10 Exciting Ideas for Family Fun Month

Just in case you didn’t know, August is Family Fun Month! While our team at Drama Kids is sure that your family has already been having a ton of fun this month, here are 10 family-friendly ideas worth trying out!

    1. Make a family music video.We all watch various music videos on YouTube and have seen those adorable homemade music videos go viral, so why not try your hand at it? Pick out a song that the whole family loves, coordinate your outfits, choreograph some dance moves and go to town! Don’t forget to share that video with us on Facebook!
    2. Put on a backyard play.Of course some theatrical offerings would pop up…….we are Drama Kids International after all! Your backyard could host a neighborhood play, with your family acting out parts of your favorite movies or even a special children’s book!
    3. Camp out in the backyard.There’s no need to pack up the car and drive to a campsite when your backyard is just as accessible. Perhaps you have a non-nature lover in the family or young children who might not be ready for the big campout yet—your backyard is a great place to introduce them to the outdoors. The indoor plumbing accessibility is just an added bonus!
    4. Go on a scavenger hunt.Plan a scavenger hunt through your neighborhood or perhaps a nearby park. Give your children a list of things to find, whether they are actual items or just landmarks. Then enjoy watching and helping them discover everything on the list!
    5. Host a dance party.This is probably self-explanatory, but bust out the tunes and get down with your bad selves! There’s nothing wrong with holding a family dance party, especially if it gives you a chance to show off those awesome moves to your kids!
    6. Enjoy a lazy Saturday.We’re often so busy that sometimes the most fun you can have is sleeping in on a Saturday then staying in your pajamas for the day. Everyone deserves a break now and then!
    7. Go star gazing.You can either do this in your backyard or if your star view is drowned out by city lights, drive a few miles out into “the country” and enjoy some quality night skies.
    8. Pack up a picnic.Does your family have a favorite park or spot to visit? Why not pack up some snacks or a meal and go enjoy it there?!
    9. Have an ice cream party.Pick out your favorite ice cream and enjoy it with your family. For a more interactive experience, perhaps try your hand at making your own ice cream!
    10. Have a movie marathon.This is perfect if rainy weather ruins a weekend. Break out some of your favorite childhood movies and share them with your kids.

We hope that your August has already been filled with tons of family fun and that it continues to be an excellent Family Fun Month! Remember, if your kids have a flair for the dramatics, our drama classes for kids are a great way for them to hone those skills and learn new ones!

Helpful Back-to-School Tips for Parents

With summer break getting closer to its end, the time to prepare your child for the new school year is fast-approaching. While our team at Drama Kids International offers drama programs for kids all year long, we still appreciate and understand the prep work that goes into getting them ready for a new school year. We hope that these tips prove beneficial to you as the back-to-school season gears up!

1. Get back on a normal sleep schedule. Summertime isn’t necessarily known as a time for keeping up with traditional sleep schedules. To get your child back on track for the upcoming school year, be sure to bring back school bedtimes one to two weeks before school actually gets started.

2. Visit educational attractions. You may have been doing this throughout the summer, but by visiting cultural attractions such as museums, you will be helping your kids get their brain back into educational mode.

3. Visit the school. If your child will be attending a new school, whether it’s due to a move or just from aging out of elementary or middle school, it can be very beneficial to visit the school so that it becomes more familiar. Schools always have registration and orientation days, which is also a perfect time to meet your child’s teacher(s).

4. Get a checkup. Taking your kids in for back-to-school physicals is a great way to keep them in tip-top shape. Since schools require children be up-to-date on immunizations, you can get that out of the way as well.

5. Read to your child. Hopefully this is already a habit in your home, but if it isn’t, perhaps it’s time to get started! Reading with your kids for just 20 minutes a day has been proven to make a difference in their overall education! If your child is not yet reading on his/her own, read to them. Otherwise, have them read out loud to you each day.

6. Set up a morning routine. By establishing a morning routine slightly before the start of school, it will make the actual school year get off to an excellent start.

