Thursday, April 30, 2009

Big Bend National Park in Texas

Show Family Two reporting here: Today we visited Big Bend National Park. This was a huge park with lots of different things to see. We went up one of the mountains and then we drove around to explore. We went on a dirt road in the desert, where some of us road our bikes and some of us hiked. We had so much fun here!

Tuesday, April 28, 2009

Sea World in San Antonio Texas-Beluga Whales

Show Family Two here reporting from San Antonio, Texas. One of our favorite things to see so far, was a show that we visited while at Sea World. The show had acrobats, dolphins and beluga whales.

We were so impressed with the interaction between the whales and their trainers!

We thought they were beautiful and graceful animals.

We hope to be able to spend more time seeing them while in California and Florida.

More about Beluga Whales:

Beluga Whales

Beluga whales are warm-blooded mammals that breathe air through the blowhole on the top of their head. Their blowhole is covered by a muscular flap which provides a water-tight seal. Beluga whales cannot breathe through their mouths and can hold their breath for 20-25 minutes. They are extremely social animals, living, hunting and migrating in groups called pods.
The beluga whales are the most vocal of the toothed whale. Arctic fisherman say they can hear the beluga whales’ sounds coming from miles away, and they can feel the vibration of their sounds coming through the hulls of their fishing boats. This behavior has earned them the nickname “sea canary.”

Fun Facts
• The beluga whale is the only whale with a flexible neck.
• A beluga whale uses its pectoral flippers (forelimbs) mainly to steer and stop.
• The beluga whale is also called the white whale. The word beluga comes from the Russian word for white, “belukha.”
• Beluga caviar comes from the beluga sturgeon, not the beluga whale.
• This whale has the ability to swim backward.

Adopt a Beluga Whale

More Facts:
National Geographic for Kids
Sea World Animal Bytes
Beluga Whales Facts
Facts and Fun Activities

Animated Jigsaw Puzzle
Whale Flip Game
Save the Whales Game

Arts and Crafts:
Origami Whale
Ocean Diorama
Whale Mobile

Coloring Pages
Beluga Whales
Whale Coloring Book
Page with Anatomy labels
Beluga Whale Page

Books and Stories
Interactive story about whales
Beluga Sky
Beluga Days
Beluga Whales up Close
The Little Lost Baby Beluga Whale

Unit Studies and Lesson Plans:
Unit Study from Sea World
Lesson Plans from Scholastic
Whale Migration Maps
Experiment about blubber

Tuesday, April 21, 2009

Bottle-nosed Dolphins at Sea World

Show Family Two reporting live from San Antonio, Texas: One of the things we've been able to enjoy at Sea World is the dolphins there. Here is some video that we took of them while we fed them (and others did too):

Some facts about the bottle-nosed dolphins:

Dolphins are mammals, not fish
Scientists believe that dolphins rank among the most intelligent animals
Bottle-nosed dolphins can measure 13 feet and can weigh as much as 600 lbs.
Bottle-nosed dolphins are gray, but their backs are darker than their undersides
Bottle-nosed dolphins show apparent great friendliness toward people
Bottle-nosed dolphins, living in groups of about 12, play and hunt food together
Bottle-nosed dolphins live in tropical waters and stay within 100 miles of land
Dolphins communicate via a series of whistles and clicks called phonationsMore Facts:
Facts and Fun Activities , Sea World Animal Bytes , About bottle nosed dolphins , More dolphin facts , And more dolphin facts , Kids Planet Facts , How dolphins use sonar

Coral Reef Creatures Game , Dolphin dash , Dolphin Diving , Drawing Game , Sliding Dolphin Puzzle , Crossword Puzzle , Dolphin Maze

Arts and Crafts:
Dolphin door Hanger , Dolphin and Whale Mobile , Dolphin Duo Card , Make a model of a dolphin , Dolphin and Boat pop up

Coloring Pages:
Many different dolphin coloring pages , Dolphins playing , More dolphin coloring pages

List of Kids’ books about dolphins

Unit Study/Lesson Plans:

Ocean Animals-dolphins unit study , Head for the Ocean Unit Study , Unit Study with Lapbook , Dolphin Unit Study , Dolphin Unit Study 2

****What do you like about dolphins? What do you want to share with us or ask us about dolphins? Leave a comment using the comment button below!

Sunday, April 19, 2009

Gavin the Falconer

This is Show Family 2 reporting live from Lakehills, Texas:
This week, we met a really cool kid named Gavin. Gavin is a falconer. Here is Gavin with his mom and his sister.A falconer is a person who trains falcons or hawks for hunting. Gavin spent many hours learning lots of different things on top of having to apprentice or train under someone else in order to become a falconer. There are three falconers in his state that fly long wings like peregrine falcons. He and his father are two of those, so that means there is only one other falconer besides them. Gavin has his own falcon that he has trained. It took him many months to train his falcon and he is still training him to be better and better at hunting.

