picture 4.pngSpecial to South Florida Times

Frustrated that her second and third-grade students showed little interest in the old-fashioned ways of the world, such as using the telephone or writing and mailing a letter, Michelle Genoune came up with a lesson plan to develop such skills and expose them to America.

“I decided to call it “Our Travels Across the U.S.,” said Genoune, a teacher at the Hollywood campus of the Beacon Hill Preparatory School.

“I picked this project because I felt through participating in this assignment the students would learn many things about the different states, understand the importance of personal contact and social communication skills like hand-writing a thank you letter and mailing it, as well as  communication and social skills that they are lacking,” she said.

Here's how it’ll work: Each students will send a teddy bear to one person he or she knows in another state who will take a picture with it and send the picture and information about the state back to the student.

The bear will be sent to someone else in another state, repeating the process until the bear has gone to five people in five states by next Spring.

“I'm really excited about our project,” said second-grader Antonio Thompson. It shows me that other people care about me and want to help me learn.”

That’s the general idea, said Principal Jamie Magloire, principal of the Hollywood-based school.

“This is a great opportunity for our students to think outside the box and to learn many lessons through the process,” Magloire said. “We're looking forward to seeing the end results.”

Photo:   Garreth Leverity-Packard