Welcome back Grade 3!
What an amazing school year lies ahead of you. In the past, I have seen many wonderful posts from your school and look forward to reading more this new school year.
Where I am in Australia is over 13,000km (over 8000miles) from you and our time is around 16 hours ahead of yours but, with a click of a button to add a post, I can see what is happening in your class. Imagine, what you share can travel around the world in a very short time.
In a way, when we share on line we travel through time. As I posted this comment, it was almost 12:30 a.m. on Wednesday morning yet, for you, it is only 8:30 a.m. on Tuesday morning. My comment traveled back in time and your comments to me would travel forward in time. We are really sending immediately but our clocks are different because of the way our earth turns on its axis while orbiting the sun.
An amazing world awaits your discovery. 🙂
Teacher (retired), N.S.W., Australia
Thank you for leaving us TWO comments, already, Ross! We have spent a lot of time talking about what we would like to call ourselves this year. Our brainstormed list was FULL of great ideas. In the end, after voting, re-voting and re-voting AGAIN, we decided to call ourselves the Battalion Bloggers. It was hard to decide on a name that fit us perfectly and we didn’t want to be called the same thing as LAST year’s bloggers. You are the FIRST to know our new name as new bloggers!
It was interesting to know about the time differences between Alberta and Australia! We are writing this comment on Friday morning, at 10:00 am … and … we are sending it … THROUGH time … to you on a Saturday morning at 2:00 am. We HOPE you are having a GOOD sleep!!! 😉 ZZZZZZZZZZZ
We LOVE that your personality is sharing things with others. Mrs. Renton told us a LOT about you. We know that you used to be a teacher but that you are retired now. We know that, even though you are retired, you’re still filming in schools and working hard on student blogs around the world to help with their learning.
Our class LOVED the treasures that you sent to the Battalion Hawk Bloggers LAST year! We are going to watch the Wizard of Oz movie you filmed for the Candelo Public School! The spiny echidna and the koala are ADORABLE. We are SO glad they are still in the classroom!
We would LOVE to learn a little more about YOU … like … what you LIKE to do in your spare time! One of our bloggers wants to know if you have ever been to the “outback”. He is really interested in the Perentie lizard and wants to know if you have EVER seen one!!! Another student wants to know if you have ever seen a kangaroo or a koala … what about a live echidna? (We really LOVE the stuffed one!)
We look FORWARD to learning from you this year, Ross!
The Battalion Bloggers 🙂
Hello Battalion Bloggers,
What a busy time I have had. This week I release the DVD of another school play and have already filmed the birthday celebration entertainment from my favourite animal park, Potoroo Palace. At the end of the month I will be filming a community choir and producing two DVDs and two CDs. I took some time off to comment on a number of blog posts and had to make sure I replied to you.
Schools like Candelo Public are thrilled when I ask if I can share their shows with overseas classes. It makes them feel international. I haven’t heard from Candelo School this year but suspect I will get a call asking me to come for a new show. They try to have one each year. At our big local school show they danced to Ghostbusters but I don’t think that will be the theme for a play.
I will share some information about me soon probably in another post but I can say I have been to the outback. In the 1980s, I organised a trip to Uluru (Ayers Rock) in central Australia. I was tour guide, minibus driver and paid my share of the costs so we enjoyed 16 days together as we travelled over 7000km out to central Australia and back. There were 13 adults and children on the trip. As I get time, I’m using a high quality film and slide scanner to digitize old photos. I will see what treasures of the trip I can uncover for you.
I have seen the perentie in zoos but not in the wild. Our local monitor lizards are also monitors but in our case we have the lace monitors. They can grow to two metres (over 6′) in length. I have surprised them on my walks a number of times. Only recently, I have read fossils have been found in Australia to show the famous komodo dragon (another monitor lizard) of Indonesia were also found in Australia. I would be very careful if they were around here because they have been known to attack people. Our monitor lizards run when they see people.
I normally see kangaroos and wallabies whenever I visit our local national parks. They often hop off in surprise when I appear. As I often don’t follow normal trails, they aren’t expecting to see me. I also see them some morning in the sports park across the road and a local golf course is famous for its extra kangaroo obstacles. The largest in our area are male eastern grey kangaroos. They can be close to my height and I am 185cm tall. They’re only dangerous if you corner them. They prefer to hop away.
I have seen koalas in the wild but not often. As they sit still and are only found in some areas, it’s easier not to see them. My favourite is in Potoroo Palace. Her name is Sapphire. I have know her since she was a little joey in the pouch. She is now a pretty adult koala. The park people hope to have a male join Sapphire so we might seen new generations of koalas. She is part of a breeding program.
