While you may know me primarily as a Star Wars fangirl, my other world is a life of service. I’m a teacher, and I am always looking for ways to hook my students while keeping myself entertained. Luckily, I’ve found ways to personally connect Star Wars to the lessons I teach, especially in reading groups.
I wrote a post for the School Library Journal’s blog “Connect the Pop” to share how I use Star Wars to help me teach the concept of the Hero’s Journey in elementary school. Since writing and sharing that post, I’ve discovered many other people using their love for Star Wars (and other fandoms) to enhance their lessons.
If you teach in primary grades in elementary school, you’ve probably heard about Flat Stanley. Some of my friends got the joy of hosting a Flat Stanley from my sons’ classes over the years. Flat Stanley is a little boy who gets flattened, and then is able to ship himself around the world in an envelope. Teachers love it, because we can get students to decorate their own and send them to all sorts of exotic locales. Flat Stanley’s hosts can send back photos and mementos from his trip, helping kids learn about geography.
Can you imagine the delighted reactions of the students who sent out THIS Flat Stanley? He traveled to Rancho Obi-Wan and the photos and description of his trip ended up on the official Star Wars Blog. Adorable.
There is even an entire website called Star Wars in the Classroom that is dedicated to using Star Wars to help teach a wide variety of topics. They have information tying into US Westward Expansion, Mythology, and they add more all the time.
Do you remember School House Rock? Check out this version of the “Interjections” song with Star Wars visuals.
For those who are worried about using this video in school due to the final interjection in the video – I checked with the creator and he pointed me toward a cleaned up version. You’re welcome.
My students are more engaged when I’m excited about the way I’m teaching them, and I’ve gotten several students to begin their own journey to Star Wars fandom along the way. One even expressed her thanks at the end of a school year by presenting me with the Yoda quote “Mind what you have learned – save you it can”. Yes, it’s good to be a fangirl teacher.
Until next week… may the Force be with you – and your Padawan.