Weekly Warm-Up: Five Winter Wonders

Temperatures are dropping (in the Northern Hemisphere, at least . . . ) and winter is coming. (The winter solstice, marking the beginning of the season, is December 22.) Warm up your classroom with these frosty winter wonders! 1. The City of Ice (Harbin, Heilongjiang Province, China) For more than 30 years, the city of Harbin in Northeast China has hosted the Harbin International Ice … Continue reading Weekly Warm-Up: Five Winter Wonders

Five for Friday: Five Fun Educational Contests with Great Prizes!

Calling all teachers, educators, parents, and kids: Check out these contests and see if you’re eligible to participate. Unleash your creativity, win a range of prizes, get recognition for your work, and learn something along the way!

Thumbnail image for Video Camera.jpgSolve for Tomorrow
Who can enter? Grades 6-12
When are entries due? October 24, 2010
What is it? Samsung and its partners are asking teachers to participate in its contest which will address a key academic challenge in our country: to increase the pursuit of Science, Technology, Engineering, and Math (STEM) education. By filling out the application, you will be entered for a chance to participate in Phase Two of the Samsung Solve for Tomorrow Contest. Out of the applicants, 50 educators will be chosen to have their classes create videos addressing the question, “How can Science and Math help improve the environment in your community?” All 50 chosen teachers will be sent a video creation kit to help complete the task.
What do you win? A technology and software package and a chance to go to an awards ceremony in NYC!

Continue reading “Five for Friday: Five Fun Educational Contests with Great Prizes!”

Five for Friday: Five Things I Am Excited About for Geography Awareness Week (GA Week)

GA Week.png1.    Blog-a-thon
We are going to have some really great entries this year that cover a wide variety of topics, such as the Sunderbans – the worlds largest mangrove forest, the 2010 Olympic Games, and the impact of mountain top coal mining on freshwater streams. I am so excited to read them! I can’t wait to hear what people have to say about geography. Hopefully, I’ll even learn some new things about the world!

2.    Challenging Myself to Cut My Water Usage
After using the Water Footprint Calculator on the National Geographic Freshwater Portal, I realized that one easy thing I can do to minimize my water usage is make my showers shorter. So, I am looking forward to challenging myself to cut my showers down and make my water footprint smaller!

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Five for Friday: Top Five Ways to Welcome the Coming of Fall

Happy autumn My Wonderful World readers! How are you planning on kicking off the fall season? Here are 5 fun activities you can do to celebrate and enjoy the colorful, chilly, and tasty season!

Foliage.jpg1.    Forage for Foliage
One of the best – and most beautiful – parts of the fall is the foliage. Although New England is famous for having some of the best foliage in the world, you can appreciate the vibrant orange, red, yellow, and brown hues all over the country. Check out this map at theweatherchannel.com that shows you the stage of the foliage in different regions of the country. Plan a hike during peak foliage time that will allow you to experience some of the best scenery nature has to offer. Ehow.com offers a simple guide of how to view fall foliage.

Ever wonder why the leaves turn different colors in the fall? The US National Arboretum explains the science of color in autumn leaves.

2.    Let the Fall Bring Out Your Inner Artist
Use the beauty of the season to inspire your creativity! Here are 24 simple fall arts and craft projects that you can do with a friend, a family member, or your class!

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Five for Friday: Haikus–The Original Twitter

Thumbnail image for TweetWave1.JPG

It seems like everyone has an opinion nowadays. With networks like Facebook and Twitter, there’s no escaping the constant bombardment of status updates informing you what the news networks think of President Obama’s Nobel Peace Prize, what your friends just ate for lunch, or how terrible the Packers are without Brett Favre. With a simple click, you can tell the world whatever you want–just as long as it does not exceed 140 characters.

Twitter may seem revolutionary in its brevity, but Japanese wordsmiths mastered the art of succinct storytelling long ago. Haiku is the ancient Japanese art form that challenges the poet to express their thoughts in only 17 syllables. The poem takes the form of 3 lines, with a syllable pattern of 5-7-5.  [Learn more about haikus on the Encyclopedia Britannica Online]

Originally, these poems focused only on nature and the seasons–very geographic topics! Modern-day haiku enthusiasts often stretch the rules of haiku writing to incorporate any theme they’d like. Sure sounds like Twitter to me! For this Five for Friday blog, here are 5 geography-themed haikus to get your creative juices flowing. Check ’em out, then post your own geo-haiku!

Geography Is…
Culture, science, art.
Knowing and growing your world.
Maps, apps, and white caps!  

Countries that Start with Y?
Is no longer a country.
But Yemen still is.

Continue reading “Five for Friday: Haikus–The Original Twitter”