Stan and Dale on the Celebrity Millennium

Just returned from a very enjoyable Alaskan cruise. I was amazed at how many people recognized the Flat Stanley my sister was carrying!

The man holding Flat Stanley had previously taken a Flat Stanley into orbit!

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It turns out Karen Baxter’s Garage doesn’t fix all flats.

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Jocka and Maria were entertainers on the Celebrity Millennium and they took the little flat guy up for a closer look at their act.

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Speaking of closer looks, this is going to hurt in the morning!

ketchican eagle cropped with blurred fs

 

Alaskan artist Maida had previously hosted Flat Stanleys.

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This couple recognized Flat Stanley in the dome car near Denali.

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Another couple from Toronto stopped to say hi.

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The most important part of the totem pole is the bottom.

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Sami and Flat Stanley in Icy Point Strait, Alaska

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A Flat Stanley participant

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You should travel on the Celebrity Millennium just to meet this crew member!

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More from the Grannies on Safari in Mongolia

Here is the Mongolian school the Grannies visited and donated the iPod touch as a gift from Flatter World Inc.

The Grannies made friends with a group of 9th graders at the 115 school in Ulan Baatar, Mongolia.  We told them that we were excited to be in their country and that as “Flat Grannies” characters in the Flatter World with Flat Stanley, we hoped they would join us as members of the flatter world.  We gave them an iPod with the Flat Stanley application and invited them to start sharing their adventures in Mongolia.

Mina, a member of the class has communicated with us and we look forward to many more encounters with the class.

 

When traveling through Mongolia it was important for the Grannies to see how the everyday Mongloians – who live outside the city, live.  Their houses – round and made of felt and wood – are called Ger’s.  Because many Mongols are nomads, they still move each season to parts of Mongolia that have better feed for their animals. It takes about two hours for a family to pack their Ger’s with all of their belongings and move them, sometimes by truck and other times by horse and cart!

The Grannies visited a family – the picture is us standing outside their home – and met the mom and her small son.  We ate dried Mare’s milk curds and nuts!

Flat Agnes in Indonesia

agnes stanley story

Students of Group “Agnes Stanley” in class 11 Science 3 , SMAN 1 Karawang:

  1. Faiz Deja Ramadhan
  2. Anita Dewi Istiqomah
  3. Angga Maulana
  4. Entri Aprilia
  5. Ita Puspitasari
  6. Ghani Wicaksono
  7. Syah Putra Saky Rianto
  8. Yuda Ardiansyah

 

The Guest Star:

  1. Mr. “Kind” from England.
  2. Mr. “Howba” from Netherland.
  3. The Oarsman with cano.

“Bogdan Voda” in Radauti, a small town in the north of Romania

Hello! My name is Natalia Cosovanu and I teach English at School no 5 “Bogdan Voda” in Radauti, a small town in the north of Romania. I have recently started the Flat Stanley project with my 5th to 8th graders and I would like to nominate my school for  special recognition as my students are very enthusiastic about the project. They have never turned down any request for a foreign Flat Stanley to visit our town and region. We have had guests from as far as Australia, Canada, U.S.A, Great Britain. Even though they were on the spring or summer break, the students of School no 5 “Bogdan Voda” often came to school and we worked together on writing diaries to send back or took pictures. I should mentioned that they study English as a foreign language and Flat Stanley really helped a lot with practising English. (I have attached some pictures of our Flat Stanley activities.)
This year we intend to continue the project and found a Flat Stanley club. Our school year only started a week ago and we have got around 80 students ready to sign up.
Ms. Natalia Cosovanu
School no 5 “Bogdan Voda” Radauti, Romania

Flat Stanley’s Adventures

I am visiting Egypt.  It is quite hot here.  I am visiting a teacher who works in a school that has children from kindergarten all the way up to Sixth Form.  She says I can stay as long as I like and she will take me to lots of new and exciting places.

