A Writer's Playground

Monthly Activities for Kids by Linda Martin Andersen

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Archive for the ‘Monthly Activities’ Category

Happy Birthday, Blog

Posted by lindamartinandersen on May 1, 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  “Happy Birthday, Blog” by Linda Martin Andersen

My blog’s name is “A Writer’s Playground,” but he recently informed me that he prefers to be called Blog.  Today, is all about Blog.

Here is how Blog has celebrated each birthday: (Archived here, like any proud Mama would do.)

Blog’s first birthday–May 2013:

https://lindamartinandersen.wordpress.com/2013/05/06/a-writers-playground-is-celebrating-its-first-birthday-lets-parade-in-our-favorite-hats/

Blog’s second birthday–May 2014

https://lindamartinandersen.wordpress.com/2014/04/30/may-days-and-my-blogs-2nd-birthday/

Blog’s third birthday–May 2015

https://lindamartinandersen.wordpress.com/2015/05/18/virtual-entertainment-at-my-blogs-birthday-party/

What does Blog want for his 4th birthday? 

 Blog wants to tell all about his adventures and he wants to start at the beginning.

(so I’ll help) 

In 2012, my good friend, Joan Y. Edwards, helped me set up Blog which I named “A Writer’s Playground.”  I thank her for that!  Blog thanks her too!  Without her, he wouldn’t exist.  And now, it’s Joan’s turn to receive some help.  On May 13, 2016  some of Joan’s followers will participate in a Blog Blitz for her new book:  Joan’s Elder Care Guide: Empowering You and Your Elder to Survive. I’m excited; so I know she has to be!

Used with permission.

Used with permission.

For purchasing information for Joan’s Elder Care Guide, see here:

4RV Publishing: the price includes shipping anywhere in the USA.

Paperback $15.99 includes shipping within the USA
Hardback $19.99 includes shipping within the USA
http://www.4rvpublishingcatalog.com/joan-y-edwards.php

Get your copy soon.  Consider giving this guide book to anyone you know who is a caregiver, or leads a group for caregivers, or works with the elderly, or has a grandparent, or… (in other words, just about everyone)

Blog wants to tell about his growing pains.

Blog has decided to change things up a bit.  Since May 2012, Blog has begun each calendar month with a list of ways to celebrate special days.

Blog will no longer provide a list of calendar events on the first of each month.  Resources for monthly calendar events are available in many places.  See some examples here:

Recommended lists of monthly calendar events: 

  1. Chase’s Calendar of Events 2016: The Ultimate Go-to Guide for Special Days, Weeks and Months– a resource available to use on site at many public libraries. 
  2. http://www.brownielocks.com/may.html
  3. http://www.timeanddate.com/holidays/us/
  4. http://www.nationaldaycalendar.com/
  5. Search Archives at this site.  Search by key words.  A good place to start would be with the name of the month.

Blog wishes to add more flexibility to his posts to provide his voice (that’s me) with more time for writing stories and books, while encouraging followers to search out their own monthly activities.  Please provide feedback so Blog knows how that’s going for you.

One example of  Blog’s recent growth:  In 2016, “A Writer’s Playground” participated in two blogging challenges. ” Just Jot It January” and in April:  “A-Z Blogging Challenge.”  Blog has visited many blogs unknown to him and has gained some new followers.  Will Blog decide to do more blog challenges in the future?  Wait and see.

Thanks for playing along with me as Blog continues to grow.  Maybe next year Blog will be old enough to start school.  😉

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!

