NEW RIEGEL - The story of Stanley Lambchop is the idea behind one New Riegel second-grade class' lesson on letter-writing.
The second-grade class of Jacquie Wise began a unit on letter-writing and decided to take on The Flat Stanley Project. "Flat Stanley" is a children's book by Jeff Brown first published in Great Britain in 1968.
Stanley is a little boy who was flattened by a bulletin board. Stanley realized he could slide under doors, mail himself across the country in an envelope and more.
Wise advised her students to write letters to family and friends across the country and world and send "flat" versions of themselves. Wherever the letters went, the recipients were then to send back items from where they lived, like information from their state or country. Some even sent back "flat" versions of themselves.
Letters were returned from all across the country - Arizona, California, Colorado, New Jersey, New York, Pennsylvania, Texas - and one even went to the United Kingdom.
Seventeen students sent letters and so far 16 have received something in return, Wise said.
Second-grader Reese Goshe sent his letter to a cousin in the United Kingdom. In return, he received different types of currency, pictures of where they took Reese's "flat" caricature and a guide on how to speak Welsh.
"It's exciting to see what other languages people speak," Goshe said.
Makenzy Shaferly sent her letter to her aunt, who is a fourth-grade teacher in New Jersey. That class sent back letters and caricatures. From them, New Riegel students learned about New Jersey Gov. Chris Christie, the history of salt-water taffy and that the state is known for blueberries.
"I enjoyed just getting the letters back," Shaferly said.
Wise said when the students return from Christmas break, they plan to write the New Jersey class back.
"Letter-writing is important to keep as a skill especially with all the technology we have now," Wise said. "Some people forget how to formally write a letter. It's an important skill not to lose."