This post is part of a social shopper marketing insight campaign with Pollinate Media Group® and Godspeed Pictures, but all my opinions are my own. #pmedia #wherehopegrowsmovie http://my-disclosur.es/OBsstV
I don’t know about you guys, but for myself and my family I am always on the hunt for uplifting and inspirational movies and television shows to watch. As a mom, I think it is a constant struggle to find things that are appropriate for not only for my kids to watch, but for me to watch as well. In my opinion, so much of what is on the news, in magazines, on TV etc., has negative messages, is derogatory and quite frankly, a little bit depressing sometimes! Over Mother’s Day weekend I had the opportunity to screen a new movie that will be hitting theaters later this week (May 15th) “Where Hope Grows.”
The story follows two main characters that form an unexpected friendship. One dealing with a difficult addiction struggle, the other, a young man with Down Syndrome nick-named Produce, is an example of great hope and love. The relationship in the movie hit home for me. I have had the opportunity to work with children at church who face similar struggles as Produce. What has always struck me about these amazing kids, is the hope and optimism that they ooze. It is impossible to be around these friendly faces and not be drawn in by their warm hugs, great laughter, and love of life. It’s those same qualities that draw Calvin to Produce and helps them form a friendship.
There are several real-life, difficult themes dealt with throughout the movie that invite and encourage you to talk with your kids about them. Some of the themes in the movie are more age appropriate for older children. As I was watching the movie I thought it would be a great way to open up a conversation about bullying and the challenges that kids with special needs face. Each week, we have Monday nights set aside in our family as “family night.” What a perfect opportunity to watch the movie and chat. A fun way to get kids involved is to play some games to help them better understand the difficulties others with physical and other challenges may face on a daily basis. Here are a few ideas for you:
A physical disability occurs when there is an impairment of the bones, joints, muscles, nerves, or misfunctioning spinal cord. A physical disability can affect how one moves, as well as how one speaks or writes. Talk with your family members about some of the things they do everyday that use their “little muscles,” also known as fine motor skills. Include things done with muscles, joints, and bones (eating, writing, drawing, buttoning, shoe tying, teeth brushing, etc.).
Give each family member a piece of paper and pencil. Simulate a partial loss of hand control by writing name and address with the non-dominant hand.
Next, pass out long strips of masking tape and have each person tape their thumbs and first two fingers to the palm of their dominant hand. Try shoe tying, zippers, buttons, cutting, turning pages, etc.
- What made these tasks difficult?
- What kinds of devices could have helped them?
Reading is a skill that is necessary for almost every task in school. When a person doesn’t read well, it’s very difficult to succeed in school no matter how bright or motivated. A reading disability is the most common type of learning disability. Try these activities to see how it would feel to have a reading disability.
Hold a book up to a mirror. Read the book by looking in the mirror.
Hold a book upside-down and read it.
- Did you have trouble reading?
- Did you use your fingers to keep your place?
- How could you help a person with this problem?
- What are some things a person with reading problems could do well?
These fun games will help kids gain more compassion for those they come in contact with that may have physical or learning challenges.
Sometimes those that influence and help shape our lives are the people we least expect. Where Hope Grows is story of hope and redemption that reminds us all of what a difference a little faith and love, even from an unexpected source, can make in our lives. You can check your local theater for availability and show times.
Have a wonderful day!