. Yes. Yes. Yes. Yes. Yes. Yes. Yes. Yes. Yes. Yes.

Yes. Yes. Yes. Yes. Yes. Yes. Yes. Yes. Yes. Yes. Yes. Yes. Yes. Yes. Yes. Yes. Yes.

Yes. Yes. Yes. Yes. Yes. Yes. Yes. Yes. Yes. Yes. Yes. Yes. Yes. Yes. Yes. Yes. Yes.

 Yes. Yes. Yes. Yes. Yes. Yes. Yes. Yes. Yes. Yes. Yes. Yes. Yes. Yes. Yes. Yes. Yes.

Yes. Yes. Yes. Yes. Yes. Yes. Yes. Yes. Yes. Yes. Yes. Yes. Yes. Yes. Yes. Yes. Yes.

Yes. Yes. Yes. Yes. Yes. Yes. Yes. Yes. Yes. Yes. Yes. Yes. Yes. Yes. Yes. Yes. Yes.

Your job is to keep writing, polishing your work, and submitting it.  Find your “Yes.”

Y is for Yesterday

Do you like collecting antiques and reading old diaries?  Do you like history and nonfiction?  Do you enjoy visiting museums and touring old homes.  Do you enjoy looking at old photographs.  Is “yesterday” or history something you want to know more about?  Do you read historical fiction?

Which interests you most:  yesterday, today, or tomorrow?  Why? How will this guide your search for books to read?  Do you enjoy a variety or are you drawn to a specific genre or time period?

Some of my first independent readings were biographies.  Have you read any lately?

What “Y” words come to mind for you? I hope you’ll share why they’re special to you.

Thank you for visiting “A Writer’s Playground.”  Come again soon and bring a friend. Please leave a comment.  Remember that children 13 and under need an adult to comment for them.  For more fun, sign up to follow my blog.  Thank you!

Posted in Activities for teachers and parents, creative play, Family Discussions, goal setting, History, Homeschool Activities, humor, Physical Education, Reading, Social Studies, storytelling, Uncategorized, Writing, Writing Prompts | Tagged: , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , | 13 Comments »

Q is for Question Marks, Quilts, and Quests

Posted by lindamartinandersen on April 19, 2016


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A Writer’s Playground–a place to find wordplay, writing prompts, reasons to celebrate, and monthly calendar activities for kids and those young at heart  “Q is for Question Marks, Quilts, and Quests” by Linda Martin Andersen

This month I’m sharing photos and blog posts from A-Z.  I’m excited about trying something new.  I hope you’ll stop by often throughout the month.

Check out the participants for the April (2016) Challenge.  There are plenty to choose from http://www.a-to-zchallenge.com/

Q is for Question Marks–and with that comes lots of questions

Some Q & A activities, just for fun…

  • Walk around your house with a question in mind.  Can you answer the question before your walk is complete?  For example:  What items in my house or yard begin with the letter “Q?”  I thought of quarter, quilt, and flowering quince.
  • In what class or classes at school would you expect to see a lot of question marks?  Give an example.
  • What written language uses inverted question marks?  How did you find the answer to this question?
  • What animal(s) is sometimes described as having a curly Q tail?
  • What is a good study skill habit that centers around questions when reading nonfiction?
  • What “W” questions and one “H” question are good to ask when writing a story?
  • Do you ever question your ability to do something?  What helps you build your confidence in situations like this?

Q is for Quilts

Years ago, I bought a quilt rack to display some of my oldest quilts.  Another special one was a gift from my mother-in-law.  Nice gift.  I also have commercially made quilts.  (See the photos below).    On our first Christmas as a married couple, my husband gave me a handmade quilt.  I was so excited.  I received a baby quilt for one son when he was born. The other son received a crocheted blanket.  I have featured a quilted apron at this blog.  You would think with this love of quilts and handmade things that I would quilt, but I don’t.  I’d rather admire someone else’s handiwork.  How about you?

