What Makes You Laugh?

My favorite sound in the world is my daughter’s laugh. My family tends to laugh until we can’t speak, or until tears are running down our cheeks. I love that my daughter has developed this trait already. Whether she is playing by herself, reading a book, watching a TV show or listening to us make funny voices, her shrieking laughter can make any day better. I am always looking for ways to make her laugh, and today’s book gave us lots of opportunities to giggle together.

What’s Making Walter C. Laugh? was written by Ginny Jordan. This book asks the reader what they think could be making the main character, Walter, laugh. The pages are full of suggestions that are ridiculous and hilarious. From penguins flying upside down to dolphins riding a bicycle, the colorful illustrations and inventive situations are sure to have kids laughing. The author leaves the ending open, allowing kids the opportunity to imagine silly scenarios of their own. I was excited to have the opportunity to talk to the author about her book as well as her inspiration.

The Inspiration behind Walter C.

What was your inspiration behind writing this book?
My father and son had endless hours of fun reading together. Then they would go off and play imagination games using the characters from the book they had just read. It was very special and I wanted to re-create that happiness, closeness and fun for other kids to feel and experience. A phrase I love to use to describe what I was imagining while I was writing the book is playful interaction.

How does your background as a teacher inspire your writing?
As a teacher I quickly saw that all kids want to feel as if they are contributing, that their ideas and thoughts matter. Kids sometimes need to know there can be more than one right answer, or many right answers, or simply that their answer is valued.

What do you hope kids will take away from this book?
Lots of giggles and laughs. Room for their imaginations to soar. Silly dialogue with whomever reads it to them. Happiness unplugged and with a book. Fun!

Why did you decide to leave the ending open?
To encourage conversation and talking. To share ideas. To feel free because their answer is a good one. To foster many answers. To spark play, and drawing and writing. To be able to do it over and over with different endings. Because I thought it would be more fun.

Encouraging kids to be creative

There are so many fun ways to use this book as a springboard for silly conversations as well as imaginative play. For each of these activities, you will need to write out the animals and actions from the book onto paper circles or scraps of paper. You can also add other animals or actions that they think will be funny. Create a pile for the animal cards as well as a pile for the action cards.

Act it Out – Have kids pick one animal and one action from the basket and act it out. You could play this like charades and have one child act it out while everyone else has to guess. You could also call out the animal and the action and everyone do their best impressions! Don’t forget to have props out to help also. Be creative! We didn’t have a unicycle like the unicorns in the book, but balancing on a beach ball can have a similar effect! 

Story Starters – Encourage kids to use their imagination while creating a funny story based on their picks out of the two piles. Ask them questions about the two cards to get them started and then let their imaginations run wild! 

Funny Pictures – Have kids create their own illustrations to go along with the book. Have them pick one prompt out of each pile and draw how they think it would look.

All of these activities encourage kids to use their imaginations and create funny scenarios on their own. Imagine the hours of laughter you can get by embracing the silly side of life while sharing a fun book together!

50 Comments

  • Aryn Hinton

    August 14, 2017 at 7:36 am Reply

    This looks like such a cute story! I love how it seems to help kids use their imagination, we will have to look for it on our next library trip.

    • Vicki

      August 14, 2017 at 12:48 pm Reply

      I love encouraging my daughter to use her imagination, and this book was a great way to do that!

  • Akyn Chim

    August 14, 2017 at 7:59 am Reply

    Nice review. Good idea for the little ones to get entertained while learning.

    • Vicki

      August 14, 2017 at 12:48 pm Reply

      I love anything that helps kids to learn while having fun!

  • Angela Kim

    August 14, 2017 at 10:34 am Reply

    This is such great points! My one year old son loves when I point out pictures and make sounds.

    • Vicki

      August 14, 2017 at 12:51 pm Reply

      It’s so much fun to bring it to life while reading aloud!

  • Lauren | also known as mama

    August 14, 2017 at 10:34 am Reply

    Cute! We love to laugh (who doesn’t, really?). You always give the best suggestions!

    • Vicki

      August 14, 2017 at 12:51 pm Reply

      Aw, thank you so much! I love introducing new books to other families who love to read!

  • Jessica Peresta

    August 14, 2017 at 11:16 am Reply

    Awe I love this! I love books that make kids laugh and are fun to read.

    • Vicki

      August 14, 2017 at 12:53 pm Reply

      I do too! Some of my favorites growing up were books that made me laugh out loud.

  • Amanda Maxwell

    August 14, 2017 at 3:10 pm Reply

    Love the imaginative play component! So great for our little ones. Hear my little guy laugh is one of the best things!!

    • Vicki

      August 14, 2017 at 7:50 pm Reply

      I agree! I could listen to my daughter laugh all day!

  • Kiley D. Smith

    August 14, 2017 at 4:19 pm Reply

    What a fun (and funny) book! Thank you for sharing it!

  • Amelia Furman

    August 14, 2017 at 8:16 pm Reply

    We’ll have to check this book out! And thanks for sharing the fun activities to help build imagination. Can’t wait to try them with my boys.

    • Vicki

      August 14, 2017 at 11:38 pm Reply

      I hope you have fun with them!