I will be keeping a journal of all my experiences and will try to upload it for everyone to see.

Dale Hubert took Flat Stanley to the Galapagos Islands

In March, 2010, my dad and I went to Ecuador and the Galapagos Islands. It was a Celebrity Cruise and all the passengers were certainly treated like celebrities! We were surrounded by expert guides and helpful staff. It was a perfect vacation.

In Ecuador Flat Stanley visited the caldera of an ancient volcano. What used to be the inside of the volcano is now fertile farmland.

Dale Hubert, Flat Stanley and My Travel Teddy were on the top of volcano.

Flat Stanley met a local animal.

This marks the equator. One side is in the northern hemisphere and other side is in the southern hemisphere. The country of Ecuador was named after the equator.

Straddling the equator – one Flat Stanley in two hemispheres!

Many years ago, Dale Hubert sang in the streets through Europe, so seeing these street entertainers from Argentina brought back memories! They were full of enthusiasm and positive energy and it was a delight to meet them! There were performing in the street in Quito, the capital of Ecuador.

On board the Xpedition with one of the Galapagos Islands in the background.

Flat Stanley visited an island where frigate birds nest. These birds are called Pirates of the Air because of the way they raid other birds and animals.

Flat Stacie used a broom handle to prevent herself from being blown into the lap of this sea lion. Sea lions were everywhere – on benches, on stairs, on the beach and even sleeping in boats.

Flat Stanley met lots of sea lions, too.

Look at the lava!

This is a younger island, so it’s still mostly lave with very little plant life. But give it time…

When we crossed the equator Flat Stanley met Neptune, King of the Sea.

And this beautiful pirate showed Flat Stanley where he was by placing him on the equaotor on this map of the Galapagos Islands.

Flat Stanley met a Galapagos bee. Since this is the only bee on the island, and it prefers yellow flowers, almost all fo the flowers on the islands are yellow.

Another sea lion!

Lots of land iguanas!

A marine iguana.

Since marine iguanas take in a lot of salt when they eat, they have evolved a special gland that removes the salt from their bodies and they spray salt crystals out of their noses!

This type of cactus is one of the first signs of plant life on a volcanic island. It is able to hold moisture in the spiny hairs.

It’s hard to believe that life could establish itself here, but, over time, plants will grow on this lava.

A few years ago a dead whale was washed ashore and the Sally Lightfoot crabs had a feast.

Flat Stanley had this excellent guide take him to the Charles Darwin Research Station in Puerto Ayora, Santa Cruz Island, Galapagos.

Flat Stanley and Dale Hubert met many of the famous land tortoises.

Here’s a good question – why do these turtles need such massive shells? What could possibly hurt them? Well, today only the young turtles are at risk from rats and sea birds, but millions of years ago these tortoises evolved when there were dinosaurs around. This tortoise is still on the lookout for dinosaurs!

