Wednesday, 22 February 2012


Facts about SUN


The Sun is one out of billions of stars.  The Sun is the closest star to Earth.  The Sun rotates once every 27 days.  The Sun is one out of billions of stars.  The Sun is the closest star to Earth.  The Sun rotates once every 27 days.  The Sun is now a middle-aged star, meaning it is at about the middle of its life.  The Sun formed over four and a half billion years ago.  You may think the Sun will die soon, but it will keep shining for at least another five billion years.  


    The Sun's surface is called the photosphere.  The temperature of the photosphere is about 10,000° Fahrenheit.  Its core is under its atmosphere. The temperature at the core, or very middle, of the Sun, is about 27 million° Fahrenheit.  That's pretty hot!  


    The Sun's diameter is about 870,000 miles wide.  The Sun is 109 times wider than Earth, and is 333,000 times heavier.  That means if you put the Sun on a scale, you would need 333,000 objects that weigh as much as the Earth on the other side to make it balance. 


    The Sun is only one of over 100 billion stars.  In ancient times, the people believed the Sun was a burning ball of fire created by the gods.  Later, people thought it was a solid object, or a liquid ball.  Over one million Earths could fit inside the Sun.   Looking directly at the Sun can permanently damage your eyes because it is so bright.  A star mostly gives off light and heat.  The larger the star, the hotter its temperature.  A supergiant star can get to be 400 times larger than our Sun, which is almost a million miles in diameter.  The Sun is tilted.


     Without the Sun, Earth could not support life.  The Sun gives off heat and light that the Earth needs to support life (us).  If you lived on the Sun, and you built a spacecraft, it would have to go over 618.2 kilometers per second to escape the Sun's gravitational pull.  The Sun is 695,000 kilometers at its equator.  The Sun is the largest mass in our Solar System. 


   Sun loops are large loops caused by the Sun's magma (molten rock) shooting off of the Sun's surface.  These loops can fly millions of miles into space.  Our Sun is approximately 25,000 light-years from the galactic core of our galaxy (the Milky Way).  It is like a really big star.  It is a million times bigger than the biggest.


   Did you know that the Sun is made out of 92% hydrogen, 7% helium and the rest is other low number gasses? The Sun's core is the hottest part of its matter.  It is 27 billion° Fahrenheit.  The Sun does not rise or set.  It just looks like it does because the Earth is moving.  The Earth orbits the Sun every 365 space days.  Can you believe that the Sun can burn over seven million tons of natural gas every second?  A star can live for over three billion years.  If the Sun was hollow, you could fit 333,000 Earths inside!  The Sun rotates, too.  It rotates every 25-36 days.  It seems as if stars always stay in the same position night after night, year after year, but they actually do move over time.  They helped scientists to develop a reference system for charting a planet's movement.  


The moon does not give off light of its own.  It is the Sun that gives light to the Moon.  The Moon reflects the Sun's light. A star is the only body in space that emits its own light; everything else reflects light from the closest star.  Can you believe that it is over 4.24 light-years to the nearest star?  Did you know that about 65% of all "stars" are actually double stars?  They are stars that look like one, but when viewed through a telescope, they are actually two stars.  Stars vary in sizes.  They can be as small as 7,000 miles in diameters, or as large as 900 billion miles in diameter.  Some stars change in brightness over a period of time.  They do this when the star's temperature dramatically drops.  These stars are called Variable Stars. 


    A star has many different characteristics, such as their position, motion, size, mass, chemical ingredients and temperature.  No two stars are exactly alike.  The number of stars in the known Universe exceeds one billion.


Some books about Planets


1.     My book of planets board book

2.     The stars trip to earth written and illustrated by 8th grade students at Ecole Viscount Alexander, Winnipeg, Manitoba

3.     True or False Planets by Melvin and Gilda Berger

4.     Earth the life of our planet

5.     Journey to Mars: Quest for the red planet


Door prize

6.     Magic School Bus fact finder

7.     Astronaut living in space

Tuesday, 21 February 2012

Celebrate Freedom to Read Week by making a bracelet with covers of banned books. You'll be able to show off your love of reading with bookish jewellery after this workshop

Sunday, 12 February 2012

Name some words borrowed from other languages.

