Dancing as a reminder of our bigger selves courtesy of Matt Harding

While this may be a bit off topic for a children's literature and reading education website, I can't help but post about the latest video from Matt Harding. I have followed Mr. Harding's simple rise to fame for years and was sorely disappointed to have missed dancing with him in Miami (I had to work that day!).

In case you don't know his story...

Mr. Harding and a buddy were on a walkabout when his buddy asked him to do his goofy dance move at various landmarks whilst his buddy filmed it. The video went a bit viral and Mr. Harding gained a sponsor to fund another trip. In the subsequent videos he figured out that it was more fun to dance with others than alone. The 2008 video was great (look it up here!) with inspirational music and smiling global faces tugging at our hearts.

The 2012 video shows that the twenty-something who went on a walkabout with a buddy has turned into a 35 year old grown-up with the gained insight of his years and travels. If there is a poster child for the "ONE simple idea" campaign, Matt Harding is that guy. I dare you not to smile!

Some quick teaching thoughts:
  • Have students research one of the places where Matt went to dance. HERE is a link to his website with the places listed.
  • Have students research various forms of traditional dance
  • Discuss how/why the video makes us smile.
  • Write about something that surprised you in the video. 
  • What are some universal ways that humans express their emotions, feelings and joy?
  • Look at a the various charities Matt supports.  What is it about Mr. Harding that leads you to believe he would support global charities? Why is it important, as a global member of planet earth, to give back to our fellow humans? Are there ways, other than financial, that we can help others across the planet? Give examples.
  • Here is his FAQ page in case your students have some questions.
And, yes, YES.... I know Mr. Harding has a curse word in his website title. Use it as a teachable moment.

 Do you have any additional ideas? Please add them in the comments section :-)

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 © 2007-2012 Cheryl Vanatti for www.ReadingRumpus.com