Tuesday, December 04, 2007

Elazar the Hero

Every Jew knows the story of Chanuka. But they probably don't know the real story involving Elazar the Maccabee being the hero. This version begins near the end of the war with the Greeks. The Maccabees were surrounded by a huge army of Greeks and elephants. Elazar noticed that there was a decorated elephant carrying the big general of the army. Without regarding his life, he went right under the elephant and stabbed its belly. Unluckily, Elazar died of an elephant crushing him. One week later, Judah the Maccabee proclaimed victory over the Greeks. It's preposterous that Judah should get all the fame. What did Judah do to deserve all the distinction? It's like an audition for a play. The better actor gets the part that they're auditioning for. But if Judah was alive today, he would've bribed the judges and got the role. I would be so angry if someone cheated against me. In the Simpsons, Mr. Burns always bribes people to keep shut. Because the person is greedy, he takes the bribe. Certainly, Elazar is the real hero and Judah isn't. We are all in debt to Elazar.

Tuesday, November 20, 2007

It's Not Fair!

Lunch recess indoors is not always fun or fair. Just today all of grade 6 room 204 was kept in for 20 out of the 25 minutes we have for free time. The students who are ready to go up and the last class are complaining about: monitors picking the children who are ready and an observation that I made. First of all, the monitors should pick the students who are ready to ascend the stairs. Instead, the head supervisor called class by class by class. That means that if one person from the whole class isn't ready, the whole class waits. It's students that deserve going upstairs who should go. Many kids are ready to go up, but their class is last to be called. The longer they wait, the more they will get bored. The more the children get bored, the more they will misbehave. Next, there has been a repetition of which class goes last. My observations throughout 3¼years show that it's always the lowest number room that goes first and the highest number room goes last. In grade 5, I was in room 207; highest number class of grade 5. At indoor lunch recess we were always last to go up. What did the kids do to deserve to go last? It's obvious. They are in the highest number room. Certainly, the head supervisor and his boss should change the rules so that the right people get their recess. How would you feel if you were punished collectively?

Wednesday, October 31, 2007

Sad Halloween!

Since last year, I don't go trick-or-treating. There are some actions that happened a long time ago that you should know before you go out.

First of all, Halloween is a witch hunting holiday in origins. In the far past, many people burned anybody who were suspected of being witches. In reality, they were medicine women. How would you feel to be burned? I would feel that people were prejudging me. Moreover, I wouldn't have time to voice my opinion. You must remember that witches were tied up and burned at the stake. Fortunately, this persecution doesn't continue today.

Equally important is that all Jews were believed to be witches. All of them. People would storm into a Jewish town, break their houses and burn them. After those Jews were burned, the angry mob would steal that person's possessions. Every person in the world wouldn't want this to happen to themselves. Many Jews lost their wives, husbands and children in this sad period of history.

Obviously, Halloween is not a holiday to be happy. People should not say the greeting "Happy Halloween" anymore. It's not fair to the people who were killed. Make the choice. Don't say "Happy Halloween".

Friday, October 19, 2007

Don't the Autumn Leaves smell good?

In Montréal the answer for anybody would be no. Because of the warm and moist weather, all the leaves are starting to rot. When leaves start to decay, they give off a bad aroma. The smell of the leaves is worse then 100 skunks put together. Because of the wind, the smell spreads across the whole city. I'm sure that many people are thinking about the odour. If you smell or smelled it please tell me about it by leaving a comment at the end of this blog post. I blame this aroma on global warming and the way that humanity is responsible for speeding up this environmental catastrophe. We can't stop global warming but we can slow it down. The warmer weather provides an excellent scenario for the leaves to rot. People might die because of this smell. For example, you won't be able to smell a gas leak after opening a window because the smell of decomposing leaves will mask the smell of dangerous gas. So don't open your window, and save yourself from suffocating in gas leaks by doing your part to combat global warming.

