Flat Friends Project

A Traveling Doll’s Global Journey

2011-2012


Project Coordinator

Julie Simmons (@BJacketsFan)


Goals of the Project:
  • to share information about one’s own community and culture with students from other cultures and communities
  • to learn about places around the world by monitoring the adventures of flat friends’ visits to participating classrooms
  • to develop an understanding of maps and to identify other places on a map


Register Here: http://globalclassroom2011-12.wikispaces.com/Sign+Up


Duration: November 2011 – June 2012
Teachers are welcome to look at the Flat Stanley Exchange Contact Directories (shared by email), and contact possible partners immediately. If it is best for you to wait until later in the year to participate; however, feel free to hold off until you and your students are ready for this aspect of The Global Classroom Project.
Please record on the Google Doc if you have agreed to partner with another class (by highlighting your entries in a colour of your choice).
We want to make sure that all classrooms have the opportunity to connect when they wish.



Important Note!
Schools around the world operate on different schedules. For example, Australia/New Zealand schools finish their school year in mid December and resume in February.
It is important that you communicate with possible partner schools so that you exchange dolls within the time constraints of their school year.



How the project works:
Each classroom is responsible for sending at least ONE flat friend to another participating school. It is up to each classroom teacher to make the connections between classrooms.
Given the length of this project, it is possible that a teacher might choose to send multiple flat friends to a variety of classrooms around the world – or to create just one flat doll and send that doll off on multiple adventures.

Although the original concept for this project is based on the book Flat Stanley and the related project, it is not necessary to read the book prior to participation in the Flat Friends Project.
The traveling doll should represent the participant’s school, city, state, or country – this is not a Flat Stanley, but rather a representative of the home class.
Participants have the option of sending a 3D stuffed representative of their school, city, state, or country, but they need to understand if the host school is unable to return the mascot.



Mailing Options
Each doll will be mailed or sent electronically from the participant’s school to another participating classroom. That host classroom is then responsible for either returning the flat doll, or contacting the home classroom and arranging to share the doll’s adventures in some other way.
An information sheet should accompany each flat friend mailing. It is essential that this page include the school name and address, teacher’s name and e-mail, and grade level of the home school students.
In addition, students might decide to include information about their favorites (games, books, foods, etc.), details about their school (size, grade levels, how they get to school, etc.), and information about their city/state/country.


Getting Students Involved

It is expected that students will be actively involved in this project.
Here are some possible ways to include students:

  • Students could work together to decorate the flat dolls – brainstorming ways to make the doll represent their school, city, state, or country.
  • Students could use a flip-cam to videotape the doll in different places around their school.
  • Students might take turns hosting the flat doll at their house for a night. They could then write about the doll’s adventures at their house.
  • Students could make a VoiceThread to share with other Flat Friend participants.
  • Students might blog about their adventures hosting a flat friend.
  • Students could participate in a Skype call between the home classroom and the host classroom. Students from both settings can prepare questions to be answered by their partner class.
  • Students could keep a map and color in the places visited by their class traveling doll. This could also be done electronically using TravBuddy http://www.travbuddy.com/world-travel-map or MapMe http://www.mapme.com/or some other site.
  • This project is open to students at all grade levels – Pre-K – 12, so teachers and students can involve their students in the ways that are most appropriate for their students’ ages. Keep in mind, as with all aspects of The Global Classroom Project, all work will be authentic and child created.


To see what some of our teachers are already doing with Flat Stanley / Flat Kids Exchanges, please visit their wikis!

Room 14, Auckland New Zealand

Third Grade Bunnies, Romania