Finland STEM Boating Challenge

What a week back from spring break! It was go, go, go from the moment we returned. We received our eggs to hatch, students wrote a class book of poems to send off to Student Treasures to be published, we started a new unit in math on money, Thursday was poem in your pocket day, and we had boat building and a big boat race on Friday for STEM. There was a lot to be excited about but the STEM lessons were some of my favorites. We kicked off the STEM lesson with a social studies connection. I wrote a small […]

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The Sound of Silence

This week I continue down travel memory lane. My photo wanderings brought me to one of my favorite spots in Helsinki, the Kamppi Chapel of Silence. Believe it or not it took me a while to find this giant building. As I was trying to get my bearings of Helsinki, riding the tram up and down Mannerheimintie and surrounding streets, I found myself hoping off stops and wandering around. Map in hand (trying to be discrete, I didn’t want to look like a total tourist!) I would meander down streets, circle around, double back, all in search of must see highlights, […]

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What’s In A Map?

One of the social studies topics we cover in second grade are types of maps and how we use them. Obviously this is a perfect opportunity to share with students maps I have picked up over the years during my travels. I have to admit that everywhere I have been I have collected maps, brochures and other literature just waiting for the right opportunity to use them one day. That day has finally arrived!   By using real maps of places around the world, it will be an authentic way of showing students different styles of maps to students. I […]

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Market Squares 

One of the things I loved most about my time in Europe this past summer was spending time in markets. Abuzz with activity, sounds and smells, open market squares were the perfect place to soak up culture and do a little shopping at the same time. When I returned home to the states all I could think was how much I missed the open markets I had visited.    Why can’t we make a go of permanent open air markets here? I mean if Helsinki, Finland can have one year round then towns in New England certainly could make it […]

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Helsinki Favorites

Helsinki may just be my favorite city I have traveled to. Not too big, clean, easy to navigate and lots to see and do, what isn’t there to love? I loved spending some time there on my own before being joined first by my sister and later by my mum. It gave me a chance to discover some of my favorite places in the city and then share them with my family. Here is a break down of my favorite must see places and must do activities if you visit Helsinki. Sit on the steps of the Helsinki Cathedral. This […]

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Design Museum of Helsinki 

Of all the museums I went to while in Helsinki, the Design Museum was by far my favorite.  It is a small museum but it packed quite a punch. In fact it was so great I went back for a second visit with my sister when she arrived to Helsinki.  The featured designer was Eero Aarino who is famous for his ball chair. As I walked through the museum both times I was captivated by Aarino’s simple but interesting designs. As I learned his designs are considered artifacts because he takes materials and forces them into man made designs.  ​​ […]

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Island Hopping Finnish Style 

Where to even begin. Today was a phenomenal day. The weather was picture perfect, just right for island hopping. I met up with a friend from the blogging world, Suvi, and spent the morning at three different islands in Helsinki’s harbor.  We started at Vallisaari, a recently reopened island just beyond Suomenlinna Island. People have been going off trails and disrupting the nature found there so the island has been closed for a while. They recently reopened it and you could tell people wanted to know what the island had to offer. It had beautiful scenery and some information posters […]

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Progressive Sitting 

Have you heard of progressive parties. The kind where you work your way down a street, stopping at different restaurants to have varying courses? Well my first night in Finland I did progressive sitting. 😎 But first let me preface this story with a quick bit of information. I had no acces to wifi throughout my progressive sit and therefore I was forced to do some unplugging. And boy did it feel good.  Let me explain. It all started after a mind blowingly good bowl of salmon soup with bread and coffee for dinner in the old market square. After […]

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Perks of Being a Solo Traveler

Well, I survived my first international solo flight! While this is something I have wanted to do for a long time, it had me absolutely petrified! There is something a bit unnerving traveling alone to a foreign country to stay in a hostel with people you have never met. I know for many this is a breeze and something they have done a million times, but this is my first solo travel experience. Making it a bit easier is knowing it is temporary and my sister will be joining me at the end of the week. My debut into solo […]

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Helsinki Wanderings

Hyvää Juhannusta! Happy Midsummer as they say in Finland. I will miss the holiday celebration this weekend but that’s ok because in 3 short days I will take off for Finland! My bags are pretty much packed at this point letting me focusing on the good stuff, what to do once I arrive. Since I will be on my own for the first few days, it gives me a chance to wander the city with a loose itinerary of areas I want to explore and museums I want to spend hours rambling through. I have divvied up activities and planned […]

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