  • Emily

    August 14, 2017 at 8:58 pm Reply

    Adding this to our library list! Nothing I love more than giggling with my kiddos.

    • Vicki

      August 14, 2017 at 11:40 pm Reply

      Right? It’s is the best stress reliever and my favorite activity!

  • Kenya

    August 14, 2017 at 9:26 pm Reply

    Thanks for sharing I’m going to have to try and purchase this for my little one …he hasn’t seemed to take interest in learning Maybe this will help

    • Vicki

      August 14, 2017 at 11:40 pm Reply

      Laughing is a great first step!

  • Justine @ Little Dove

    August 15, 2017 at 1:26 am Reply

    Oh my goodness, this sounds like such a cute book! My kiddos would love it, thanks for the recommendation!

    • Vicki

      August 15, 2017 at 12:20 pm Reply

      I hope they have fun with it!

  • justine

    August 15, 2017 at 6:45 am Reply

    I love this book! such a great read and the kids love it!

    • Vicki

      August 15, 2017 at 12:21 pm Reply

      It is a great way to get kids laughing and using their imaginations!

  • Paula @ I'm Busy Being Awesome

    August 15, 2017 at 6:56 am Reply

    This looks like such a great book – I love the ones that encourage imagination and creativity 🙂

    • Vicki

      August 15, 2017 at 12:22 pm Reply

      I do too! It’s so important to encourage kids to use their imaginations!

  • Bindy

    August 15, 2017 at 7:14 am Reply

    Oh this book sounds great! Who doesn’t love a laugh!?

    • Vicki

      August 15, 2017 at 12:22 pm Reply

      We could all use a reason to laugh!

  • Emily Young

    August 15, 2017 at 7:17 am Reply

    This looks adorable!!! I love to hear my little one giggle, we will have to check this out! Thanks for sharing!

    • Vicki

      August 15, 2017 at 12:23 pm Reply

      I hope you enjoy it!

  • Shalene R

    August 15, 2017 at 7:19 am Reply

    Great book review! I’m raising my kids to become readers and I also allow them to become creative after they’ve read a book. Sometimes I ask them to role play or to draw a scenario from the book 🙂

    • Vicki

      August 15, 2017 at 12:24 pm Reply

      That is fantastic! Allowing kids to be creative with the books they read is a great way to make the books more special to them!

  • Vanessa

    August 15, 2017 at 7:44 am Reply

    Useful review and it’s a good idea to leave the end open 😉 thanks

  • Cassie |White Sands and Cool Breezes

    August 15, 2017 at 8:10 am Reply

    This book sounds great! I love listening to my little guy laugh too, and all the different activities sounds awesome. I’m excited to get the book!!!

    • Vicki

      August 15, 2017 at 12:24 pm Reply

      I’m so glad! I hope you enjoy it!

  • jehava

    August 15, 2017 at 12:23 pm Reply

    This looks so great! Great tips too!

  • April Kitchens

    August 15, 2017 at 2:22 pm Reply

    Great interview! This book looks so fun to read.

    • Vicki

      August 15, 2017 at 3:20 pm Reply

      I love books that encourage creativity!

  • Kelsey

    August 15, 2017 at 5:23 pm Reply

    Such great tips! I Loved reading books growing up! xo

  • Jessica Bradshaw

    August 15, 2017 at 7:02 pm Reply

    This is so cute! What a great way to foster creativity!

    • Vicki

      August 15, 2017 at 9:17 pm Reply

      I am a big fan of books that encourage kids to think creatively!

  • Jazz

    August 16, 2017 at 9:03 am Reply

    This looks like a great book for my nephew. Thanks for sharing!

    • Vicki

      August 16, 2017 at 12:43 pm Reply

      I hope he enjoys it!

  • Sissy Johnson

    August 16, 2017 at 12:32 pm Reply

    I also love the sound of my children’s laughter 🙂 – their giggles can normally bring a smile to my face . This post is really great and definitely that I will put on our bucket list of fun things to do 😀 Thanks so much for sharing it!

    • Vicki

      August 16, 2017 at 12:45 pm Reply

      It is the best sound in the world. I hope you have as much fun imagining together as we did!

  • Jennifer Corter

    August 17, 2017 at 5:37 am Reply

    This looks like a GREAT book! My son is such a giggler! He would enjoy this book!

    • Vicki

      August 17, 2017 at 12:28 pm Reply

      There is nothing better than losing yourself in some laughter with your kids!

  • Mae

    August 17, 2017 at 10:28 pm Reply

    What a neat post! We are always exploring new books for the little one and this sounds like a great title to check out. I love how it explores feelings and helps them articulate them. It’s always tough for kids sometimes to share how they are feeling.

    Mae | http://www.thegospelofbeauty.org

    • Vicki

      August 18, 2017 at 1:43 pm Reply

      I agree! Teaching kids about feelings can be really difficult, but so important!

  • April Kusewicz

    August 19, 2017 at 1:18 am Reply

    This is a great idea..ill be doing this on my preschooler

    • Vicki

      August 19, 2017 at 12:43 pm Reply

      I hope you have fun with it!

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