Hurricane Katrina Hits Louisiana

Hello Flat Stanley Fans!
My name is Stacy Bodin and I am a second grade teacher in Erath, Louisiana.  Last year, I participated in the Flat Stanley Project and was anxiously waiting to participate again.  The recent visit of two Hurricanes to Louisiana delayed me starting the project this year. Hurricane Rita’s tidal surge sent record high flood waters displacing half the children and teachers in Vermilion Parish.
Erath is a coastal parish in Vermilion Parish in Louisiana.  My home is approximately 10 miles from the gulf and my hometown was covered with Hurricane Rita’s recent tidal surge.  Though the Hurricane itself hit to the west of us, the east side brings water with it and that is what we received.  In fact, our small town of 2100 was on CNN and the other leading news shows often the week of Hurricane Rita’s visit.
My sister and her family lived in New Orleans where Hurricane Katrina hit.  They lived in the area where  the water remained the longest from the levee break.  In fact, her home literally sat in seven feet of water for 3 weeks.  Hurricane Katrina hit on August 29th and they were finally able to see their home for the first time on October 8th.  Of course, it is totaled.  They moved in with our family, hoping to find a rent home in New Orleans soon. I have pictures and sites linked to my page if you are interested in viewing them.
Our town is still cleaning up and our children were shipped to another area school.  We are platooning our children for the time being.  We aren’t sure how long we will be out of our school.  FEMA is now in the process of cleaning up for us but that is expected to take a good while.
This past spring, our school had made plans to work with the Flat Stanley project as our reading theme for the year.  But with the hurricane visits, we are just looking to survive and that has been put on hold!!  Last year, I did participate in the Project and loved it.  I didn’t host a Stanley, but did respond to three projects. I was hoping to host a few this year, but will not be able to do that.
Though I don’t have the time to host a Stanley, I don’t mind responding to something.  In fact, if anyone wants to participate and I would like to try and respond.  We can send links via email and my kids can respond through the mail. I was luckily placed in a classroom at my new school with 12 computers, so we could respond with letters, etc. or via email.
Because I am at a new school and not knowing “how long” we will be here, you could email me at my home email address stacybodin@aol.com or mail me at my home address at 16007 HWY 685, Erath, LA 70533. I was invited to participate by several teachers at the beginning of the year and I responded yes,  however if anything was mailed to us, it was lost in the flood.  I just wanted you to know that I am still interested.
A wonderful story emerged through Hurricane Katrina’s visit that you may want to share with your children.  My sister and her husband have a set of 12 year old twins.  The evacuation was quick and they left their two pets not realizing that the New Orleans levee would break and flood New Orleans. Once that happened, my family prepared them for the death of the two pets. My nephew was extremely upset that his rabbit Bugs died.  We grieved with him and for the rabbit for weeks.  My sister Janine and her husband Thomas returned to New Orleans on October 8th to finally get pictures for the insurance company and to bury the pets. The rabbit stayed in my nepehew’s room in a large cage.  My sister quickly went to his bedroom to take his little body out to bury him and found “Bugs” still alive after 42 days!!  My sister had 7 feet of water in her home for three weeks, so we were amazed!  The bottom of the cage was plastic, so the cage floated for three weeks.  My sister had left him food and water, but not for 42 days.  When they called, we were all in awe with the story.  His eyes were dull and he was thinner, but he was alive.  He is now living at my house and seems to have adjusted to his new country home!  I created a powerpoint about my nephew and Bugs’ experience for my 2nd graders.  That can be found on my homepage (http://www.vrml.k12.la.us/smbodin ).  Click on  “A Journey of Hope”. I created several links on my homepage as well.
You can download the powerpoint to share with your children.  My kids loved the story and comforted the many who are still displaced at this time.
Last year, I purchased 3 sets of 30 Stanley books to work all year with “Stanley” as my main theme this year.  I just adore Stanley!!  I was saving until I could afford the next three sets of 30 this year when Hurricane Rita hit. I was going to use one story each six weeks this year in Social Studies, Science, Math and Reading.  I had already created cute math lessons with the first book.  My plan was to use some of the online lessons and I was going to create more lessons for each. However I lost all of those in the water.  When things settle down, I will begin again and buy the books when I can afford them.   I did have 3 of the 90 books with me to start planning, so, I can at least read those three Stanley books to them.
Please feel free to send Stanleys to me and my class if you want to learn about Hurricanes or the process of how coastal states handle hurricanes, evacuations, displacement, etc. I am a teacher whose children write daily and work with a large amount of technology projects.  I have participated in several state technology conferences and I have also presented at two National (NECC) Conferences, so I am extremely comfortable with technology projects in terms exchanging via email, etc.  Either way is fine for me!  Just drop me a line if you are interested in sharing information about your area with my class.
To see some pictures are information about what happened our home parish, I have sent some links below.  I attached pictures of my classroom. (These were taken about a week after the hurricane).
Sincerely,
Stacy Bodin
Dozier Elementary (School Homepage)
We have a children’s parish site that was created this summer by our Technology Camp students.  (Our home parish is Vermilion Parish).  Our state has parishes, not counties.
Erath Children’s link with information about our town, http://www.vrml.k12.la.us/dozier/vp/Erath/erath.htm

