Sunday, May 19, 2013

Waiting for the train

We had to wait for the train today. It was a very fast passenger train. The train was going about 130 kilometers per hour.

How fast is that in miles per hour?

 What do you think the word WACHT means on the blue sign?

Saturday, May 18, 2013

Riding around Haarzuilens

The little village of Haarzuilens is close to the Castle de Haar. Only 210 people live in this little village. It's smaller than Nome, Texas.

Biggest Castle in Holland

My second stop was the Castle de Haar (sounds like HARD without the D). This is the biggest castle in the Netherlands. It has more than 200 rooms inside. I didn't go inside, but gave the castle a high five instead.

Learn more: Castle de Haar

My host family gave me some red wooden shoes to wear. My shoes were too big for me. I wore them anyway. I wanted to look like a real Dutch boy.

Why do Dutch people wear wooden shoes?

Learn more: Wooden Shoes

Hanging out at Ham Tower

 My first stop was Ham Toren or Ham Tower built in 1259. How old is this tower?

Somebody is living in Ham Toren and it has been considered private property for many years. It is supposed to have a brilliant view of the countryside, but no one really knows.

I wouldn't want people visiting my house every day and every weekend to climb my stairs and look around my room.

We couldn't find any English information about Ham Toren. So I will show you some magic.

Learn more: Ham Toren in Dutch

Copy the text and translate the Dutch into English in this translation program.

Playing Minecraft with boys from Holland

Kids in Holland love Minecraft, too. Adam is 9 and Julius is 8.
They go to school called Openbaar Vleuterweide Basisschool.

Friday, May 17, 2013

Meeting Austin's cousin from Holland

I arrived safely in Vleuten, the Netherlands on Friday, May 17, 2013. Some people call the country Holland and some people call it the Netherlands. It doesn't really matter to the Dutch people.

I will be staying with Austin's cousin Adam. Austin's great grandma Catherine and Adam's great grandma Lucy were sisters.

How far is it from Nome, Texas to Vleuten, the Netherlands?

1000 miles? 5000 miles? 10,000 miles?

Find out with this map. Put in the two cities.


My Name is Flat Stanley, Prince of Orange

My name is Flat Stanley. I am from Nome, Texas. My friend Austin sent me to Holland for a school project.

I came dressed in orange. The Dutch love orange because the last name of the King and Queen of Holland is Van Oranje (pronounced: fun Or run yuh) or 'of Orange'.

Today, I started my big adventure visiting another country.

I might become Prince of Orange some day. I already picked out a girlfriend here in Holland. She's a real princess.

Did you know that the youngest crowned princess in the world is from Holland? Her name is Amalia
and she is 9 like me.

Wish me luck or in Dutch 'geluk'.

Tuesday, February 14, 2012

Back Home in Sour Lake, Texas

Flat Stanley is back in Texas and arrived in his envelope in Ms. Doris Long's class. They think he smelled like Holland. While he was away, Mrs. Long taught the 3rd graders about poetry.

In this video, the kids of Sour Lake Elementary read some of their poems about Flat Stanley. Writing poems and finding the right words for different kinds of poems is not easy. Listen to the poems in the video Mrs. Long made.

Ode to Flat Stanley
The poems talked about Flat Stanley being too light, too thin and flying away. Here is a picture you did not see before because we did not want you to worry. Flat Stanley was too light, his scarf was too heavy and he flew off of the fence in Holland.

Oh Sour Lake Elementary
Thank you for the thank yous, little Hawks and Mrs. Long! I LOVE LOVE LOVE your sweet video and your fabulous, creative, silly, funny, wonderful poems. You made me cry. Today is my birthday and your video was a beautiful surprise and gift.

Some day, I hope you get to visit Holland and travel to all the places Flat Stanley has seen around the world. Keep writing.

From Avery's Aunt Tammie

Friday, January 27, 2012

Just One More Song

While I am on the way, my Texas friends have time to learn one more song.
We can sing and dance to this Dutch song. You can practice at home, too.

I love it. Let's try it.

Watch the video in Dutch. Can you understand the song?
Try to guess the words before you use the translator.