Tuesday, October 02, 2007

D(Duck)-Day

Jake has arrived! He's all nice and new with extra fur. There are many good things about being new; and some bad things. As I said in The Search for Jake, the new Jake the duck will never be the same to my brother and I as the old original Jake. Having a new version of my friend Jake the duck is not as satisfying as having the original worn down duck, but it is better than having no duck at all. All the same human beings always want more (with a few exceptions at certain times, like at a party when you're overwhelmed with too many presents). Therefore, I still want the old Jake.

"Radar!" When you hear this word you probably think of a submarine off on a mission to torpedo an enemy ship, but the only way to find its target is with radar. When I heard the word "radar" I used to think that too. But things are different now. Radar is a stuffed manufactured bat whose name is a palindrome. If you're thinking that naming a bat Radar is crazy, then think again! What do bats have that make them special. That's it: echolocation, like radar. Whichever way you think of it, radar makes animals and ships special.

Thursday, September 27, 2007

Speech Commands

Yesterday I found out a really cool application on my mac. It's called speech commands. You can demand it to do everything from getting your e-mail to telling you a joke although it can't type from speech to word processing. Nevertheless, it can open and quit all the original applications. Just say make this speakable and the item that you have selected. If you have a new mac, it's sure yo have speech commands. How do you turn it on you ask? Well, you go to the system preferences. Go to speech. At the top, there is two choices; on or off. Select on and you're ready to zoom!

Sunday, September 23, 2007

Alone

On usual Sundays, I have orchestra at noon. It usually starts in October but my father said that there was an orchestra session today. While I'm at orchestra, my mother and my brother often go food shopping. Everything went as planned so far. I was dropped off at orchestra. I went to the room and... nobody was there. I waited 5 minutes, still nobody there. 10 more minutes passed and still there wasn't anybody there. I was stranded. I was alone. I had my cell phone with me, so I called my father. He said that he was going to call my mother. Unluckily, she wasn't answering her phone for unknown reasons. So I went outside and waited. I tried calling my mother many times, but it was unsuccessful each time. To pass the time, I called my father and talked to him about many things such as helicopters, airplanes, fancy cars and a tiny water fountain. When I wasn't talking to my father, I was trying to contact my mother. Finally, after talking with my father for the fifth time, I telephoned my mother successfully. She said that my father had called her and she was going to pick me up. 10 minutes later, she arrived. I was so glad to see my brother and my mother! When you're outside by yourself, always keep a house key, a bus ticket, some money and your cell phone. It can be boring and dangerous if you don't have these items. Please follow this advice and keep yourself safe. Everything that happened in this post is true and really happened.

Saturday, September 22, 2007

The Search for Jake

Jake is a manufactured stuffed mallard duck. My brother got Jake when he was three years old and is very attached to it. My brother has incorporated Jake in many made up games including Doggy Game, Doggy Diamond Show and The Fox dog Game. My brother and I have had lots of fun with Jake. Six years have passed and my brother is still very attached to it. He loves his Jake and Jake, if you can imagine, loves my brother.

My brother and I still play Doggy Game but it's never the same without Jake. Yes, we've lost Jake. My brother reckons it was in mid-August we lost Jake. There's only one problem, my brother doesn't remember what he was doing and where Jake was lost. Weeks of searching yielded no result. My brother is sad when he remembers Jake. Our family plans to buy a new one and that raises my brother's hopes. But the new Jake will never be the same to my brother or to me.

Tuesday, September 18, 2007

Typing: a Waste of Time?

It is a complete waste of time to force kids to type pieces of writing themselves. First of all, children would type one letter at a time and be very slow. It could take 30 minutes for a kid who hasn't learned to type, while an adult could type something in 5 minutes. While they are typing, the kids could be doing many other activities such as board games, sports, reading and other homework. If kids don't type for a long time, they would have more chances to lead a healthier lifestyle. Teachers shouldn't force kids to type pieces of writing themselves.

