Fill in the ___ Friday
I’ve got a brand new feature that I’ve been working on in my brain for a little while. This is a story I wrote with help from my gal Friday, so it seemed only appropriate to share it on a Friday.
This is a fill-in-the-blank story, similar to Mad Libs. In contrast, though, you’re expected to fill in your story as you go instead of picking all your nonsense answers ahead of time. Part of the idea here is to use the framework of the story to help inspire some kids who are shy about using their imagination, while helping constrain the kids who like to let their imaginations run completely wild (nothing wrong with that!) by allowing them to pick options that make “sense.”
Y’all are still fully welcome to use “poop” as much as necessary!
So read through with your kids, and let their imagination help guide you through the story. Below I’ve included the version my gal Friday and I wrote together and a link to a downloadable version with blanks included.
Magic School #1
Our story begins with a wizard named Francine. Francine’s favorite thing about being a wizard is that she can fly on a broom. One day while flying, Francine sees a mouse down on the ground. It must be the biggest mouse ever to be able to see it from her broom.
“It must be magical,” Francine thinks. She flies down to get a closer look and sees the mouse’s tail is caught under a nearby rock. “You poor thing,” Francine says.
She pushes the rock, but it doesn’t budge. She tries to use her magic. “Abracadabra pick up rock. Abracadabra help the mouse,” she says as she pushes as hard as she can. It still barely moves!
The mouse squeaks.
“Hmm,” she says, “if I can’t use magic, then I’ll have to use science!” Francine wedges one end of a stick under the rock, and, using a rock as a fulcrum,* she pushes hard on the stick. The lever makes Francine much stronger than she is on her own.
It works as good as magic! The rock lifts enough for the mouse to get its tail free and it scurries out, but not away. He stands up on two legs like a person.
“Thank you,” the mouse says.
“I knew you were magic!” Francine says. “Why didn’t you talk before?” she asks.
“It’s that,” the mouse, says pointing to the rock. “It’s no ordinary rock. I was studying it.”
“Why?” Francine asks.
“It has anti-magic powers,” the mouse says. “That’s why your magic words didn’t work when you pushed on it, and it’s why I couldn’t talk. Now, since you freed me, I’d like to grant you a wish. Something you can’t do with your own magic. What would you like?”
Francine thinks for a moment. “I’ve always wanted a fox, but my mom won’t let me have a pet.”
The mouse tilts his head like a nod. “I can give you the power to summon a fox that needs no food or special care. He will come to your aid when you need him, but you should know that wizards have familiars, not pets.”
The mouse speaks some magic words. “Here, fox, here, fox,” he says in a high pitched voice.
Francine feels a tingling all over her body and then repeats the words. “Here, fox, here, fox,” she says in the same high-pitched voice as the mouse. Mists begin to swirl around her then come together to form a yellow fox with a faint glow.
Francine gasps. “I’ll call you Fenner,” she says, petting her familiar on his head, which is surprisingly solid.
“Good good,” the mouse says. “Now, if you’ll excuse me, I need to confer with some friends on the matter of the rock. Say the words anytime you want to call Fenner to you.”
With that, the mouse scrambles off into the nearby woods and Francine is left with her fox. She yells after the mouse, “Maybe I’ll see you again!” but gets no response.
“Oh, shoot! I must be late by now!” Francine picks up her broom and turns to Fenner. “I’ll definitely see you later,” she says, and pats the fox on his head one more time before she flies away to her first day at Magic School.
Find the pdf with blanks on the NerdishMom.com Google Drive.
*In case your kids ask what a fulcrum and lever are, check out all these awesome experiments here at Inventors of Tomorrow!
How’d it go?
Share your fill-ins here! Did you have any particularly good combinations? Hit me up in the comments or on Discord!