In English the words sounds like:
Leaf kline koh-nine-chuh had ain fleegh-juh op zine noose
En high zoom-duh hain en veer

Lyrics in Dutch to Lief klein konijntje

Lief klein konijntje had een vliegje op zijn neus
Lief klein konijntje had een vliegje op zijn neus
Lief klein konijntje had een vliegje op zijn neus
En hij zoemde heen en weer

Oh lief klein konijntje
Oh lief klein konijntje
Oh lief klein konijntje
Had een vliegje op zijn neus

Copy this Dutch song and put it in the translator to find the words in English. 

Thursday, January 26, 2012

Not Going to Cry, Not Going to Cry

Here is my last run to the big red Dutch mailbox. I couldn't see much. It was cold and raining. It was a crazy bumpy trip because Adam, Joshe and Julius were playing soccer on the way to the mailbox.

When they dropped me inside the mailbox, I tried to yell my loudest "Tot Ziens" or "Doie" (pronounced tot zeens and dewey). I hope they heard me. Good Bye guys and thanks for showing me around.

I waited for the mail person. It was quiet, dark and I felt alone and a little scared. I was so happy that my host family let me take my red scarf back to Texas. My scarf kept me warm the whole trip.

I decided to sleep and dream about my adventures in Holland. I also thought about meeting Avery and my 3rd grade friends at Sour Lake Elementary again.

Good night Holland and see you soon Texas.

Saying Good Bye to Holland

On my last day in Holland, I played with some of my new buddies that I met at school. This is Joshe, Adam and Julius. They were sad to hear it was my last day. 

Joshe asked: 
Will Stanley ride in the airplane tonight? 
How long will it take for him to get to Texas? 
Who does he live with?

Such curious boys. Maybe my new school friends from Holland can send a Flat Stanley like me to Sour Lake Elementary. I will miss these guys. 

Texas Here I Come

Today is Thursday, January 26, 2012. I should be picked up at 5:00pm by the Dutch mail person. 

How long will it take for me to get from Vleuten, the Netherlands to Sour Lake, Texas? 

Mrs. Long's 3rd grade class can give the answer in the comment box below when I arrive.

Wednesday, January 25, 2012

Learning a Dutch song

Head, Shoulders, Knees and Toes
One of my favorite songs is Head, Shoulders, Knees and Toes. Adam and my host family helped me learn the whole song in Dutch. 

When I get back to Texas, I can help Avery and her 3rd grade class sing this song in Dutch. The words are on the wall behind Adam. Let's practice.

The words sound like:
Hoaft, Shkouders, Kuh Nee en Tain.
Hoaft, Shkouders, Kuh Nee en Tain.
Oar ren, Oh ghun, Pun chuh vun yuh noose.
Hoaft, Shkouders, Kuh Nee en Tain.

Inside the Dutch classroom

From the front of class, I could see all the kids. This was my view all morning at school. 

Juf Neenke put a magnet on my belly so I could see the kids and the school day's schedule. Dutch kids do not go to school on Wednesday and Friday after lunch. We could go home at 12:30.

What did I learn today? It's on the board above my head.

Click on the picture and make it bigger.

No Fighting, No Shouting and No Bullying
The students in this school also get lessons about Respect, Responsibility, and Working Together. They learn how to understand their own feelings and to respect the feelings of their classmates.

Instead of fighting, shouting or bullying, these 2nd graders know how to communicate with each other to solve conflicts. They are taught that they always have a choice. They can decide how to solve things.

I felt very safe with my new friends.

Backpacking to school on the bike

I rode in Adam's backpack to his school. Adam was very careful on his bike with all the traffic, people, bikes and cars. I didn't see how dangerous this was because I was inside the backpack with the school snacks.

Adam is Avery's cousin, he is 8 years old and in Group 4. His school has a really long name: Vleuterweide Openbaar Basisschool or Vleuterweide Public Elementary School.

See more about Vleuterweide Openbaar Basisschool (in Dutch only)

Adam's teacher is Juf Neenke (YUF Nain Kah) and she was happy to have me in class today. She is a kind and strict teacher. Just what an 8 year old boy needs.

She introduced me to Adam's Group 4 classmates. I think this is like 2nd grade. I felt very proud, special and lucky to be doing this project and spending the day in a real school in Holland.