Saturday, September 15, 2007

Outdoor Wonders

Yesterday, my father and I decided to go for a walk. I brought a digital camera along. We stumbled across some interesting and wacky things. I will tell you about two of the things. If you are interested in world wonders, you would like this.

My father and I were walking in a park when I noticed something in the sky. It was light in the middle of the clouds. It looked like a window into heaven. It's unusual for me to notice these things, so I took a picture. I had to take two pictures to get the kind of photo I wanted.


My father and I walked south, past the Ville-Marie Expressway, towards Atwater market. After Lionel-Groulx, the métro station, we came across a very interesting building. There was the lobby. Nothing special yet. Second floor, left: nothing, right: nothing, middle: big circular shape going to the top! What else can I find?

Sunday, September 09, 2007

Coin Collecting

I like coin collecting. It's very fun because of many reasons. One reason is because it always feels like you're gaining something. Another reason is that there are many stories behind each coin. There is always a reason for the picture. If I don't know the reason for the picture, I try to find out what it is. You can collect coins in circulation or non-circulatory coins. It'll be fun both ways. I prefer collecting coins in circulation because I think it's more fun. Circulation coins won't be worth much in the future so don't think you'd be able to sell them for lots of money. If you have a very old coin, it's different. I don't plan to make money off of my coins in the future. There are some groups of coins that I like to collect. I started my whole coin collection with the 2000 commemorative quarters. I'm still trying to get them all! There are such 2000 quarters with the themes Liberty 2000, Creativity 2000 and Wisdom 2000. I've got all of these coins. Start your coin collection now!

Monday, August 27, 2007

Exercise Day

Today was Exercise Day (not official). It started out by walking from Bonaventure métro station to the church of Notre Dame in Old Montreal. We walked back to Square Victoria. Then, we waited 15 minutes for bus number 36 to get to Lionel-Groulx. When it arrived, we found out that it didn't go to Lionel-Groulx. So instead, we took the Orange line home from Square Victoria. In the evening, my mother, my brother and I jumped rope. I used to be very good in grade 1, but I hadn't practiced for a long time. After an hour of jumping rope, all three of us had gotten better. I like jumping rope. It's very fun. Later in the evening, my brother, my father and I went to the park. In the park, we played hide and seek tag. I love hide and seek. It's one of my favourite games. For the first two rounds our father knew where we were. But my brother and I had a plan: our father would think we were in the same place as before, but we really weren't. The plan worked so well that it worked two times. Our day of exercise was extremely exciting and fun.

Sunday, August 26, 2007

The Alps

Today my brother, my father and I went to a movie about the Alps. The movie is about a man named John Harlin III climbing the most rugged part of the Alps; the north face of the Eiger. For him, it's not just difficult physically, but also emotionally because when he was nine, his father, John Harlin II decided to climb the Eiger and died in the attempt. John Harlin III doesn't believe that there's any climb worth dying for. If needed, he will take a helicopter back to base. His wife and daughter are anxious for John but are nevertheless supporting him emotionally. His wife said that her husband knows what he's got to do; complete the climb that his father started 30 years earlier. I think this movie was very good. It might have been better if it was not mainly about a man climbing the Eiger. It should have more about other parts of the alps. I would give this movie 4½ stars out of 5.

Saturday, July 07, 2007

Summer Camps and Institutes

Explorations day camp is fun because we get to choose the activities we want to do during the day. Every day of camp now consists of the activities you chose and 45 minutes of sports at the end of the day. You can choose every activity; from tennis to 3D movie making. At the end of two weeks there is an open house where your group will show what they have learnt.
For more information go to www.education.mcgill.ca/explorations/

Cordes en Folie is a musical day camp for strings. It's not just playing your instrument; it's also drama, arts and crafts, improvisation, chamber music and orchestra. At the end of two weeks, your group puts together one big show with everything you've learnt (except for improvisation).
For more information go to http://ecoledesjeunes.musique.umontreal.ca/camp/index.html

If you play flute, violin, cello and piano, you can register at Institute of Suzuki of Montreal. Suzuki is a method of playing many different musical instruments. On the first day, you get an envelope that contains many different things. One of the most important is your individual schedule. Your individual schedule tells you what classes you're taking, where they are and when they are. The classes usually last 1 hour. There are practice modules if you want to practice when you have breaks. A practice module is a soundproof cubical.
For more information go to http://suzukimontreal.org/

Thursday, June 21, 2007

The Last Day of School

Today was the last day of school. Everybody brought board games and playing cards. We were allowed to wear free dress instead of our boring old uniform. In the morning, our English teacher asked the class to talk about how they feel, this being the last day of school. Many students had mixed feelings. I felt happy and sad. I felt sad because I wouldn't see all my friends every day right in the morning. I will miss my class because next year, who knows who I'm going to be with? The last day of school is when we part with our friends and teachers we know so well. That is a sad thing. I felt happy because it's the last day of school and I'm relieved from all the work. I have weeks to have fun and go to camp. I can spend all day exploring Montreal or just relax at home. I'm free! As the song In the Summertime goes:
In the Summertime when the weather is high, you can stretch right up and touch the sky, when the weather's fine, you got women, you got women on your mind. Have a drink, have a drive, go out and see what you can find. If her daddy's rich, take her out for a meal. If her daddy's poor, just do as you feel. Speed along the lane, Do a ton, or a ton and twenty-five. When the sun goes down, you can make it, make it good in a lay-by. We're not grey people, we're not dirty, we're not mean. We love everybody, but we do as we think. When the weather's fine we go fishing or go swimming in the sea. We're always happy, life's for living, yeah, that's our philosophy. Sing along with us, dee-dee-dee-dee-dee. Da-da-da-da-da...Yeah, we're happy happy, da-da-da-da-dah. When the winter's here, then it's party time. Bring a bottle, wear your bright clothes. It'll soon be summertime, and we'll sing again, we'll go drivin' or maybe we'll settle down. If she's rich, if she's nice, bring you're friends and we'll all go into town.
(Song by Jerry Mungo) Long live summer!

Monday, June 11, 2007

F-factor and the Silliest Mistake

Excerpt from the book "Why Don't Penguins' Feet Freeze." Please read this sentence and count the Fs: FINISHED FILES ARE THE RESULT OF YEARS OF SCIENTIFIC COMBINED WITH THE EXPERIENCE OF YEARS. How many Fs did you count? If it was 6 then you are correct. The human mind doesn't know the word contains the letter because it's pronounced with the sound. Say this out loud: The Silliest Mistake in in The World If you said "The Silliest Mistake in the World," then you are... WRONG. The real way to say this phrase is "The Silliest Mistake in in the World." The human mind is always correcting itself and other things. So you did see those two , it's just that your brain corrected the phrase. Please post your comments and tell me how many Fs you counted in F-factor and if you fell for the silliest mistake.

Saturday, June 09, 2007

Papier Maché

Papier maché can be very fun and amusing but very messy. You can make many things out of papier maché, including model houses, bowls and many more items. First, you have to make your adhesive. There are three ways to make the adhesive but I only know one way. Add three cups of water to one cup of flour to get your glue. Next, tear newspaper. You would want them long and skinny if you're using a circular mold but the newspaper strips can be wide if you're using a rectangular mold. Dip the newspaper into your adhesive, using the thumb and forefinger to take off any extra glue. Keep repeating these steps until you're done. Remember, papier maché can be very messy, so I would do it outside if I were you. To get more information on papier maché go to http://www.papiermache.co.uk/exec/cms-documents/s-tutorials/p-view/id-23/ http://www.papiermache.co.uk/exec/cms-documents/s-tutorials/p-view/id-23/page-2/

