Since it's almost summer and the homework quotient is low, we think it's time for a fun challenge inspired by today, National Smile Power Day!
The inspiration: Many of our camp plays begin with a concept that Lola finds inspiring, then she writes the story, and the live-action characters bring it to life with the kids ideas interwoven into the story.
The challenge: For National Smile Day, challenge your kids to take on the power of a smile. See if they can write YOU an original story! After they write a few sentences, wherever they get stuck- they get to come to you and YOU get to add a sentence to the story that completely changes it's direction. You can add a character, create a wacky conflict or change something about the scene. For example, drop a Martian into the story by suddenly landing it's rocket ship right down into the scene! Anything fun will create a laugh that makes a kid THINK CREATIVELY! See what they can imagine to help themselves resolve the story, and pass it back to you, even more twisted up like a mess of sparkly spaghetti! If either of you get totally stuck, you still get to win by stoping the story and simply drawing an illustration of the ridiculous situation. Pin it to the fridge with a laugh as your triumphant writing reward and begin another story. You are sure to see the power of your smiles and enjoy quality the time together.
Your young writer can illustrate a story in any fashion they choose. Weather it's writing a newspaper like our kids in Art Venture Island Camp pictured in our collage above or even imagining the characters simply with a text bubble (like a comic book), combining writing with illustration is an excellent way to use writing to work fine motor skills, organization, and visualization!
Smiles bring people together. You can communicate with a smile in every language and culture.
Smiles make others feel good. Smiles make you feel good too. Smiles actually bring down stress levels.
Smiles are easy! It takes fewer muscles to smile than it does to frown.
Smiling is contagious: receiving a sincere smile can brighten a person's day, making them likely to smile back and return the happiness right back!
Happy National Smile Power Day, everybody. We can't wait to see you all this summer for lots more ("thinking") smiles!