Sunday, March 6, 2011

E Is For English

We are participating in the Christian Home School Hub's Passport to the World journey. This week, we're exploring Australia and the English language. We learned a lot about cool aimals in Australia such as the kangaroo, the wallaby, the koala, the wombat, the Tasmanian devil, the spiny anteater, the frill-necked lizard, the duck-billed platypus, the emu, the kookaburra, the lyrebird, and the green turtle. We also read about the Great Barrier Reef. It was fun to try speaking Strine (what Aussies speak) :). Below are some interesting facts we've learned about Australia and some useful links that different homeschool families share at .

Hello or Hullo
(He low or Ha low)

Interesting Facts:
  • The continent of Australia is the smallest, the flattest, and the driest (except for Antarctica) continent.
  • There are ten times as many jumbucks (sheep) as people.
  • Australia produces more wool than any other country (30 % of the world's entire output).
  • The largest lake, Eyre (3,600 square miles), is usually dry.
  • Australia is among the world's least densely populated countries, averaging only 5 people per square mile.
  • Its Great Barrier Reef is the world's longest at 1,250 miles, more than half as long as its longest river system, the Murray-Darling (2,300 miles). More than 1,400 different kinds of fish (including more than 100 kinds of sharks) live there.
  • Australians' literacy is virtually 100 percent.
  • In Australia, voting is compulsory.
  • The Aboriginals invented the boomerang.
  • Two unique musical instruments made by Aboriginals are the didgeridoo (a long, hollow wind  instrument made of wood and painted with beautiful designs) and the bull-roarer (a long, flat piece of wood with a string attached...When you twirl the string through the air, it makes a roaring sound like an animal).
  • Australia's national sport is Australian Rules Football ("Footie"). It is a combination of soccer and rugby.
  • Almost all the world's opals are found in Australia (usually found in the outback).
  • Vegemite (a salty paste made of yeast, used to spread on bread/sandwiches) is very popular among Australians.
  • A favorite dessert in Australia is pavlova (a sweet meringue topped with fruit).
  • Australian children's fond treat is lamingtons (small sponge cakes covered with chocolate and shredded coconut).
Useful Links:

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