Finnish Visitors

Today we had some very special guests in the school. Sara, Jussi,
Tuukka, Juhani, Iika, Elina, Tero and Mikko are from Finland and are a part of a group called Friends of Sointula. Many members of the group were here for a visit last year as well.

They played a game of Line Tag with us to get warmed up and then we played two very fun drama games: Slime and Fairies, and another game very much like Hospital Tag.

Before our time was up we also had time to learn some words in Finnish and hear a traditional Finnish song.

30 minutes went way too fast. We hope they will be able to come and visit again next year!

Mail From Australia

At the end of last week we got a wonderful surprise when we arrived at school. Our friend Mr. Mannell, a retired teacher from Australia, had sent us a very special package in the mail. One of the grocery stores in Australia was running a promotion where you could collect baby animal cards. Mr. Mannell managed to collect a few sets and was kind enough to send one to us. We even got a a folder to display them in. Some of the animals were familiar to us, and some of them we had never even heard of. We love the cool facts on each card. Thank you for the wonderful gift, Mr. Mannell! We are going to laminate the cards on the display so that it will last a long time.


Masala Youth Theatre-Written by Brooklynn

Yesterday we were lucky to get a visit from the Masala youth group who came all the way from Finland! In Finland they were performing a play all in Fin called Sointula. Then someone from Sointula contacted them and asked if they would put the play on here, and guess what, they said yes!

They are going to put on the play on the weekend that is all in Finnish and three hours long so on Wednesday they came to the school to do theater with us. It was so much fun!

We played Socket Tag when someone is it if they tag you you put your hands on your hips and to be freed someone who is not it has to put their arms through yours. We played it in the gym.

Photos taken by Jonathan

We also played a game to learn names where you shake two hands at once say your name twice then let go and find two more people. Eventually it turns into one long chain.

We all loved it. We hope they could come again and do it with us soon. It was so much fun!

Skype with Our Friend Mr. Mannell

This post is long overdue! During the last week of school we had a very special visit with our friend Mr. Mannell. Mr. Mannell lives in Australia, but we were able to chat with him through Skype.

Each student in the class came up with questions that they wanted to ask Mr. Mannell. We wanted to know what life was like in Australia and we wanted to learn more about the teacher who had been such a wonderful supporter of our blog this year. If you follow our blog, you will have seen the wonderful comments that Mr. Mannell leaves us. Sometimes he has so much fantastic information to share that he has to write an “extended comment” and leave us a link to the post. Three of our favourite extended comments this year were: the post comparing Canadian and Australian animals, the post about rocks and soil, and the posts about the beaches in Australia and doing our part to clean up the ocean.

It was Tuesday afternoon at 1:30 pm for us when we made the call, but it was 6:30 am on Wednesday morning for Mr. Mannell in Australia. Thank goodness Mr. Mannell is an early riser!

Mr. Mannell wrote three amazing posts about our call and even added extra information! You can read the posts by following the links below:

Part 1

Part 2

Part 3

We would like to thank Mr. Mannell for all the wonderful comments he leaves on our blog, for teaching us so many amazing and cool facts, and for taking time to chat with us! We look forward to learning with Mr. Mannell again after summer holidays.

Our New Friends in Finland

Recently we received letters from a grade 2 class in Finland. We wanted to find a school to buddy up with in Finland because of the Finnish history of our town.

Our new friends go to Oulu International School. There are 289 students at OIS from preschool to grade 9. We only have 42 students in kindergarten to grade 7.

Here is a great You Tube video they have posted on their website all about their school:

From their letters we learned that:

  • Many of the students like to play Minecraft.  Many of the students in our class love Minecraft too!
  • They only have PE once a week and we have PE for 30 minutes every day.
  • Our school day begins and ends at the same time every day, but they start and finish at different times.
  • We study many of the same subjects in school.
  • Many of the students at OIS are from different countries around the world and can speak several different languages.  Only one student in our class can speak more than one language fluently.

We decided to make a video to show our new friends a little about our school. This first video, will show you the outside of our school and some of the things we like to do (we are working on a second video that shows the inside of our school).  We hope you like it!

We hope that you will be able to leave us a comment!

Our World, Our Numbers Topic 5- Animals

This week, in our global blogging project, the classes are talking about animals from their countries.  Here is the post we added:


Here in Canada we have many different kinds of animals. Canada is a very large country and there are several different habitats that animals can live in. We have arctic, temperate rainforest, grassland, desert, coniferous forest, ocean, mountain, lake, river, and pond habitats.

We each chose a favourite Canadian animal to learn about and share with you. We will tell you about their length and height in centimetres or metres, their weight in grams or kilograms, and their lifespan in years.

We just thought that we should let you know that even though all these animals call Canada their home, hardly any of them live on our island! In Sointula, you will find White-tailed deer, Killer whales, and the occasional bear or cougar that swims across from the main land (this hardly ever happens).

Which Canadian animal is your favourite?

What kind of habitats are in your country?

Do you have any of these animals where you live or any animals that are similar?

Our World, Our Numbers-Topic 2

The second topic in the, Our World, Our Numbers project is landmarks. This topic is being led by Mrs. Yollis’ class in California.

We talked about Canadian landmarks earlier this week, but the students had a hard time thinking of any. Someone thought, the Co-op might be a Canadian landmark (it may very well be a landmark in our little town, but it doesn’t quite make the list). We also had suggestions of the Taj Mahal, the Sphinx, and Burj Khalifa (the world’s tallest tower). It seems we had a little work to do before we would be able to share with our friends around the world.

We started by looking at photos of famous Canadian landmarks and then read facts about each one. On Thursday, we choose the landmark that we would like to share and wrote our scripts with our partners. Next we practised, practised, and practised some more until we felt ready. After lunch we each took a turn in front of the green screen and put our video together just before we went home for the day.

