Brandon Brown has been on the road for a whole week already!  As he has travels from classroom to classroom, Brandon is learning a lot about the lives of students around the world. When he began this journey, he assumed that everyone grew up the same as he did in Colorado but he is starting to learn that life around the world is very different. He’s discovered that the world offers a great deal of intrigue and excitement, as well as a  a variety of Global Challenges.

Brandon thinks it is important to learn more about what it is like to grow up in another country, regardless of the level of class. From novice level studies of food and nutrition or global health care to intermediate level discussions about diversity, economic challenges, and the environment, Brandon wants to see how classrooms around the country are building a foundation in the AP themes in your classroom? More importantly, he wants to see what you are doing to build a global community that cares about humanity. 

Some ideas for global studies include: using the novel Frida Kahlo with late novice students to discuss healthcare in Frida’s time and now, using the novel Vol des Oiseaux to educate students about the global issue of wildlife poaching and smuggling, using the novel Esperanza with late novices to discuss the economic and political challenges the family faced in Guatemala, or even using the novel Vida y muerte en la Mara Salvatrucha to discuss how war led to the formation of this dangerous gang.

Kristy Placido describes how she uses stations to begin her unit of study on the Dirty War in Argentina. She gets her students thinking and asking questions that will later help them as the delve into the novel Guerra Sucia by Nathaniel Kirby. Sharon Birch shared several blog posts on how she teaches Robo en la noche. She focuses on connecting students to the music and culture of the novel’s setting to generate interest and foster acquisition. Sharon was inspired by the blog of Cynthia Hitz! Carrie Toth shares how she uses infographics to familiarize students with Frida’s crippling exposure to polio. What do all of these activities have in common? They help students make connections between themselves and the world at large. They are connecting to their role in tackling Global Challenges!

How are you addressing Global Challenges in YOUR classroom?

Enter the contest by printing out Flat Brandon, coloring his clothing  and  accessorizing his wardrobe  to reflect the AP theme your class is targeting. You may incorporate Brandon into a new “setting” by adding a new background if you like! You may even hold your own Flat Brandon contest in your classroom and select one as your official entry! Your submission should incorporate the printout of Flat Brandon AND visually communicate proficiency-mindedness through one of the 6 AP themes:

1. Beauty and Aesthetics
2.  Global Challenges
3. Science and Technology
4. Contemporary Life
5. Families and Communities
6. Personal and Public Identities

Once Brandon is decorated, either send a single (digital) photograph or a collage of him participating in the unit of study so we can watch him learn and grow in global and communicative competence. Tell us in 1-2 sentences what Brandon has been up to in your classroom. We are looking for images that capture Brandon acquiring language and becoming globally minded through communicative activities that are creative, innovative, and enjoyable! Remember, the path to proficiency should be pleasant!

Share images on Twitter or Instagram with the hashtag #flatBrandonCIPeek and tag @FluencyMatters. You may also enter on Facebook by posting your photo on the Fluency Matters Facebook page with the hashtag #flatBrandonCIPeek. Limit ONE entry per teacher, please! The contest deadline is October 24 and we will announce our winner on October 31. The winner will receive a class subscription to the Fluency Matters’ Flip Book E-course for the novel of their choice! Up to 150 students will have full access to the E-course for 5 months (limited to current availability)! All Flip Book E-Courses include an online novel, audiobook, pre- and post-reading activities, and comprehension quizzes.

View full contest terms and conditions here.

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