Falconry is one of the oldest forms of hunting and is often used together with hunting with horses and dogs. One of the differences between hunting with a horse or a dog and hunting with a falcon is the horse and dog are domesticated animals and the falcon is a wild animal. Falconry is the oldest field sport known to mankind.
Gavin also told me a bunch of neat facts about falcons. Here are some facts about these amazing birds:

Falcons have incredible eyesight. They are believed to be able to spot a pigeon from over five miles under ideal conditions. They are the swiftest of the birds of prey. In a dive, they can top speeds of 200 miles an hour. This makes them the fastest moving creatures on earth. It has been calculated that as a peregrine falcon comes out of a dive, and is straightening out for horizontal flight, it is pulling around 25G. Humans, on average, can tolerate 5-6G well.They are at the top of the food chain, so adults have no natural predators. The female is the boss of the house, so the male is cautious around her.How can these birds fly so fast? It is because of how they are built.

Falcons are very streamlined. They have pointed wings with slim, stiff, unslotted feathers. Because of this, they have almost zero resistance when flying. They have especially strong flight muscles that allow them to fly fast. They have a large, strong heart and ultra efficient lungs and air sacs. Everybody knows how difficult it gets to breathe when you're walking in a heavy storm. You have to turn your head to be able to breath. The falcon does not walk in the storm, it dive-bombs at 350 k/hour. Breathing would be absolutely impossible without special adaptions.The air pressure from a 200 mph (320 km/h) dive could possibly damage it's lungs, but small bony tubercles in a falcon's nostrils guide the shock waves of the air entering the nostrils (compare intake ramps and inlet cones of jet engines), enabling the bird to breathe more easily while diving by reducing the change in air pressure.To protect their eyes, the falcons use their nictitating membranes (third eyelids) to spread tears and clear debris from their eyes while maintaining vision.

Let's look at the lungs on a bird a bit closer. When a person breathes, air flows into its lungs and back out again. Bird lungs operate quite differently from ours. Instead of inhaling and then reversing flow when exhaling, birds have a clever lung design that permits them to circulate air in a single direction continuously.

Birds lungs with diagram and explanation

I can see why Gavin would want to work with such a fascinating animal!More resources on falcons:

Live webcams of Peregrine Falcons


Videos and slideshows , Video of falcon , Pigeon vs Falcon video , Facts and video clip

Coloring Pages

Falcon head , Peregrine Falcon , Another Peregrine Falcon Page , Falcon

Audio: A to Z Mysteries: The Falcons Feathers

Raptor, A Kid's Guide to Birds of Prey , List of books for Young Readers , The Malted Falcon: A Chet Gecko Mystery

Facts and other Fun

National Geographic Kids Info on Peregrine Falcon (Has video, e-card and printable)

Birds of Prey Facts for Kids , Peregrine Falcon Facts , Facts and info on how to adopt a Peregrine Falcon


Raptor Rescue Kids Games , Fierce Fliers Game , Peregrine Falcon Games

Arts and Crafts:

How to Make an Origami Falcon

Other Fun Stuff

Experiment related to Peregrine Falcon and DDT , Quiz on Falcons , Lesson plans on Falcons , Lesson Plans on Birds of Prey , Science Lesson Plan on Raptors , Unit Study with Falcon , Birds of Prey Unit Study ideas

*****Share your thoughts and questions with us through the comments section. Just click on comments and it will take you to the correct spot.

Thursday, April 16, 2009

The Alamo in San Antonio, Texas

This is Show Family 2: Today we visited the Alamo in San Antonio, Texas. It was a beautiful building, made of limestone. The walls were very thick and the doorways seemed very tall to us. This used to be a church and then it was used as a fort. It was easy to imagine lots of people living here together, and it would have been very tight quarters because the place is not very big for the number of people who did share this space.

It was built in the 1700's. Then in 1836, there was a big fight between Mexico and the people that lived in Texas because the people in Texas wanted to be free from Mexico. The people from Texas were inside of this fort during the big fight. Most of the people inside the fort died during this fight. This place is now a memorial for those people.

Other resources related to the Alamo:

Let’s take a look at some of the world events that were happening during that year:

Jan 5th - Davy Crockett arrives in Texas, just in time for the Alamo
Jan 12th - Battle of Wetumka, Fla
Jan 12th - HMS Beagle/Charles Darwin reach Sydney Australia
Feb 3rd - Whig Party holds its 1st national convention (Albany NY)
Feb 25th - Samuel Colt patents 1st revolving barrel multishot firearm
Mar 2nd - Republic of Texas declares independence from Mexico
Mar 5th - Samuel Colt manufactures 1st pistol, 34-caliber "Texas" model
Mar 16th - Texas approves a constitution
Mar 17th - Texas abolishes slavery
Mar 23rd - Coin Press invented by Franklin Beale
Mar 27th - 1st Mormon temple dedicated (Kirtland Ohio)
Apr 21st - Battle of San Jacinto, in which Texas wins independence from Mexico
May 16th - Edgar Allan Poe marries his 13-year-old cousin Virginia.
Jul 13th - US patent #1 (after 9,957 unnumbered patents), for locomotive wheels
Sep 1st - Reconstruction begins on Synagogue of Rabbi Judah Hasid in Jerusalem
Sep 1st - Narcissa Whitman, one of the first white women to settle west of the Rocky Mountains, arrives at Walla Walla, Washington.
Sep 5th - Sam Houston elected president of Republic of Texas
Nov 10th - Louis Napoleon banished to America
Dec 7th - Martin Van Buren elected 8th president
Dec 28th - Spain recognizes independence of Mexico