I know many people think echidnas are shy but I have seen many of them in the wild as well as in zoos. One was foraging in the garden in my backyard one day. They are wonderful spiky, ant-loving animals and, with the platypus, are the only know monotremes (egg-laying mammals) in the world. While their spikes are hard, they are soft and furry underneath but, if startled, they dig their strong claws in the ground and only show their spikes so they aren’t easy to pick up.
For our budding herpetologists (someone who studies amphibians and lizards) I have also come across diamond pythons (non-poisonous), red-bellied black snakes (poisonous), brown snakes (poisonous), and tiger snakes (poisonous) in my walks. The first two are shy and try to get away but the other two can be aggressive so I keep clear of them.
Well my short reply didn’t end up so short but it has given me ideas for at least one new post. Because of my busy time it may be a fortnight before I can share it. 🙂
Here is a link to the new blog post for you looking at echidnas, kangaroos, koalas and the outback.
Sorry that it took us SO long to respond to your AMAZING blog post! We’ve been working on our Rocks and Minerals Inquiry … and we JUST finished our ROCK Museum yesterday! We had lots and lots of fun at our Rock Museum, sharing our rock and mineral collections! Our parents came and so did the other Grade Three Classes! Mrs. Renton told us that YOU know a ton about rocks and minerals too. One day we are going to check out some of the rocks and mineral posts you have on your blog!
We are glad that the perentie and lace monitors are only slightly venomous and that they are shy and will run away when they see people. Can the perentie and lace monitor venom kill a person if they bite them? We wonder why the komodo dragon is only found in Indonesia now and not in Australia anymore? HOW could they get to Indonesia when they once roamed Australia? We wonder if they lived in both places but then they died out in Australia. Why would they die out?
We have the Grade Six teacher in our school … and he is our referent for two metres. He is about as tall as a male gray kangaroo can be! That’s pretty TALL!
Sapphire is SO adorable! We thought it was SO cute when she started to peek out of her mama’s pouch. We LOVED the video footage you shared with us from the Potoroo Palace! We felt like we were RIGHT there, at the zoo alongside you! It’s too bad that Sapphire’s mom and dad died. We hope she finds a good mate so that there can be MORE koalas at the Potoroo Palace! 🙂
Spike is SO cute! We think that the picture of the echidna digging his claws into the grown and curling into a ball to protect himself was SO cute! Do echidnas get frightened easily? We wonder if they do much damage to gardens like voles can do? We wonder what they like to eat … besides ants! We wonder how small an echidna’s egg would be. We STILL think it’s SO cool that they are egg-laying MAMMALS like platypuses! How BIG to echidnas grow … we wonder if our Grade Six teacher would be a GOOD referent for measuring an echidna! 😉
We really enjoyed seeing all the pictures of your fieldtrip to the Outback! It looks like hardly anybody lives there. It would probably be a hard place to live because it looks like there aren’t any stores around to get food or water. It looks SO hot too!
We loved Ayer’s Rock and the Devil’s Marbles at Karlu Karlu. We wonder how those rocks got stacked like that. They look like they could fall off at any moment! We wonder how long they’ve been stacked like that … and also how old Ayer’s Rock is! It just looks like a place where tons of poisonous snakes and spiders would live. Do armadillos live in the outback? How long and how tall is Ayer’s Rock?
We LOVED all your pictures of the outback. We loved how you told us that people would build their houses underground to stay cooler. How would they get to their houses? What would happen if a rainstorm came … would those houses get flooded? Do the houses leak when there is a rainstorm? Wouldn’t it be hard to dig into the ground to build a house? Couldn’t it cave in? We wonder, if they go out, how do they find their houses again, if they are underground. Do they mark an x on the roof?
We wonder what kinds of animals live in the outback.
Thank you for sharing your pictures and sharing your journey with us, Ross!
We all seem to be having busy times meaning our posts and comments can take weeks but I always enjoy what you share. Your reply to my comment on this blog led to thoughts and you know that can mean a new post so here is a link to a post I prepared while trying to answer your questions and curiosities…
Thank you for leaving us another GREAT comment on the blog. We really enjoy learning from you. It makes us feel good to know that, while you are researching for us and writing your extended blog posts, you are also learning for and from us!
You’re right about being careful around wild animals … and domestic animals … and respecting the “biting end”! We think that the symptoms of a lace and perentie monitor lizard bite sounds awful! We’re glad you can’t die from their bite, though!
Wow … the megalania was HUGE! It would have been as long as 2 ½ of our grade six teacher or … 3 of Mrs. Renton! We wonder if it had a poisonous bite. We think it wouldn’t really have mattered, though, because ONE bite from something THAT huge and you would be dead! Gulp! Probably, even with a flick of its tail, a person would be killed right away! Double gulp!
