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A MAGICAL Skype … sharing our “Wonders”!

Posted by on October 19, 2013

“The important thing is not to stop questioning. Curiosity has its own reason for existing.”
~ Albert Einstein

Airplane Flight Wing flying to Travel on Vacation

Flickr Creative Commons Photo by

On Wednesday morning, our class took a “virtual” trip to Victoria! It’s TRUE! It would have cost us about $300.00 EACH to do this on an AIRPLANE … but … WE connected through SKYPE! Wow. Technology is a BEAUTIFUL thing. Instead of having to pay around $7 200.00 for the WHOLE class to FLY to Victoria … we did it for FREE! Woo HOO!

You MAY be asking yourselves WHY we were Skyping with someone in Victoria. Well, Ashli is our PERU expert, and she is in Victoria for a couple more weeks. For FOUR years now, Ashli has been working HARD to help the Grade Threes at Battalion Park deepen their understanding of life in Peru. If you have been following this blog for a while, you will know that Ashli founded an AMAZING not-for-profit non-Government organization, Mosqoy, working in Peru to support indigenous communities. Over the years, we have helped Ashli and her Mosqoy crew to build a library in the small rural weaving village of Q’enqo! Wow … Grade THREES helping to make a DIFFERENCE in the world. Now THAT is GOOSE-BUMPY!

Zoe and Ashli ... Skyping with us from Victoria!

Zoe and Ashli … Skyping with us from Victoria!

This was the VERY first time we were meeting Ashli since we are NEW to Grade Three. We were joined by 3 other classes who were JUST as eager to ask questions and learn more about life in Peru through our expert’s eyes! (With three additional classes, THIS trip would have cost us at LEAST $22 000.00!) GULP! Ashli brought along Zoe, who is also working with Mosqoy now.

We had SO many questions. What follows are our reflections on the hour spent with Ashli and Zoe:

“Today we Skyped with Ashli and Zoe. They were in Victoria. We were talking about Peru. We asked a LOT of questions. There are around 2 400 different types of potatoes in Peru! Did you know that they eat guinea pig in Q’enqo? Ashli told us that a guinea pig is mostly bones than meat. When Ashli was in Peru she saw a condor!” ~Noam

“When we were getting seated, Mrs. Renton was g-mailing Ashli. Soon everyone was seated so Mrs. Renton pressed the Skype button. It took a while but it started. I never knew that they eat guinea pig! It’s cool if you see a condor. It can mean good luck, point you in the right direction or that someone died. I didn’t get to share my questions. I had no idea that llamas live in the mountains. I am still wondering about why Macchu Picchu the mountain is shaped like stairs!” ~Ethan

Many of us wonder WHY the land is cut like "stairs". Photo by Lauren Adamson

Many of us wonder WHY the land is cut like “stairs”.
© Photo by Lauren Adamson

“Wow. I REALLY did not know that there are over 2 000 types of potatoes in Peru. They eat guinea pigs. Eww. I’ve heard that they are very tough. Ashli graduated from university just this summer! Amazing, huh? And, well, Zoe is still in university but she helps Ashli in Peru. They live in Victoria BC. They have a foundation called Mosqoy!” ~Claire

“Today we had an awesome day! Guess what we got to do? We got to Skype with Ashli and Zoe. Why we got to Skype them is we were learning about Peru. My favourite part was talking in the mic! My question was “what are the houses made of in Q’enqo, Lima and Cusco?” Ashli said the houses were made out of rocks, grass and the floor was made out of mud in Q’enqo! I never knew that they  had a library in Q’enqo. A boy asked how they would cook guinea pig. They said they would kill it first then put it by the fire and spin it on the fire. Ashli and Zoe said they were vegetarian. That means they don’t eat meat. But, we get to Skype with them soon. Ashli said some people in Q’enqo like guinea pig but some people say eww! My favourite part was learning new things! She told us even more stuff like the library in Q’enqo is as big as our classroom. I got to sit at the front of the classroom. The most popular food is potato and it is easy to grow. I had a lot of fun. I can’t wait until the next Skype. Sometimes I also Skype at home. I wonder how long it takes to get to Q’enqo? There were four classes in our classroom and altogether that is 88 children. When we Skyped them they were in Victoria. In Q’enqo people loved to do weaving for years!” ~Kelly

The magic of Skype made Ashli and Zoe seem like they were right there in the room WITH us!

