A Writer's Playground

Monthly Activities for Kids by Linda Martin Andersen

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Posts Tagged ‘peace’

Theme for December 2015: Stand Up for Yourself and Others

Posted by lindamartinandersen on December 1, 2015

A Writer's Playground Fotosearch_u17996074 “Theme for December 2015:  Stand Up for Yourself and Others” by Linda M. Andersen

Copyright 2015 Linda Martin Andersen. Quozio Poster site.

Copyright 2015 Linda Martin Andersen. Quozio Poster site.

December is a time to think of others.  In the poster above, I chose to spotlight days that represent the theme “Stand Up for Yourself and Others.” (Awards selected by me for this site only.)  As much as possible, the suggested activities below apply to that theme.

December is…

  • Bingo’s Birthday Month  Have you ever played Bingo?  Word Bingo and other versions of the game may be played to reinforce learning.  Church bingo has helped raised money for the needy and other causes.  Sometimes, it’s just played for fun and a chance to win a prize.  What games do you like to play?

 Special Weeks in December:

  • Cookie Cutter Week: 1-7 Decorate with old cookie cutters or use them to bake for others. A recent article in my local newspaper told of a woman who shared her love of baking with homeless individuals. How can you help others with baked goods this holiday season?
Cookie Press, biscuit cutters, cookie cutters. Copyright 2012 Linda Andersen

Cookie Press, biscuit cutters, cookie cutters. Copyright 2012 Linda Andersen

  • National Hand Washing Awareness Week: 6-12 Practice good hand washing practices to help prevent sickness this winter. What other good health practices can you name?
  • Computer Science Education Week: 7-13 Name ways computers can be used to help others.  Recently a local newspaper featured a family with special medical needs and a charity drive. The article was also appeared on Facebook.  This is one way computer science can help those in need.  What are other ways? Talk with your family about this or use it as a writing prompt.
  • Christmas Bird Count Week: 14-1/5 Sing of happiness. Sing of joy. Birds sing no matter the season. Let’s do the same.   Often, people who are sick or lonely enjoy watching and listening to birds.  Some nursing homes have feeders outside patients’ windows. 
  • Kwanzaa: 26-1/1 Kwanzaa is a “celebration of family, community, and culture.”  How can Kwanzaa help teach the theme of “Stand Up for Yourself and Others?”  Read more about Kwanzaa here:  http://www.officialkwanzaawebsite.org/index.shtml