7. Find activities for after school. Once school gets started, there will be a multitude of after-school activities for your child to become involved in. Decide which ones your child wants to do most, so that you can plan accordingly. If your child is dramatically inclined, or simply has an interest in participating in a fun, exciting activity where they can express themselves each week, don’t forget to check out the programs that Drama Kids offers! Drama Kids classes are carefully designed to be fun and challenging, while helping each child to develop public speaking and communication skills.

We hope that you enjoy the rest of summer break and that the upcoming back-to-school season doesn’t prove too stressful for the family! Remember, if it’s drama classes for kids you’re looking for, Drama Kids International is the place to go!

Be Wary of These Apps

Being able to enjoy some much-needed downtime is just one of the perks of summer, but our team at Drama Kids International wants to help ensure that your kids are using their time for good!

If your kids, tweens or teens have their own cell phones, more than likely, their world revolves around games, social media and various apps. Let’s face it, cell phones have practically become a new appendage—and the younger generation is far more technologically savvy than many of us are! With so many excellent apps available at the touch of a screen, there are still some apps that you should be looking out for on your child’s phone.

1. Kik. This is a free messaging app where the messages don’t show up as texts. Usernames are used, and it is possible for strangers to begin communicating with your child through Kik. Sadly, this app has already had a tragic outcome for a young girl that has raised awareness throughout the country.

2. WhatsApp. Another messaging app cracks our list, this time one that “has done for messaging what Skype did for video and voice calls.” WhatsApp allows users to communicate via messaging and share photos and videos in small groups or private messages. It is encrypted, but there are valid security concerns.

3. Snapchat. We hate to break it to you, but this app isn’t one that’s just being used for the fun face filters. While the photos have a timer or “self-destruct,” those pictures posted and sent on this app can still be saved via screenshot. Sexting and harassment are constant concerns with Snapchat. Another concern is the new feature, “snap map,” which can share your child’s location.

4. Whisper. This is an online community where users can interact anonymously. Some of the content posted can be extremely personal and often inappropriate for those under the age of 18.

5. YouNow. This app is just another in a long list of livestreaming video apps. Users can create and watch live broadcasts, but unfortunately, they can also accidentally share personal information with viewers they do not know.

We know that you’re already monitoring what your kids participate in with their cell phone, but remember, there are always new “bad apps” that pop up daily. Taking the time to communicate the dangers of certain apps and how to be smart with an online presence to your kids is very beneficial!

If you don’t already use a monitoring app on your child’s phone, TeenSafe is a great option. Available for iPhone and Android, this app allows you to securely monitor texts, phone calls, location, and web history.

Your kids are going to enjoy their downtime to the fullest over the summer, but remember, idle hands often lead to no good! Give them something other than their cell phone to focus on by taking advantage of the fun, educational and engaging summer drama programs that Drama Kids International has to offer!

8 Enjoyable Summer Activities for Children and Families

 

Summer is in full swing and that means one thing—you’re more than likely continuing to search for fun summer activities to keep the kids active and entertained.

It should come as no surprise that we at Drama Kids International know a thing or two about how to keep children occupied with fun activities. Since we want summer to be enjoyable for the whole family, here are 8 excellent ideas to try out!

1. Learn a new skill together. Have you ever wanted to take up painting or learn a musical instrument? Chances are, your child would enjoy picking up a new skill, too. Check out your local community center and see what they’re offering—perhaps a family paint night is on the schedule.

2. Join a summer reading club. Do you have avid readers in your home? Keep on encouraging your bookworms by enrolling them in a summer reading club. Their nights or rainy days can be occupied with books, which keeps their minds and imaginations active. Your local library can be a great resource and more than likely has a book club your child can join!

3. Visit the theatre. No, we’re not talking about going to the movies! Your little drama enthusiast will love a trip to see a show—and you’ll be helping to support community theatre!

4. Have a garage sale. Want to teach your child the value of a dollar while ridding your home of items that are no longer needed? A garage sale (or yard sale, depending on where you’re from) is a great way to make some extra cash. Your child can help price and sell some of his or her old items and then will have a little spending money for the summer.

5. Rearrange the furniture. Have your kids been wanting to redo their rooms? Let them try out their hand at interior decorating by planning a new look for their bedroom. It can always be changed back if it doesn’t work out.