The magic of Skype made Ashli and Zoe seem like they were right there in the room WITH us!

“Can you believe that there are over 2 000 kinds of potatoes in Peru? Sometimes you can get altitude sickness! Have you ever been on the Inca Trail? Do you like the animals in Peru? Have you ever had the traditional food with the Peruvian people?” ~Zyne

“I did not know that the people in Peru ate guinea pig. And I learned that Peru has over two thousand and four hundred kinds of potatoes. We all enjoyed talking to Ashli and Zoe. I wish we could do the Skype again. And even in Peru there is a lot a baby llamas, and papa llamas and mama llamas. I even learned that red rocks have iron!” ~Hannah

We are REALLY intrigued by llamas and alpacas! You can see them all OVER the place in Peru! © Photo by Lauren Adamson

We are REALLY intrigued by llamas and alpacas! You can see them all OVER the place in Peru!
© Photo by Lauren Adamson

“I never knew that there are about 2 400 types of potatoes in Peru! In Peru, some people eat guinea pigs. Ashli and Zoe told us that because we were Skyping with them. They say that some people in Peru cook the guinea pig without even taking the hair off. In each region they use different materials to build buildings in Peru. Not all people in Peru hunt. Most people in Q’enqo didn’t have electricity but now the people in Q’enqo are getting solar panels.” ~Daniel

“Did you know that people in Peru eat guinea pig? I also learned that they don’t use lots of wood. My wonder is how many holidays and celebrations are there in Peru. What are they called? I didn’t get to talk to Ashli and Zoe. I LOVE to Skype with Ashli and Zoe. PS Ashli and Zoe have been to a little village in Peru called Q’enqo!” ~Melvin

It was SO much fun being able to ask Zoe and Ashli some of our questions!

It was SO much fun being able to ask Zoe and Ashli some of our questions!

“Today the Grade 3s came to our classroom and we Skyped with two girls named Zoe and Ashli. Some people asked questions. Some people asked about the towns there. I did not ask about anything. It was very fun.” ~Alex

“Today we Skyped with Ashli and her friend Zoe. I learned they eat guinea pig in Peru. When guinea pigs are cooked the hair falls off. Llamas are bigger than alpacas. A llama is a backpack animal. What are the streets like in Peru? Many streets in Peru are made out of soil. Under the soil is iron. Some roads are red. We will talk together again sometime. Have fun in your country and explore the world!” ~Lane

“Did you know that 4 classes at Battalion School came into our class? There was 88 people in our class. In Q’enqo they eat potatoes and crops. They are not hunters. The hunters are in the jungle region. But the people in Q’enqo do eat meat. They eat pig, cow and guinea pig. They even cook them without even taking the fur off. They believe that the condor will guide you when you are lots or when someone dies.” ~Kale

If you look VERY closely, you will see row upon ROW of different kinds of POTATOES! © Photo by Lauren Adamson

If you look VERY closely, you will see row upon ROW of different kinds of POTATOES!
© Photo by Lauren Adamson

“I choose Alex said Mrs. Henderson. My friend Alex walked up. And when my friend faced the computer … he said what are the houses made of? Well … said Ashli … in Lima houses look like yours and Q’enqo’s are made of adobe and stone. In Cusco the houses are made of stone. I kind of knew that. And they also mentioned that in Peru they eat guinea pigs. When they said that some girls said “eww”! One boy said YES! There was one thing that was interesting. It was that the main sport is soccer.” ~Isaac

“I’d never eat guinea pig they’re too cute … and they would taste bad. People eat guinea pig in Peru. We Skyped with Ashli and Zoe. I didn’t get to share my question. But, it’s cool that they eat guinea pig. They’re too cute for me to eat them. I didn’t know there was more than 2 000 types of potatoes.” ~Amy

“Have you ever seen a condor? If you have you’re lucky. That probably means you are from Peru or you’ve been there. Did you know that there are around 2 400 types of potatoes in Peru? They also eat meat like guinea pig!!! Can you believe it? Some people eat guinea pigs! Yucky. Have you ever seen a flamingo in the wild? In Peru you can!” ~ Peng Peng

Flamingos ... in the WILD! Wow!

