“I light my candle from their torches.”
— Robert Burton
“The adventure of life is to learn. The purpose of life is to grow. The nature of life is to change. The challenge of life is to overcome. The essence of life is to care. The opportunity of life is to serve. The secret of life is to dare. The spice of life is to befriend. The beauty of life is to give.”
— William Arthur Ward
On May 22, Ross’s Extended Comments Blog turned TWO! Instead of receiving gifts for this celebration, Ross gave every class that follows his blog a chance to win a stuffie by trying to name the koala and the kangaroo pictured above! We all had until May 29th at 11:59 pm.
This morning, Mrs. Renton made a funny face … smirking like a cat that had swallowed the canary … because she was hiding a great BIG secret! We were ALL asking what the SMIRK was for … and SHE made us GUESS! It DIDN’T take us very long … and when we discovered that Ross had chosen our suggestion for the kangaroo and it’s baby … we were OVER the MOON!
Ross … we KNEW this was going to be a LONG comment … and we REALLY wanted to add some pictures … so … we have STOLEN a page from YOUR book and we are writing an EXTENDED Comment BLOG Post! Tee hee hee!
We were ECSTATIC when we heard that the Grade Fours helped you pick our names for the kangaroo and its baby … BOXER and ROO! We are SO excited that Boxer and Roo are coming to Canada to live with US and the future Grade Threes. We SURE hope that THEY are excited TOO! We hope they don’t have a bumpy ride!
The other classes had GREAT suggestions for names ALSO! We thought Eucy was great because Koalas eat eucalyptus leaves! Didge was also awesome because it is Australian. About 1/3 of our class had heard of the didgeridoo … so we looked it up on Google! A didgeridoo is much LARGER than we thought … and we LOVED the sound of it. Mrs. Renton has a CD called Outback … it has the didgeridoo on it … so we will spend some time listening to it because we really liked the sound.
Three classes contributed! The third class that gave name suggestions didn’t win the koala or the kangaroo. We loved their suggestions and we LOVED how you decided to send Pepper Possum along to live with them. You’re right! He would have been VERY lonely without Boxer, Roo and Eucy!
Ross, we have learned SO much with you this past year! We decided to … ADOPT A BILBY for YOU! We RACKED our BRAINS trying to think of something special that WE could do for YOU because you have been our special teacher on the other side of the world! In one of your video links the zoo keeper said that, instead of giving her family chocolates or other presents, she adopts bilbies for them! All the money from the adoption goes toward saving bilbies. Why is THIS important? Because, through you, we have discovered that bilbies are ENDANGERED in Australia!
This makes us VERY sad … but … because of you we have discovered a way to HELP … and a way to do something SPECIAL for YOU … our OTHER teacher!
Unlike Boxer and Roo, the bilby we have adopted for you DOESN’T get to come and LIVE with you!!! But, you WILL get an Animal pack that will contain:
- Membership Certificate
- Animal Fact Sheet
- Personalised Letter
- WILD LIFE Sydney Zoo Discount Pass
- Colour Photo
And … our gift to you will ALSO help to protect AND restore the bilby population!
June 24, 2014
An AWESOME package arrived for us yesterday! Ross, we had SO much fun opening our package and discovering all the treasures inside! We want you to know that Boxer, Roo and all the other special treasures arrived safely! We promise to take VERY good care of EVERYTHING! We ADORED the photo of the bilby we adopted for you and have our fingers crossed for ALL bilbies! Thank you SO much for being SUCH an inspiration for us this year – you have truly helped to stretch our learning in SO many ways! Here is a little slideshow of us discovering just what was INSIDE our awesome package:
Thank you for EVERYTHING you have done for us this year, Ross … and for taking GOOD care of the Battalion Bloggers, and their learning, for the past THREE years!
Do not follow where the path may lead. Go instead where there is no path and leave a trail. Only those who will risk going too far can possibly find out how far one can go.
On May 27th, we had a final Skype with Natalie while she is still in Peru. It’s hard to believe just HOW much sharing can be done in a 60 minute Skype … you would BE surprised! Natalie filled us in with all her Q’enqo adventures since our LAST Skype with her. She has been a VERY busy girl! Since our LAST conversation with her she has managed to write several reports for Mosqoy, travel back and forth into Q’enqo to work on renovations, teach EACH class LESSONS on how to use the library and paint a BEAUTIFUL mural in the LIBRARY! Phew … we’re tired just LISTENING to everything she has managed to accomplish in her short time there!
Together with the community, Natalie has managed to strengthen the security of the library windows so that no more books will go missing. They have build a partition wall so that the books stay safe and the eating area remains separate from the precious books. Coordinating the renovations was VERY tricky work because not many people in Q’enqo have the skills to do the technical work required for welding and wiring. The school director and the community President are SO excited about the library that they have offered to help Mosqoy fund some of the work that has been happening with the library! Ya HOO!
Natalie has managed to buy MORE books … which is a GOOD thing because at the end of LAST year there were about 120 books in the library. NOW … there are only about 58 books. GULP! MANY books went missing because the people in the community just aren’t used to having them around. They LOVE them … they are precious … but no one seems to know where the books have gone.
So … GOOD news … they have hired a part-time librarian. His name is Santiago! His wife is a teacher at the Q’enqo school … and he is ALSO a teacher! His job will be to work with the community, help them use the books … and help to keep the books safe! Because the homes in Q’enqo have dirt floors and cook stoves INSIDE, everyone has decided that the books will be most safe and best enjoyed within the library. Santiago will work with the classes and the teachers while he is there for the next seven months. They redid the electrical wiring in the library so now they will even be able to keep it open in the evening sometimes so the high school students can come in and enjoy the library. There are LOTS of POWER outages, though, because Q’enqo is HIGH in the Andes Mountains.
What follows are SOME of our highlights and reflections on ANOTHER amazing Skype:
“Yes! We are Skyping with Natalie! Woo hoo! I can’t wait to learn more about the Q’enqo library! I wonder if it has changed or not! Skype time, class … or … should I say “classes”! All five classes were in the classroom with us. It was squishy but it was worth it! Natalie was talking lots about the Q’enqo library but what really stood out to me was this wonderful fact about the library. Natalie painted a big blue tree with no leaves and some kids put their hand prints on the tree like they were leaves and printed their names under their handprints. I had an awesome time having the last EVER Skype with her because she is getting a new job in Victoria.” ~Kennedy
“I was right … we got to Skype with Natalie again! But, this is the last Skype with Natalie! I wish we could Skype again with her. Natalie said to us that she painted a tree stem that is blue on the wall … so kids put their hand in paint and put it on the tree so it’s a hand tree! The kids put their name under their handprint! I wish I could do that! I didn’t get to ask a question … I was scared when Natalie told us that TWO books when missing. Two boys said they did it.” ~Catherine
“Wahhh! It was the last Skype with Natalie. We learned so much from the Q’enqo journey. Two boys in Q’enqo took a book and then Natalie asked them and then they gave the book back. There are 75 families in the community. After the Skype my teacher showed us pictures of the library from when Natalie got there. Natalie is going back to Victoria and getting another job.” ~Ethan
“Today we had another Skype with Natalie! I liked when she said that they eat soup for breakfast! I love soup. I wish that my mom could make soup for breakfast … and … I LOVE potatoes! It was the last Skype with her. Will we see Natalie again? I forgot to tell you they put the potatoes into the soup! I really want to try it! YUM!” ~Zyne
“Oh my GLOB … YES! Another Skype with … drum roll, please … Miss NATALIE Sands! By the way, BEST Skype EVER! I LOVED it! Anyways, yesterday, Mrs. Renton told my class that we are going to Skype again! Wow! I LOVE my life! Guess what? I got to ask my question! Yay! My question was, “how many kids have you seen go into the library?” ~Amy
“”Hi! We just Skyped with Natalie and I’m actually sort of sad because it was our LAST SKYPE! I had lots of highlights and some of them were: getting to see her again, watching people ask questions, having lots of fun and seeing Natalie’s beautiful smile! There were all five classes in the Skype and all of the classes got to ask two questions each. Some of the questions were:
- What is the currency in Peru?
- Have any changes been made in the library?
- What was your favourite part of your internship?