In Scotland with Dale Hubert

Gardenstown, Scotland
Gardenstown, Scotland

This Flat Stanley spent July 2009 in Scotland with Dale Hubert. The first stop was Gardenstown. There is a ruin on the hilltop that was begun in the year 1004 to commemorate a battle between the Vikings and the Picts. viking church

Speaking of the Picts and Scotland, do you know how the the thistle became associated with Scotland? Take a look a this giant thistle and think about this story. A very long time ago, the Vikings were attacking a group of Picts in the night. The Vikings were trying to sneak up on the sleeping Picts, so the Vikings were running barefoot across the countryside. Suddenly a Viking stepped barefoot onto a giant thistle and as he cried out in pain he awakened the Picts and the surprise attack was ruined.thistle

The Picts

Notice the size of the large standing stone behind the mseum guides.
Notice the size of the large standing stone behind the museum guides.

Little is known about the Picts. The Romans called them the Painted People and that’s where the word “Pict” comes from. As you drive through the Sottish countryside you can see Pictish Standing Stones. There are some examples of Standing Stones in Groan House Museum. This is a great place. There’s a video that outlines the history of the Picts, the staff is friendly and helpful and there’s free admission and parking!

Pict stonework often included crosses
Pict stonework often included crosses

Loch NessNessie 5s

Flat Stanley visited perhaps the most famous place in Scotland, Loch Ness. Even though the experts agree that the existence of a monster verges on the impossible, and most of the photos have been proven as fakes and the photographers themselves have admitted to hoaxes, there’s still a bit of magic connected with Scotland’s deepest loch (lake) and people still peer into the misty distances hoping to see Nessie.

Urquhart Castle and Trebuchet

Urquhart Castle
Urquhart Castle
Urquhart Castle with very thick stone walls
Urquhart Castle with very thick stone walls

Trbuchet ammunition
Trebuchet ammunition
Trebuchet
Reconstruction of a Trebuchet

On the shore of Loch Ness is the ancient Urquhart Castle that legend says was begun in the year 565. Much of what exists today has been reconstructed. Nearby is a trebuchet, a siege weapon that used a counterweight of many tons to launch stone balls. Urquhart Castle changed hands many times and was eventually destroyed by placing barrels of gunpowder in the gatehouse and blowing it up so the enemy could never use it. It has since been partially restored as a tourist attraction.

The Lighthouse

Scotland’s first official lighthouse was built on top of a old castle.

Scotland's first official lighthouse was built on top of an old castle.

One the earliest forms of navigation technology was the lighthouse. This was a way for sailors to tell not only how close there were to shore, but which shore they where nearing. They could tell which shore they were close to because each lighthouse had its own signature. The signature was the order of flashes per minute. Sailors could therefore see the flashing light, look at the chart, and know which lighthouse they were nearing.

lighthouse lens 5-s

lighthouse with Kate-s

The lenses were amazing and even now, as they are on display they cast 3D reflections and almost look like holograms. The lighthouse had a giant clockwork mechanism that caused the light to rotate. Large weights made the mechanism work. The lighthouse keeper had to pull up the large weights every half hour so the light would keep turning.

Looking down inside a lighthouse at the spiral stairs. The chains held weights that made the clockwork mechanism rotate the light.
Looking down inside a lighthouse at the spiral stairs. The chains held weights that made the clockwork mechanism rotate the light.

The lighthouse keeper also had to pump the fuel tanks every half hour to keep the pressure up so the flame would keep burning. So he would pull up the weights using a winch, then 15 minutes later he would use a hand pump to pump air into the fuel tank, then 15 minutes later he would have to rewind the clockwork mechanism, and that was his part of his job for the night. He was also expected to record weather conditions such as wind speed, wind direction and temperature. The lighthouse keeper was even required to paint the lighthouse and keep it in good condition. When it was too foggy to see the lighthouse, a foghorn was used. The foghorn had its own signature as well. Before the foghorn was invented, cannons were fired so when sailors heard the signature of the explosions they would have an idea where they were on the sea.

This cannon was used to warn ships in fog that the shore was nearby.
This cannon was used to warn ships in fog that the shore was nearby. A glass lens is beside it.

Battle of Culloden

One of the battles that lives on in the memories of the Scots is Culloden. William led his Hanoverian army against the Prince Charlie’s Jacobites. The Jacobites were Scots who wanted Bonnie Prince Charlie to become king. It seems that everything went wrong for the Jacobites.

Culloden tour guide
John, the tour guide on the fields of Culloden

It all started well, with the Jacobites well-placed on the field of Culloden, waiting for William’s army. They then discovered that William had given his army the day off to celebrate his birthday and the Jacobites had been waiting in the cold and wet for an army that wasn’t going to attack that day. There was much discussion and the Jacobites finally decided they would march all night to where William’s army was celebrating, and launch a surprise attack by first light of the morning. So they set off in the darkness. Unfortunately, after marching most of the night, the Jacobites realized they wouldn’t reach William’s army in time, so had to turn around and head back to Culloden. They set up their positions again but not quite the same as before. In their haste they were badly positioned with boggy wet ground in front of some of them and a stone wall in front of others. They were tired after marching all night and waiting the day before and many of them hadn’t eaten for three or four days. William’s army arrived and set up. There were three lines of men with guns so they could take turns firing. While one line reloaded, the other line fired. William’s army also had more cannons with trained men to fire them. As the Jacobites attacked in the ferocious highland charge, William’s men stayed in place and fired their guns and cannons. Few Jacobites made it across the field to the enemy and those who did break through the enemy’s lines were surrounded and killed. The Jacobites were badly beaten at Culloden and those who were left retreated to Inverness. William’s army followed them to Inverness and made life very miserable for everyone in that town. The Battle of Culloden marked the end the Jacobite uprising. About that time a new flower was introduced and supporters of William named the flower Sweet William. In return, there was a weed with a very bad smell that opponents renamed Stinking Billy. Here’s Flat Stanley on a Stinking Billy plant.

Stinking Billy weed
Stinking Billy weed

Orange and Purple, Googly-Eyed Fellow Travellers

Flat Stanley met some fellow travellers, Orange and Purple at Dunvegan Castle. Orange and Purple were accompanying this very nice couple on their honeymoon. Notice the giant plant leaves in the background.

Purple and Orange, a pair of googly-eyed fellow travellers with Flat Stanley
Purple and Orange, a pair of googly-eyed fellow travellers with Flat Stanley

2 Flat Tires and Flat Stanley near the end of the Scotland Visit

The Scotland Trip didn’t end as well as it began. It could have been much worse, though.flat tire and flat stanley

We were all deflated when I managed to blow the left front and the left back tires while only 18 miles from the end of the trip. I’d driven more than 1800 miles without incident but as a bus passed closely by on the right side, something on the road wrecked both tires on the left side. Fortunately, I was able to drive the car to the nearby Loch Lomond and the Trossachs National Park. There was even a pay phone there, so it appeared help was on the way “within 60 minutes” according to the person at the tire service. But then the restaurant with the payphone closed and the repair truck hadn’t arrived.

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Two hours later, there was still no sign of help but fortunately, Park Rangers Caroline and Beverley showed up. They were great! They let us use their mobile phone and kept us company for the next hour awaiting the tire service. They even drove some of our group into the next town. After several more calls, the repair truck finally arrived and the Volvo was hoisted onto the flatbed and driven into Balloch.