Flamingos … in the WILD! Wow!
© Photo by Lauren Adamson

“Really? I never knew that sometimes Peruvians let guinea pigs run around their kitchens and then roast them and teat them. Some people say they love to taste guinea pig. Some others say eww. I don’t like to taste guinea pig. I wonder if Peruvians love to eat guinea pigs or if some of them don’t? Four grade three classes joined un in our classroom to Skype with two girls named Ashli and Zoe because we are learning about Peru. Ashli, (sometimes Zoe), goes to Peru so they taught us a lit bit about Peru. Some of us asked questions. A little bit of us asked about the library we are raising money for in Peru. Some of the questions were “how big is the library? Is there more books now than when we saw the pictures? Do the kids use it?” Some kids and a teacher got to go up to the computer and got to ask other questions that they thought of. I kept on wondering how bit IS the library. I tried to raise my hand to ask my question. Finally Mrs. Renton picked me to come up so, I asked my question. “How large is the library in Q’enqo?” Ashli and Zoe answered, “Hmm, maybe the size of your classroom”. I nodded and smiled then I went back to sit down on the carpet. I had a great time Skyping with Ashli and Zoe.” ~Kennedy

“Did you know that in Peru some people eat guinea pig? We didn’t all get to ask Ashli and Zoe questions. I thought it was cool that when they said that their is a LOT of potatoes. We will Skype with Ashli and Zoe again one day. Did you know that in Peru people use tire to make shoes?” Catherine

We had SO much fun reflecting on our Skype with Ashli and Zoe in our journals.

We had SO much fun reflecting on our Skype with Ashli and Zoe in our journals.

“Ok … that is gross! I said to myself. We did a Skype with Ashli and Zoe and it was very fun. Ashli told us that some people but not all eat GUINEA PIGS. I was up next to ask my question. I got to sit on the teacher’s computer chair! Now I know that Ashli has been working in Peru for seven years and Zoe has been working in Peru for three years. Did you know that there are more than 2 thousand kinds of potatoes in Peru? Well … there is!” ~Jenna

“That’s neat! In Q’enqo they eat guinea pig. They raise them to get them ready to eat them. Did you know that there are over 2 000 kinds of potatoes? Lots of areas are made out of soil the colour red. The library is about as big as our classroom.” ~Hilary

“I never knew that there were over 2 000 types of potatoes. The library is as big as our classroom. People in Peru eat guinea pigs. When they get cooked the hair falls off. The houses are small. Our Grade Three classes had so much fun with you guys. I hope I could Skype with you again. I wish I could spend more time asking questions.” ~Aya

We have SO many "wonders" ... thank GOODNESS we get to Skype AGAIN!

We have SO many “wonders” … thank GOODNESS we get to Skype AGAIN!

Our WONDER Wall is just not BIG enough to hold ALL our “I wonder”s about Peru … thank GOODNESS Ashli and Zoe had as MUCH fun as WE did … they want to do it AGAIN in two weeks, BEFORE Ashli heads off to Peru again! Ya HOO!

This post may lead us in the direction of investigating what people eat around the world … many of us were SO shocked to discover guinea pigs were seen as a food source for many people living in Peru. In our culture, they are pets. An investigation into what the WORLD eats may help us to more clearly understand and respect cultural diversity!

I have no special talents.  I am only passionately curious. 

~Albert Einstein

*Special acknowledgement goes to Lauren Adamson who has VERY graciously allowed the Battalion Bloggers to use many of the BEAUTIFUL photographs she took, in September, while on a special holiday in Peru! Thank you, Lauren. You are truly helping us learn even more about the beautiful Peruvian culture through your fantastic photography! The Battalion Bloggers are SO grateful! *MANY of us wonder if YOU tried the guinea pig while on your adventure in Peru! 🙂

7 Responses to A MAGICAL Skype … sharing our “Wonders”!

  1. Lauren Adamson

    Dear Grade Three Bloggers,
    I am so glad that you were able to use the photographs, Peru is such a beautiful country. It was easy to find lots to photograph. Before I went over, I was planning on trying the cuy, but did not get the opportunity. I did get the chance to try ceviche, it is a raw fish salad marinaded in lemon juice. I also had a lama steak. The lama steak was salty, but very good!

    I was so excited to see my photos on the blog, it is a fantastico blog!