There were many more questions.” ~Claire
“Hurray! Today we had another Skype with Natalie … but it was her last Skype. She is going to get a different job. Someone asked Natalie how many people live in Q’enqo. Natalie said about 400 people. I thought there was only 125 people. She also mentioned that some books were missing! My highlights were learning and finding out that Natalie got more books for the Q’enqo library. My lowlight was that it was Natalie’s final Skype.” ~Isaac
‘Another Skype with Natalie? Yay! We’re going to Skype with Natalie! Here are some of my highlights: we got to learn new facts. We got to ask questions. Here are my lowlights: the Skype had to end because it was recess. I wish we could Skype again!” ~Kelly
“On May 27th we did our last Skype with Natalie. I was really excited because the last time when the class did a Skype with Natalie, I was at a dentist appointment. I was REALLY disappointed that day. But, I am better now! my highlight was when Natalie told us that the library was different. I don’t have a lowlight!” ~Hannah
“Really, Natalie? I said in my mind. Do you have to go back to Victoria? I can’t believe this is your last Skype with us because you’re going back to Victoria. I will never forget what you said to us. I hope you Skype with Ashli when you return back to Victoria. These words are for you, Natalie. Last time we Skyped with you you said that two kids pulled out books because they were very excited to know how to use the library. That made me laugh. I wish that we could Skype again because you impressed the whole class so much!” ~Lane
“Yay! We got to Skype with Natalie again! It is her last few days in Peru. It will be our last day to Skype with Natalie. She told us that they lost two books but they found them. Two boys took them and left them in their backpacks. They were only seven years old. The boys were really excited. They just wanted to read the books because they were so exciting! My highlight is that we get to Skype with Natalie. My lowlight is that Natalie is leaving to go back to Victoria. I hope we get to Skype with Natalie again!” ~Aya
“Today was our last Skype with Natalie. We got to ask her questions. Did you know that there are around 50 students at the Q’enqo school? Two books were missing from the library and they found them in some backpacks. The students didn’t know that they had to sign out the books. They are learning how to use a library. I know how to use a library.” ~Sam
“Bye, everyone was saying to Natalie, when the Skype was ending! Today we had a Skype with Natalie. It was the last one because now she is going back to Victoria. Natalie answered a few more of our questions like:
- does it have electricity in the library?
- what work do people do there?
There were lots MORE questions. The answer to “what do people do for work” is that lots of people farm. Some people mine and because the government has a project to build a soccer stadium some people get to work to build that too. I hope the next kids that will be in Grade Three have the experience to Skype with Natalie at LEAST once!” ~Martin
“Yay, I thought, because it was the last Skype with Natalie this year. She told us that when she got to the library she counted all the books. There were only about 50 books. I was relieved when she told us that she got about 50 more books. Also, I was very happy when she said when she was gone the builders started repairing the window frames. When Natalie was working a few men came and started to build the wall to separate the dining hall and the library! Natalie painted a tree on the library wall and everybody dipped their hands into paint and then put their hands on the tree to make leaves. Then the kids signed below their leaves. I wish I could put my handprint there.” ~Daniel
“Today we Skyped with Natalie! It was so fun, even though I didn’t get to ask a question … but … I asked one last time! Natalie started by telling some of her stories, like this one. She said, when she came back to Q’enqo, she counted all the books and there were two missing! So, she went around asking kids then two kids gave her the books back. They, she had to talk with the two kids. But, they just didn’t know how to use a library. Then, it was time to ask some questions. One person, who is my bff at school, asked what animals live in the jungle. Natalie said she didn’t know. Another kids who had crutches said something that I couldn’t quite make out. Well, this was the last Skype with Natalie. I will never forget this day.” ~Kale
“Noo! It CAN’T be the last Skype with Natalie. all five of the classes came. Natalie said that the people of Q’enqo used the library as a cafeteria for the students to eat in … so they are building a wall to separate the books and the food and drinks because those two things do NOT go well together. two little boys went into the library and took two books. The students did not know how to use a library because it is so new. Natalie talked to all the teachers and students to see if someone had the books and the two boys gave her the books back. My highlights are: seeing Natalie again. If I said ALL my highlights, we would be here FOREVER! I have ONE lowlight … that the Skype we had was the last Skype. It is very sad. I REALLY wish we could Skype with her again!” ~Jenna
“Today we Skyped with Natalie for the last time. Natalie is going to go back to Victoria and is going to do another job. When Natalie first got to Q’enqo she coloured a blue tree then the classes coloured their hands and put the handprints on the tree. It is like leaves are growing on it. It is really sad that Natalie is going back to Canada. I hope at least to get one more Skype with Mosqoy!” ~Melvin
“Hi, blog readers! I’m back to tell you about our last Skype with Natalie. Guess what? Natalie was sick. She said she didn’t know what she would do with the Q’enqo library when she goes back to Victoria. My highlight was getting to say goodbye to Natalie. Some of our questions were: what kinds of foods do they have in Q’enqo? What are they going to do with the Q’enqo library when you go back to Victoria? I’ll never forget our Skype with Natalie.” ~Noam
“Yeah! We are having a Skype again! Today we had a Skype with Natalie! Some of my highlights are: hearing about Natalie’s adventures, getting answers from our wonders, getting more wonders, and a bunch more! But, I have one lowlight: Natalie won’t be able to work with Q’enqo anymore! She does not have that much money anymore, so she is going to Victoria to get a full time job. But, still, the Skype was really fun. I’m hoping we can connect with Natalie again and maybe she could leave a comment on the blog! That would be SO cool! I hope we see her again!” ~Peng Peng
“…we all have an obligation as citizens of this earth to leave the world a healthier, cleaner, and better place for our children and future generations.”
~ Blythe Danner
Never believe that a few caring people can’t change the world. For, indeed, that’s all who ever have.
We have been blessed with SO many wonderful Skypes with the amazing Mosqoy crew this year! On Monday we had another SURPRISE Skype with NATALIE! Since our LAST Skype … just a few DAYS ago, she’s already been to the library in Q’enqo FOUR times! She was LUCKY, though, because she was able to catch a ride with the teachers who live in Cusco and work in Q’enqo. When the weather is good, they are able to travel by taxi. Sounds GREAT … but, it’s STILL a 1 1/2 hour TRIP … and THAT’S when the ROADS are good!
Since we last spoke with Natalie and Ashli, Natalie has had a big meeting with the community members in Q’enqo to find out what their hopes and needs are for our special library. They’ve had to take SEVERAL steps back … to revisit what a library is for. We know that the parents are VERY interested and concerned about their childrens’ literacy and math education. They want their children to learn these skills in Spanish because there are MANY more opportunities if you can count, add and subtract, and read and write in Spanish for children living in Peru. We already know that most of the adults in the Q’enqo community are illiterate. They want MORE for their children.
Natalie told us about how they need to renovate a little room for the part-time librarian to stay in. The library will operate differently than a library runs in Canada. They have decided that the books will need to STAY in the library. Why, you ask? Because the children in this community are unable to do homework after school. They are VERY busy helping their families with chores on the family farms in order to meet their BASIC needs.
Natalie was heading back up to Q’enqo right after our Skype to spend a few more days working with the community. They will hire a librarian to work two days a week to do lessons with the children during the day. On these days, they also hope to keep the library open in the evening so that high school students will be able to use it as a place to study, if they have the time. During her next few days in Q’enqo, Natalie plans to work with the teachers with some “training days”. She will spend an hour with each class, and their teachers, talking about how to use the books and how to take good care of them.
The EXCITING part? When Natalie showed up for her community meeting, she was nervous … but the kids were peeking in the windows … and RUNNING into the library … jumping, excited and GRABBING books to read them! One little boy was SO proud to show Natalie the Spanish words he could recognize in one of the books he was looking at! What follows are our individual highlights:
“What? In the middle of NOWHERE … a Skype with Natalie! The only person who knew was Jenna! And, well, the rest of the class had no idea! Some of our questions were:
- During the rainy season what happens to the Q’enqo library?
- Do they have a part-time librarian?
- What are your biggest hopes and DREAMS for the library?
- Do more GIRLS or more BOYS use the library?
- Are they still scared to ruin the books?
- Do ADULTS ever use the library?
