Wednesday, January 12, 2011

Learn to Use an Online Encyclopedia!

The PFC (Parent/Faculty Club) generously purchased a one year subscription to World Book Online!

The students in Mrs. Ranney's class are learning how to research!
1. Go to the school website.
2. Go to the Learning Links
3. Select:  World Book Web
4.  The username and password have been sent to each parent via email.

Since the class has been visiting the Giant National Geographic Map of Africa this week....

Why not use the World Book Online to learn about Africa?

Learn and share some facts about Africa in your comment.  We will use the facts in our class slide show about the Giant Map of Africa!

Here are some examples of facts that you may want to research:
  • How tall are the Pyramids? How old? What are they?
  • What is the source of the Nile River?
  • How many days does it take to scale Mt. Kilimanjaro? (on average)
  • What are some facts about the Sahara Desert?
  • How big is Lake Victoria?
  • Where is Victoria Falls?


  1. Dear Mrs. Ranney,

    Victoria falls is a spectacular waterfall in southern Africa, and it lies right between Zambia and Zimbabwe. It is also about halfway between the mouth and the source of Zambezi river.

    The Sahara desert is the worlds largest desert. That desert is also very dry, and very few plants grow. It covers about 3 1/2 million square miles (9 million square kilometers), an area roughly equals to that of the United States. The landscape of this vast African region includes mountain ranges, very rocky plaques, gravelly plains and sandy wastes. The barren desert is broken only by the cultivated land along the Nile River and in scattered oases.

    I hope that you enjoyed the facts!

    Yours Truly,

  2. Dear Mrs. Ranney,

    I am Tristan's sister, and he has asked me to share a few things about Africa with your class. What a wonderful task you have proposed to your students. The great thing about researching these treasures of the world is that one day you might find yourself standing in front of the real thing. That was my experience with the Ngorongoro Crater. It is a beautiful wildlife park in Tanzania that I came across during my time in East Africa. It took my breath away, and I know I will visit it again.

    One other thing I would like to share with your class is the name of a very key staple in the Kenyan diet: Ugali! There is so much to know about ugali: what does it look like, why is it so important, how do you make it, how do you eat it?

    Finally, here are of a few words in Swahili- the national language in Kenya:

    Asante sana= Thank you very much
    Nimeshiba= I am full and satisfied (after a meal)
    Mimi ni mwanafunzi = I am a student
    Hujambo = Hello

    Best wishes,

  3. Dear Mrs. Ranney,
    Did you know that the largest lake in Africa is Lake Victoria in East Africa? It borders Uganda, Kenya, and Tanzania. The largest island in Africa is Madagascar off the East coast of Africa. The Indian Ocean borders Africa, and is also the fourth largest ocean in the world. Those are some facts about Africa.

    Yours Truly,

  4. Dear Mrs. Ranney,

    I did some research on World Book Web so here is what I found out:

    Did you know that African groups speak more than 1,000 languages? In fact, they speak so many different languages that it ‘s hard for them to communicate!

    I also found out that there are many diverse animals in Africa including some fierce predators like the cheetah. I watched a short video about cheetahs demonstrating that they can run up to 70 miles per hour! That’s faster than any car on the freeway!

    I will definitely use World Book Web often!

    Your student,

  5. Dear Mrs. Ranney and Class,

    South Africa has three capitals. The three capitals are:
    Pretoria, Bloemfontein and Cape Town. Cape Town is called the mother city because it was the first place settled by Europeans.

    The movie Invicitus is filmed in South Africa. Did anyone see the movie? I watched it at my Grammy and Grampy's house and I enjoyed the stunning movie. The movie was about rugby and Nelson Mandela.

    My father's family is from South Africa.

    Who else in this class is half African?

    All the best,

  6. Carly & Jamie:)January 13, 2011 at 8:51 PM

    Dear Mrs. Ranney,

    Hello, this is Carly and Jamie. We have some fantastic facts for you.

    Here is the first fact:

    The source of the Nile River is the White Nile.

    This is another fact:

    The delta for the Nile is in northern Africa.

    We hope that you enjoyed our phenomenal facts!

    Happy New Year!

    Carly and Jamie:)

  7. Dear Mrs. Ranney,

    I have found a lot of facts about Africa on the World Book web site that I thought were interesting. The first fact that I found was about the increasing population in Africa. There were two reasons that I have found for the increase. The first reason is that the medical care for children has gotten better, and the other reason is because more people are being born.

    Many African people don’t eat three meals a day like us Americans. Instead of having breakfast, lunch, and dinner everyday, African people have one huge dinner and only have small snacks during the day.

    Because most people are poor, they can’t afford to buy a car. Only people who have a lot of money can buy cars. The people who can’t afford to buy a car get around buy using buses, minivans, and taxis or sometimes just walk or ride a bike.

    The clothing that people wear in Africa surprised me. The men wear long flowing robes. Sometimes they wear a turban or a skullcap on their heads. The woman wear long simple dresses, sometimes with baggy trousers underneath.

    Children in Africa don’t have as good of an education as we do in America. Only about two-thirds of the people in Africa can read and write.

    I have enjoyed learning about Africa and look forward to learning about more continents. I will use World Book more to learn more facts about different continents.



  8. Dear Mrs. Ranney,

    I LOVED learning all of the facts that people told us. All of the facts were very interesting, and helpful for me. I do not have a favorite fact though.

    I think that it is amazing that Tristan's sister, Monica went to Kenya.

    My dad grew up in Johannesburg, which is in South Africa.

    Warmest Regards,



Getting feedback is important to our writers. Let us know what you liked or what you learned.
Steps to comment:
1. Write your comment in the box below. Be sure that you have proofread it for spelling, grammar, punctuation, and capitalization. Students should have a parent check it!
2. Sign your post using your first name only.
3. Choose an identity. (If you have a gmail account, use it. If not, simply choose "Anonymous".)
4. Click "Publish your Comment". You may preview your comment before publishing if you'd like.

Important: All comments MUST be approved by me.
:) Mrs. Ranney