 

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Posted in Activities for teachers and parents, Book Launch, Calendar Events, creative play, Family Discussions, Health Care, History, Homeschool Activities, humor, Monthly Activities, storytelling, Uncategorized, Writing, Writing Prompts | Tagged: , , , , , , , , , , , , , | 21 Comments »

C is for Cotton, Concentrator, and Christmas Card Bowl

Posted by lindamartinandersen on April 4, 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  “C is for Cotton, Concentrators, and Christmas Card Bowl” 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/

An ABC Find:

First Presbyterian Church. Copyright 2012. Linda Martin Andersen

First Presbyterian Church. Copyright 2012. Linda Martin Andersen

Yesterday, I discovered an ABC Find.  While driving, I turned from  Ann Street onto Bow Street, where our church sits on the corner. I like that the word “church” completed the ABC find.  I never noticed this ABC Find until participating in the 2016 A-Z Blog Challenge;  yet I’ve passed by these street signs all my life.

C is for Cotton

 I live near cotton fields.  I tease that it’s as close to snow-covered fields as southerners usually get.  Squint and see if you can imagine snow.

Riddle:  What do you call a cotton-picking good friend?

Answer: A cotton harvester.

Fall 2012. Close up. Copyright Linda Andersen

Fall 2012. Close up. Copyright Linda Andersen

Fall 2012. Copyright Linda Andersen

Fall 2012. Copyright Linda Andersen

 

C is for Concentrator

IMG_0583  Two of my family members now require oxygen and concentrators provide it for home use.  This model comes with a top attachment that refills small portable cylinders, often referred to as tanks.  “E” cylinders, larger ones, are most often delivered by medical suppliers.  Patients place these on carts for portable use.  Smaller tanks are sometimes carried on the patient’s shoulder.  Do you know anyone who requires supplemental oxygen?  I’m thankful concentrators are a medical option available for patients who want to remain in their homes.

C is for Christmas Card Bowl

Years ago, when shopping in an antique/vintage shop, I spotted some reduced Christmas merchandise.  I fell in love with a set of bowls made from Christmas cards and stitched together.  Have you ever recycled cards?  What did you make?

Christmas Card Bowls. Copyright 2015. Linda Martin Andersen

Christmas Card Bowls. Copyright 2015. Linda Martin Andersen

What “C” 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, crafts, creative play, Environmental Concerns, Family Discussions, History, Homeschool Activities, Monthly Activities, Sewing, Uncategorized, Writing, Writing Prompts | Tagged: , , , , , , , , , , , , | 22 Comments »

B is Butterbeans, Bonfires, and Buttons

Posted by lindamartinandersen on April 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  “B is For Butterbeans, Bonfires, and Buttons” 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/

B is for Butterbeans–five bushels of butterbeans

 

Last summer, Amy Ludwig VanDerwater asked for volunteers to submit Summer Notebook Projects for Kids and I contributed my springboard activity.  https://lindamartinandersen.wordpress.com/2015/05/27/try-this-look-for-a-springboard/

I don’t know if she’ll repeat the notebook project, but you can contact her to see.  Amy has a new poetry book out called Every Day Birds.  Check it out and her poetry blog called “The Poem Farm.” It’s National Poetry Month.  I hope you’ll visit lots of poets.

http://www.poemfarm.amylv.com/2016/04/poetry-friday-is-here-wallow-in-wonder.html

B is for Bonfire

Linda M. Andersen copyright 2012

Linda M. Andersen copyright 2012

I live out in the country in a home with a septic tank.  One year, we decided to cut a full-grown magnolia tree that grew on top of our septic tank lines.  We watched the bonfire, much like others watch fireworks.  When I think of bonfires, I think of high school homecomings and the memory of our magnolia.   Name occasions when you’ve attended a bonfire.  What memories stand out for you?

B is for Buttons

Buttons from Joanna. Copyright 2016. Linda Martin Andersen

Buttons from Joanna. Copyright 2016. Linda Martin Andersen

 

Buttons from Joanna. Copyright 2016. Linda Martin Andersen

Buttons from Joanna. Copyright 2016. Linda Martin Andersen

People who know me well know that buttons bring back special memories for me.  One such friend gave me these framed cloth gifts.  Who knows you well enough to find those “just right” gifts?

