A Writer's Playground

Monthly Activities for Kids by Linda Martin Andersen

  • Copyright Notice

    Copyright © 2016 Linda Martin Andersen.

    Unauthorized use and/or duplication of this
    material without express and written permission
    from Linda Martin Andersen is strictly prohibited.

    Excerpts and links may be used, provided that
    full and clear credit is given to Linda Martin Andersen
    with appropriate and specific direction to the original content.

Posts Tagged ‘North Carolina’

July 2012 Activities

Posted by lindamartinandersen on July 1, 2012


“July 2012 Activities” by Linda Martin Andersen

  “A Writer’s Playground”

A place to find word play, writing, and monthly calendar activities for kids and those young at heart.

Think:  What does the word “July” bring to mind?

  • Fourth of July, fireworks, picnics, and family reunions.
  • Swims in the pool, lake or ocean. 
  • And no school. 
  • Time to read whatever you like.  If you are interested in nonfiction, David L. Harrison and Cheryl Nathan’s book is sure to spark attention.  It compares volcanoes to fireworks.  Visit David L. Harrison at  http://www.davidlharrison.com/.  Check out his blog too.  There’s a page for kids to publish their poems.  See the illustrator’s site at http://www.cherylnathan.com/books.html .

Vocanoes–Nature’s Incredible Fireworks by David L. Harrison51gTrbuepXL__SS500_

What else happens in July?  Choose one of the conversation starters below and leave a comment.

Special Days in July:

  • I Forgot Day: 2 (Name a time you forgot something.  What did you do about it?)
  • Made in USA Day: 2 (Divide the room in half.  Check labels on one side of the room and have a friend check the other side.  Set a timer for three minutes.  The winner is the one who locates the most USA products.)
  • World UFO Day: 2 (Watch old movies about UFOs.  Share titles you liked with a friend.)
  • Fourth of July or Independence Day: 4  (Read books that mention the Fourth of July or Independence Day.  Suggested Middle Grade title:  Glory Be by Augusta Scattergood.  See http://augustascattergood.com/books/bk_glory.html)  Historical fiction centered around segregation of a public pool in Mississippi in 1964.  Apple Pie Fourth of July (Chinese American girl) and Declaration of Interdependence (poems) by Janet S. Wong.  See http://www.janetwong.com/books/index.cfm
  • Global Forgiveness Day: 7 (Who do you need to forgive?  Send them a card.  Who do you need to ask to forgive you?  Send them a card.)
  • Tell the Truth Day: 7 (What is that promise made on the witness stand at a trial?  Watch a movie about a court trial.)
  • Chocolate Day: 7 (Plan a menu for the day.  Serve chocolate at each meal.  Help prepare the chocolate dishes.  Be sure to eat some.  Share with a friend.)
  • Gummi Worm Day: 15 (Eat gummi worms while reading books about worms such as Diary of a Worm by Doreen Cronin at http://www.doreencronin.com/www.doreencronin.com/Home.html  and illustrated by Harry Bliss.  See http://www.harrybliss.com/main_content.html  Write a diary entry pretending you’re a gummi worm.  Look for Wiggle and Waggle (chapter book)by Caroline Arnold.  See www.carolinearnold.com  It is illustrated by Mary Peterson.  See http://www.marypeterson.com/  Check out the worm facts in the back of the book.)
  • National Lollipop Day: 20 (List as many lollipop flavors as you can.  Assign a flavor to each friend and tell why you chose that one.)
  • Toss Away the “Could Haves” and “Should Haves” Day: 21 (When have you used these words in a sentence?  Write down what you said and then toss the paper away.  Example:  I could have made a home run, if I hadn’t stopped at third.)
  • Paperback Book Day: 30.  (Fill your backpack with paperback books.  Pull one out and reread it.  What’s your favorite paperback?  Recommend it to someone.  Swap  with a friend)
  • Tell an Old Joke Day: 24 (Here’s one for you:  What are 3 good reasons to be a teacher?Answer:  June, July, and August.  Ask a friend to join you in  reading and sharing old jokes. Favorite first words of your conversation:  “Here’s one for you.” or “Do you know this one?”  Make up jokes or riddles of your own.) 

Special Weeks in July:

  • Dog Days (3-11): (Do you know why this week got this name?  What does it mean?  Name three things you do to stay cool during Dog Days.  Ask friends for their ideas.)
  • National Zoo Keepers Week (15-21): (When was the last time you visited a zoo?  What was your favorite animal doing when you visited his area?  What would you like to ask a zookeeper?  Be sure to visit “A Writer’s Playground” during National Zoo Keepers Week for your chance to ask a zookeeper a question.)
  • National Ventriloquism Week: (18-21) (Find a ventriloquism act to watch in person or see one on television or a movie.)
  • World Lumberjack Championship: 27-29.  (Research.  Can you name a real lumberjack and one from a folktale? What was his/her record?)

