Tuesday, June 21, 2011

Disneyland Edutainment Part 3 of 10 - Fantasyland ~ Reprised

Disneyland Edutainment Part 3 of 10 - Fantasyland ~ Reprised

What can you learn from Fantasy!

It’s Teaching Disney Tuesday!

Let’s march straight down Main Street and onto Fantasyland!! What is there to learn there? It’s all Fantasy and silliness right? No it is not!

Let’s start out with the little kids and move on up. For the tiny tots that are just learning to count and or identify colors and shapes have fun! How many steps are there between the Carrousel and Dumbo? How many rows of Horses or how many Horses are on the Carrousel and how many Dumbos are flying around? How many steps are between Dumbo and Mr. Toad? As they get older and more able start adding. Add the steps between the Carrousel and Dumbo and Dumbo and Mr. Toad. Subtraction works the same way. Get creative! Count people in line or anything you see multiples of! When they get ready go onto multiplication. If there are 12 Dumbos and 2 people ride in each Dumbo how many people can ride at the same time? Division? If 24 people can ride Dumbo at one time and you are the 48th person in line in how many times will the ride load before you get on?

Fantasyland encourages reading and literature. Read the original Peter Pan, Alice in Wonderland (when they are old enough) and other stories the movies and rides are based on. Read it to them as bedtime fair or have them read it for themselves if they can. After reading the books watch the Disney movie. While at the park ride the ride. Talk about, or have your older child write about when they get home how the story was told differently in each version. What is the moral of the story? Does each version bring out the same moral? Is there more than one point that can be taken away from the story? For example in Peter Pan you can take away keep a childlike heart and enjoy life but know when to grow up and you can do anything when you believe. How would they translate the original to a movie or ride? What parts would they keep and leave out. You will be amazed what happens at home while watching movies later. My daughter came up with a crazy great idea for a ride based on the Emperor’s New Groove! Just wish Disney took suggestions. Suggestions . . . Don’t do more than one story at a time. Don’t have them write the report at the park unless they are excited and want to do it while taking a break or waiting for something. Let them enjoy the moment and think about it for later. Maybe do a little talking about it to help it sink in.

When they read the book or watch the movie they may see something we consider insensitive to a people group today. A great example is the “What makes the Red Man Red” song in Peter Pan. It is a very stereotypical attitude for the time the movie was made and the story was written. We must show our children these things and not hide the fact that people did not always treat people fairly. It also is a time to talk about how people have changed and should change how they treat and talk about the people around them. Should Disney take that song out of future releases of the movie? NO! Keep it in! Not only is it a funny song that can be look at as just a silly moment, it can be a teachable moment between a parent and child.

Now for my favorite subject History! Many things to talk about here but I’ll just stick to the main points and let you fill it in. Look at the buildings. They are from different times and places as are the stories they represent. Talk about how people lived during those times and in those places. Look at the Castle. Beautiful building!! Talk about why the drawbridge and small slits. Why not big windows people could look out of? What was the feudal system like, how did most people live then. Why the moat? Drop by the Harold Shop and talk about family crests and what they meant and why they were so important to people and gave them identity. How would it feel to walk around, ride a horse and fight in a suit of armor?

      Another thing to teach is that Fantasy is an important part of life. Without Fantasy there is no Imagination. Without Imagination there are no dreams. Without dreams new technology and thoughts would not be possible. In all Fantasy there is some Reality. In all Reality there is some Fantasy.

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