Name some words borrowed from other languages.

There are more words in the English language than in any other in the world.  The experts say the number is somewhere between 400,000 and 600,000 words!  This isn’t surprising when you think about how many words are borrowed from other languages.

Because of this, there are often many ways to say the same thing in English.  Take the word eat, for example.  English-speakers have several different ways to describe this activity.  Here are some of these, and the languages they were borrowed from:

Gulp                       Dutch
Nibble                    German
Devour                   French
Masticate              (a fancy way to say chew) – Greek

Not to mention feed, dine and gnaw, which all trace their origins to Old English.  What other examples can you think of?  Look them up in a dictionary that includes word origins to see where they came from.

English has also borrowed many words from Spanish, such as barbecue and lasso.  From Hindi, the most widely spoken language of India, come such words as Veranda and pajama.  Sofa is derived from an Arabic word; Sleuth from a Norse word; pistachio from Italian.  Robot, a word that was invented only in 1920, is a Czech contribution.  Black Americans have enriched the language with many words including okay, and expression some believe evolved from a West African word 0-ke.

Pick any word and see if you can guess its origin.  Now check the dictionary.  Were you right?

Action rhymes

Father Mother and Uncle John

Father and Mother and Uncle John
Went to market one by one
Father fell off
And Mother fell off
But Uncle John went on and on and on.

A Smooth Road

A smooth road, a smooth road, a smooth road
A bumpy road, a bumpy road, a bumpy road
A rough road, a rough road, a rough road
A Hole!

Wednesday, 8 February 2012

Oviparous word origin

Word Origin & History


"producing eggs that are hatched outside the body of the female,"

1646, from L. oviparus, from ovum "egg" (see egg) + stem of parere "to bring forth" (see pare).
Online Etymology Dictionary, © 2010 Douglas Harper

Monday, 6 February 2012

Earth worm facts

Friday: Round 1, Feb 3

Eagles 3

• An earthworm can grow only so long. A well-fed adult will depend on
what kind of worm it is, how many segments it has, how old it is and
how well fed it is. An Lumbricus terrestris will be from 90-300
millimeters long.
• A worm has no arms, legs or eyes.
• There are approximately 2,700 different kinds of earthworms.
• Worms live where there is food, moisture, oxygen and a favorable
temperature. If they don't have these things, they go somewhere else.
• In one acre of land, there can be more than a million earthworms.
• The largest earthworm ever found was in South Africa and measured 22
feet from its nose to the tip of its tail.
• Worms tunnel deeply in the soil and bring subsoil closer to the
surface mixing it with the topsoil. Slime, a secretion of earthworms,
contains nitrogen. Nitrogen is an important nutrient for plants. The
sticky slime helps to hold clusters of soil particles together in
formations called aggregates.
·       Earthworms poop is healthy for the soil
• Charles Darwin spent 39 years studying earthworms more than 100 years ago.
• Worms are cold-blooded animals.
• Earthworms have the ability to replace or replicate lost segments.
This ability varies greatly depending on the species of worm you have,
the amount of damage to the worm and where it is cut. It may be easy
for a worm to replace a lost tail, but may be very difficult or
impossible to replace a lost head if things are not just right.
• Baby worms are not born. They hatch from cocoons smaller than a grain of rice.
• The Australian Gippsland Earthworm grows to 12 feet long and can
weigh 1-1/2 pounds.
• Even though worms don't have eyes, they can sense light, especially
at their anterior (front end). They move away from light and will
become paralyzed if exposed to light for too long (approximately one
• If a worm's skin dries out, it will die.
• Worms are hermaphrodites. Each worm has both male and female organs.
Worms mate by joining their clitella (swollen area near the head of a
mature worm) and exchanging sperm. Then each worm forms an egg capsule
in its clitellum.