Tuesday, June 05, 2007

Multicultural Events

Today the grade fives got to eat snacks and participate in activities that originated from three countries: Japan, Italy and South Korea. The food from Japan was snow cones. We got to choose one of three flavours: strawberry ,peach or lime. I chose lime because I like it's sour taste. The food from South Korea was a soft drink that had moo moo milk inside. From Italy, we had chocolate chip biscotti. For the activities: from Japan we did karate, from South Korea we played a board game and from Italy, we played soccer. We started with karate. First we have to bow for respect. Then we have to warm up by moving our head. After that, my class played a game where you try to touch your partner's forehead, but your partner is also trying to touch your own forehead. Last, we put on some protective gear and learned how to hit and kick. Next came South Korea. This game is like Sorry! There are two teams. The white team and the black team. Each team gets four pieces. The object of the game is to get all four around the board and get to home. But there is a faster way. There are shortcuts that go diagonally. There's only one catch: you have to land exactly on the square that leads to the shortcut. If you land on a square which is occupied by a ival team's piece, you get to eat it. When a piece is eaten, that piece is removed and must start all over again. Instead of rolling dice, you roll Korean dice. This game is fun and easy to learn.

Sunday, June 03, 2007

The March to Jerusalem

Today I completed the march to Jerusalem. The March to Jerusalem exists to raise money for the March of the Living. In the beginning, you register at a desk. Once you're done, the officials give you a passport. The passport isn't real; it's fake. There are many checkpoints (named after cities in Israel) along the way starting with Ben Gurion airport and ending with Jerusalem. At every checkpoint, volunteers stamp your passport. When you reach the end you are supposed to get a medal and a loot bag. There are a few things that bug me. This year, the organizers cut out the Town of Hampstead from the route. There are alot of people who can do more walking. When I completed the March, I only got my medal. When I asked them for a loot bag they said, "they've all been taken." I saw people who took shortcuts take loot bags. That's not fair! I did the whole March, but when I get to Jerusalem, they've been taken by people who cheated. it's like a ship. There should be enough lifeboats to carry all the passengers and crew. The officials of the March to Jerualem should be more fair.

Thursday, May 31, 2007

Artificial Turf in the Park

Artificial turf is bad. There are many injuries you can get from it such as turf toe. It has been proven that when you add water to the artificial turf, it becomes poisonous. Many countries have banned artificial turf. If the field is in bad condition, do not put artificial turf. Just make sure that the field is properly used as not to damage it. It will also make taxes higher. The lowest cost of artificial turf for one soccer field is $3.3 million. There's more: you have to replace the artificial turf fiel at a cost of $1.2 million every 10 years. In the summer artificial turf can reach temperatures as high as 65℃! The burning pint for skin is 44℃. Artificial turf should be outlawed in Canada. For more information on turf toe got to http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Turf_toe

Friday, May 25, 2007

My City

I like living in my city. It's a good city because we get fresh air, there's a pool and there are alot of parks. I like the bird sanctuary. In the summer, you can see many different kinds of birds in the bird sanctuary. It might be far up the mountain, but it isn't too far to walk. The pool is one of my favourite places to go in summer. It is open to all residents. You can dive, have swimming lessons or just relax. In the winter, I like going to the arena. There is the small rink for lessons and free skate, and there is the big rink for hockey. Sometimes when there are no hockey games, we are allowed to go onto the big rink.