Over the past three years of building the library all the grade threes have made fundraisers and that money goes into the bank and then they take the money and use it for more books and renovations. The money that they have raised over the four years … they think they can buy 50 more books! How do you get to Q’enqo you ask? Well first you fly to Cusco Peru and then you take a taxi to Corao, which is 30 minutes away. And, then you take a taxi up to Q’enqo, which is an hour. So, it takes about 1:30 minutes to get to Q’enqo. If you were to walk to Q’enqo from Cusco, then it would take about 4 hours. Did you know that Natalie went to Q’enqo four times in two weeks? That’s a lot of times that she went to Q’enqo in two weeks! I HOPE and WISH that we can Skype with Natalie again before the end of the year!” ~Claire
“What a great surprise Skype with Natalie! It was an AWESOME Skype! My highlight was that we got to see Natalie but my favourite thing she said was that some people have to go to work every day but have to go from Cusco to Q’enqo or from Q’enqo to Cusco. But, they have to take a cab straight up a mountain and that takes about one and a half to two hours. If it is rainy season you can’t go up there at all. One of the questions were how many books are in the library. The answer was 150 books in the Q’enqo library! I had a great time Skyping with Natalie. Thanks to here, I know WAY more than I did before the Skype!” ~Kennedy
“We had a surprise Skype with Natalie because this Skype was postponed from last week! Yipee! Natalie was texting us on Skype! ‘Call me when you are ready!’ “Okay!’ ‘So, Natalie, we have heard that you have been working down at the library!’ ‘Ya! So, I’ve been down at the library four times in two weeks!’ ‘Wow! That’s amazing!What was the one moment you were very proud of during the library process?’ ‘Well, when we were building it I was so happy to see kids peeking into the window!’ My highlight was definitely asking my question! I hope we can Skype again!” ~Cohen
Wow! Really! Natalie you inspired me with all your information about the library in Q’enqo Peru. I love the part where you talked about how the librarian will have a room for an office and also to sleep in. I hope you enjoy travelling to Q’enqo for two months! I wish I went to Peru because your information inspired the class. If we saw you in real life we would ask a million more questions! We can’t wait to Skype with you again!” ~Lane
“Guess what? I was right! We got to Skype with Natalie again! But, this time it was only with Natalie. This Skype was different because we usually Skype after recess. Today she was in her room. She taught us a new word in Quechua … it is a small town: Corao. It’s cool because when you say the “r” you have to roll your tongue! Natalie was lucky because instead of hiking she mostly took a cab to Q’enqo. But, she likes to hike too. She said she saw a lot of guinea pigs. She said it tastes good like chicken! At first she had no idea why there were guinea pigs running on the floor. In Peru guinea pigs are actually a delicacy! Natalie was surprised when she saw a beautiful scarf made by a ten year old little girl in Peru. We will probably Skype again!” ~Catherine
“That’s cool! I never knew that people don’t use the library. I was shocked! Did you know that guinea pig is small after you cook it? Guinea pig is a very special rare treat in Peru. In Q’enqo they are going to learn how to use the library books. We raised over 1000 dollars for Q’enqo this year. It would be amazing if our class got to go to Peru. One of my highlights was just seeing Natalie. One of the best parts was hearing about the library. I can’t wait until we Skype again!” ~Ethan
“Today we had another Skype with Natalie and she said she was in Q’enqo for four days. My favourite part was when I got to ask a question. I asked: how to you get heavy things from Cusco to Q’enqo. She said that she straps them to the roof of the taxi! She gets free rides with the teachers because they get a special deal as teachers to go from Cusco to Q’enqo every day. I can’t wait to have another Skype with Natalie and Ashli.” ~Zyne
“Today we had a Skype with Natalie. Someone asked “do more boys or girls go to the library?” Natalie answered: more girls visit the library. Another person asked “what are your biggest hopes for the library?” In reply, Natalie explained that her biggest hope is that the library starts running by itself. Someone else asked “what did the people in Q’enqo feel like when they had to work on the library?” I hope we get to Skype with Natalie again!” ~Kale
“What? I can’t believe that we have a Skype with Natalie! Some of the highlights were asking her questions about the library, listening to her stories and seeing how excited kids are for the library! I was really happy to see the kids wanting to learn! Some people skip school because they don’t lie a class. Natalie also once tried guinea pig. She said it tasted like chicken! Weird! I wonder how you cook it and what ingredients would you need? Maybe I should search it up? Natalie is very lucky. Because, usually you have to hike up to Q’enqo but she was lucky and did not have to hike. Instead she got to drive! That was an awesome Skype! Hopefully, soon, we can do another one!” ~Peng Peng
“We are having a Skype with Natalie. I will tell you my highlights: that we did get to Skype with her because she is SO busy, that we got to hear about the library. Like, she saw these little kids running into the library and just jumping and REALLY wanted to read the books! I was very happy because Mrs. Renton and I were emailing each other and she told me before the other teachers!!! I got to ask a question. I asked: what are your BIGGEST hopes for the library? Natalie replied that the library can run itself and will not need me to be there a lot. It makes me happy that we get to Skype with Natalie and Ashli because we get to learn a LOT of information from them! It’s SO fun to talk to them! I hope we get to Skype with them again … but … I know we will!” ~Jenna
“Woo HOO! We get a surprise Skype with Natalie! We had SO many questions. These were some of our questions for Natalie: do more girls or boys use the library? Do any adults use the library? But, when Natalie answered them we walked away with MORE questions! Some of my highlights were that the library has 150 books in all and that girls and boys use the library. Natalie’s BIGGEST hope for the library was that the library was going to run by itself with a librarian! She told us that she went FOUR times to Q’enqo. Guess what?!? Once, when she went up to Q’enqo the people told her she could NOT work on the library (and that she would have to come back the next day)! It’s a 1000 metres elevation difference between Corao and Q’enqo. That’s SO far up. By the way, Q’enqo is WAY up in the Andes mountains. The Skype was so fun! I hope we get to Skype with Natalie again!” ~Noam
“Yay! Today we Skyped with Natalie. I didn’t know that more girls than boys go to the library. It was awesome to Skype with Natalie. I LOVED to hear about the Mosqoy work they have done. I didn’t know that guinea pig was a really, really rare treat!” ~Melvin
“Wow! What a surprise! Guess what … we Skyped with Natalie … just Natalie! Did you know that some girls in Peru weave a lot? So, Natalie got a scarf made by a ten year old girl! We had a lot of questions accomplished. Natalie went to Q’enqo four times since our last Skype with Ashli and Natalie! My most favourite highlight was everything! I finally got to ask a question! It was: do kids in Q’enqo go to school in the rainy season? And … the answer was yes, but sometimes they can’t.” ~Hilary
“Are you serious? I can’t believe that the trip from Corao to Q’enqo is about a 1000 metre elevation change up into the mountains! Isn’t that cool? That part was definitely a highlight. It was a highlight because it is always cool to know stories like that!” ~Alex
“Yay! We got to Skype with Natalie! Natalie told us all about her adventures from Cusco to Q’enqo. My favourite part is when she told us about the guinea pig that run around their houses, (in Ollantaytambo). They caught one and Natalie ate the guinea pig. Oh. I forgot to tell you she at the guinea pig at someone’s house and she said it tasted delicious!!! There was a three year old boy in the house and he was chasing the guinea pig around! Ha ha ha! It was funny! She said that they were going to get 50 more books in the library. One day I would LOVE to go to Q’enqo Peru! I can’t wait until we Skype with Natalie again!” ~Aya
“Yay! A Skype, I thought to myself. We were having a Skype with Natalie. She told us some books went missing from the library in Q’enqo so the people in Q’enqo are installing better windows so the books won’t be stolen as much. I was very sad that some books were gone. Natalie told us they might get 50 more books into the library. More girls use the library than the boys. People in Q’enqo have to walk an hour to go to school for high school. One of my highlights was Skyping and getting lots of questions answered. The scarf Natalie was wearing was woven by a ten year old girl.” ~Daniel
“Oh my gosh … we are having a Skype with Natalie. My highlights: I like when Natalie said that a ten year old girl wove a scarf for her. Natalie was 24 and could not do that! Another highlight: that we got to ask a few more questions. Now, in the Q’enqo library, they have 150 books. I know if you live in Cusco and have a job in Q’enqo, then you would have to take a cab straight up to the mountain. It might take two hours. I feel really happy because we got to Skype with Natalie!” ~Kelly
“What? Today we had a surprise Skype with Natalie! Only three classes came to Skype and the rest of the classes couldn’t because they had to do other stuff and they didn’t know it was coming up and the couldn’t change the day. My lowlight was that my leg was starting to get sore in the middle of the Skype. My highlight was that Natalie wasn’t shushed. Natalie told us that her scarf was made by a ten year old girl in Peru!” ~Isaac
“G. G. G. The Skype sounded when it was opening. Somebody from the three classes in the room said, quietly, I hope we are not upside down!!! Today we Skyped just with Natalie. She was in her room in Cusco so if she got excited and loud nobody would need to shush her! Some of our questions were:
- Do many books get lost?
- Do more girls or boys use the library?
- How many books are in the library?
The answers to that question was that the library has around 150 books now. That’s a little books still. In our classroom we have more than that! She explained about her four trips to Q’enqo and how you get from Cusco to Q’enqo. First you take a bus to a town called Corao and then you take a taxi to Q’enqo. Well, this was another magical, beautiful Skype that I will never forget!” ~Martin
We can NOT wait for our next Skype with Natalie … and Ashli … to hear ALL about the WONDERFUL work Mosqoy is doing with the library in Q’enqo! We KNOW we will CERTAINLY have MORE questions!
Do your little bit of good where you are; its those little bits of good put together that overwhelm the world.
Alone we can do so little; together we can do so much.
On Friday, our ENTIRE school came together to help the Grade Threes with their Battalion Park Library Project in Q’enqo Peru! Imagine that … over 700 students ALL working together to be the best FOR the world! Helen Keller was SURE right when she said “…together we can do so much.”