Here is the video we made about Canadian landmarks:


Have you seen any of the landmarks we shared in person?

Are there other Canadian landmarks that you would have included?

Our World, Our Numbers-Week One

The first week of the Our World, Our Numbers project flew by!  You can read all the posts by the different classes by visiting the Our World, Our Numbers blog.  This week we learned all about Canadian, American, Australian, New Zealand, and UK currency.

Yesterday we tried a game called, “Guess My Coins” that Mr. Salsich and his class posted on the blog.  It was a lot of fun.  Theygave us 5 challenges to try:

  1. I have seven American coins that equal 67¢. What coins could I have?
  2. I have five American coins that equal 36¢. What coins could I have?
  3. I have nine American coins that equal 59¢. What coins could I have?
  4. I have seven American coins that equal 46¢. What coins could I have?
  5. I have eight American coins that equal 65¢. What coins could I have?

    Here is a video showing some of the solutions we came up with.  We thought it was great that many of the challenges had more than one correct solution.


    Do you have a coin challenge for us to solve?

Our Currency

This week the students in 4KJ and 4KM are sharing with us about their currency in Australia for the Our World, Our Numbers project we are a part of.

We noticed that there are a lot of similarities between their money and our and that there are some differences too:

  • We both have the dollar. (Lily)
  • We lost our penny.  I wonder if they ever had the penny. (Jorja)
  • They have Queen Elizabeth II on lots of their money too. (Brooklynn)
  • We both have 2 dollar coins. (Teagan)
  • We both have 1 dollar coins. (Kezra)
  • We both have plastic (polymer) money. (Bronwen)
  • We don’t have a 20 cent coin. (Solomon)
  • We don’t really use our 50 cent coin, but people collect them. (Sharon)
  • The symbol on our 10 cent coin is a schooner. (Jorja)
  • We have a 25 cent coin and they don’t. (Kezra)
  • Our paper/plastic money is called bills and they call it notes. (Lily)

We thought that they did a great slide show showing the different coins and notes that they have in Australia. We learned a lot of interesting facts!

Here is a picture showing the different coins we have in Canada:

image from

Here is a picture showing the different bills we have:

image from

Here is a link to our most recent bills and what they represent 

Here are some facts about our money:

  • Queen Elizabeth II is on all of our coins. (Lily)
  • So far we only have polymer bills for some of our bills. (Solomon)
  • Only the most recent of our bills are made of polymer. (Brooklynn)
  • There is a picture of a polar bear on our 2 dollar coin.  It is nicknamed the toonie. (Taegan)
  • The penny s a maple leaf on it,  starting this month we don’t have it anymore. (Bronwen)
  • Queen Elizabeth II is on one of our bills, the $20. (Kezra)
  • On the quarter, the 25 cent coin, there is a caribou.  (Jorja)
  • One of our $5 bills has hockey players on it. (Jacob)
  • The one dollar coin is nicknamed the loonie because it has a loon on it. (Rhys and Jorja)
  • Our 10 cent coin has the Bluenose Schooner on it, the fastest sailing ship. (Lily)
  • They stopped making the pennies because they cost too much to make. (Brooklynn)
  • The 5 cent coin has a beaver on it. (Bronwen)
  • The 50 cent coin has Canada’s Coat of Arms on it. The Coat of Arms has a unicorn and a lion on it. (Jorja)

We thought that people might find these videos interesting.  The first one is a song that talks about some of the symbols on our coins and the second one explains how Canadian coins are made.

Canada in My Pocket by Michael Mitchell

Making Stuff Visits the Royal Canadian Mint

Our World, Our Numbers

In our class, we love to connect and learn with our friends around the world.

Today we are launching a new global project called Our World, Our Numbers.

We have a blog where we’ll meet up with our blogging buddies to learn together for the next five weeks.

In late 2011, many of us worked on an award winning global project called Our World, Our Stories. This latest project is based on a similar format with a mathematical focus.

Classes involved

The students are all from primary (elementary) classes and are from three different continents and five countries.

Mr Avery’s sixth grade class from Massachusetts, USA

Mrs Monaghan’s 3/4 class, Room with a View, from England

Mrs Morris and Miss Jordan’s grade four class, 4KM and 4KJ, from Victoria, Australia

Mrs McKenzie’s 2/3 class, B4, from New Zealand

Mrs Yollis’ 2/3 class from California, USA

Mr Salsich’s third grade class from Connecticut, USA

Mrs Watson’s K/1/2/3 class from Canada

View Our World, Our Numbers in a larger map

How will it work?

Students from all classes will connect and collaborate by sharing their mathematical lives. This will happen through the blog and involve a variety of media.

A different class will “lead” a mathematical topic every four days or so, publishing posts and replying to comments.  The other classes will read the posts, possibly publish their own posts, and leave blog comments.

We will share topics such as currency, seasons, time zones, population data etc.

The learning

Through blog posts, the students will teach each other about different aspects of mathematics based on aspects of their own culture.

The learning will continue in the commenting section where students, teachers and parents will engage in conversations to explore mathematical and cultural topics further.

Students will gain an understanding of mathematics through the eyes of children in different countries and cultures. They will make comparisons and contrasts between their lives and other students’ lives.

If you want to keep up to date with how the fun and learning unfolds, there is a “subscribe via email” box on the right hand side of the Our World, Our Numbers blog.

Get Involved

We encourage all members of our class blogging community to get involved!

4KM and 4KJ are leading the first topic by sharing about their currency.

Head over to the Our World, Our Numbers blog now to check out their post and leave a comment.

What do you think about our new global project?