Friday, July 25, 2008

Unplugged Project - Flat

I'll bet I'm not the only Mama to come up with a Flat Stanley project for this week's Unplugged Project theme! But I might win an award for the most prep time...I got a little obsessed.

I had heard of Flat Stanley before, but a quick web search gave me more information than I could even process! The original book published in 1964 is a short story about a kid who gets flattened by a falling bulletin board...it's not all bad, though. He can do fun things like slide under the door and get himself mailed around the world. Some very fun people came up with the idea of encouraging kids to make their own Flat Stanleys and mailing them around the world to promote literacy and friendship. We didn't have time to mail him around the world, but we did make our own Stanley from the template found here. I printed him, colored him, and (knowing my daughter) laminated him...then the fun began.

I introduced Stanley to E while she was doing a craft project, and she was mildly interested. She looked him over, got him involved in the craft, and it seemed to be going well. Then I thought we could pose him around the house and yard, and I would take pictures. That worked up to a point, but E seemed more interested in crumpling him up than setting him out for a photo shoot. We worked through it, and I knew she had warmed up to him when she turned to me and said, "Mama? Tell Flat Stanley I'm pooping."

After I had some good pics of Stanley, I showed them to E and asked her what he was doing in each one. She liked looking at the pics on my computer, but didn't seem to want to tell a story. She made a few comments which I wrote down, and then I used them to create a little book about Flat Stanley's visit. This was where the time involved got WAY out of control. Microsoft Word hates me. It always has...and so when I tried to do a "book fold" page layout, I could actually hear Bill Gates laughing. I could not get it to print right, and I REFUSED to just print it in pieces and cut and paste manually. For goodness sakes, if "book fold" doesn't work, then why is it an option, I ask you!?

In the end, I compromised. Turns out there's a bug in my program that many a user has tried to combat unsuccessfully. So I printed the book on half sheets of card stock and glued them together into a heavy (though not toddler proof!) book. This morning, Daddy read the book to E and she pretended to be interested. Note to self: Do not try to read E a book after a long conversation about candy. When Daddy got to the last page, E said, "More! I want more pum-rockas!" "What do you want, honey?" asked Daddy. "Pop Rocks," I answered. "She wants more Pop Rocks." Turns out that the adventures of a flat, laminated boy cannot compete with strawberry flavored, carbonated sugar.

11 comments:

STRETCHING said...
This comment has been removed by the author.
STRETCHING said...

M~ Thanks for all of the fun and varied activities you do for E and us.

Gottfredsen said...

I love flat Stanley. Did you know that there is flat stanley groups in the yahoo. One for homeschoolers and one for public schoolers. It is a lot of fun.

Robyn said...

Your post made me laugh. I remember my little sis doing a Flat Stanley project when she was younger.
Great idea!

Ashley said...

I'd never even heard of Flat Stanley. Looks really fun. We'll have to give it a try.

Karen B said...

We were Flat Stanley Unpluggers this week, too. I love that you posed him around the house and yard.

Nature Mama said...

Flat stanley is such a great project!! We participated in a round robin with him last year and the kids loved taking him all over and posing for photos *grin*

Clare said...

Flat Stanley was what first came to mind for me too! I thought of sending him to my daughter's Uncle Andy in Montana who did Flat Stanley in first grade. I might still do it but my daughter is only 18months so she may not appreciate it now. But I would! :)

I hope you had fun as it seems your daughter just wanted candy! I love your little book!

Evenspor said...

That's awsome. Flat Stanley looks like a lot of fun. We'll have to learn more about him too.

Bobbie said...

I did a flat stanley too!! love yours...maybe i should have colored one too!!! I wasnt sure if it was just an idea I knew... good to see that others have heard of it too...

yours is so pretty

Michie said...

I thought of Flat Stanley first too, even though I'd never read the book. You definitely get an A for effort with your project! Sometimes with my daughter, I think she isn't interested in something, and a few weeks later she'll ask to do it or see it out of the blue. That might happen with E too. Great post!

 
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