IMG_0635

 

Commercial quilt--larger view. Copyright 2016. Linda Martin Andersen

Commercial quilt–larger view. Copyright 2016. Linda Martin Andersen

Q is for Quests

http://www.dictionary.com/browse/quest

I used to work as a school counselor in elementary schools.  When I taught classroom guidance, I often used a resource called  “Lions Quest Skills for Growing.”  Years later, I met a former student who told me he remembered me coming to his class and teaching lessons, and he remembered getting to hug Quinton the Bear–Q Bear, the program’s mascot.  He went on to say I was one of his favorite teachers.  It didn’t hurt that he got to hug Q Bear too. 😉

What are you on a quest for?

What “Q” words come to mind for you? I hope you’ll share why they’re special to you.

Thank you for visiting “A Writer’s Playground.”  Come again soon and bring a friend. Please leave a comment.  Remember that children 13 and under need an adult to comment for them.  For more fun, sign up to follow my blog.  Thank you!

Posted in Activities for teachers and parents, art, Character Traits, crafts, Critiquing writing, Family Discussions, goal setting, History, Homeschool Activities, Reading, Sewing, Social Studies, Uncategorized, Writing, Writing Prompts | Tagged: , , , , , , , , , | 20 Comments »

F is for Full, Half Full…(Part 2 of 2)

Posted by lindamartinandersen on April 7, 2016


A Writer's Playground Fotosearch_u17996074

 

A Writer’s Playground–a place to find wordplay, writing prompts, reasons to celebrate, and monthly calendar activities for kids and those young at heart  “F is for Full, Half Full…(Part 2 of 2)” by Linda Martin Andersen

This month I’m sharing photos and blog posts from A-Z.  I’m excited about trying something new.  I hope you’ll stop by often throughout the month.

Check out the participants for the April (2016) Challenge.  There are plenty to choose from http://www.a-to-zchallenge.com/

Close up of gas gauge. Copyright 2016. Linda Martin Andersen

Close up of gas gauge. Copyright 2016. Linda Martin Andersen

F is for Full, Half Full…(Part 2 of 2)

We all know the expression “Is the glass half full or half empty?”  Today, I’d like you to focus on “F–F is for Full, Half Full.”

What does full look like in your life? Half full?

How do you celebrate the full moments?  Do you give thanks?  What about the half full ones? And now for an even bigger challenge:  can you celebrate or give thanks even on half empty or empty days?

Is it possible to move from full to empty in the same day?  Likewise, is it possible to move from empty to full in the same day?

Do you know the expression “rock bottom” or  “hit bottom?”  http://idioms.thefreedictionary.com/hit+bottom

Here’s a motivational video about hitting rock bottom:  https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=5yBU1ELFXfk

If an experiment proved… that half full and half empty are equal measures, which description would best describe how you approach life? What is your perspective?  Do you lean toward the negative or the positive?  If you tend to lean toward the negative, would you want to change that?  How could you?

In yesterday’s blog post, I stated that “Some people’s circumstances appear to be half empty at best and yet they seem happy or are doing their best to get on with their life.  What’s their secret?” https://lindamartinandersen.wordpress.com/2016/04/06/e-is-for-empty-half-empty-part-1-of-2/

I hope this two-day series has you looking at Empty/half empty and Full/half full in a different light.  I’d love to hear your comments.

What “F” words come to mind for you? I hope you’ll share why they’re special to you.

Thank you for visiting “A Writer’s Playground.”  Come again soon and bring a friend. Please leave a comment.  Remember that children 13 and under need an adult to comment for them.  For more fun, sign up to follow my blog.  Thank you!

Posted in Activities for teachers and parents, Character Traits, Family Discussions, goal setting, Homeschool Activities, Uncategorized, Writing, Writing Prompts | Tagged: , , , , , , , , , , , | 12 Comments »

 
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