American Girl continues to keep up with modern trends in summer 2020. New dolls they debuted have pink, blue and purple hair! Does this new style inspire creativity in your children? Mine too! Featured today on Theresa’s Reviews, I’m sharing tips for getting your children involved in filmmaking and storytelling with their dolls.
To allow creativity to shine, I’ve been hard at work creating the curriculum for a fun virtual summer camp that empowers girls ages 7-10 as filmmakers and storytellers with their Truly Me American Girl Dolls. You can read about my summer camp that helps girl across the country connect here.
You can join me for Truly Me American Girl Writing & Acting Camp Part 2 here! We will be further exploring storytelling and scriptwriting, composition and camera angles, stop motion, green screen, and editing in iMovie.
Since celebrating our uniqueness matters, I’m also giving away Truly Me #86 and #88 to two different lucky winners! Keep reading to the bottom of this post to find out how to enter. One of the entries is to watch, like, and subscribe to this video. It is the sample commercial and movie trailers my daughters created with their dolls, like your children can make in the camp.
Encouraging original storytelling
Creating an original idea can be one of the most challenging parts of storytelling! Before brainstorming, read some of the historical books to get an idea of the genre. These new hairstyles could inspire a fantasy/science fiction genre. Remember that the American Girl books stick closely to the historical fiction genre. You might want to do the same with your story, but embrace your creativity wherever it leads you!
Acting out stories with the dolls
Some creative writing topics to teach include dialogue, voice, descriptive words, and writing with the 5 senses. Since I most recently taught 2nd grade, I have some ideas on how parents can encourage these writing strategies in younger children. As your child plays with the dolls, give positive feedback like:
“Melody did a great job sharing her thoughts aloud with Rebecca! You came up with great ideas for dialogue – that means her ideas that she said out loud. If I would write those, I would put them in quotation marks that look like this.” (Show quotation marks on a whiteboard or notebook paper)
“Your Truly Me shared that she wants to travel to the moon? You gave her such a bold and courageous voice! Voice is when we learn more about a character by what she says and how she says it.”
“When Nanea asked for her hair clip, you described the color so well! Orange is a wonderful descriptive word!”
“Samantha’s dog made a beautiful barking sound to let her know it was happy to see her! If you were writing the sound, what letters could we use? How could we write it using sound words and hearing? As a writer, we write with all 5 senses like sight, sound, smell, taste, and touch.”
If your child is older, you can challenge them more by encouraging them to write their story and share it out loud. Remember that it is their creative project, not yours. Feedback can share three or four positives that they really got right. If you mention something to work on, make it a simple and achievable goal to encourage confidence. As young writers get a bit older, they want to be heard, not to feel lectured or criticized.
Giving over the camera and editing for creative ownership
Today’s generation of girls have all been on camera much more than previous generations. Every time parents snap a photo, there’s pressure that it should be picture-perfect to go on Instagram or Facebook or a family blog.
However it matters that girls are taking creative ownership over technology. Allow them the opportunity to use the camera for taking a video, even it’s just recording on your phone. Show them basic editing on a program as simple as iMovie. With filming and editing, they can take ownership over their own creation. If you’re hesitant about helping them get started with this, these are skills I’m focusing on in my virtual American Girl summer camp. I’d love to have your children join me!
American Girl Truly Me Doll Giveaway
Enter to win either the Truly Me #86 doll or the Truly Me #88 doll! I will pick two winners! a Rafflecopter giveaway