    Lauren Adamson

    PS: The reason that the ruins are built in step formation is for agricultural reasons. It allows the water to drain down the slope and it allows for the maximum planting area.

    • The Battalion Bloggers

      Hi Lauren!

      Thank you for leaving a comment on the blog for us, Lauren! We were glad we could put your pictures on our blog because it’s very hard to find good pictures of Peru to use on our blog. It was REALLY nice of you!

      It would have been fun to try the cuy. Ashli and Zoe told us that guinea pig has more bones than meat. They say it’s very tough to eat but it also depends on how it is cooked. They didn’t eat it, though, because they are both vegetarians! Over half the class thinks they would try it if they were given the chance … which is a HUGE change from our initial feelings the FIRST day we heard that they eat cuy in Peru!

      Thank you for telling us why the ruins are built like steps. It makes sense that you have more growing room when you cut into the mountains!

      We are SO glad that you left a comment for us, Lauren! What was your MOST favourite part of going to Peru? Did you meet any Peruvian families while you were there? If so, do you know what the kids like to do for fun there?

      The Battalion Bloggers 🙂

  2. rebecca :) ;)

    hi awesome grade 3’s!

    this is going to be a pretty short comment… but it MUST be enough until I get ready to go. I see you’ve skyped with Ashley already! ( that was fast!) was it fun skyping with her? what are some of the questions you asked her?

    told you it would be short… now I need to go! 😉

    hope you have a wonderful day/ night!

    Rebecca 🙂

    • The Battalion Bloggers

      Hi Rebecca!

      Thank you for leaving a comment. We just didn’t Skype ONCE with Ashli and Zoe, we Skyped with them TWICE! It was really great to learn about Peru from Ashli and Zoe. A few of our questions were:

      – What kinds of traditional foods are there in Peru?
      – What were the houses made of in Lima, Cusco and Q’enqo?
      – How big is the library in Q’enqo Peru?
      – What kinds of animals are in Peru … wild AND domesticate?

      What are you DOING in Grade Four? Do you like it? What kinds of questions would YOU ask Ashli and Zoe about Peru?

      Thank you for leaving a short but awesome comment! It was nice “chatting” with you!

      The Battalion Bloggers 🙂

  3. Kennedy

    Hi Mrs. Renton

    I’m having a great time blogging. the blog looks really good. I bet you guinea pig is really good and fried frog legs are really good too.

    I can’t wait to see the next blog post that you will put on. It will be AWSOME. 😉

    I LOVE learning about Peru, I can’t wait to learn more about it. I’m EXCITED!!! 🙂

    I hope you had a great weekend!!!

    Have a great day!!!

    Kennedy 😉

  4. Kelly Christopherson

    The Battalion Bloggers,

    That was an amazing blog post packed full questions, thoughts and ideas! Wow. It is great to see all your questions. As a principal, I always wanted students to ask questions, to seek different ways of doing things and be curious about what is going on around them. I have a daughter in Spain right now and we Skype with her every week – isn’t it wonderful to be able to talk to someone that far away! The experience you describe with Ashli bursting into tears at the corner store reminds me of how my daughter describes the differences in the way people live and how she misses a few things from Canada and she wants to tell everyone here how wonderful Canada is!

    Keep up the great work!

    Mr. C

    • The Battalion Bloggers

      Hi Mr. C.!

      Thank you for leaving us a comment on the blog! Thank you SO much for the compliment on our post! Are you still a principal? It is SO cool having a class blog because we get to learn so much WITH the world! It’s really fun to Skype with Ashli and Zoe – we’ve learned SO much about the Peruvian Jungle, other places in Peru and the people who live there! The next time we Skype with Ashli she will be in Peru. She promised to turn her laptop around so that we could see into the streets of Cusco! How cool is that?

      We wonder about what it is like in Spain. Ashli cried because in Peru the kids sometimes have to walk for 3 or 4 hours just to get to school. Sometimes the teachers aren’t there when they get there. When she saw kids in Canada skipping school at the corner store, she was pretty sad. Many people in Peru want to go to school but they can’t. They’ll even walk that far AND back … just to get to school. Sometimes we just don’t know how lucky we are!

      Thank you, Mr. C. We hope you check back again!

      The Battalion Bloggers 🙂

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