Students in Kathryn Cassel’s first grade class at Carter Lake Elementary School on McChord Air Force Base spent the year working on the Flat Stanley Project to strengthen reading, writing and social studies skills. One student, Connor Covel, sent his Flat Stanley to Afghanistan where the paper character “participated” in 15 combat missions and was awarded the Bronze Star.
Students made paper Flat Stanleys and began a journal to record his travels. Then, Flat Stanley was sent to family and friends, where he was treated as a guest. During Flat Stanley’s journey, students plotted his travels on a world map and shared their completed journals with their classmates.
Earl Covel, Connor’s father, filled his son’s journal with pictures and stories from Flat Stanley’s travels around Afghanistan and even dressed the character in Air Force combat gear.
“My Flat Stanley traveled the farthest,” said Connor. “It was neat to see the pictures and share them with my friends. The Bronze Star is really cool.”
Flat Stanley was created in 1995 by a Canadian third grade teacher to encourage students to write in journals.