July is…

  • Cell Phone Courtesy Month (Describe a sign you’ve seen in a public place reminding customers to use cell phone courtesy)
  • Family Reunion Month (Do you know all your cousins, aunts, uncles?  Could you help plan a reunion?  What about a skype reunion?)
  • National Grilling Month (What is your favorite grilled food?  Does your family grill inside, outside, with gas, charcoal,  or wood?  Who does the grilling at your house?)
  • National Ice Cream Month (Have you ever churned ice cream?  What flavor of homemade ice cream is your favorite?)

*Thank you Brownie Locks.com for July celebration information.  For more July observances check out: http://www.brownielocks.com/july.html

Let’s talk:  Choose one or more of the conversation starters above and leave a comment.  Thank you for visiting “A Writer’s Playground.”  Please come again soon.  Bring a friend.

*Resources:  http//vertex42.com (calendar) and http://www.brownielocks.com/july.html (calendar observances)

Coming next:  Meet Melissa Barr,a zookeeper from the North Carolina Zoological Park in Asheboro.  Celebrate National Zookeeper Week (July 15-21)

Copyright © 2012 Linda Martin Andersen

 

Posted in Careers, Character Traits, Games, Interviews, Math, Monthly Activities, Reading, Science, Social Studies, Uncategorized, Writing | Tagged: , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , | 29 Comments »

“A Writer’s Playground” Welcomes Phyllis Heil, The Whistling Woman, and Offers a CD Giveaway

Posted by lindamartinandersen on June 8, 2012


Raise your hand, if you can whistle.  Keep your hand raised if you ever entered a whistling contest.  Continue to hold your hand up if you won a whistling contest.  Congratulations whistlers! 

Now, put your hands together and give a loud clap or whistle if you’d rather, to welcome a champion whistler.  Well recognized on the stage of the International Whistlers Convention http://www.whistlingiwc.com/, I’m proud to introduce Phyllis Heil from Hickory, North Carolina.

My first opportunity to hear Phyllis whistle was at a patriotic celebration.  So, I’ve invited her to “A Writer’s Playground” in honor of Flag Day, on June 14.  Today, she’s here to whistle “The Grand Old Flag.” 

Here’s Phyllis…

http://www.thewhistlingwoman.com/sounds/grand_old_flag.mp3

International Whisting Champion

http://www.thewhistlingwoman.com/ 

Welcome Phyllis.  Thank you for agreeing to an interview at “A Writer’s Playground.”

1.  Phyllis, how old were you when you learned to whistle? Around 7 or 8.  Who taught you?  One of my older brothers.   What instructions did you get? To insert my little finger (pinkie) into my mouth, tighten my lips around my finger, pull my finger out of my mouth (holding the round opening it made) and blow.

2.  Who did you share your new whistling skill with and what was the person’s reaction?  I whistled for my mom and she said, “A whistling woman and a crowing hen always come to some bad end.” So out of respect for my  mom,  I didn’t whistle in public for many years.

3. Years later, when you whistled in public who was it  for and what was the reaction? The first public whistling was at a funeral where I was also singing with a quartet. The mourner’s became calm as they listened to me whistle.  How did the reaction change things for you? As my husband was working in the sound booth that day, we both realized that there was a use for whistling and that it has great power to calm people.

4.  Describe the different types of whistling.  Pucker whistling, teeth whistling, hand whistling, throat whistling and probably other styles I don’t even know about.

5.  Are your whistling instructions for a beginner different than the ones you were first given?  If so, how?  No, except I observe the pupil’s position of the lips and chin.  Sometimes I can have the person move his/her chin forward, if it appears the “air” coming out needs a better direction.

 6.  What are some simple tunes you would suggest for a beginner?  “Twinkle, Twinkle Little Star, Amazing Grace, Jesus Loves Me, theme from Mayberry or some song easily recognized.

 7.  Phyllis, I know you’re not one to brag, but please share some of your whistling accomplishments.  Count your plagues, trophies, and ribbons.  It’s time to shine.  Mention special appearances, also. 

