Flat Stanley has been a favorite in elementary schools since I was young. Back when I read the story, we just talked about it in class. When my own kids read it, they made a paper Stanley and sent it to my mom in Montana so that she could take pictures of him in situ. Grandma sent back 4 x 6 pictures of Flat Stanley in a cow pasture, in the snow with mountains, etc. Lots of work for even a doting grandparent!
This year, my second grade team decided it was time to take Flat Stanley into the digital realm. They decided they want to have the kids create a Travel Journal for Flat Stanley (FS) as he visited a US State. Here’s what we came up with:
1. I colored in a paper version of FS, and scanned him into the computer (image to the left). Yes, he is very caucasian, because I made him to look like me. If I had known that he would have been used by the entire school, I would have made him more…well…racially neutral.
2. I then had to cut it out digitally so that he could be inserted into other photos without having the white background show. I used the free photo editor http://www.pixlr.com and this video for help. The resulting image had to be a .png file to maintain the transparency around his body.
3. The teachers then created a QR code for each state where FS could visit (naturally, they didn’t do all 50 this year!). They plugged a URL for a website with lots of good pictures into QRStuff.com.
4. After sharing the FS .png image with the second grade Google Drive, I went around to all the iPads the kids would be using and put the image into their Photos.
5. Students then used the iPads to scan the QR codes, save images of places off the websites, and then made a travel journal using the Book Creator app, inserting FS into the pictures on each page. Their digital story could then be shared with other students, or exported in an email to parents.
What ways have you updated a children’s (teachers’?) classic to be a part of the digital universe?