Uncommon Connection


There is a difference between “social distancing” and “physical distancing”. And it’s not just a matter of semantics! We need each other now, so connecting socially (if only digitally) can vastly improve our attitudes and relationships.

Today, we adventure into connection. We hope these uncommon ways to connect with each other will inspire your own creative connections this week.  

Stay safe, and stay connected!

Share your Design Challenge creations with us on Facebook and Instagram or email us at dailyadventures@tomtodideas.org. We can’t wait to see what you create!

Subscribe to receive Daily Adventures in your inbox! Adventure on.            ~TomTod Team


Why differentiate between social distancing and physical distancing?

How can we connect to one another in creative and unexpected ways?


Christmas lights are back this March to brighten spirits during social distancing

On March 16, Mike Griffin tweeted “My youngest son was bored today and said, ‘can we put Christmas lights on our tree outside to cheer us up?’ Great idea buddy. Lights are on tonight as a sign of hope!”


Watch + Learn

Missing sports as a family? Check out the MarbleLympics and cheer for your favorite team as a family.

Family Adventure-tivity

Something that comes out of “7 ways parents and educators can improve kids’ middle school experience” that we at TomTod try to live into is the idea of free play. “Free play is ‘how they learn to deal with frustration, make friends, read people, hold themselves together . . . and get to feel joy…’”

Try to find time to play as a family today. Bust out a board game, challenge your kids to a game of Euchre, or try learning one of their favorite video games. This kind of free play time as a family can be so helpful in connecting with those you care most about.


Design Challenge

Make your own marble course and race marbles together as a family! This could be indoors or outdoors and is only limited by your creativity! Share your creations with us on Facebook and Instagram!

Explore More

Think marbles are just a kids toy? Check out this magical musical Marble Machine (4:32)


Online Learning Toolkit

As our students are navigating change, adjusting to online learning, and supporting their families during this public health crisis, our students’ Social and Emotional Learning (SEL) skills are being tested every day. This week, we will bring you resources on teaching the 5 Core Competencies of SEL. Missed our last Daily Adventure? Find all of our SEL resources at tomtodideas.org. 

Today, we adventure into building connection through Social Awareness.

Social awareness is the ability of our students to empathize with others from diverse backgrounds and understand social and ethical norms for behavior. Building social awareness is about connecting students to a wider world and guiding them to discover empathy and understanding for others. Warning: This can be awkward for middle schoolers! So remember, like learning to walk, it’s okay that learning to empathize is a little clumsy and awkward.

Introduce Social Awareness

Start a conversation with your students about social awareness. Watch students share why social awareness is important for them and then have your students reflect on their social awareness skills. 

Build Social Awareness

Our students are constantly traveling to different worlds. (And, no, we don’t mean via daydreaming). Students spend their days switching from their school world, to their home world, and to their online world. Now that the school world is on pause, teaching our students to bring empathy into their online world is more important than ever. 

Here are 3 ways to help students build empathy online. Our favorite is teaching empathy through storytelling like StoryCorp’s Student Voices Project. Students can listen to stories from across our country and the world. Then they can record their own podcasts to tell their story.

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Share your ideas and any photos or videos of your design challenge with us on Facebook and Instagram or email us at DailyAdventures@tomtodideas.org.

TomTod’s Daily Adventures are free and available to anyone to use. If you find them valuable and have the means to do so, consider donating to support this work.

Thank you and Adventure on!

– The TomTod Team

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