Friday, November 1, 2013

Answers to kids questions

We recently had some video conferences with several classrooms.  After one of the videos, Kim Schafer's 3rd grade class at Breck School in Minneapolis, had some great questions for us.  We thought we'd publish the questions and answers here.

What animals did you see in the Amazon Rain Forest?  Did you have a favorite?
The animals that we saw in the Amazon rainforest were:
  • Monkeys
  • Caterpillars
  • Butterflies
  • Snakes
  • Birds
We've created a specific photo album focused on Amazon rainforest animals that we saw.

It's hard to pick a favorite, but some of our most favorite are squirrel monkeys, woolly monkeys, andean cock-of-the-rock birds, oropendola birds, and hoatzin birds (thought to be related to archaeopteryx dinosaurs).

What kinds of things did you see in the desert?
Your question about the desert is a tough one.  Because Arequipa is at the edge of the desert.  Colca Canyon has a very desert-like climate.  And even Lima, the capital of Peru, is considered to be in the desert.  Here are some of the things we saw in the desert:
  • Cacti (we tried a new fruit called Tuna - which is fruit from a cactus, sometimes called Prickly Pear)
  • Andean condors (Huge vultures with a wingspan over 10 feet long)
  • A lot of homes built from adobe mud bricks
  • A lot of brown (except for green areas around the occasional river)
  • Tiny plants less than a foot high - some which are 1-2 thousand years old, and grow only millimeters per year

Cactus from one of our hikes in Colca Canyon
Tuna or Prickly Pear fruit
Jason eating some tuna fruit
Adobe house (on right)
Small, slow growing shrubs in the desert highlands

What is the music like in Peru?
The traditional music in Peru uses a lot of flute-like instruments, called panpipes.  It often includes a small guitar as well called a charango, which is actually referred to as Peru's national instrument.


Here's a link to someone playing the panpipes and the charango at the same time.
Here's another link to a small panpipe band.

When you lived without electricity what did you do for fun?
We lived without electricity in two places.  For a night on Isla Taquile in Lake Titicaca, and for 5 days in the Amazon rainforest (they had a generator that ran for 2 hours every night between 7:30 and 9:30pm).  Here are some of the things we did:
- Went on a lot of hikes (in the rainforest this is when we saw a lot of animals!)
- Rested in hammocks
- Helped build a bio-garden for a local family (we'll be doing a post about this in the next couple of weeks)
- We met a lot of new people and talked and had fun with them
- We played some games (Uno for example)

- Charango, panpipes, and tuna fruit photos are from Wikipedia.  Charango and tuna fruit photos are in the public domain and panpipes photo is © Andrew Dunn, 13 August 2005.  All other photos taken by Larry Kraft.

1 comment:

  1. Wow! We thought the Amazon was amazing! Thanks for the link to the panpipe and panflute players. See you next week!

    Your friends in Mrs. Schafer's 3rd grade


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