 

 

 

 

 

What “B” words come to mind for you? I hope you’ll share why they’re special to you.  Maybe one of these will serve as a springboard or a writing prompt.

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, Homeschool Activities, Monthly Activities, Sewing, Uncategorized, Writing, Writing Prompts | Tagged: , , , , , , , , , , , | 15 Comments »

A is for April, Artists, and Aprons

Posted by lindamartinandersen on April 1, 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  “A is For April, Artists, and Aprons” 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.

A is for April

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

A is for Artists

Laura Reeves painted this mural in my kitchen.  Learn more about her here:  http://www.reevesartworks.com/

Laura Reeves. Kitchen Mural. Copyright 2012 Linda Andersen.

Laura Reeves. Kitchen Mural. Copyright 2012 Linda Andersen.

Another artist I’d like to spotlight is Tracy Campbell.  Learn about her and Matilda here:

http://tracycampbell.net/blog/baked-goodness-rising-life-creative-tuesdays/

 

A is for Aprons  (Before and After)https://lindamartinandersen.wordpress.com/2015/11/24/before-and-after-apron-remodel/

Apron--Before. Copyright 2015 Linda Martin Andersen

Apron–Before. Copyright 2015 Linda Martin Andersen

Apron--After Copyright 2015 Linda Martin Andersen

Apron–After Copyright 2015 Linda Martin Andersen

What “A” 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, Homeschool Activities, Monthly Activities, Sewing, Uncategorized, Writing, Writing Prompts | Tagged: , , , , , , , , , | 33 Comments »

April–A To Z

Posted by lindamartinandersen on March 30, 2016


A Writer's Playground Fotosearch_u17996074A Writer’s Playground–a place to find wordplay, writing
prompts, reasons to celebrate, and monthly calendar activities for kids and those
young at heart  “April–A To Z” by Linda Martin Andersen

April—A To Z

(Can you find A To Z here?)

April Fool’s Day: 1

National Farm Animals Day: 10

National Teach Your Children To Save Day: 29

Zipper Day: 29

International Jazz Day: 30

Writing Prompts:

  1. What prank or April Fool’s joke has someone played on you? What have you played on others?
  2. Are you a good sport when someone plays a joke or trick on you?  How do you handle it?
  3. What farm animal do you wish you could raise in your backyard?  Why would you choose that particular one?
  4. Have you ever visited a petting zoo?  Tell about it.
  5. Are you good at saving money?  What plan works for you?
  6. Julie Bowe writes a friendship series of children’s books that mention a backpack with many zippers. Can you discover which title it is?  Name other stories that mention zippers.
  7. Would you rather wear zippers or buttons and why?
  8. Name different uses of the word “jazz.”  Choose one and write about it.

What will you celebrate in April? 

I have decided to try the Blogging From A to Z–April (2016) Challenge.

      Letter Schedule [2016]

To learn more, check  here:  http://www.a-to-zchallenge.com/

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, Calendar Events, Homeschool Activities, Monthly Activities, Uncategorized, Writing, Writing Prompts | Tagged: , , , , , , , , , , | 13 Comments »

St. Patrick’s Day Riddle

Posted by lindamartinandersen on March 17, 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

“St. Patrick’s Day Riddle” by Linda Martin Andersen

Riddle-for-St-Patricks[1]

Happy St. Patrick’s Day!  I hope you enjoyed this one.

And now for the backstory about writing this riddle:

I wrote a post about ways to celebrate March… https://lindamartinandersen.wordpress.com/2016/02/29/march-forth-do-something/

and I listed a writing prompt based on Dr. Seuss.  A friend recalled that she had celebrated Dr. Seuss’ birthday with preschoolers who were served green eggs and ham.  I read her comment on St. Patrick’s Day.  I combined Dr. Seuss, green eggs and ham, with St. Patrick’s Day.  Like a three-ingredient recipe.  Sometimes, writing riddles is that simple.