What follows are our personal thoughts about our special day to raise funds for more books and a part-time librarian in the Q’enqo library:
“Friday was Caps for Q’enqo! We raised $1443.22 for the library in Q’enqo. The reason we raised the money was so we could have a part-time librarian and more books in the library. When we were counting the money it was VERY hard but not so hard when we organized it in arrays! Then, we ended up with $1375.22 but then we got another bag. Mrs. Renton double checked and counted again at home. She got $1443.22. And, that is how much money we raised!” ~Kale
“OH MY GOSH! We raised $1443.22 dollars! That’s a LOT! Do you know how much our class raise? We raised about $220 dollars! When we counted the money and saw that we raised 220 dollars as a class I was absolutely shocked. When we were counting the money, (which made our brains REALLY hurt), we made an “almost” T-chart and counted the money in groups. So, we would write $20 and then how many 20s there were. For example 5 20s … so … then … how many dollars and we would do that for the 20s, 10s, 5s, 2s, 1s, .25s, .10s, .05s and .01s. (That’s why our brains hurt so much!) The school got to wear their hats. Some of the funny hats were:
- a hat with a beard and an elf hat put together
- a cowboy hat
I can’t believe we raise $1443.22 dollars!” ~Claire
“Caps for Q’enqo, here we come, shouted Jenna! On that same day we counted the money after showing everyone our caps. I felt good counting the money for Q’enqo because I like helping people around the world! We felt happy donating money to the library because we are making a difference in the world. Did you know that we raised $1443.22? Isn’t that a LOT? I had donated $20 to Caps for Q’enqo. Our class donated over $230 dollars. Our buddy class raised $50 dollars. Wow! That was a lot of working. My biggest hope for Q’enqo is for them to get a part-time librarian. It is the BEST feeling in the world!” ~Cohen
“Today we are counting money! We are counting money for Q’enqo to buy some more BOOKS for the library! We have raised about $1443.22! Our group counted about $150.75. I don’t really know the exact amount! We are going to send the money, but what will we send it with? It took a lot of work to count the money! MORE money started to come in on Monday so it was very hard to count because of the extra money. Today we counted one more bag. The total was … $1443.22. I felt SO good to give money!” ~Zyne
“That’s a LOT of money! On Friday we had to count all of the donations for Caps for Q’enqo! The same day we got to wear our caps! Our whole table worked together. It was hard at first … but we worked it out! We needed our teacher to help us add it up. Our table group had about 220 dollars … but I forgot the actual number. Our whole class got about 200 dollars. Each table group counted each classroom’s donations. It was NOT easy! It was hard! We have more money coming in and that makes it HARDER!” ~Catherine
“Holy Mac and Cheese! All those hats! I can’t believe how much we have raised. It’s so cool that we did a fundraiser for Peru. I felt so good for what we did. In total we got $1443.22. SO much. For our class we raised 220 dollars. I wish we do this again! My group got over 200 dollars!” ~Ethan
“Caps for Q’enqo was AWESOME! We got to count MONEY! The total was … drum roll, please … over 14 hundred! Cool, right? Everyone wore a hat. DID you know they were all super funky hats? It was amazing. Even our Principal was wearing a hat! Someone wore a squid! I have a squid too! Someone even wore a hood.” ~Amy
“I CAN’T believe how much MONEY we got! Last Friday we were counting how much money we got for Caps for Q’enqo. Also, we still have money coming in AFTER Caps for Q’enqo! Right now we have $1443.22 and we might get MORE money! I am so excited about how much money we raised for Q’enqo! But, when my group tried to add all the money we got from Mrs. Renton, my brains felt like they were exploding! The math was SO hard! Oh, yeah, the reason why it’s called Caps for Q’enqo is because you got to wear any type of hat in the school! I wonder how many books they can get! Probably more than 400 books! I just can’t wait til they get the money. That was one of my best days I ever had in school! Hopefully all the money we raised gets put in use!” ~Peng Peng
“That’s a lot of money. Our school together raised exactly $1443.22. Wow! Most of the money came in on Friday when we had our fundraiser Caps for Q’enqo. You got to wear a hat. Our class raised about $220. I brought in $5 for my donation. $1443.22 is enough to pay for a part-time librarian AND more books. I hope Q’enqo will LOVE our donation!” ~Noam
“We raised a lot of money for the Q’enqo library. Everybody wore a cap to raise money. Each class brought their money to our classroom and we counted it. We worked hard but it was fun. I brought in a donation to help buy a book.” ~Sam
“Bang, bang, bang went the coins. Wow … we have been counting a lot of money because in school we are raising money for Q’enqo. Once we are finished we will send it to Ashli to buy more books for the library. Our whole school helped us to raise this money this time. We collected all of the money and counted it. In the end we raised $1443.22. Isn’t that a LOT? Well, I am really happy! I also love to count money because you can use arrays to help you. I can’t believe that we raised that much money! I am really amazed!” ~Kelly
“That’s GREAT! We raised $1443.22! Our class raised about 220 dollars just by ourselves! We had to do VERY hard math. You had to work with your table group. My group made a T-chard. We counted 10s, 5s, 2s, 1s, 25¢, 10¢, 5¢ and 1¢. Guess what? The school got to wear crazy hats! I hope that they get more books in the library in Q’enqo because they have a lot of money now!” ~Jenna
“Wow! That is a LOT of money! Friday it was Caps for Q’enqo! We got to wear our hats at school when we were working like counting the money! Even today we still got donations. Altogether we got one 100 $ bill, 16 20 $ bills, 64 5 $ bills, 193 twoonies, 184 loonies, 355 25 ¢. 250 10 ¢, 102 5 ¢ and 37 1 ¢. The total is $1443.22! I hope they get more than 1000 books!” ~Melvin
“Waht? 1443 dollars and 22 cents! That’s a LOT, I explained to myself quietly! Last Friday, we raised $1443.22. It was easy to sort the money but the adding was hard. Almost everybody in the school was wearing a hat. Maybe Ashli and Natalie will be able to buy more than two hundred books with that money that we raised! One person in my class was wearing a hat with a beard! It was funny! One of the teachers was wearing an Egyptian hat! I hope we get some more books in the library!” ~Martin
“On Friday it was Caps for Q’enqo. We got to bring our hats or caps! We raised $1443.22 for the library in Q’enqo Peru! I felt so happy when we raised all that money for the Q’enqo library! We were in groups for counting the money. It was SO fun! It was so hard to count the money. I hope they use the books now!” ~Aya
“Wow! Can you believe it? Caps for Q’enqo was my favourite part of the entire day! We raised lots and lots of money for the library in Q’enqo Peru. I was glad to feel that excitement in my life. It was so special to raise a lot of money. We counted 20 dollar bills, 5 dollar bills, cents and pennies. We put them in groups. All of us worked together to add them all up. We raised it because the Q’enqo library is their hope. I hope they use this money to find math and social studies books. I wish we raised even MORE money!” ~Lane
“Awesome! On caps for Q’enqo we raised over 200 dollars. Just my class! The whole school raised over 1400 dollars! To count the money we made five groups and each group counted some of the money. To make the fundraiser more fun we said that you cold bring crazy hats! 1 dollar is 2.59 in Peru. So, if 1400 is in Peru ten it will equal over 2800 dollars! They money is for a school in Peru and the school is going to buy books. The highlight was I got to do math. One kindergarten class raised over 50 dollars. I was surprised. I hope the school gets a librarian.” ~Isaac
“Wow! I can’t believe Battalion Park raise 1443.22 dollars! How did we count the money you ask? First of all we counted in table groups. Oh ya. I forgot to tell you our class raised about 220 dollars. Anyways, back to counting. We got into table groups and we each had our own part to count. I was adding and the other three people in my group, they were putting the money into groups and doing all the hard math.” ~Alex
“On Friday we brought caps and hats to school. Why did we bring caps? Great question! Because, on Friday, we did Caps for Q’enqo. It was really fun! We were REALLY happy when we saw that people were raising money for Q’enqo! Then we added the money that people brought! We had partners to add the money. Our group got a huge chart paper. Then we added it. That was my favourite day. Our total was $1443.22. I wish that we could GO to Q’enqo!” ~Hannah
People who work together will win, whether it be against complex football defenses, or the problems of modern society.
Every great dream begins with a dreamer. Always remember, you have within you the strength, the patience, and the passion to reach for the stars to change the world.
Ahh. The MAGIC of technology. Nothing beats the ability to be in TWO places at once … through the POWER of SKYPE! Yesterday, we had the privilege of going to a crowded, NOISY cafe in CUSCO Peru … all while snuggled in close, on the carpet, with 100 OTHER Grade Three students at school! Skype can DO that for you … transport you to MAGICAL places … without spending a SINGLE dime on the airplane tickets!