Special Days in December…

  • Basketball Day: 1 Earlier this year, I read a newspaper article about Austin Lehmann, a PE teacher who had set a goal to make a million free-throw shots.  He achieved his goal.  Mr. Lehmann encourages his students to set and reach goals of their own.  Read more here:  http://www.fayobserver.com/news/local/cumberland-county-pe-teacher-hits-millionth-basketball-shot/article_fc45d374-d5ab-5624-b57a-67ebd828d9f3.html
  • What goals can you set to help yourself?  To help others? 
  • Day With(out) Art Day: 1 Art tells a story, often without words. How can art be used to help others?
  • Rosa Parks Day: 1 Tell how Rosa Parks stood up for herself and others.
  • Giving Tuesday: 1 Name ways you can help others without spending money. What can you give?
  • Special Education Day: 2 Do you know anyone with special needs? Name ways we are alike. What can be done to help with any differences?
  • International Day of Persons With Disabilities: 3 Name types of disabilities. Are handicaps the same as disabilities? What can you do to help someone you know with disabilities? Ask an adult to discuss this with you.
  • National Cookie Day: 4 Children in my church gathered on Veterans Day and baked cookies for Wounded Warriors. What could you and friends do for a special group with needs?
  • World Wildlife Conservation Day: 4 Learn about programs for wildlife rescue or other programs to help wildlife.
  • National Pearl Harbor Remembrance Day: 7 Read and study about this day in history. What is a way to help heal these wounds?
  • National Cotton Candy Day: 7 Thoughts of cotton candy at fairs, circuses, and festivals brings smiles. How can you bring smiles to others?
  • Pretend To Be A Time Traveler Day: 8 If you could travel back to an earlier time in your life, what time would that be and why? Was something special done for you? What is something special you could do in the future for someone else?
  • Nobel Prize Day: 10 Nobel Peace Prize is the one I chose to spotlight.  Awards are presented for other categories.  Can you name other categories?  If your teacher says, “That’s Nobel Prize behavior,” what does she mean? 
  • National Cocoa Day: 12 Do you like a cup of hot chocolate? By the fire? On a hayride? Other times? What made this a special time? How can you help others enjoy special times?
  • National Re-gifting Day: 17 What does it mean to re-gift? If I give you a good laugh, could you do the same for someone else? Would this be an example of re-gifting? Can you re-gift items other than purchased presents?
  • Wright Brothers Day: 17 What gift did the Wright Brothers give to the world? Name ways that flight has brought joy to others.
  • International Migrants Day: 18 What is a migrant worker? What are some ways people have stood up for migrants? What ways have people helped migrant workers?
  • National Ugly Christmas Sweater Day: 18 Some people have parties where guests wear an ugly Christmas sweater. At other events, guests may be asked to bring canned goods for the needy as an admission fee. What are other ways to remember those in need while partying?
  • Underdog Day: 18 What is an underdog? List ways you can help an underdog.  Could the needy be considered as underdogs? 
  • Poet Laureate Day: 20 Research for names of poet laureates. Can you name a poet who writes about showing concern for others.
  • World Day of Prayer and Action for Children: 20 “Working to create a world where children are free from violence.”  Read more here:  https://prayerandactionforchildren.org/
  • Crossword Puzzle Day: 21 Consider creating a crossword puzzle about caring for the needy. Check this site for help: www.puzzlemaker.com
  • Humbug Day: 21 What does “humbug” mean? Who made this word famous? When might someone use this word when asked to help with charities?
  • National Homeless Persons’ Remembrance Day: 21 Read about this day here:  http://nationalhomeless.org/about-us/projects/memorial-day/
  • World Peace Day/Winter Solstice: 21 What would world peace look like? How can you stand up for peace?
  • Christmas: 25 Many people donate to a charity at Christmas. What other ways can you help the needy?
  • Boxing Day: 26 (Canada) I recently saw a rerun of a MASH television program where people were participating in Boxing Day. On this day, people trade jobs with someone. This reminds me of “walking in someone else’s shoes.”  Do you think job trade for a day could be helpful?  In what way, if any?
  • National Candy Cane Day: 26  Read The Legend of the Candy Cane here:  http://www.spanglercandy.com/our-brands/candy-canes/legends
  • National Thank-you Note Day: 26 Do you write thank-you notes? Who do you need to thank for a gift? Have you ever received a thank-you note?
  • Visit The Zoo Day: 27 What is your favorite animal? Read about animals you like to visit. Visit the zoo if you can. This time of year, could be too cold for some animals to be outside.  Spending time at the zoo brings pleasure to many. 
  • New Years Eve: 31 How will you spend New Years Eve? Do you have a goal(s) set for 2016?
  • Universal Hour of Peace Day: 31 An hour of peace is doable. What will you do to keep the peace in your life for an hour? 
  • World Peace Meditation Day: 31 Plan a day with peace as the goal. What things will you do differently? Could you continue to do these things beyond the day?

For archived activities for December, see here:




Thank you for visiting “A Writer’s Playground.”  Come again soon and bring a friend. Please leave a comment.  I look forward to reading them. 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, Family Discussions, History, Homeschool Activities, Interviews, Monthly Activities, Physical Education, Reading, Uncategorized, Writing, Writing Prompts | Tagged: , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , | 10 Comments »

October 2012 Activities

Posted by lindamartinandersen on October 1, 2012

“October 2012 Activities” 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.


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

Halloween, hayrides, pumpkins, jack-o-lanterns, Fall leaves, haunted houses, Fall Festivals, cool nights, bonfires, jackets, ghost stories, homecoming games, football, trick-or-treat, and costumes.

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

Special Days in October:

    • National Custodial Workers Day:  2  Thank a custodian for his/her hard work.