Write a riddle of your own for St. Patrick’s Day Words you might want to include:

shamrock, green, leprechaun, pot of gold, pinch, Irish.

I hope you’ll share your riddle.

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, Critiquing writing, Homeschool Activities, humor, Monthly Activities, Uncategorized, Writing, Writing Prompts | Tagged: , , , , | 17 Comments »

Easter in the Hospital

Posted by lindamartinandersen on March 16, 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.  “Easter in the Hospital” by Linda Martin Andersen

The Youth at our church will soon prepare Easter baskets for children in the hospital.  Donated items are being collected to fill baskets.  Last year, the youth group filled 30 baskets.  This year they hope to meet or possibly surpass that goal.  A fun-filled afternoon is planned for Palm Sunday following a covered dish meal.  This good will gesture will bring joy to many sick children away from home.

Being in the hospital is difficult any time of year.  Hospital stays are hard on the patient as well as the family.  Even grown-ups look for entertainment during long hours there, if it’s just a trip to the snack machine or a walk around the halls.  The last time I stayed with a hospitalized family member, I observed that disposable medication cups reminded me of break-apart plastic eggs.   I started saving some and I now I’d like to share my project with you.  Check the photo below to find the two med cup eggs pictured here.  Not exactly egg shaped and they’re held together with bandage wrap tape, but an idea was born out of a need for creativity and humor during a stressful time.

Find the Med Cup Eggs. Copyright 2016. Linda Martin Andersen

Find the Med Cup Eggs. Copyright 2016. Linda Martin Andersen

Another simple medicine cup Easter craft would be to transform these into miniature baskets.  Perhaps a pipe cleaner could be used for a handle or wired craft ribbon.  I hope you never find yourself celebrating Easter from a hospital bed, but find a way to have some fun if you do.

Our grandsons came to visit at the hospital and proved that creative play can exist, no matter where you are.  They wadded up colored newspaper ads and tossed them at the waste basket.  Sometimes they’d toss to the ceiling and dunk it into the trashcan below.  Sometimes, balls whirled across the room, almost like a snowball fight.  A trashcan target was placed on either side of the room.  Later, when I told my niece about the boys’ playfulness, she spoke her wise wisdom of 16 years, “Boys can make a ball out of anything.  Even a string. ”  LOVED it!

Writing Prompts:

  1. Have you ever been hospitalized?  Name things that helped cheer you up.
  2. What do you think makes the best gifts for someone in the hospital?  Why?
  3. Tell about a time you cheered up someone who was sick.
  4. Tell about a time someone surprised you with something very nice.
  5. When you were worried about someone who was sick, what helped you stay calm?
  6. How can you  shine where you are?
  7. What do you see around you that can bring joy in some small way?
  8. Name some simple joys you can bring to others.
  9. What do you think:  Can boys make a ball out of anything?
  10. What will you do this Easter season that you’d like to share with others?

Thank you for visiting “A Writer’s Playground.”  Come again soon and bring a friend. Please leave a comment about Easter or hospital stays.  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, Calendar Events, Character Traits, crafts, creative play, Family Discussions, Games, Homeschool Activities, humor, Monthly Activities, Uncategorized, Writing, Writing Prompts | Tagged: , , , , , , , , , , , , , | 14 Comments »

March Forth–Do Something

Posted by lindamartinandersen on February 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.  “March 4th–Do Something” by Linda Martin Andersen

March-4th-is-March[2]

Writing Prompts:

  1. What is your favorite fable and why?  Read a copy of the fable and then tell it to someone.  Rewrite it in your own words.
  2. What famous doctor has a birthday on March 2?  Tell about celebrations you have participated in to remember this famous name in literature.
  3. Have you ever played in a bucket drum band?  What thing makes a great musical sound that isn’t an instrument in the band?
  4. Name a way to march forth and celebrate this month.  What will you do?
  5. Name a favorite topic.  Look for poems on that topic.  Swap poems with friends for Poetry Day: 21.

