Thursday, November 24, 2011

River Quiz

This is our quiz that we used in the Year 5 assembly. Can you get all the questions right?

Monday, November 21, 2011

Not All Rivers Reach the Sea

Mr Gregg was reading this article in the New York Times and he spotted this impressive short film:

The Colorado River: Running Near Empty

There are places...

There are places in the world where the rivers don't run to the ocean:

Read this story about one such river (you'll need to sign in).

We considered what the story could be a metaphor for. Here are some of our ideas:

The steam never wanted to change, and it is suddenly forced to change. So, it's like my brother. He did not want to come to France, but he was forced to come. Now he likes it here. He's changed now!

It is like the sand is a person who doesn't let another person (the river) through.

If you refuse help, you'll never get things done.

The grass isn't always green.

Rivers cross lots of barriers and try to reach the sea or the ocean. Similarly human beings face a lot of problems and troubles, and overcome the barriers to reach their destiny. 

Always try.

If you don't try, how do you know if you can do it?

The river twists and turns like a slithering snake trying to catch its prey. Humans don't always reach their targets.

You are young. You grow up, you go to school. Your life changes. I live in Turkey for 5 years, and then I came to France. I learned English and French. My life changed. 

Sometimes we don't reach our goal, sometimes we have to overcome problems to reach our goal. We sometimes change our goal as well.

Have a look at some of our visual interpretations too:

Tuesday, November 8, 2011


Here is a newspaper about the Aswan Dam from 1956, when the Aswan Dam was being planned:

But was the newspaper report true?

A Nubian village, around 1870:

Partly submerged palms above Nile dam: The first Aswan dam completed in 1902 submerged parts of Egyptian Nubia. The Aswan High Dam, completed in 1971, flooded Nubian land along 500 kilometres of the Nile. Groves of date palms and 45 Nubian villages disappeared underwater.

This music by Hamza El Din is called The Water Wheel, "Escalay" in Nubian

In what once was Nubia, the water wheel was the oldest mechanical device used for farmland irrigation. Nubian musician Hamza El Din sought to recreate both the sounds and the images of that ancient culture. “My country was flooded after the construction of the Aswan dam,” he explained, “and we lost it after a recorded history of 9,000 years, so I have a nostalgia for that place. Escalay is a representation of how to start the waterwheel and let it run.”

“I was in New York when the Aswan Dam was finished. I lost my village. When I went back and saw my village and my people in a different place, I saw in their eyes the loss. I saw my people were lost. They had moved to an almost semi-desert place. When I came back I was lost myself. I was playing my oud, doing nothing except repeating a phrase. I was on the water wheel, the oldest surviving machine in our land. Whoever sits on that machine will become hypnotized by that noise."

Here's some of the same piece played by the Kronos string quartet:

Sunday, November 6, 2011

Journey of the Nile

These BBC videos can only be viewed if you can watch their UK-only content:

from this BBC page

Living near the River Nile: