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Social Studies

Fascinating Flags: The History and Usage of Maritime Signal Flags

In this one-time class, learners will be introduced to maritime signal flags and how they are used for communication by sailors and seagoing vessels.
Julie Mitchell, Ed.D.
8 total reviews for this teacher
New class
  There are no upcoming classes.
year old learners
US Grade Level
learners per class


Charged upfront
Meets once
45 minute class
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Class Experience

Students will become familiar with the history and significance of maritime signal flags, recognize the signal flag alphabet, and use it to decode secret messages.
As a social studies teacher with thirty years of experience, I have studied flags and used them in various classes to teach about history, geography, and culture. I have acquired a collection of miniature flags that have been both useful and popular during these lessons. Flag projects have always been very successful with students and their enthusiasm and interests in these objects led me create an on-campus Vexillology Club. This club used research, games, and other interactive tasks to introduce students to the study of flags and included national flags, U.S. historic flags, U.S. state flags, maritime flags, and more. For several years, I also served as the trainer and mentor for my school’s flag detail team, a student team who handled the school's daily ceremony of raising and lowering the American flag on campus. In this role, I trained the team in various aspects of flag etiquette and how to determine when the flag should be flown at half-staff. I am also currently a member of the North American Vexillological Association, which proudly boasts that it is “the world’s largest organization of flag enthusiasts and scholars.”
There is no homework.
Learners will need the following materials: • Paper (unlined or lined) • Pencil • Crayons, colored pencils, or markers • Printed coloring sheet (if learners do not have access to a printer, the images can be drawn freehand but there will be limited time for this task)

45 minutes per week in class, and maybe some time outside of class.
Leaners may need assistance to print a copy of the signal flags coloring sheet which will be available 30 minutes prior to class. This page will be used for several class activities. If learners do not have access to a printer, the images can be drawn and colored freehand. However, there will be limited time for the task and learners who do not finish may not be able to reference their work for additional class activities.
•	All-Star Flags (allstarflags.com)
•	Flags of the World (crwflags.com/fotw/flags/)
•	National Weather Service Heritage (vlab.noaa.gov)
•	Naval History and Heritage Command (history.navy.mil)
•	Sea Flags: Flags, Pennants, Ceremonies and Customs of the American Sea Services (seaflags.us) 

•	Flags of the World compiled by Gaby Goldsack
•	International Code of Signals for Visual, Sound, and Radio Communications (United States Edition) published by National Geo-Spatial Intelligence Agency


Julie Mitchell, Ed.D.
Lives in the United States
Experienced, Award-winning Social Studies Teacher
8 total reviews
13 completed classes

About Me

Greetings Learners and Families!  My name is Julie Mitchell and I am so excited to share my passion of teaching social studies with you.  As a 30-year public school educator, I have worked with thousands of amazing students.  While most of my time... 
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