 

  • Placed in Grand Championship at my first competition in 2004 and again in 2005. 
  • Named International Whistling Entertainer of the Year (female) in 2005, 2006, 2007, 2009, and 2010.
  • I have competed in the Unifour Senior Games, Silver Performing Arts, received the first place gold medal several times, was once chosen as Best in Show to represent Western NC at state level, where I received the gold medal for my whistling.
  • I appeared/whistled on “The Tonight Show” with Jay Leno. I have been asked to whistle on stage at two Gaither Homecoming Friends concerts. Have been on several TV shows, radio shows and online “shows.”
  • I have performed at many churches, seniors & ladies events, benefits, High Point University (four times in 2012), Andy Griffith Playhouse in Mt. Airy, and traveled from Pennsylvania to Florida performing.
  • Our State magazine, WNC magazine (May, 2012), and “Old Farmer’s Almanac” (New Hampshire)
  • I have been asked by three families to whistle for a relative who was being cared for by Hospice.  I was honored to be a part of that time in the life of a family.

 8. Where is the International Whistlers Convention held?  Founded and held in Louisburg, NC since 1973, except for 2 years when it was held in Japan and China.  What competitions exist for children? Teens and children may compete in the same categories as adults.  Those age groups perform their music on Saturday.  When is the next International Whistlers Convention?  April 2013.

 9. What advice would you give children who want to compete as whistlers?  Find a song you enjoy whistling; get a good, but simple soundtrack for accompaniment and practice, practice, practice. Practice sometimes in front of a mirror to see how you present yourself on stage.

10.  Who do you credit for your ability to whistle?  God and my family who always sang when I was growing up and instilled in me the love of music.

11.  Why do you whistle?  It comes from the joy within and also to uplift those who hear me.

12.  How has whistling brought joy to others?  It seems to have touched many hearts through the years as I’ve observed tears, smiles, and sometimes received standing ovations at the end of concert.

 13.  How did you get your nickname as “The Whistling Woman?”  The manager at a local grocery store used to say, “There comes the whistling woman” when I would be in the store shopping. I often am not aware that I am whistling.  I do it subconsciously.

 14.  What did you want to be when you grew up?  Everything from a nurse to a hair dresser.  What career did you choose?  I was in retail management for many years; then I worked in medical offices and business offices at a local furniture manufacturer.

Thank you, Phyllis, for joining us and for sharing your whistling experiences. 

Readers, did you know that most present and future adults will hold more than one career in their lifetime.  I’m so glad Phyllis decided to include whistling as one of hers.   Aren’t you?  Phyllis gives “Whistle While You Work” a new twist.  She works while she whistles. 

New CD

Click on the link below to hear Phyllis Heil whistle a tune that’s available on the giveaway prize.  http://www.thewhistlingwoman.com/sounds/great.mp3 

Here’s a contest everyone can enter, whether you can whistle or not:

A complimentary copy of Phyllis Heil’s CD entitled I’ve Got Joy (Still Whistling His Praises) is being offered as a giveaway to one lucky follower. 

 To enter: 

  • For contact purposes, please list your email address if you are not a follower.
  • Leave a comment about whistling.  Name a tune you can whistle or tell about a whistling experience. 
  • If you are a child, or registering for a child, mention that information and you will receive an extra entry. 
  • Please let me know if you post this contest to Facebook, Twitter, your blog, etc.  You will receive an extra entry.
  • International entries will be accepted in honor of the international whistling competition.
  • Contest ends at midnight, June 20, 2012.  The winner will be announced on June 22.  Thank you for participating.

I am pleased to announce that Phyllis Heil’s story, written by Linda Martin Andersen (that’s me), will be published in the November 10, 2012 issue of Guide magazine (Christian Fun for Kids—ages 10-14).  All stories in this magazine are nonfiction.  Visit http://www.guidemagazine.org for more information about Guide magazine.  I hope you will on the lookout for the story about Phyllis Heil. 

Phyllis’ story is something to crow about.  Even the hens think so.  Listen. 

http://www.bing.com/videos/search?q=crowing+hens&view=detail&mid=7FB48989A58087B3F4697FB48989A58087B3F469&first=0&qpvt=crowing+hens

One last thing to crow about… a new series of books by McFarland and Company called Joining the Military, written for teens and young adults who are considering a military career.  Snow Wildsmith, the author, is interviewed on Carol Baldwin’s blog where she is offering a set of the books to be donated to a library.  Learn more at  http://carolbaldwinblog.blogspot.com/2012/06/gift-your-librarian.html?utm_source=feedburner&utm_medium=email&utm_campaign=Feed%3A+blogspot%2FDtis+%28Carol+Baldwin%27s+blog%29  Enter the contest now.

Posted in Careers, Character Traits, Interviews, Monthly Activities, Uncategorized, Writing | Tagged: , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , | 24 Comments »

 
%d bloggers like this: