Saturday, October 31, 2020

Dream Lady - Edward McCartan

We just learned about the statue of Prometheus by Paul Manship.

Another famous American sculpture is Dream Lady by Edward McCartan made in Chicago in 1922.

This statue was made to honor Eugene Field, who was a famous writer who wrote some very famous poems like Wynken, Blinken and Nod.

The sculptor McCartan was born in 1879 in New York where he grew up studying art.
He went to Paris for a few years to study art, and usually made things in the old Classical style which meant everything looked very realistic.

(from: wikipedia - edward mccartan)

Kid Facts - Blast from the past: San Martín Pajapan Monument 1

Friday, October 30, 2020

Swahili - How are you?

We just learned some greetings in Swahili, like Habari, Mambo, Shikamoo and Habari za asubuhi, Habari za mchana, Habari za jioni, Habari za usiku.

There are also a few ways to say How are you? in Swahili:

Hujambo? - sounds like hoo-jah-m-boh 文A

Unakuwaje? - sounds like oo-nah-koo-wah-jay 文A

To respond and say Very good thanks, you would say one of the following:

Sijambo, asante (responding to Hujambo) - sounds like see-jah-m-boh ah-sah-n-tay. 文A

Safi, asante (responding to Unakuwaje) - sounds like sah-fee ah-sah-n-tay. 文A

(from: wikipedia - swahili language)

Russian: Как дела? (kak dela), Спасибо Хорошо (Spasibo khorosho)

Norwegian: Hvordan har du det? Veldig bra takk.

Greek: Γειά σου (Geiá sou), Χαίρετε (Chairete), Αντίο (Antío), Καλημέρα (Kaliméra), Καλησπέρα (Kalispéra), Καληνυχτα - (Kalinychta)

ASL: How are you?

Italian: Come va? Molto bene, grazie.

German: Wie geht es Ihnen? Sehr gut, danke.

Spanish: ¿Cómo estás? Muy bien, gracias.

French: Comment allez-vous? Très bien, merci.

Thursday, October 29, 2020


We just learned about the Locomotive Piston.

Another part of a steam locomotive is the Firebox.

Remember we learned about the Tender Coal Car where all the coal is stored, and the Fireman who is the person in the Cab that shovels the coal from the Coal Car.

The Fireman shovels the coal into the Firebox where it burns up really hot, which heats up the water to make steam.

(from: wikipedia - firebox (steam engine))

Kid Facts - Blast from the past: Valve

Wednesday, October 28, 2020

Scottish Fold

We just learned about the Siamese Cat.

Another type of cat is the Scottish Fold.

This type of cat started out in 1961 when a cat named Susie was born in Scotland with their ears flopped over forward instead of sticking up like other cats.

Susies kittens had folded ears too, and after that Susie's grandkittens and so on and the breed of Scottish Fold was born.

(from: wikipedia - scottish fold)

Kid Facts - Blast from the past: Nematocysts

Tuesday, October 27, 2020

B Cells

We've learned about just learned about the T Cells.

Another type of white blood cell lymphocyte is B Cells.

We are looking at:
- the type of blood cells called white blood cells,
- the type of white blood cells called lymphocytes
- the type of lymphocytes called B Cells.

Remember that we already learned about 2 other types of lymphocytes called NK Cells and T Cells.

In your body you have the living cells that make up your body or even bad diseases, and then you have a lot of other liquid floating around that is not made up of cells, just liquid.

The T Cells and NK Cells work on looking at the cells, killing bad ones and letting good ones live.

The B Cells work on the liquid that is flowing around the cells in your body.
If they find anything that looks bad, they let out these things called antibodies that stick to the bad disease and tell the body that this bad cell needs to be killed.

(from: wikipedia - b cell)

Kid Facts - Blast from the past: Ciliary Body

Monday, October 26, 2020


We just learned about Thurston Island and a whole lot of other things about the continent of of Antarctica!

We've learned before about some countries in the continent of Europe.

Let's learn a little about the country of Albania!

Albania is just north of the country of Greece, and east of Italy across the Mediterranean Sea.
It is 11,000 square miles and has about 2.8 million people living there.
Tirana is the capital city and biggest city in the country.

Because of where it is on the map, it has some very cold weather up in the mountains, and very warm weather in the southern parts on the sea.

(from: wikipedia - albania)

The flag of Albania is red with a black double headed eagle on it.
The red is for bravery and strength, and the eagle was the symbol of some of the early royal rulers of the land.

(from: wikipedia - flag of albania)

To eat in Albania you might have Speca të ferguara, which is a layered pie with roasted peppers, usually served with pita bread.

(from: wikipedia - albanian cuisine)

The ancient Greek city of Apollonia is now part of Albania, and there are some ancient Greek ruins there.

(from: wikipedia - apollonia (illyria))

The famous nun Mother Teresa was from Albania.

(from: wikipedia - mother teresa)

Kid Facts - Blast from the past: Czech Hedgehog

Sunday, October 25, 2020


We just learned about the Fall of Constantinople.

Another part of early Christianity was Devshirme.

Many times in history Christians and Hebrews were not treated very well.
In Egypt during Moses time they were slaves, and when Jesus was alive they were not treated well by the Roman empire.
When Emperor Constantine came around, things were very good for Christians for about 1,000 years.

After the fall of Constantinople, some Christians started being mistreated again by the people that were the new Ottoman rulers in the east.

One sad thing that happened is that Christian boys from the ages of 8 to 20 were taken away from their parents and made to work in the army for the Ottomans.

They were not killed or tortured, but they were told that they could not be Christian anymore.
These kids were put into school and could even become rulers in the land, like the Grand Vizier the second most powerful person in a land.

Even though they weren't killed many families were very sad that their kids were taken away.

(from: wikipedia - devshirme)

Kid Facts - Blast from the past: Leo and Attilla

Saturday, October 24, 2020

Prometheus - Manship

We just learned about the Vision of Peace by Carl Milles.

Another famous American sculpture is Prometheus by Paul Manship in New York in 1934.

In the 1920s in America, some sculptors started making statues that were a lot like the very old Greek statues in the art style called Classical Art.

Paul Manship was born in Minnesota in 1885 and grew up learning to be an artist.
When he was 24 he won an art competition and got a trip to to go Rome Italy.
While he was there he really learned to like the old Classical style, and when he came back to America he started making statues like he saw in Europe.

The Prometheus sculpture is made of bronze, and it is in New York at the famous Rockefeller Center.
It is 18 feet tall and weighs 8 tons.
Prometheus is a Titan from Greek mythology who brought fire to people by stealing it from the sun.
In this sculpture it has a big ring around Prometheus that he is falling through toward the earth.

On the wall behind the statue are the words: "Prometheus, teacher in every art, brought the fire that hath proved to mortals a means to mighty ends."

(from: wikipedia - prometheus (manship))

Kid Facts - Blast from the past: Toltec Atlantean figures from Tula

Friday, October 23, 2020

Swahili - Good Morning

We just learned a few ways to say hello and goodbye in Swahili, like Habari, Mambo, or Shikamoo.

Sometimes you might want to say good morning, good afternoon, or good night.

Habari is a way to say hello that means "How is the news", Za means "for", and Asubuhi means "morning".
So sometimes to say good morning people will say Habari za asubuhi, which really means "How is the news for morning".

Good Morning - Habari za asubuhi - sounds like hah-bah-ree zah ah-soo-boo-hee 文A

Good Day - Habari za mchana - sounds like hah-bah-ree zah m-chah-nah 文A

Good Evening - Habari za jioni - sounds like hah-bah-ree zah jee-oh-nee 文A

Good Night - Habari za usiku - sounds like hah-bah-ree zah oo-see-koo 文A

(from: wikipedia - swahili language)

Russian: Доброе утро (Dobroye utro), Добрый день (Dobryy den), Добрый вечер (Dobryy vecher), Доброй ночи (Dobroy nochi)

Norwegian: God morgen, God dag, God ettermiddag, God kveld, God natt

Greek: Καλημέρα (Kaliméra), Καλησπέρα (Kalispéra), Καληνυχτα (Kalinychta)

ASL: Good Morning, Good Day, Good Evening, Good Night

Italian: buongiorno, buon pomeriggio, buonasera, buona notte

German: Guten Morgen, Guten Tag, Guten Abend, Gute Nacht

Spanish: Buenos días, buenos tardes, buenas noches

French: bonjour, bonsoir, bonne nuit

Thursday, October 22, 2020

Locomotive Piston

We just learned about the Piston Rod.

Another part of the Locomotive is the Piston.

This is the thing that pushes and pulls the piston rod, using the power of the steam.

Remember we've learned about how hot steam pushes out, and then cooling the steam makes a vaccuum that pulls or sucks in.
- The pushing and pulling of the steam and vaccuum is pushes and pulls this piston
- The piston pushes and pulls the piston rod
- The piston rod pushes and pulls the connecting rod
- The connecting rod spins the train wheel around

(from: wikipedia - piston)

Kid Facts - Blast from the past: Cam

Wednesday, October 21, 2020

Siamese Cat

We just learned about the Tabby Cat.

Another type of cat is the Siamese Cat.

This type of cat first came from the Asian country of Thailand. This country used to be called Siam, so that is why it is called the Siamese cat.

These cats have blue eyes, big ears, a skinny body.
Most of the time when people think of Siamese cats they picture the white fur on their body and then brown black fur on their face, ears or legs.

Siamese cats can actually have different colored fur at any part of their body, but they are most often white with brown points.

(from: wikipedia - siamese cat)

Kid Facts - Blast from the past: Tentacles

Tuesday, October 20, 2020

T Cells

We just learned about NK Cells.

Another type of lymphocyte is T Cells.

We are looking at:
- the type of blood cells called white blood cells,
- the type of white blood cells called lymphocytes
- the type of lymphocytes called T Cells.

These cells are called T Cells because they are usually found in a part of the body called the thymus, which is right in the middle of your chest behind your sternum.

All white blood cells are made in the bone marrow, but after these T Cells leave the bone marrow they go to the thymus.

T Cells are kind of like NK Cells as they go kill bad viruses that attack your body, but the T Cells are special because they are made to only attack certain types of viruses, where as the NK Cells attack everything.

When the T Cells go to the thymus, the thymus sorts them out and figures out which ones are set up to fight the right kinds of viruses that the body wants to fight, and then if a T Cell is not needed it is thrown away.

The T Cells are sort of like specialized attack soldiers waiting for certain viruses to show up and then they attack.

(from: wikipedia - t cell)

Kid Facts - Blast from the past: Fibrous Tunic

Monday, October 19, 2020

Thurston Island

We just learned about Berkner Island.

Another island in Antarctica is Thurston Island.

This is the third smallest Antarctic island after Alexander Island and Berkner Island.

It is 134 miles long and 56 miles wide.

Up until 1960 people thought this island was actually connected to the main part of Antarctica, which would make it a peninsula, but they later discovered it was actually an island, just surrounded by ice.

(from: wikipedia - thurston island)

Kid Facts - Blast from the past: Dragon's Teeth

Sunday, October 18, 2020

Fall of Constantinople

We just learned about Joan of Arc.

Another part of early Christianity was the Fall of Constantinople.

Back in the year 313 the emperor Constantine made himself a home city of Constantinople, in eastern Europe.
For a long time it was the strongest city in the area, and was the head of the Roman empire.

Later on the eastern and western parts of Europe started arguing over how the church should be run, and about whether the head of the church should be in Rome, Paris or Constaninople.

When that happened, and Constantinople had other problems like fighting off plagues, it was not the strongest city anymore.

In the middle eastern countries the Ottoman Empire was getting very strong, and so they started a war to take over Constantinople.
The western European countries did not come to help Constantinople, so the Ottomans took over Constantinople easily, and also because they were using gunpowder and cannons.

(from: wikipedia - fall of constaninople)

Kid Facts - Blast from the past: Saint Patrick

Saturday, October 17, 2020

Vision of Peace - Carl Milles

We just learned about the statue of Georgia O'Keefe by Gaston Lachaise.

Another famous American sculpture is the Vision of Peace by Carl Milles made in Minnesota in 1936.

This statue was made to remember the people from Minnesota who died in World War I.

At the bottom of the statue are 5 Native Americans sitting around a fire, and in the middle in the smoke coming up from the fire is a Native American God of Peace.
It wasn't made just for Native Americans, but for the whole world.

The statue is 38 feet high, and made of onyx.
It is on top of a moving base at the bottom that slowly spins the statue around about 1 time every few hours.

Carl Milles was born in Sweden in 1875, and became a famous artist working there until he was 56.
In 1931 he moved to Michigan to be part of the Cranbrook school, and made many sculptures for the school grounds.
He made many other sculptures in Michigan and other parts of the midwest like Minnesota and Wisconsin.

(from: wikipedia - carl milles)

Kid Facts - Blast from the past: Montezuma's Headdress

Friday, October 16, 2020

Swahili - Hello and Goodbye

We've now learned a whole year of Russian!

Let's try another language now, how about Swahili?

This is the language millions of people speak in different countries across the continent of Africa, like Burundi, Congo, Kenya, Malawi, Mozambique, Rwanda, Somalia, Tanzania, Uganda, and Zambia.

Let's learn how to say hello and goodbye in Swahili!
There are a few ways to say Hello, Hi or What's up.

These words aren't used much anymore, but they mean Hello:
Jambo - Sounds like jah-m-boh 文A
Hujambo - Sounds like hoo-jah-m-boh 文A

Just like in English a lot of times we say things like What's Up to say Hi, Swahili has the same kind of things.
What's News? - Habari - Sounds like hah-bah-ree 文A
How's it going? - Mambo - Sounds like mah-m-boh 文A

If you are going to say hello to an older person or someone who is in charge like a teacher or a police officer, you use this word which means something like Greetings.
Shikamoo - Sounds like sh-ih-kah-moo 文A

(from: wikipedia - swahili language)

Russian: Привет (privet), Здравствуй (Zdravstvuy), Пока (poka), до свидания (do svidaniya)

Norwegian: Hei, Hallo, Ha det, Ha det brah

Greek: Γειά σου (Geiá sou), Χαίρετε (Chairete), Αντίο (Antío)

ASL: Hello and Goodbye

Italian: Ciao, arrivederci

German: Hallo, Auf Wiedersehen

Spanish: Hola! Adiós!

French: Bonjour! Au Revoir!

Thursday, October 15, 2020

Piston Rod

We just learned about the Connecting Rod.

Another part of a steam locomotive is the Piston Rod.

This is the big straight metal rod that is connected to the piston that goes up and down with the steam and vaccuum.

The piston rod is connected to other metal rods that help turn wheels and make the engine go, but the piston just goes straight back and forth and does not turn around at all.

(from: wikipedia - piston rod)

Kid Facts - Blast from the past: Linear Actuator

Wednesday, October 14, 2020

Tabby Cat

We just learned about the Calico Cat.

Another type of cat is a Tabby Cat.

Just like the calico, tabby isn't a type of cat breed, it is just a type of fur style that can be on just about any breed of domestic cat.

A tabby cat is any cat that has an M shaped mark on their forehead, and stripes on its body.

(from: wikipedia - tabby cat)

Kid Facts - Blast from the past: Oral Arms

Tuesday, October 13, 2020

NK Cells

We just learned about the type of white blood cell called a Lymphocyte.

There are a few types of lymphocytes, like the NK Cells, also called Natural Killer Cells or large granular lymphocytes (LGL).

These cells float around in the body, and if they find a cell that doesn't look like it's supposed to be part of the body then it lets out some chemicals called cytokines that will destroy the bad cell.

The bad cells might be like a tumor, an infection or a virus, and when the NK Cell releases it's cytokins and the bad cell will be destroyed.
Because these LGLs kill other bad cells they are called natural killers.

(from: wikipedia - natural killer cell)

Kid Facts - Blast from the past: Aqueous Humour

Monday, October 12, 2020

Berkner Island

We just learned about the largest island in Antarctica, Alexander Island.

The second largest island is Berkner Island.

This island is about 200 miles by 100 miles, and 17,000 square miles, bigger than the US state of Maryland.

Even though it is an island, the rock part of the island is below the water, and on top of the rock is a big bunch of ice that makes up the island.
If all of the ice melted, the island would be under water.

During the cold parts of the year the island is surrounded by ice, so it doesn't always look like an island.

(from: wikipedia - berkner island)

Kid Facts - Blast from the past: Witch Tower

Sunday, October 11, 2020

Joan of Arc

We just learned about the Avignon Papacy.

Another part of early Christianity is the famous French person Joan of Arc.

She was born in France in 1412, while there was a war going on between France and England.

When she was 13 she said that she had a vision of some Christian saints, who told her she needed to go help King Charles VII of France to win the war.

At first no one believed her, but she begged over and over again to go see the king.

When she was 17 she finally got to see the king, and he let her go to some of the battles and try to help out.
Wherever she was at the French won their battles easily, so people started believing that she was a sign from God that they could win the war.

She wasn't really a fighter who carried a sword, she usually had a banner that she waved around to try and help get all the French soldiers excited about winning.

When she was 19 she was captured by the English soldiers, and they had a trial where they said she was bad and wasn't talking to Christian saints but was working for the devil, and they had her killed.

Years later the French people said that trial was not fair and said she was innocent, and the church leaders agreed so she became a Christian hero Saint Joan of Arc.

Her story is very famous in France and people have even found the house where she grew up and turned it into a museum.

(from: wikipedia - joan of arc)

Kid Facts - Blast from the past: Mariology

Saturday, October 10, 2020

Georgia O'Keefe - Gaston Lachaise

We just learned about the sculpture of Richard Yates by Albin Polasek .

Another famous work of American art is the sculpture of Georgia O'Keefe made by Gaston Lachaise in 1927.

Lachaise was born in 1882 in France, where he grew up learning how to be a sculptor.
He met an American woman named Isabel and fell in love with her, so when he was about 20 years old he moved to America with her and they got married.

He was mostly famous for making sculptures of women that looked very big and powerful, like a force of nature.
Most people made sculptures of women that were very small and delicate, so this different way of making sculptures of women was seen as a way to give power to women who were seen by some people as weak.

He also made sculptures of famous people like Georgia O'Keefe.
She was a famous American artist, who some people called the Mother of American modernism.

(from: wikipedia - gaston lachaise)

Kid Facts - Blast from the past: Teocalli of Sacred War

Friday, October 9, 2020

Russian - Vegetables

We just learned how to say some fruits to drink in Russian.

Let's learn how to say some vegetables.

carrot морковь (morkov') - sounds like moh-dr-koh-v 文A

corn кукуруза (kukuruza) - sounds like koo-koo-roo-zah 文A

pea горох (gorokh) - sounds like goh-droh-k 文A

russian language
(from: wikipedia - russian academy of sciences)

Norwegian: gulrot, mais, erter

Greek: καρότο (karóto), καλαμπόκι (kalampóki), μπιζέλι (bizéli)

ASL: carrot, corn, pea

Italian: carote, mais, piselli

German: Karotte, Mais, Erbse

Spanish: zanahoria, maíz, guisante

French: carotte, maïs, pois

Thursday, October 8, 2020

Connecting Rod

We just learned about the Coupling Rod that hooks all the wheels together.

Another part of a steam locomotive is the Connecting Rod.

Remember that we learned about how steam pressure works with a steam cylinder to push and pull a piece of metal in a tube called a piston.

The piston is hooked up to the connecting rod, which takes that forward and back pushing an pulling and makes it into a circular push and pull to spin the locomotive's wheel around.

(from: wikipedia - connecting rod)

Kid Facts - Blast from the past: Rack and Pinion

Wednesday, October 7, 2020

Calico Cat

We just learned about the Napoleon Cat.

Another type of cat is the Calico Cat.

This type of cat has fur with three different colors, usually white, orange, and black.

There are a bunch of different types of cats that sometimes have this type of fur, like the American Shorthair, the Persian Cat, or the Japanese Bobtail.

Calico is just a way to describe the type of fur a cat has, it is not an actual type of cat like Napoleon Cat.

One interesting thing about these types of cats, is that they are almost always girl cats!
It is very rare for boy cats to have calico three color patched fur.

(from: wikipedia - calico cat)

Kid Facts - Blast from the past: Manubrium

Tuesday, October 6, 2020


We just learned that there are three types of blood cells, white blood cells, red blood cells and platelets.

Let's learn a little more about the white blood cells.
There are 5 different types of white blood cells!

One of the types of white blood cells is called a Lymphocyte.

Remember we learned that lymph is a white liquid carried in the lymph capillaries and then the lymphatic vessels, and the lymph nodes help clean out all the bad stuff in the lymph.

Lymphocytes are types of white blood cells that help fight off bad diseases, and in the white lymph liquid there is more of this type of cell than any of the other ones.

There are 3 different types of lymphocytes: T cells, B cells and NK (natural killer) cells and they each have a different job to help fight the bad diseases that attack the body.

(from: wikipedia - lymphocyte)

Kid Facts - Blast from the past: Vitreous Body

Monday, October 5, 2020

Alexander Island

We just learned about the Cirque Glacier.

Another part of Antarctica is Alexander Island.

This is the biggest island on Antarctica, and it is the second largest island in the world that no one lives on, just after Devon Island which is up by the north pole.

It is about 240 miles long, and 50 miles wide.
That is bigger than each of the US states of Rhode Island, Deleware, Connecticut, New Jersey, New Hampshire, Vermont, Massachusetts and Hawaii.

Even though it is an island, most of the time it is connected by ice to the rest of Antarctica, so it doesn't always look like an island.

(from: wikipedia - alexander island)

Kid Facts - Blast from the past: Trou de Loup

Sunday, October 4, 2020

Avignon Papacy

We just learned about the Mirabilia Descripta.

Another part of early Christianity is the Avignon Papacy.

Remember that there were church leaders in all the different countries called Bishops, and that the Bishop in Rome - Italy was supposed to be the leader of all the other Bishops, called the Pope.

In the early 1300s, the king of France was very powerful, and helped a French person get elected as the Pope.
But to make France more powerful, he wanted him to live in the city of Avignon instead of Rome.

So in 1305 this Pope and the 6 popes after him all lived in Rome and were the heads of all the other churches.
It made the people in the city of Rome angry because they believed they were the most important city, and also having the Pope live in your city means you get a lot of power and money that they didn't get anymore.

After 74 years in 1379 AD the new Pope moved back to Rome.

(from: wikipedia - avignon papacy)

Kid Facts - Blast from the past: Saint Augustine of Hippo

Saturday, October 3, 2020

Richard Yates - Albin Polasek

We just learned about the Two Circus Women by Nadelman.

Another famous American sculpture is Richard Yates by Albin Polasek made in Springfield Illinois in 1923.

Richard Yates was the Governor of Illinois in 1860.
Before the Civil War he said he did not like slavery, and helped get soldiers to fight with the north in the Civil War against slavery.

Abraham Lincoln was also from Illinois, and he was friends with Richard Yates.

The sculptor Albin Polasek was born in 1879 in the Czech Republic.
When he was 22 years old in 1901 he moved to Pennsylvania to try and get a good job and make money.

(from: wikipedia - albin polasek)

Kid Facts - Blast from the past: The Wrestler

Friday, October 2, 2020

Russian - Fruits

We just learned how to say some things to drink in Russian.

Let's learn how to say some fruits.

apple яблоко (yabloko) - sounds like yah-bloh-kah 文A

orange апельсин (apel'sin) - sounds like ah-pel-seen 文A

banana банан (banan) - sounds like bah-nah-n 文A

russian language
(from: wikipedia - russian academy of sciences)

Norwegian: eple, appelsin, banan

Greek: μήλο (mílo), πορτοκάλι (portokáli), μπανάνα (banána)

ASL: apple, orange, banana

Italian: mela, orange, banana

German: Apfel, Orange, Banane

Spanish: manzana, naranja, banana

French: pomme, orange, banane

Thursday, October 1, 2020

Coupling Rod

We just learned about the Brake Shoe.

Another part of a steam locomotive is a Coupling Rod or Side Rod.

When the steam engine uses its power to turn the wheel of a steam locomotive, it is usually only turning one wheel.
That wheel is connected to the other wheels by a big metal rod called the coupling rod.

So when the driving wheel is turned, it makes all the wheels turn and spin at the same speed so it makes the train more stable and gives it more power.

(from: wikipedia - coupling rod)

Kid Facts - Blast from the past: Air Gap