For more than 20 years, the Flat Stanley Project has connected over 6,500 students and classrooms in nearly 50 countries throughout the world annually. Inspired by a 1964 children’s book, the Project has participants sending out “flat” visitors, created by students, through the mail (or digitally, as Flat Stanley has joined the 21st century via his own app).
Kids then talk about, track, and write about their flat character’s journey and adventures. Similar to a pen-pal activity, Flat Stanley is actually much more enriching as students don’t have to wonder where to begin or what to write about. The sender and the recipient already have a mutual friend, Flat Stanley. Writing and learning becomes easier, flows naturally, and tends to be more creative.
This summer, Summit Academy is joining the trend that everyone from Jay Leno to President Barack Obama has taken part in by encouraging students to spend the summer participating in the Flat Stanley Project. This month we will show you how to get started on the Project while the next couple months will see other ways to have educational fun with your favorite two-dimensional traveler.
Create Your Own Summit Academy Flat Stanley
- To begin the Flat Stanley Project, first register your student on flatstanley.com.
- Next, download your own Flat Stanley. There’s even a Flat Ella for girls! Once you’ve downloaded your template, allow your students to color and accessorize as they see fit.
- Once your Stanley (or Ella) is ready, log in and check out the Flat Stanley List of Participants to see where your student might like to send their Flat Stanley; who might be sending a Flat Stanley to you; or what classroom, in what country, you would like to arrange an exchange with (Note: you must have registered and be logged in to view the List of Participants). It’s a good idea to contact your recipient by email at this stage to confirm the exchange.
- When Flat Stanley is ready for his journey, be sure to include the sender’s name, return address, and email on back. You might want to document Stanley’s starting point in your classroom or home, with a picture or a journal entry or a biography about your own flat character.
- And like that, off Stanley goes! Mail him (or email him via the Flat Stanley app) off on his or her journey. All sorts of good teaching activities can be involved at this stage: geography, with locations of Stanley’s travels and destinations; math, in distances and times; narrative and writing, with journal entries and biographies, and on and on.
- Track Stanley’s journey as he makes his way to your chosen destination. And then wait with bated breath for acknowledgement of his arrival from your exchange partner classroom or friends.
Share Stanley All Summer!
Flat Stanley is about connecting students across the world, but he is also a mascot for travel, geography, and fun. That’s why we are asking Summit students to share their summer vacation with Flat Stanley. Even if you aren’t participating in the Flat Stanley Project, we want to see your summer vacation with the iconic wanderer!
Sources include FlatStanley.com, harpercollinschildrens.com