We were in for an AWESOME treat. We NEVER walk away with ALL our wonders answered but we sure walk away with a DEEPER understanding … and … even MORE wonders! What follows are some of our discoveries from yesterday:
“Today we had another Skype with Ashli, along with Natalie! Natalie is the intern for the library in Q’enqo! We learned that in the school in Q’enqo they eat AT school, just in case they HAVEN’T eaten. Ashli was in a cafe because they have better internet in there. In Peru it’s the rainy season and it can flood. My lowlight was when the worker at the cafe shushed Ashli and Natalie. I hope that Ashli finds a part-time librarian.” ~Isaac
“Friday is “Caps for Q’enqo”. And, guess what? Today we Skyped with Ashli and Natalie!!! Natalie is the intern who works in with the library in Q’enqo. My favourite part was asking questions. I didn’t get to ask one!” ~Alex
“Hi, Ashli and Natalie, the grade threes shouted. Today we were having a Skype with Ashli and Natalie. This is one of the questions I had: I wonder what Ashli’s highlight was while helping out in Q’enqo? Quechua is an oral language. It means that it’s only spoken. But, people are trying to write it down so the language isn’t forgotten. One of my highlights is that Ashli Skyped with us again. But, my lowlight was that Ashli had to STOP Skyping! One good thing is that she is going to help with three weaving villages! Another lowlight was she got shushed in the cafe in Cusco because (they thought) she was too loud. This was an awesome Skype. I wish that I could have another Skype like this again.” ~Daniel
“Today we had a Skype with Ashli and the intern from the Q’enqo library whose name is Natalie. I liked that our camera didn’t turn us upside down again. It was funny how Natalie was like ‘oh, we need this and we need that when she was in the stores(when she was looking in the book stores in Cusco)!
“Yeah. We got to Skype with Ashli! It was SO fun. Some of the best parts were asking questions about the library in Q’enqo, seeing her and getting answers about the library in Q’enqo. Did you know that they eat at school because it is their only nutritious meal of the day? Amazing. They also used to be scared of ruining the building and the books because they have never had a library before and books are precious to them. They also only have two seasons – the wet season and the dry season. That was an awesome Skype. Hopefully we can do it again!” ~Peng Peng
“Yay. We got to Skype with Ashli and her new intern Natalie. I asked ‘do they have books in other languages than Quechua and Spanish?’ My highlights are that we did get to Skype. It was great! But, we also got to learn LOTS about Q’enqo! I still have some wonders and they are:
- What is Ashli’s hope for the library?
- How do you get HEAVY supplies from Cusco to Q’enqo?
Well, that’s only SOME of my wonders! Guess what? On April 24, Natalie said to us that when she was in Cusco she saw things that she would like for the library and she said that she was like a little girl and wanted to get a LOT of things! Did you know that Quechua is an oral language? That means that there are not a lot of writings in Quechua. It was SO cool that we got to Skype with Ashli and Natalie. I hope we get to do it again!” ~Jenna
“Yes! We got to Skype with Ashli and Natalie. Tomorrow, Natalie will be at the Q’enqo library. It was kind of funny when they shushed Ashli and Natalie. After, their faces turned red. It was really fun. My favourite part was when they shushed them. They were really excited but the people in the cafe thought they were too loud. But, I did not think they were too loud! It was awesome to Skype with them. I forgot to tell you that Natalie is the new intern. We had a bunch of questions to ask. Some of them were: did more girls or boys go to the library? Do parents go to the library? There were way more questions. It was kinds of sad to stop the Skype but we will Skype again!” ~Aya
“Yay! Today we Skyped with Ashli and Natalie! I finally got to ask a question! My highlights are that I got to ask a question, that the library wasn’t destroyed and that the camera wasn’t upside down! My question was ‘are the people in Q’enqo using the library, or are they still scared to ruin the books?’ I hope we get to Skype again!” ~Melvin
“Wow, Ashli! I was amazed at how you introduced Natalie to the whole class. I felt interested in how you and Natalie are helping the Q’enqo library. Natalie is going to help find a librarian and teach them how to use the library. For the past four years the grade threes have raise money to build a library in Q’enqo Peru. On Friday we are raising more money for Q’enqo by having a “Caps for Q’enqo” day.” ~Lane
This awesome Quechua song was written by Daria. We LOVE it because Quechua is an ORAL language … very FEW books exist in Quechua. We WONDER what they’re SAYING!
We don’t know how ACCURATE this site is … but here are some MORE Quechua phrases.
“What happens to the library during the flood season? Well, this year the library was closed up. Kids use the library more than adults do. Kids do because adults can’t read and the adults don’t have the same education as the kids. Ashli and Natalie were in a cafe. Once, they became too loud and they were shushed by the staff. Are there any other languaged books other than Spanish and Quechua? Yes! There is an English/Spanish dictionary! Do you know the story of the Little Prince? Well, they translated it into Quechua!” ~Cohen
“Hi! We were Skyping with Ashli again! Zoe wasn’t with her but Ashli introduced us to Natalie, a new intern. I don’t know where Zoe was. We missed her. We had lots of questions and some of them were:
- do girls use the library more than boys?
- do they have books in the Q’enqo library other than Spanish and Quechua?
All the grade three classes joined us so there were FIVE classes in our CLASSROOM! So, that would add up to 125 students and seven adults! That’s a LOT! Do you know what an intern is? Well, an intern is someone that will do something for an organization. So, Natalie is an intern for Ashli in the organization called Mosqoy. She is helping Ashli by helping the people in Q’enqo and the library. We will be having a fundraiser at Battalion Park and all the money we make we will send to the Q’enqo library so they can get more books. I hope that the money we donate will help get more books!” ~Claire
“Yay!!! Today we did a Skype with Ashli and Natalie. It was really fun. They told us a lot of things. Yesterday we wrote questions for them. We didn’t get to ask all of our questions because there was like five classes in one classroom. And, in the Skype, Ashli first introduced Natalie to us. Zoe wasn’t there. We kind of missed her. But, that was TOTALLY fine because Ashli and Natalie were there! Natalie is an intern in the library in Q’enqo. I hope they have a good time.” ~Hannah
“Woo Hoo! Finally it’s Ashli day! On April 23, 2014 the five classes walked cautiously down the hall. Then, at that very moment Ashli called. We asked Ashli a few awesome questions and she answered a LOT. They were:
- what are your biggest highlights?
- do more girls or boys go to the library?
- do you speak Quechua?
- What happens to the library during the rainy season?
The answer for what are your BIGGEST highlights was ‘seeing the kids laugh!’ Ashli hired another person named Natalie! She is there to help with the library. Ashli and Natalie don’t know if more girls or boys use the library. Ashli can speak a little Quechua and she wants to learn to read a book in Quechua called The Little Prince. Quechua is a really hard language. My class saw a video in Quechua. It looked like it was about a celebration. The answer for what happens to the library during the rainy season … well … the library is closed in the rainy season! I can’t wait to Skype with Ashli again.” ~Hilary
“Guess what? We Skyped with Ashli and Natalie! This time they are trying to get a kitchen close to the library because food and precious books DON’T go together! Natalie also is getting more books for the library! My highlight was that we were not upside down on the Skype! Ashli was SO excited that she got the quiet signal in the cafe … but it’s okay … we get a little loud too sometimes! It’s funny because Natalie is my buddy’s name too. We are going to Skype again!” ~Catherine
“Ggg, ggg, ggg … the Skype was opening. Today we Skyped with Ashli and Natalie. You know who Natalie is? Ashli just hired Natalie to work with the Q’enqo library. The funniest part of the Skype was when some people, (because Ashli was Skyping with us in a cafe in Cusco), shh-ed Ashli because she was SO excited! I hope we get some more books in the library!” ~Martin
“Hi! Today we Skyped with Ashli. She had another person but it was not Zoe. The other person was somebody named Natalie. She’s an intern. She’s there to help with the Q’enqo library. They’re going to hire a part-time librarian. They are going to put sticky labels on all the books. Did you know that the people in Q’enqo don’t have four seasons like Canada? They only have two seasons. The wet season and the dry season. The library is stronger than some of the other buildings so in the rainy season it does not get ruined. I can’t wait to Skype with Ashli again!” ~Noam
“Hi readers! Let me tell you about what happened this morning. Mrs. Renton told us we were going to Skype AGAIN … of course … drum roll, please … with ASHLI! And … a new intern … Natalie! Yeah! I never get to ask questions. Oh well. At least I see her! Huh? Oh … you want to know my question? Okay. It is: what is your BIGGEST hope for the library, Ashli? You know, there was ONE lowlight. Ashli got shh-ed.” ~Amy
“Today we had another Skype with Ashli … BUT … she had someone new with her. Her name was Natalie … an intern. When we saw them they were in Cusco Peru in a CAFE! When they were sitting down Ashli was speaking Spanish! My highlight was when she talked about the rainy season. She said that the people in Q’enqo closed down the library (until they can train people to help with it) so it doesn’t get ruined (in the rainy season). The houses in Q’enqo are made out of adobe and they have to be rebuilt several times in the rainy season.” ~Zyne
“I think I just learned SO much about Ashli and the Q’enqo library. What was my biggest highlight, you ask? Well, that we got to meet someone new. Her name was Natalie. Natalie was there to help out with the library. You know what was the most interesting question? I thought it was “do you know how to speak Quechua?’ because DON’T you want to KNOW how she communicates with the people in Q’enqo? Oops. I forgot to tell you the answer to the question. Ashli knows how to speak Spanish but she is learning how to speak Quechua. Here are some of the questions that we wrote on the chart. Have you hired a librarian? What was your highlight in the past four years? What are your biggest hopes for the library? Well, I had a fantastic time Skyping with Ashli and Natalie.” ~Kennedy
“I am so glad that nothing happened to the library. Did you know that kids in Q’enqo don’t use the books? One funny part was we Ashli got shushed. Natalie is the new intern for the library. I kind of missed Zoe there. My highlight was the whole thing. Ashli is trying to learn Quechua. People in Q’enqo are scared to use the books because they think they will lose them. I love books. Some people don’t take that for granted.” ~Ethan
“Here are some highlights: I liked how Ashli introduced Natalie. Natalie is going to find a part-time librarian and more books for the library. Ashli also told us that she was in Cusco Peru! Someone asked if adults use the library and Ashli quietly said no because if Ashli did not talk quietly she would get shushed. I was amazed how Ashli could speak Spanish. We also told her about Caps for Q’enqo. What is Caps for Q’enqo, you ask? On April 25th we are going to wear our favourite hats and the money we raise we are giving to Ashli to buy more books!” ~Kelly
There were SO many more highlights from this amazing Skype with Ashli and Natalie! Over the next few weeks, Natalie will be visiting the Q’enqo community to assess what will work best for the COMMUNITY. That means finding out about the qualities of the person needed who will be hired as a part-time librarian. This person will need to be someone who will work well with the community as they build capacity and comfort with using this amazing library. The children are EAGER to sign books out. Many adults in the community are illiterate. Who knows … maybe ONE day the CHILDREN of Q’enqo will teach the ADULTS how to read using the books from their VERY own library!