As a class, we searched up pictures of the liger and the tigon. They are SO cute. Most of us had never heard of them before. It’s neat to know that two species can interbreed if they are the same genus. It’s a lot to think about, though!
Every time we see a picture of Spike, or Sapphire, we ALL say ahhhh!!! We LOVE those photos. We wonder if Sapphire was named for the crystal sapphire … was she born in September? The sapphire is the birthstone for September.
We think it’s really cool that an echidna can stick its tongue in and out 100 times in a minute, if they are very hungry. We also thought it was neat that their ear flaps are opposite to ours because they can hear predators and also dig without getting dirt in their little ears. That’s really important because they have sensitive hearing … and their eye sight is lousy!!! We think it’s funny how much an echidna looks a little like a porcupine and a platypus, (because of the beak)!!! We wonder what the other two echidna’s names are at the Patoroo Palace? Are they males or females? Which one is the oldest? Which one is the youngest. We know that Spike is about ten years old. We LOVED the video you sent to us. We learned a lot about echidnas through that also!
We think we need to do some more research about the homes that are built underground. We still have so many questions. It may even end up to be another blog post because while we were researching indigenous voluntary no-contact tribes we discovered some amazing different homes around the world! We wonder how long it would take to dig a home under ground? We wonder how they get down to go into their front doors … maybe they use ladders or maybe they carve steps down into the hillside.
We looked at the link you shared for Uluru … and we all fell in LOVE with the burrowing bettong! It looks like a cross between a mouse and a teeny tiny kangaroo! We DEFINITELY need to do some more research about the animals that live there too.
We really enjoyed reading your blog post and learning MORE about Australia from you, Ross! Thank you for always taking the time to teach us more about the world!
PS One of our bloggers is CRAZY about procoptodons … and … wonders if you have ever seen a fossil of this prehistoric kangaroo!
Thank you SO much for your amazing comment! We sure hope you’ve had a good week! It sounds like you’ve had a BUSY week! We are not sure if you celebrate Thanksgiving in Australia … but … if you do … we sure hope you had a blast! You sound like you have a LOT of work to do with all that filming and commenting on blogs. You must get tired. We are SURE grateful that you leave us comments even when you’re busy!
We think it’s COOL that you have been to the outback, where all the wildlife is! We feel excited that you are going to share your outback pictures with us. None of us have EVER been to Australia before … but … SOME of us have seen pictures of Ayers Rock. Mrs. Renton brought up pictures of Ayers Rock on the internet for us to all see. Immediately, we noticed that Ayers Rock is RED!!! In science, we are learning about Rocks and Minerals. Often, the red in rocks means the rocks may have IRON inside them. Do you know if Ayers Rock HAS iron in it? We would LOVE to know!
Wow! The lace monitor is even taller than Mrs. Renton is! We think it would be really, really freaky to have a lizard run after you. It’s a good thing they run away when they see people! A couple of us read in a book that if a komodo dragon hits you on your wrist … it can break your wrist. We are glad that komodo dragons don’t live in Australia … or in Calgary!!!
We might see kangaroos and wallabies at the ZOO … but … we would NEVER see them in the wild in Canada! We thought it was funny when you said you see them on the golf course and in the sports park across the street. We giggled because we wondered if they were playing golf … or … football!
Do you have pictures of Sapphire? We would LOVE to see them. We think it is cool that you have known that koala since she was a baby! We hope that they find a male koala too!
We’ve all met Spike, our special grade three guest from Australia, and we LOVE him! We wonder what the little echidna foraging in the garden did when he saw you! Sometimes we see bunnies and vole in our garden … and some people have even seen mice, elk, bear, cougar, and DEER … luckily … not so much the elk, bear, cougar or deer!
In Calgary, we have garter snakes in the wild … it sounds like in Australia there are a lot of snakes … and … many of them are poisonous! Gulp! One of our bloggers has a “dangerous creatures of Australia” book that she is going to bring in for us to explore! It makes us wonder if you have ever been bitten by a snake. We sure hope not!
We wondered if “fortnight” was a week, or overnight … so we had to look it up! We discovered that a fortnight means 14 days, or two weeks. THEN we had to google where it CAME from!!! It’s old English … fortnight is just the shortened form of fourteen nights. Or … according to the website we discovered … the old English spelling: which is feorwertyne niht!
We thought our reply would be short too, Ross! Thank you for making us think!
After posting the previous comment for you, I realised I hadn’t commented on an above reply you left for me in October. I intend keeping it shorter as I am running out of time and will filming about four hours after posting this. Because I wanted to share some photos, I needed to create another post. Two for one class in a day is probably a record.