Thank you for visiting “A Writer’s Playground.”  Come again soon and bring a friend. Please leave a comment.  What special plans do you have for March?  Share, if you’d like. 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, Calendar Events, Family Discussions, Homeschool Activities, Monthly Activities, Writing, Writing Prompts | Tagged: , , , , , , , , , , , , , , | 12 Comments »

Things I’ll Love to Celebrate in February 2016

Posted by lindamartinandersen on February 1, 2016


A Writer's Playground Fotosearch_u17996074

“Things I’ll Love to Celebrate in February 2016” by Linda Martin Andersen

“A Writer’s Playground”–A place to find wordplay, writing, and monthly calendar activities for kids and those young at heart.”

Things-Ill-Love-to[2]Valentine’s Day is a special day on this month’s calendar.  I chose not to include it simply because it is so well known.  February 14 is also International Book Giving Day. Why not consider giving a book instead of a Valentine to someone special?

I hope something listed here will catch your attention and be added to your February calendar.  Perhaps you’d like to send a Valentine, thank you card, or missing you card to friends during International Friendship Week, or read cowboy poetry and haikus and write a few yourself.  Could you reach out to a school counselor, an author, or illustrator?  Make February special by finding new ways to celebrate.

What special things do you have planned for this month?  I’d love to hear about them.

Writing Prompts:

  1. If you chose to give a book to someone this month, which would it be and why?
  2. Do you ever swap books with friends?  What type books do you usually swap?  Have you found a favorite author by swapping with someone else?
  3. What would you rather write:  cowboy poems or haikus?  Why?  Try writing one.

Thank you for visiting “A Writer’s Playground.”  Come again soon and bring a friend. Please leave a comment.  I’d love to hear what special things you have planned for this month.  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, Calendar Events, Family Discussions, goal setting, Homeschool Activities, Monthly Activities, Reading, Uncategorized, Writing, Writing Prompts | Tagged: , , , , , , , , , , , | 16 Comments »

Just Jot It January #21–Excitement is in the Air

Posted by lindamartinandersen on January 21, 2016


A Writer's Playground Fotosearch_u17996074    jjj-2016[1]

“A Writer’s Playground”–A place to find wordplay, writing, and monthly calendar activities for kids and those young at heart.”

“Just Jot It January #21–Excitement is in the Air” by Linda Martin Andersen

I accepted a challenge for January: Just jot a note and submit.  I can’t participate every remaining day this month, but I will join in when I can.

I decided to create a theme to write about:

Today, I Celebrate Excitement is in the Air.

Our area has talk of possible winter precipitation and here in the south that means there’s excitement’s in the air.  Will there be a snow day.? A day off from school?  A delayed opening?  Will there be a chance to build a snowman, go sledding, etc.?

Last night a friend in the Piedmont area saw snow.  We got sleet.  This morning, the ground is clear.  The weather report?   Precipitation should begin before 5 a.m. tomorrow morning.  And for that reason, there’s excitement in the air, although I hope we’re spared the blizzard some places are expected to receive.  In other words, less is better!

Writing Prompts:

  1.  Winter weather can add excitement to the air.  What other things do too?
  2. Have you ever been so excited about something that you thought you would burst?  Tell about it.
  3. Why do you think we say “excitement is in the air” instead of excitement rests on the ground?
  4. When would you say, “less is better?”

Visit http://lindaghill.com/2016/01/20/just-jot-it-january-20th-surreptitiously/

http://lindaghill.com/2015/12/31/just-jot-it-january-2016-rules/ for details about Just Jot It January and to comment on other participants’ posts.

Thank you for visiting “A Writer’s Playground.”  Come again soon and bring a friend. Please leave a comment.  I’d love to hear what you’re celebrating today.  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, Homeschool Activities, Monthly Activities, Uncategorized, Writing, Writing Prompts | Tagged: , , , , , , , , , , , | 10 Comments »

 
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