A map of Texas in 1836


The Alamo Memory Game

Other fun:

Flat Stanley Gallery

History of the Alamo for Kids and by Kids:

Brief History

*Child’s report on the Alamo


The Mystery at the Alamo , *Voices of the Alamo , *Susanna of the Alamo , *The boy in the Alamo ,

*The Story of the Alamo

Unit Studies:

Lesson Plans , *Unit Study on Alamo , *San Antonio Missions Lesson Plans

Coloring Pages:

The Alamo ,*The Alamo and Texas , *Davy Crockett, *Alamo page and some history

Some of the men there:

James Bowie

William B Travis

Davie Crockett

****Share your thoughts with us by leaving a comment! How do I leave a comment? Just click on the comment button below!

Monday, April 13, 2009

Whitetail Deer

This is Show Family Two. One of the things we have enjoyed since being in this part of Texas, is that the place we are staying has many whitetail deer here. We have been able to feed them right out of our hands.

The things we have fed them so far are carrots and corn that has been made into feed for deer. We bought a 50 pound bag of the corn, so we will have plenty of food to feed them during our visit.
This deer is named a whitetail because of its tail. The underside of its tail is white, and it's the only part that you can see when it is running.Some natural predators of deer are: man, bobcats, wolves, mountain lions and other deer. Some things that these deer eat are: acorns, hay, corn, apples, cabbage, pine, cedar and just about any green that they can get to.

The baby deer are called fawns. The fawns have spots which helps them be able to hide from other animals that might try to kill them.The whitetail deer have a language and some of the ways they "speak" are: flicking their tails, moving their ears, curling their lips and stomping their feet. The tail waving is typically used to warn other deer of danger. This deer saw our dog and thought it might be in danger:
We are really falling in love with these gentle creatures!

More facts about deer:
National Geographic

Some deer coloring pages:
*White tailed deer and some facts, *Many different deer, *Deer themed coloring pages,
*Deer pages and activivites

More fun:
*How to draw a deer ,*Deer arts and crafts , *Folding paper deer craft , *Pipe cleaner animals with fawn

Deer Games:
*Deer and Hunter Game , *Oh deer game

Books about deer:
*Lightfoot the Deer , *Fawn at Woodland Way , *My Little Book of Whitetails , *Whitetail Deer ,
*Bambi: A Life in the Woods

Online Books or Stories about Deer:
*Short story about deer , *The Tale of Nimble Deer

****Tell us what you like best about deer by leaving a comment.

****Are there any other things you want to say about deer? Leave a comment so we can all hear it.

Sunday, April 12, 2009

The state of Texas

This is Show Family Two. Right now we are in the state of Texas. Here is a map of Texas:This is the state flag:The capital is Austin. Texas became a state on December 29, 1845. The state bird is the mockingbird. The state flower is the bluebonnet. The state tree is the pecan tree.

Some fun facts about Texas found at this site:

Rodeo is the official state sport of Texas.

The only place in the world where they make Dr Pepper according to the original formula is in Dublin, Texas. Dr Pepper was invented in Waco in 1885. There is no period after the Dr in Dr Pepper.

Seventy-five percent of the world's Snickers bars are made in Waco at the M&M/Mars plant.

Three existing Indian reservations are in the state: the Alabama-Coushatta Reservation, located between Livingston and Woodville in East Texas; Ysleta del Sur Pueblo (Tigua Indian Reservation) near El Paso; and the Kickapoo Reservation in Maverick County. Most Native Americans in Texas live outisde reservations. Texas' Indian population ranks sixth among the states, with approximately 65,000.

The official dance is the square dance.

Texas is home to about 2.5 million deer and 200,000 alligators.

The World’s largest parking lot is located at DFW Airport.

The official dish of Texas is chili.

Texas Coloring Pages:

Texas Bob's Coloring Book
State Bird and Flower
Facts, Maps and State Symbols
Many different Texas Pages

Unit Studies:

Texas State Unit Study

Educational Games About Texas:

Texas Pledge of Allegiance Game

***What things do you know about Texas that we haven't added to our list yet?

***Are there any questions that you have about Texas?

Welcome to Show Us the World Too

We thought it would be fun to share our travels and what we are learning with all of you! Now you can join our journey and travel along with us. Feel free to ask questions or share spots you would like to see with us as we go.

Who are "we"? We are two families that both travel. Our families are made up of two brothers who are named Daryl and Nathan, their wives who are named Diana and Krystal and their children who are Auburn-16, Austin-14, Lauren-12 and Joshua-3.

Sometimes we travel together, so you will see up sharing our travels and experiences. Sometimes we are traveling in different parts of the country, so you will see what both of us are up to with our own experiences during those times.

No matter what, we love to see new and exciting things and we believe each thing we see and do is a learning experience.