Never doubt that a small group of thoughtful, committed citizens can change the world; indeed, it’s the only thing that ever has.~Margaret Mead
One child, one teacher, one book and one pen can change the world.
*This post is dedicated to Mrs. Campbell, our amazing Assistant Principal. She is leaving us for a brand new Principalship! We will miss her and we will ALWAYS remember how she helped us to be the BEST that we can be … she treated us with respect and dignity and love!
Today we took a vow of silence. We did this to support the We Are Silent movement. We did this to speak up for the many people around the world who are unable to speak for themselves, through our silence.
“Shh. We are silent. Why are we silent, you ask? Because we are the voices of those who can not speak. When do you celebrate we are silent, you ask? On April 17th. It’s a time when we choose a silent period of time to not talk at all.” ~Alex
“Shh! Today is silent day. Everyone has to be silent for a whole day. I am being silent for all of the people who can’t speak. But … it was hard being silent. Like, for example, playing a math game. It is hard to explain. And, it is hard to not be silent. I wish if it’s not silent day we could just be quiet. I wish we could do the silent day again. We did this silent stuff because other kids in the world didn’t get the chance to speak up.” ~Hannah
“Today we are silent for those who are in child labour and people who are child soldiers. MY class took a vow of silence for the WHOLE DAY … six and a HALF hours! It was not hard. It was easy because I am quiet most of the time!” ~Noam
“”Today we had a vow of SILENCE for the kids that are slaves. I know it’s sad … but true. There are many other reasons why we are doing this … not just child slavery! I’m doing this for EVERYONE that’s TREATED wrong!!! I hope life doesn’t go on like this. PLEASE stop this.” ~Amy
“Shh. Today we need to be silent. This is not hard. You should try it at hone whenever you want because being silent is a very special thing to do because some kids never get to speak out loud. We get to talk every day. Why can’t they? Today I was silent for everybody. I hope that child labour would stop and that all of the children that can’t speak get to talk for the REST of their LIVES.” ~Zyne
“Shh. Today we were silent because many kids are not allowed to talk. Not because they weren’t born right. The main reason why they aren’t aloud to speak because they are in child labour. Mostly, in Africa, kids go into child labour. The school started to be silent two years ago. So, everyone, every year, is silent. I hope that child labour would stop now.” ~Issac
“Shh. We have to be silent! We are doing this because some people can’t speak up for themselves. Our silence is their voice! I hope that they don’t need to be forced to work. I’m going to be silent for everyone.” ~Catherine
“We are silent because some kids aren’t allowed to speak up. Our class is going to be silent. We communicated by doing writing like I am now. My question is WHY do they do such mean things to kids? What countries do child labour? I still can’t believe that I I thought it was in the middle ages. Where do they work? In a factory or a store? I just want to know. They have the right to talk about their feelings. I wish they had what we do. Silent day is one of my MOST favourite times of the school year. I love it so much because you can do so much for people in the world that can’t speak their feelings.” ~Ethan
“Hi Blog Readers! Today we had a vow of silence. Why did we have a vow of silence? Well, some kids get taken away which is called child labour and they are not allowed to talk. Some people take children away and make them slaves.” ~Kale
“Shh. It’s silent day! This is going to be hard I thought to myself. After, it seemed a bit easy. Do you want to know why we are doing this? I will tell you why. We are doing silent day because some kids don’t get to speak up for themselves. This is why we are doing silent day. I hope that kids around the world get to go to school and speak up for themselves. I am doing silent day for everyone!” ~Aya
“Shh. You should be quiet, I hissed. But it’s SO hard, whined Ethan. but, you have to be silent, I said calmly. Why do we have to be quiet, anyways, said the complaining Ethan. Cuz there are many children in the world that are forced not to complain and also made to work. That sucks, said Ethan, sadly. But, still, it’s very hard! I know, I said. But, still, we should stay silent. Who are you silent for, asked Ethan. Everyone, I answered. Me too, said Ethan. Hopefully some day the children that are forced to do work will someday be in school.” ~Peng Peng
“I’m silent because some kids have lost their voices. It would be hard. Sometimes they don’t have shelter, or fresh drinking water. I loved being silent.” ~Lane
“On April 17, 2014, our school took a vow of silence. For me, it was not hard because I am silent a LOT! It was easy. A piece of cake, if you know what I mean. The reason we did it was because there are some kids in the world who have to work and do not have any play time. Some girls can not go to school. Did you know that? Our silence is THEIR voice. All day we were writing on whiteboards to talk to each other because, well, it is SILENT day! I hope that everyone can go to school and I hope everyone can have the freedom to talk! I had a GREAT time with SILENT day.” ~Jenna
“Shh. It’s we are silent day in our school! It is hard but I like challenges! I don’t care if I do it wrong. We are doing this for the people who don’t get to do whatever they want. They also can’t complain about it! shocking, right? I think I will be silent for everyone because I think everyone should be free … peace NOT war!” ~Melvin
“Squeak, squeak … we wrote on whiteboards. We couldn’t talk. We are silent. The school was silent for six and a half hours. We did this at the school AND at my bus stop. My class is trying to be silent for the whole entire day. The reason we do this is because some people can’t say their feelings … or they will get hurt. It was very hard to stay quiet because it was hard to write everything or mouth the words. I was silent for everybody who can’t say or write their feelings. I hope later on all the people in the world can say their feelings.” ~Daniel
“The vow of silence is basically being silent for people who can’t talk because they are forced to work, to be slaves, to not have clean drinking water, to not have their basic needs met. There are many other reasons to go through. Some children are forced to do child labour. For that reason we are silent for the whole entire day, but not including recess and lunch! We got inspired by Craig Kielburger.” ~Cohen
“Our silence is THEIR voice. Wow. Today was fun AND easy, I said to myself. Today we were silent all day. It was fun because you write on a board to communicate. It was easy peasy. I was silent for everybody, boys and girls, that are not allowed to talk. Because, if I do it just for BOYS that are not allowed to talk, it will not be fair. I hope those kids who work and are not allowed to talk get freedom so they could play, have fun, learn and talk instead of working in quarries and companies. I just hope that those kids who work and DON’T have rights HAVE them one day.” ~Martin
“WE ARE SILENT!!!” Why? Because there are lots of kids in the world who are taken into child labour and can’t talk. Well … they can by nobody listens to them. So, we are taking a day of silence to help those kids in the world. Is it hard, you ask? Sort of. I mean it’s hard because you want to burst out talking and easy because we know children need help in the world. So … it’s basically both! My hope is to let all the children go to school and to not be in child labour. I wish that the world would let ALL girls go to school!” ~Claire
We know that TRULY walking a mile in someone else’s shoes is HARD to do. We ALSO know that taking this vow of silence, for an ENTIRE day, doesn’t even BEGIN to show us the challenges faced by MILLIONS of people around the world. After all, we came to school. LOTS of people don’t GET that choice. Even though we were SILENT, we were STILL able to communicate our thoughts on our mini white boards. We have beautiful shelter over our heads, parents and teachers who love us and do EVERYTHING they CAN to help us to be the BEST we can be. We have 100s of books in our classroom … 28000 books in our school library … and probably 100s of books at HOME too! Our water bottles and drinking fountains are FULL of FRESH, CLEAN water. No. Our vow of silence wasn’t a TRUE reflection of the silence many people are forced into around our world.