Thursday, May 24, 2007

Cirque du Soleil: Kooza

This year's Cirque du Soleil show is called Kooza. It's about a melancholy loner called The Innocent who discovers the world of Kooza. The Innocent struggles to find his place in the world of Kooza. There are many other characters such as the Trickster, the clowns and the pickpocket. Kooza goes back to the origins of Cirque du Soleil. It combines the art of clowning around with acrobatics. To find out more information, go to www.cirquedusoleil.com My favourite part was when two acrobats went on two brass circles that looked like a pair of handcuffs. The circles started turning. To stay on the circles, these acrobats had to keep walking. Their pace was decided by how fast the two circles were moving through the air, high in the big top. It was amazing when they skipped rope; the pair of circles were going so fast that one of them seemed to be flying in mid-air while doing his rope-skipping. Kooza was a good show. It was funny, interesting and amusing. One small improvement would be to have The Innocent do his own act at the end. The whole show is about what he sees and learns from the series of acts. He should show the audience what he has learned in his own segment at the end of the show.

Monday, May 21, 2007

Bye-bye Grade 5-Grade 6, Here I Come

What a Grade 5 year this has been! We began the year by learning about the municipal government. I loved writing a letter to the mayor of Westmount. With my English teacher, we wrote a lot of prose. That was one of my favourite parts in English. Later in the year, we started talking about our families in Yiddish. I learnt a lot from talking with my father. Meanwhile, we were studying about the provincial government. It was much more enjoyable because the Liberal Party of Quebec called an election. More Canadian history would enhance the Grade 5 program. We need to learn about our country. Long live Grade 5! Grade 6 is going to be so much fun! We will be senior and the oldest. We will learn about the federal government. I can’t wait for that. Learning about the government is what I love. I hope there will be history and countries of the world. We will be learning about the Holocaust and how terrible it was. We will be older and be able to handle more responsibility. Therefore, we will take our turns being monitors. Grade 6, here I come!

Saturday, May 19, 2007

Because of Winn-Dixie

Because of Winn-Dixie is a book about a girl named India Opal and how she gets friends. She and her father (the preacher) have just moved to a small town in Florida called Naomi. Opal has no friends in Naomi and summer vacation has started. One day, Opal goes to buy food at a grocery store. She hears the manager shouting, "who let a dog in here?" Opal answered "I did, he's my dog". She names the dog Winn-Dixie after the grocery store Opal found him in. The very same day, Opal goes to church. Winn-Dixie had to stay outside. Winn-Dixie had to be let in because he was disrupting the church. When he was let in, he started chasing a mouse. Everybody started laughing. Finally, Winn-Dixie gave the mouse alive to the preacher. The preacher said, "let us pray, for this mouse." Opal was riding her bicycle home when two boys ride next to her. They start teasing her. Suddenly, Winn Dixie runs of into a private lane. The boys say the lane belongs to a witch but Opal finds out the truth. It really belongs to a nice woman named Gloria Dump. Opal tells Gloria all about her life. Gloria says that Opal should try to make friends with the boys. Opal doesn't listen to this advice. The next day, Opal brings Winn-Dixie out for a walk when Winn-Dixie stops right in front of a pet store, staring at a shiny dog collar. It's expensive but Opal will do anything for her dog. Opal goes in and meets Otis, the man who works there. Opal works a deal with Otis that after a few weeks of sweeping floors, she would get the shiny dog collar. She ends up being friends with Otis. Opal spent alot of time at the library that summer. But she always brought Winn-Dixie with her and it was because of Winn-Dixie that Opal became friends with Mrs. Franny, the librarian. It happened like this: Opal was choosing a book to check out when Mrs. Franny cried "bear!" She actually saw Winn-Dixie and thought he was a ferocious bear. Opal assured Mrs. Franny that it was only her gentle dog Winn-Dixie. After being reassured, Mrs. Franny let Winn-Dixie into the library. Mrs. Franny told Opal and Winn-Dixie the story of why she was scared of bears. That's how they all became friends. What will happen? Read the book to find out! I like this book because it doesn't have one big problem. It's a few days in the life of an 8 year old girl. It makes me feel like I'm actually there, right in Naomi. This book teaches me that enemies can become friends. Therefore, I recommend this book for age 7 and older. It could even teach adults! You should read the book before the movie because there are some features about the father is more kind in the book.