• Worms can eat their weight each day. (Facts from University of
Illinois Extension)
Activity:  Students made beaded worms. 1 bead is equal to 1 feet
Take out: Students enjoyed earthworm poop and hermaphrodites

Read books about Penguins and Little Pip

Grade 2 Nursery Rhymes
Read: The world that loved books
Rhyme1: Hungry hungry… I am so hungry I can eat 16 bananas and a purple plump.

Rhyme 2: Father and Mother and Uncle John Went to market one by one,
Father fell off
Mother fell off
But Uncle John went on, and on,  And on,  And on,  And on,  And on,  And on ...  

Monday, February 6: Round 1, Day 4

Grade 2
Read books:
·       The world that loved books by Stephen Parlato   
·       The END by Robert and Marlene McCraken
Showed pictures of 2 friends Allie and Corky from the book,  'See you later Alligator' by Norma M Charles
Classroom activity: Craft supplies given for classroom activity based on animals and the book, 'Alligator beat.'

Read book: The world that loved books by Stephen Parlato   
Story: Shimmering clouds and the Rooster with golden horns

Wednesday, 1 February 2012

Library Services report for January 2012

Library Services report for January 2012

What we did

January was Legends Celebration Month at the library.  I did a 'Coyote Learns to Fly' read-n-tell session using the black feathers of crow. Our students learned how to use the range of dictionaries. Our library has rhyming, picture dictionaries and subject specific dictionaries.  We celebrated Chinese New year by making Chinese lanterns.  I did a show-n-tell with the Chinese musical instruments, paper piecing samples, and double happiness artifacts.  We read a Chinese book, 'Mouse Match' by Ed Young and 'Daisy Comes Home' by Jan Brett.  Since this is a year of dragon, we studied different types of Chinese dragons and rainbow Australian aboriginal dragon. We looked at Chinese pictographs such as the sun, moon and mountain.  We hosted a Family Literacy Day Coffeehouse on January 26th from 1 to 4 pm. Families read together and played with puzzles, puppets and board games.  Thank you for participating in the Raise a Reader contest.  Read more at and

We would like to thank Frontier College for donating books.

What we are planning to do in February

February is 'Love Our Library' month and our students will be writing book reviews and giving awards to books.  Plus, we will be reading books and do special activities in February to mark the following days.

·      February 1: Digital Learning day by making Wordles  (Today is Week 1, Day 1)
·      February 15: National Flag of Canada Day (Promotional materials will be distributed on February 7)
·      February 21: UNESCO's International Mother Language Day  
·      February 26-March 3: Freedom to Read week   
·      February 16-21: Book Sale 
·      Launch, 'Look I am using my Shelf Marker' campaign

I would like to invite and request you to bring your favorite book when you come to the library this month and share with the students why do you like that book so much. I would be reading Anansi and Alligator stories, Flag day, and I love to read.  Our guest presenter of the month for Heather Schpansky's class will be coming on February 7 from 2 to 2:45 pm.

Tammy and Kim have created awesome Valentines Activity Centers for our students.

Teacher Surveys

I would like to share the following two reports.  The first one is about class size and differentiated instruction and the second is a survey of aboriginal teachers and their perspectives.
National teacher survey shows diversity as a key challenge in Canadian classrooms
OTTAWA, Jan. 31, 2012 /CNW/ - According to a recent national survey reporting on nearly 10,000 Canadian classes, one in every six students has an identified learning exceptionality. The survey, conducted by the Canadian Teachers' Federation (CTF) last October, drew responses from nearly 3,800 teachers, the largest number obtained in a CTF online survey to date.  
"The fact that so many teachers responded to the survey is a clear indication that the relationship between class size and diversity is a major issue in our schools," says CTF President Paul Taillefer. "When we talk about class size, we also need to be thinking about the number of students with a variety of individual learning needs in those classes. In order to enhance quality and equity in our public schools, these two issues need to be addressed together," he explains.

Proposed Library Calendar 2012

Our proposed library calendar is posted on the following page.  I will also include author birthdays. 

Finally, I would like to thank all of you for the feedback and suggestions.  Much appreciated.