But … our vow of silence today will STAY with us. We know that we are lucky. We will think of the others who HAVE no voice and we will stand with others to help CHANGE that.
Out of the silence came THOUSANDS of voices!
A MYSTERY Package Arrives!
On Tuesday morning, when we came in and gathered on the carpet, we spotted an unusual package sitting on the counter! Right away we could tell, by looking at it, that it had had a ROUGH journey! We could see water stains all over the surprise package. There was LOTS of duct tape and all of its corners were crumpled in! It was SO beat up … it was EVEN missing its PACKING labels! We wondered if, when it went through customs, they had to open it … because sometimes they DO … and then seal it back up!
WHERE did it COME from? What kind of JOURNEY had it been on? Some of us guessed that it had come from PERU! A few of us thought it might have come from Australia! Guess what? Guess who it was FROM? Drum roll … please … Mr. ROSS Mannell!
Boy, were WE excited! First, as we passed the mysterious package around … and shook it … assessing its MASS with our hands … we took some guesses:
- an echidna puppet
- chocolate bilbies
- a koala kleenex box cover
- adult animal cards to go with the baby animal cards Ross sent earlier this year
- finger puppets of the animals we researched from the cards Ross sent earlier
- mini stuffed animals of each baby animal we researched from the cards
“What a great surprise. Thank you SO much, Ross, for the gift! We wonder where you GOT the chocolate bilbies … online or in a shop? If in a shop, what shop? The chocolate bilbies are SO cute. We love their little pink noses and ears! But … we love EVERYTHING about them! Where do bilbies live? It ALMOST looks like a BUNNY! When we FIRST saw the ears, peeking out of the box, we were like, “What IS it? What IS it? WHAT IS IT?” Our first guesses were dvds, echidna puppets, chocolate bilbies, a koala kleenex box cover, adult animal cards, finger puppets of the animals we researched, and … finally … mini stuffed animals of each animal we researched! When we first opened the package, we saw LOTS of STYROFOAM. Ross, that was AWESOME packing! You can see the little feet at the bottom of the chocolates and they are SO cute! Thanks, Ross, for ALWAYS extending our learning!” ~Jenna, Catherine and Hilary
“Thank you for sending us an awesome package. Ross, you are very thoughtful and very smart! We shook to hear INSIDE the package because we HAD to find out what it WAS! You GUESSED it … it was CHOCOLATE bilbies! We might send you a package soon! We cut the box open because we were BURSTING with excitement! Ross YOU spoiled us!” ~Lane
“Thank you Ross. You are very thoughtful. It had a rough journey. The package had chocolate bilbies. When I saw the chocolate bilbies they were so cute.” ~Sam
“Thank you SO much Ross! The chocolate bilbies are SO cute. Some of us want to EAT them! The package looked like it had a hard time getting here. We had NO idea it was chocolate bilbies! We think we should send YOU some chocolate BUNNIES! It was SO thoughtful of you!” ~Melvin & Kale
“Hi Blog readers! We got a surprise package in the mail from ROSS! When we opened the box it looked like it was a box of STYROFOAM! When we pulled the first layer of styrofoam out we saw SIX ears! After we took the second layer of styrofoam out, we pulled the ears and … guess what POPPED out? Drum roll, please! CHOCOLATE BILBIES! The chocolate bilbies are blue and inside their ears and their noses is the colour PINK! Once again, Ross, thank you SOOO much!” ~Noam & Claire
“Thank you SO much, Ross. They look so cute and tasty at the SAME time! It’s SO cool that you sent us chocolate bilbies … and took time our of your week to do it! We were mind blown! But, we’re TOO soft-hearted to eat them! Our class might donate some money to the bilby fund! They look like they are GREAT eating! Bye, Ross! Thanks again!” ~Alex, Amy & Ethan
“Hi Ross. Thank you for sending us that mystical package! It was VERY thoughtful of you to send us that surprise! We enjoyed opening the package! First, we saw styrofoam and then some tinfoil sticking up! When Mrs. Renton took the foil things out … GUESS WHAT/ It was BILBIES! Everyone BURST into surprise! I hope we can send something to YOU!” ~Martin, Cohen, & Zyne
“Wow! Thank you for the chocolate bilbies! They are SOO cute! Some of us really want to eat them but some of us don’t want to eat them because they are really cute! When we saw the box waiting for us we were SO excited. We took some guesses and one of the students guessed chocolate bilbies! He was RIGHT! When we opened it, we saw two ears sticking out of the box. I really wanted to eat them!!! If it wasn’t for YOU we would NOT have chocolate bilbies!” ~Hannah
“What a SURPRISE! Ross sent us not one but THREE chocolate bilbies! Hmmm. I wonder what we are going to do with themse adorable little chocolate munchkins! What do they look like, you ask? They really look like a rabbit, chocolate or not, but their tails are longer and they live in Australia! They are also really cute. Thank you, Ross, for sending those really adorable bilbies! Somehow the box looked like it had a rough journey! Ross, you are SO thoughtful. I LOVE the part when we got to hold the package … somehow we didn’t hear anything when we shook it!” ~Kelly & Kennedy
We have been learning about the Save the Bilby Fund because we did NOT know that they were critically endangered. When our chocolate bilbies arrived in our classroom, we read the special TAGS that were on each of them. We LOVE that the Pink Lady Chocolate Factory is donating 30 cents from each chocolate sale to the Save the Bilby Fund! Our class thinks it is sad that the Lesser Bilby might ALREADY be extinct and that the Greater Bilby is so close to extinction.
Before we were doing our research we thought bilbies were so TINY … but … as we READ more, we discovered that a full grown Greater Bilby can be up to 55 cm long (including their tail, which is around 29 cm). STILL … 26 cm is pretty BIG compared to what we thought! We USED to think that bilbies were TINY like MICE!
Ross, we LOVED our special surprise package. Our three adorable chocolate bilbies are sitting in a safe spot on a shelf … and they watch over our learning EACH and EVERY day! We STILL haven’t decided WHAT to do with them. SOME of us think we should:
- take a PICTURE and then … EAT them ALL up
- save ONE but EAT two
- making them the class PETS … they’d be REALLY easy to take CARE of
- invent a “chilled” glass cabinet so that we can preserve them FOREVER
- sell raffle tickets to WIN a chocolate bilby … to raise money for the Save the Bilby Fund
- sell raffle tickets to WIN a chocolate bilby … to raise money for more books for the Battalion Library Project in Q’enqo Peru
We would ALL hate to see them go … so this is certainly going to be a HARD decision to make! We PROMISE to let you know what we decide to do with our special classroom guests! Thank you, Ross … you ROCK!
“I have always imagined that paradise will be a kind of library.”
~Jorge Luis Borges
This morning, we were experimenting with how strong different column shapes are. We were surprised by our discoveries … and THAT led us into an AMAZING discussion around our work with Ashli and the Q’enqo library! It’s FUNNY how our our learning often unfolds like this!