    • Balloons Around the World Day:  3 (First Wednesday) Buy a bag of balloons (notice the alliteration).  What color did you choose?  Research a country with this as the dominant color of their flag.  Learn 3 facts about this country.

    • Blessing of the Animals Day (aka Blessing of the Pets Day, World Pet Day):  4  Does your church recognize this day?  Do you have a friend who attends a church that does?  Consider attending a service.

    • Ten-Four Day:  4  When is “Ten-Four” spoken?  What does it mean?  What jobs might use this signal?  Use the term in conversation with someone today.

    • National Diversity Day:  5 (First Friday) Brainstorm ways to celebrate this day.  Which way will you celebrate?  Ask a friend to join you.

    • World Smile Day:  5 (First Friday) Create smile posters or leave a Post-It Note with a smile.  Take them everywhere you go today.  Don’t forget to smile.

    • Laura Reeves’ artwork used by permission. Copyright protected. To purchase see http://www.reevesartwork.com

      World Communication Day:  7 (First Sunday) Think of ways to start a conversation with someone who is not one of your best friends.  Communicate with that person today.

    • You Matter to Me Day:  7  Tell someone special, “You matter to me.”  Tell them why.

    • Native American Day:  8 (2nd Monday)  Research Native Americans.  Share facts you learned.

    • National Face Your Fears Day:  9 (2nd Tuesday) Book characters often face fears.  Name one book character, his/her fear, and how it was overcome.  Would you recommend this book?

    • Stop Bullying Day:  10  At lunch or on the playground, ask friends what they think helps stop bullying.  What action will you take next?

    • Day of the Six Billion:  12 What does this mean?  Ask friends, teachers, parents, Google it, etc. until you learn the answer if you do not already know.  Why is it important?

    • Universal Music Day:  13 (2nd Saturday)  Pick a musical instrument you don’t hear often.  Listen to instrumental music with this instrument.  What emotion do you feel as you listen? 

    • Clergy Appreciation Day (or Pastor Appreciation Day or Ministry Appreciation Day):  14  Find a way to give thanks for your pastor, your church, and its ministry.

    •  I Love Lucy Day:  15 Watch a rerun, read about Lucille Ball, share your memories of favorite shows.

    • National Grouch Day:  15 Read a book with a grouchy character.  Sesame Street has one, so does The Christmas Carol by Charles Dickens, and Christopher Robin and the Hundred Acre Wood.  What are these characters names?  Name others. 

    • Dictionary Day:  16  Name places where you can locate a dictionary.  Race a friend to find a word using different resources.

    • Mulligan Day:  17  What is a mulligan?  What sport uses this term?  When would you like to have a mulligan and why?

    • Reptile Awareness Day:  21  Check out a nonfiction book about reptiles.  Quiz your parents about different ones.

    • United Nations Day:  24 What is the United Nations?  How is the day celebrated?  What other ways could it be recognized?

    • Frankenstein Friday:  26  Who is Frankenstein?  How was he created?  Is he real or fiction?  If you were a scientist working on a cure for a disease, what would be your mission? Why?

    • Make a Difference Day:  27 How can you make a difference today?  Do it.

    • National Forgiveness Day:  27 (Last Saturday) What would our world be like if everyone forgave everybody?  Who will you forgive today?

    • National Chocolates Day:  28 What’s your favorite kind of chocolate with ice cream?  Swirls in ice cream, chocolate chunks in ice cream, crunchy thin coat on a fudge bar, soft chocolate on an ice cream sandwich?  Something else?  Have you ever persuaded someone to try something new?  How did you convince them?

    • National Knock-Knock Jokes Day:  31  Check out books from the library with knock-knock jokes.  Ask your friend(s) to check out copies too.  Take turns telling jokes.  Take a break and play outside and come back and ask more jokes.  Count the jokes as you go.  See how many you tell in a day.

Special Weeks in October:

  • Universal Children’s Week: 1-7 How do you think this week should be celebrated?  Learn about children in other countries.  Many public libraries subscribe to databases about other cultures. 

  • National Newspaper Week: 1-5 Visit the local library and look at the newspaper displays.  What are local titles?  What are national ones?  Spend time reading. 