6. Utilize local parks. Your area has built those parks for a reason, so why not go out and enjoy them?

7. Visit a historic site nearby. Practically every town has some sort of historic site either in it or nearby. Take a little trip to visit it and enjoy the history—it can also serve as a fun learning activity!

8. Check out a drama camp for kids. OK, this one happens to be our favorite on the list! Not only do we offer year-round drama programs for children, but we also have many super fun AND developmental summer drama camps kids and parents alike rave about. Each camp ends with an end-of-week performance! Through our website, you can find a Drama Kids location near you and then learn what they’re offering this summer.

We hope that this list of 8 summer activities can help make the summer break an excellent one for you and your family. Remember, for even more drama-based ideas, you can reach out to your local Drama Kids location.

How Participation in the Arts Boosts Academic Achievement

how participation in arts

If you’ve ever wondered what benefits your child is getting through Drama Kids International programs, have we got the blog for you!

We pride ourselves on having drama programs for children ages 3–17 that are designed to help with acting skills, public speaking skills, creative thinking skills, leadership skills, networking and social skills, self confidence, and self-esteem, as well as teaching kids to have a positive approach to life. What’s even better are the extra benefits that Drama Kids can gain through their participation in the arts.

According to a National Educational Longitudinal Survey (NELS), there are ways that youth involved in arts programs are achieving more than students in the national sample.

The NELS found that youth in arts are 25 percent more likely to report feeling satisfied with themselves, 23 percent more likely to say they can do things as well as most other people can, and 23 percent more likely to feel they can make plans and successfully work from them.

The arts are not just helping the younger generation feel more satisfied with themselves and confident, but they are also encouraging further education. Youth in arts programs are 31 percent more likely to say that they plan to continue education after high school.

The academic achievements were further expanded on in the NELS. Being involved in arts programs resulted in youth being eight times more likely to receive a community service award and four and a half times more likely to win an award for writing an essay or poem. They are also three times more likely to win an award for school attendance, twice as likely to win an award for academic achievement and four times more likely to participate in a science or math fair.

We can’t wait to show you the “dramatic” difference Drama Kids can make in your kids’ life, whether it be building up their drama skills or boosting their self-esteem!

Think before you act - stop bullying

Drama Kids Launches Its New ACT UP! Anti-Bullying Initiative

Bullying remains the most prevalent form of violence in our society today. According to government statistics [www.stopbullying.gov], almost 30 percent of students in grades 6-12 experience bullying in one form or another, including cyberbullying. Equally alarming, about the same number of kids admit to doing the bullying themselves.

Drama Kids, has always felt a responsibility to do our part to help kids build the confidence they need to stand up for themselves and for others. We know that confidence is a skill that kids can develop and strengthen through practice and reinforcement. Through our drama programs, we’ve seen how our students stretch their comfort zones and learn how to step forward, speak up and express their ideas, and respect others. But we believe we can do more.

Drama Kids is proud to roll out our newest initiative – ACT UP! to Stop Bullying. This series of anti-bullying workshops is designed for 3rd through 5th graders and utilizes a variety of student participatory drama activities and group discussions to teach children about the various forms of bullying and the ways in which students can properly respond.

 

Specifically, the workshops are designed to help students:

  • Understand the many and different forms of bullying, from physical and verbal attacks to more subtle forms like purposefully excluding someone from a group
  • See the different roles they can play when bullying occurs, from silent participant to observer to preventer
  • Reinforce that their negative feelings about bullying are very common and shared with their peers
  • Learn how to model good behavior
  • Role play to learn how to identify bullying and practice safe and effective interventions

 

According to the Education Development Center, empathy activities like role playing are among some of the most critical social skills we can teach our kids. “Children are less likely to hurt and more likely to help someone if they can imagine themselves in that person’s place and can share that person’s thoughts and feelings.”[i]

 

Using our developmental drama approach, we are proud to do our part in helping kids gain the confidence and skills they need to not just prevent but stand up to bullying. The workshops are available as a stand-alone program or as an add-on option to our traditional drama programs. We also look forward to introducing the workshops as a week-long camp program next summer.

 

For more information, contact us at 866-809-1055, or info@dramakids.com.

[i] Preventing Bullying, 2013, Education Development Center, www.promoteprevent.org

 

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