Monday, July 19, 2010

Marco Polo and The Silk Road

I went to a Silk Road exhibit at American Museum Of Natural History. The Silk Road was a big network of trading routes. Not just single road. They had each country shown as part of it and you could go to each place and get a stamp in a mini stamp book. It had live silk worms too! Another thing I learned was that it went through Europe, Egypt, Arabia, Persia, India, China, Java, and Somalia. It was very boring.

After it we stopped at the gift shop and got a book called Animals Marco Polo Saw. It was about Marco polo’s travels through the Silk Road. It talked about how when Marco made a book about his travels, it inspired people to explore and talk to new countries. This changed the whole world.

Marco Polo was a trader in the Silk Road. He was born in Italy September 15, 1254. In 1271, he started a journey through the Silk Road. When he got back he made a book about his trip which became the very first travel guide. That was how he became famous.

Here is a link to the book:

Thursday, July 8, 2010

Learning About The Battle Of Hastings

The Battle Of Hastings was a big historic battle between the Norman and the English people. It took place at Senlac hill 14 October 1066. The English were lead by Harold First and the Norman were lead by Duke William 1 of Normandy.

I read a book about William the First called William The Conquer And The Battle Of Hastings by Micheal St Jhon Parker, and this is what I learned from it.:

William the First was a king of England who was born around 1027 and died in 1087.  He was the king at the Battle of Hasting. After he won the battle he was nicknamed William the Conqueror.

The other book I read was The Battle Of Hastings by Chris Priestly.

The Battle of Hastings was important because it would decide who would take the throne and be the King of England. Also after this battle Normandy was introduced to a new system of government in which the king would usually offer to his warriors a plot of land called a fief, in exchange for their loyalty.  And it would decide who the next king would be.

Here are two of the books I read:

Wednesday, July 7, 2010

Learning About Vikings

Who Were The Vikings?

Vikings were people who lived in 800 AD to 1050 AD. They lived in Europe. One important Viking was Arick The Red. The Vikings were strong fighters. They invented the axe, the hammer, and the flat bottom boat! AND they were the second to find America! They were fighters, farmers, raiders, and traders! So the better question is who were the Vikings not?

In my unit on Vikings I read a book by Frid Inguistad. It was a historical fiction with historical inaccuracies (like the fact that the Vikings did not end with peace with the natives) called Magnus the Viking. In this story a Viking boy goes to Vinland and meets a Native American boy named Maku. But can the two boys stop the war between the two groups?

One more book I read for my unit was called History dudes: Vikings by Rich Camdo here is what I wrought about it:

Do you know the word berserk? Do you know it’s a Viking nick name? Ber is bear in Viking and serk means shift in Viking. So berserk means bear shift. Vikings went “berserk “in battle it was said that when they went berserk they became powerful fighters, and they sometimes killed their own friends!

So as I said Vikings were a lot of things not just fighters and raiders like most people think!

Here are some of the books I read on vikings:

Tuesday, July 6, 2010

Learning About Leanardo Da Vinci

I did a unit in school about Leonardo Da Vinci. This unit included reading books about Leonardo Da Vinci, watching movies about Leonardo Da Vinci, and reading websites about Leonardo Da Vinci. Some books I read about Leonardo were:

• The Da Vinci Cod by Chris Riddell

• Leonardo Da Vince by Kathleen Krull

• The Second Mrs. Giaconda by E.L. Konigsburg

• Amazing Leonardo Da Vinci Inventions by Maxine Anderson

• Who Can Crack The Leonardo Da Vinci Code? By Thomas Brezina

• Masters Of Art Leonardo Da Vinci

• Getting To Know The World’s Greatest Artists Leonardo Da Vinci

• Leonardo Da Vinci Dreams, Schemes, and Flying Machines

• The Importance Of Leonardo Da Vinci

• Neo Leo

Who Can Crack The Leonardo Da Vinci Code? By Thomas Brezina

The book who can Crack the Leonardo Da Vinci Code? Is a time travel mystery about a young boy who lives in present time and goes through a panting of Leonardo, which takes him into the past when Leonardo lived. He went through time so that he could solve a riddle and open a box left behind from Leonardo. This book was a funny, historical fantasy book.

Making Monalisa Smile by Nick D Alt

In my unit I also read an article in the magazine Odyssey: Adventures in Science that talked about a computer that could read peoples smiles and figure out if they are happy, angry, frustrated, or confused. This could be useful for when people are learning a new language with a computer program which does not make sense. The computer can change the lesson making it easier to understand. I do not think it would be very helpful though because if you’re in the middle of something and then get hit by a rock you wince and everything your reading changes so you have to read it all over again and when you face settles down and you were half way done with what you were reading it changes again.

Leonardo’s Horse by Jean Fritz

One of the other books in my Leonardo Da Vinci unit was a book about Leonardo building a really big hoarse out of copper. In the book he said that he would make the ears of the horse pointing back to show that it was listening to its rider’s commands. It also said that Leonardo made a clay model first. At the end of the book it said that the horse was completely destroyed in an enemy attack. In real life he built the clay model but never got around to building the copper version. So it is a good historical fiction because it brought the story to life but it is not very factual.

I watched a movie called Leonardo Da Vinci. It showed all of his paintings and some of his inventions in a funny way. That made it easier to understand. I did not like it very much because I thought it was too cartoony. Although little kids (I call my Minions) might like it.

I watched a bunch of TV shows on YouTube called Doing Da Vinci in it they built a tank, a war caret, and a sedge tower! Here is a link to the videos:

My visit to a Leonardo Museum

A while ago I went to a museum exhibit about Leonardo it was filled with Leonardo inventions here is a list of the inventions from it:

• A tank

• A bridge ( me and dad argued whether it would work )

• A flying contraption

• And a weird canon

Here is a picture from it:

I’m the one in the green jacket.

Mrs.Giaconda by E.L.konigsburg

One of the last books I read was about Leonardo Da Vinci’s life from the point of view of his helper Salai. The book said that Salai used to be a pickpocketer! It also said that Leonardo needed Salai so that the tame Leonardo could live with the crazy criminal Salai but that’s mushy gushy deep feeling it is too boring blah. I think that the book was supposed to be about why Leonardo made the Monalisa but its more about his life.

Here are some not so fun facts:

• Did you know that Leonardo had a rival? He did! His rivals name was Michelangelo the two artists don’t get along. Leonardo made his artwork more realistic but Michelangelo did not like that.

• Did you know that Leonardo helped with community problems? He ones stopped a plague in a city! He invented a Sewer that got rid of the waist that was making it!

• Leonardo Da Vinci took three years to paint the Monalisa!

• The renaissance ( the time when Leonardo Da Vinci was alive ) means rebirth

Here are some links to books I read. ( if you were going to get something on amazon please use the link from my blog, i get money :D)