“Hey … hey, you! Let me tell you a story! Today, in science we did a column challenge. First, we tried the rectangular prism. It held 30 books! WOW! But … what is amazing is the cylinder column held 150 BOOKS! Ahh! Crazy! But, it made us feel bad because the Q’enqo library only has about 120 books!” ~Amy
“Did you know how much a hundred books looks like? If you think it is big it’s actually tiny compared to the books in our classroom. Don’t even mention our school library. In the Q’enqo library they have only about 120 books! So, we are going to donate the Biblioburro book to the Q’enqo library! We are also going to have a special day and raise money for the Q’enqo library! Hopefully the next year’s grade threes will help the library too!” ~Peng Peng
“Today our class did a science experiment. We made three different shapes. A cylinder, a square and a triangle. The triangle held 21 books. The square held 30 books and the cylinder held 150 books! But, then our class remembered that the Q’enqo library only has 120 books. I mean … our school library has 28 000 books and the Public Library has 115 000 books! So … then we thought of fundraising! We are going to sign a Spanish Biblioburro book to send to Ashli so the next time she goes to the library in Q’enqo she can drop off the Biblioburro book we sign! I think that it is great to have a book there with our names on it!” ~Alex
“What? The Q’enqo library only has 120 books! We should do a fundraiser to get more books in the library. Books are SO important! We got an English and a Spanish version of the Biblioburro which we will all get to sign! I hope we can give them the books soon! We had a cylinder, triangular prism and a rectangular prism. The rectangular prism held 17 books. The triangular prism held 30 books … but the cylinder held 150 books! That’s MORE than the books in the Q’enqo library! We REALLY ned to get those books in the Q’enqo library!” ~Kale
“Wow! Today we found out that card stock, crafted into a cylinder can hold 150 books! That made us think about the Q’enqo library in Peru. The teacher also thought about the Q’enqo library. Then we all thought about a fundraiser so the library in Q’enqo can have MORE books because they only have 120 books. That’s not a lot. Books are important because they can keep you company and you can learn more. So … if you don’t read … start reading!” ~Isaac
“142, 143. 144, 145, 146, 147, 148. 149, 150 … we all said to count the books for a science challenge. Then we all thought of the Q’enqo library and that it only has about 120 books. We had two books of the Biblioburro. One is in Spanish. The other is in English. The Spanish book is for the Q’enqo library and the English book is for our library in the school. Both of the books we will sign. We all thought we should make a fundraiser for the Q’enqo library. I hope the Q’enqo library gets a lot of books!” ~Melvin
“What? That’s what 120 books looks like? Today we were doing a science challenge. We were putting books on top of a cylinder, a rectangular prism and a triangular prism. I couldn’t believe that the cylinder could hold that much. I think it is so sad that they only have 120 books in Q’enqo. The grade threes really want to do a fundraiser. If every one of us brought in a loonie or a twoonie we would have a LOT of money and we could donate all of that money to the Q’enqo library. Then they could buy books! I think books are important because that’s how you learn to write and learn to read. That’s why I think books are important. We even got The Biblioburro books in Spanish and English. I hope they get more books in the Q’enqo library!” ~Aya
“That is so sad, I thought because we just did a science experiment. It was called the Book Tower. Mrs. Renton made a cylinder and stacked books on top of each other and we got up to 15. We all stared at it and said that is more than the Q’enqo library. Then what we did was we decided about raising some money and donating it so they can get more books. We all agreed to it, so now we are going to raise some money. Mrs. Renton ordered a Biblioburro Spanish version book that everybody is going to sign.” ~Kennedy
“Guess what? I can’t believe that in school we did an experiment about how many books a cylinder, rectangular prism and a triangular prism can carry! Did you know that the cylinder held 150 books? I know that is very shocking! We are going to sign a Spanish book and send it to the Q’enqo library. I am glad that we are sending a book to Q’enqo Peru because they only have 120 books. Wow. That’s SO little, don’t you think?” ~Kelly
“In science we were testing how many books a cylinder could hold. After we got to 120, Mrs. Renton said that’s how many books are in the Q’enqo library. What? We all said NO WAY! So we thought we could give them a book … one for us … and one for them that we sign with all our names! Maybe we can wear pajamas, bring a stuffy and a favourite book and fundraise with a dollar! Books are important because you learn from them.” ~Ethan
“I think libraries are so close to our hearts. ♥♥ They are special because reading is one of the most important things in the world. It’s important because we can learn so many things from books. Did you know that the Q’enqo library has 120 books. Compared to our library we have 28 000 books! If we didn’t have libraries it would be sad. The Q’enqo library is like SO special to me and the rest of Peru. The Grade 3s really want to read a lot. My wish is to see the Q’enqo library.” ~Lane
“Oh! The Q’enqo library only has 120 books! My class is thinking that we should bring one favourite books and our awesome teddies … with pajamas … but the best part is donating money to Q’enqo. The class was doing science and the shapes were a rectangular prism, a cylinder and a triangular prism. Guess what the cylinder held? 150 books! More than the Q’enqo library. Isn’t that CRAZY? We’re signing our names on a Biblioburro Spanish book for the Q’enqo library!” ~Hilary
“Can you believe that the Q’enqo library only has about 120 books? My teacher got a book called The Biblioburro. She got two of the Biblioburros. One in Spanish and one in English. The Spanish one will go to the Q’enqo library. But, first, we are going to sign it. And, the English version will go to my school library. My school library has 28 000 books. That is a lot more books. I hope we get 28 000 books in the Q’enqo library!” ~Noam
“That’s sad. The Q’enqo library only has around 120 books. It’s heart breaking! We are giving the Q’enqo library a book called the Biblioburro in Spanish AND we MIGHT wear our pjs, bring stuffies and a favourite book … and maybe bring in some money to buy more books for the Q’enqo library! Yah! We also have the English version of it so we have the Spanish one for Q’enqo and the English one for our library! We will sign the Spanish book and send it to Ashli to deliver the book tot he library in Q’enqo Peru. I decide we NEED to get more books in the Q’enqo library.” ~Zyne
“Wow. That is so sad. The Q’enqo library only has 120 books. THAT’S SUPER DUPER CRAZY! Do you know how we got to making this blog post? Well, we were in the middle of doing a science experiment and we were putting books on a cylinder! 149, 150, 151 … oh … the last book doesn’t count … so … we had 150 books! That’s more than the Q’enqo library! And, one more fact … 150 books is LESS than ONE metre stick! So, then that means that the Q’enqo library has LESS than ONE shelf of books! Since the Q’enqo library only has 120 books then we wanted to make a fundraiser for more books. So, Mrs. Renton ordered the Biblioburro in Spanish and English. We are going to sign both books and give the Spanish book to the Q’enqo library and sign the English one and donate it to OUR school library. I LOVE when we get to donate things to people … especially the Q’enqo library! ~Claire
“Hey! Do you know how many books are in the Q’enqo library? Just 120. And, in our public library it has 115 000! We need to fundraise so we can get more books in the Q’enqo library! Everybody is feeling sad in my classroom because it has 120 books in the Q’enqo library so we think we need to do a fundraiser by making a book day or p.j. day. We are still deciding. The kids in Q’enqo need books because they need to read. If you can not read, you don’t have many choices when you grow up. Just today, because my teacher ordered it, a book was delivered. It is called Biblioburro. It is an English version and a Spanish version. The Spanish version we will give to the library in Q’enqo and the English version we will give to our school library. Our whole class will sign the books. The Biblioburro book is based on a real man and two real donkeys. Now let’s see what will happen. I hope we fundraise a lot of money for the library!” ~Martin
“Wow! 120 books in the Q’enqo library! It sounds like a lot but it’s really a small, small amount. That is so sad. In our public library, we have 115 000 books! Hmm. Maybe we can donate books. But, that costs too much money to send! We could donate money to Q’enqo so they can buy more books. I even thought before that 120 books was so much! It’s really important to know how to read because if your imagination is bigger you can do really big changes! Our teacher got Biblioburro. One is Spanish. One is English. Mrs. Renton said we could all sign our names on it. The Spanish one we will send to Q’enqo. The English one we will give to our library.” ~Catherine
“Today we got some books and out of card stock paper we made a cylinder. On the cylinder we put 150 books. It fell when we got to 151. But, before that, when we were on 120, we had a rest. What?!? Everyone gasped when Mrs. Renton said this is the amount of books they have in the Q’enqo library. It was only a LITTLE pile. So, we decided to have a fundraiser with pajamas, stuffies and a favourite book. We got the Biblioburro book. We are going to sign the second page of the book. We are going to sign the Spanish version of it. And, the English one we are going to sign it and we are going to donate it to OUR library. When we are doing fundraising, we can bring a twoonie or a loonie. Books are so important because if you don’t have books, you can’t learn!!! I wish Q’enqo library will have tons and tons of books.” ~Hannah
“It all started when we did a science experiment. A cylinder held 150 books! Then we thought about the Q’enqo library. It only has around 120 books. When we stared at 150 books on the cylinder I was surprised. We thought 120 books was a lot of books but 150 books was SO small! Mrs. Renton ordered the book Bibliburro in English and Spanish because they speak Spanish in Q’enqo. We are going to sign it. The people who read the book enjoyed it. We are going to fundraise money to get books in the Q’enqo library. The English one we will give to our school library. We want to raise money so Mosqoy can get a part-time librarian and books for the Q’enqo library. I hope the Q’enqo library can get more books and a part time librarian.” ~Daniel
“Hmm. What can we do for a school fundraiser? Oh, I know. We can do a crazy day and bring a twoonie, then give it to Q’enqo. I am happy that we get to sign a book and give it to the library in Q’enqo Peru. It is called Biblioburro. It is about a man who has all kinds of books. Then he gets donkeys and has books and gives them to kids that do not have books. Hey, maybe you can look it up! I hope they get more books! Hey … WE can make that happen!” ~Jenna
“The more that you read, the more things you will know. The more you learn, the more places you’ll go.”