  • Spinning & Weaving Week:  1-7 Visit a museum with displays about spinning and weaving.  Attend a demonstration, if possible.

  • World Space Week: 4-10 Consider visiting a planetarium, read nonfiction books about space travel, or read biographies about astronauts. 

  • National Storytelling Weekend: 5-7 (1st Full Week) Do you know a storyteller?  If not, check out some library books and read folktales, fairy tales, fables, ghost stories,etc.

Linda M. Andersen copyright 2012
  • Fire Prevention Week: 7-13 Review “stop, drop, and roll.”

  • Great Books Week:  7-13 (1st Full Week) Have everyone in your family list one or two books they call great.  Check out the titles from the public library and takes turns reading a favorite section.  Visit here again on October 7 for a chance to meet a Newbery Award Judge. 

  • National Metric Week:  7-13 (Week always has 10th in it)  Think metric.  Speak metric.  Measure metric.  GO metric!

  • Kids’ Goal Setting Week: 8-12 What goals have you set for yourself?  What are you doing to achieve them?  Ask an adult to help you set goals and monitor your progress.

  • World Rainforest Week:  12-18 Can you imagine spending time in the rainforest?  One of my friends did.  Check out Joy Acey’s blog posts with poems she wrote about her adventures.  See her photos below:  

  •  http://poetryforkidsjoy.blogspot.com/search?q=rainforest

Macaw in Rainforest of Peru. Copyright 2012 Joy Acey
Monkeys in Rainforest of Peru. Copyright 2012 Joy Acey



    • Teen Read Week:  14-20 Name your favorite authors for teens.  Read something by an author new to you.

    • National Character Counts Week: 21-27 Name character traits.  Which are your strengths and which do you need to improve?  How? 

    • National Chemistry Week: 21-27 Do you know someone who is taking chemistry?  Ask questions about the subject.

    • Red Ribbon Week:  21-27 (Last Week)  Why is Red Ribbon Week celebrated?  How do you celebrate it

    • National School Bus Safety Week:  22-26 (4th Week) How do you get to school?  Have you ever ridden a bus?  What rules do you think should be added to keep a bus ride safe?  Who can you discuss this with?

  • Peace, Friendship and Good Will Week:  24-30 Name one way to improve each for the week.  Are you willing to continue doing what worked beyond a week?

  • International Magic Week:  25-31 What is your favorite magic tricks?  Read and practice a magic trick.  Watch a magician’s act.

October is…

  • Apple Month

  • Bat Appreciation Month. What do you appreciate about bats?  Learn one more positive thing about them.

  • Bullying Prevention Month  See October 10.  Think of other activities.

  • Children’s Magazine Month. Read stories or articles from three magazines you don’t subscribe to.  Some magazines may be checked out from the public library.

  • National Bake and Decorate Month Check for parent-child cooking programs.  Some craft stores may offer them.  Public libraries may also.

  • National Book Month. Write a favorite author.  Buy a favorite author’s book.  Attend a favorite author’s book signing.  Consider doing these same things for a debut author such as the one spotlighted here this month:  Donna Earnhardt.

  • National Crime Prevention Month.  Brainstorm terms about crime prevention.  Research careers in this field.

  • National Dental Hygiene Month.  Do you need to replace your toothbrush?  Do you floss every day?

  • National Go on a Field Trip Month. How many school field trips can you recall taking?  Where else would you like to go?

  • National Stamp Collecting Month  Ask about this at your local post office?  Find out what stamps are popular now.

  • Positive Attitude Month.  What could you do this entire month that demonstrates a positive attitude?  Would you be willing to try for two months?

*Thank you Brownie Locks.com for October celebration information.  For more October observances check out:  http://www.brownielocks.com/october.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/october.html(calendar observances)

Coming this week:  Debut Author, Donna

Earnhardt, and Signed Book Giveaway!

Copyright © 2012 Linda Martin Andersen


Posted in Careers, Character Traits, Games, Interviews, Math, Monthly Activities, Reading, Science, Social Studies, Uncategorized, Writing | Tagged: , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , | 11 Comments »

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