Thank you for leaving another comment … yes … it is really awesome that you left TWO for us on our blog in ONE day!!! We are SO lucky!
We’ve had a lot of snowy days this week. It all started with a HUGE blizzard Sunday night! When we woke up on TUESDAY there were HUGE snowdrifts EVERYWHERE … some of them even TALLER than the Grade Six teacher in SOME places!!! And, NONE of the BUSES were running. We usually have twenty-two students in our class but we only ended up with TEN kids ALL day long!!! That’s less than HALF!
The TEN of us spent time on the iPads researching our WONDERS about some of the animals you have told us about! We ended up with a TON of research about these animals … and we would like to share a FEW of these discoveries with you!
• They can live up to 45 or 50 years!
• Pricilla is one of the echidnas who lives at the Patoroo Palace!
• There is an albino echidna at the Patoroo Palace!
• They can have 6 inch tongues.
• They can swim!
• Babies are called puggles.
• They are sometimes called spiny anteaters.
• New Zealand and New Guinea has LONG beaked echidnas.
• Australia has SHORT beaked echidnas!
• They are not bears … they are marsupials.
• They are shy, so it’s hard to find them in the wild.
• They have TWO thumbs on each front paw.
• They are related to wombats and kangaroos.
• They have one home to eat in and one home to sleep in!
• They eat a little bit of dirt every once in a while to help them digest eucalyptus leaves!
• They are threatened by humans.
• They have many enemies.
• Can live in many places … they adapt well.
• They are nocturnal!
• Adult people are an average size of 1.5 metres long. These snakes CAN be up to 4.5 metres long.
• They are found in the arid regions of central Australia and in the south west of Australia.
• They shelter in burrows during the day.
• They use their heads as shovels to dig these burrows out.
• It’s the largest bird in Australia.
• It is the second largest bird in the world … the ostrich is bigger.
• The babies are brown and creamy striped.
• They stay with their fathers for about 18 months.
• Emu eggs are dark green and the same colour as an avocado!
• Emu males are called cocks.
• Females are called hens.
We had a TON of OTHER cool facts that we could have shared. We LOVED all the information that you shared with us about Australia and it inspired us to do some of our own investigations! Thank you for always helping us to be curious about the world!
Hi global grade 3!
Wow I can’t believe that it has been this many years since the global grade three started, all these milestones and memories come and go, to enjoy ourselves. Learning is a great thing, and sharing it with the world is even better, being part of a caring group and under a wing of a great teacher is an amazing thing. Blogging is a great thing, you guys don’t know how lucky you guys are!You are the only class in all of CBE that get to have a blog. WOW!
Happy learning and yeah!
Thank you so much for leaving a comment for the new bloggers this year! I can’t believe this will be our third year blogging either! It’s quite exciting, when you think about it! You are right. There are LOTS of special memories and milestones! Sharing our learning with the world has been amazing! Thank you for your awesome comment – I feel VERY lucky to work with all the awesome students I get to have in my class!!!
I hope you have a magical year of learning this year, Eric! Keep checking back! The new Grade Threes are still returning all their blog permission forms. Once they are all in, we will begin the exciting journey of sharing our learning! There is a lot to learn about blogging, citizenship, online safety and responsibility!
I look forward to your next comments, Eric!
Mrs. Renton 🙂
Hi Ms.Renton me and my mom are writing a comment my mom eat chicken leg it tastes like crunchy because there are a lot of bones.
I have ate stuff that I don’t no how to say in English so I will write them in Chinese one of them is 油条 it is a type of food . here is another word I don’t know it is I think a soup it is called 藕粉 I like it it tastes good . This is also tasty it is called 米酒。I hope you look up all the Chinese words and what they mean 🙂 😉 <3
Thank you for leaving us a comment with Chinese words! It was fun looking these words up with Google Translator. Mrs. Renton said that the translator isn’t always accurate, though … so … you have to be careful with it!
Melvin, thank you for explaining that chicken legs aren’t the same as the chicken thighs we get from Kentucky Fried Chicken. The chicken legs your mom eats have the whole leg and the feet still attached. The claws are still even on them. Peng Peng says these are delicious!
油条 our translator says this is “fritters”. Melvin says it is deep fried bread.
藕粉 our translator says this is “lotus root starch”. Melvin says it is light brown, because of the brown sugar, and it is sticky.
米酒 our translator says this is “rice wine”. It is sugary and made with egg white. Melvin says it tastes sweet. It’s like soup.
Melvin, we LOVE that you added a comment that told us a little more about some of the interesting foods people eat within their cultures!
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