Happy May Day! May 1st marks the start of new beginnings and Spring Birth. Many celebrate this day with fresh flowers, bon fires, and feasting. No matter the season though, nature is constantly growing and expanding. One of the greatest phenomenon’s in life is seeing new life come forth. Here’s one group of scientists amazing experience:
In 2009, a yacht was traveling in the South Pacific, not far from the Tonga Islands, when the crew came across a weird sight. Look at these photos and try to imagine the thrill of experiencing this phenomenon.
No! This is not a beach.
It’s volcanic stones floating on the water.
WHERE IS THE VOLCANO?
AN UNBELIEVABLE SIGHT, HAD TO
TAKE PICTURES BECAUSE NO ONE
WOULD BELIEVE IT!
THE WAKE FROM THE YACHT.
WE STAYED ON THE EDGE OF THE WATER.
THEN THIS WAS SPOTTED: ASH AND
STEAM RISING FROM THE OCEAN.
And, while WE were watching,
a plume of black ash, a HUGE CLOUD.
COVERING EVERYTHING IN RED, EVEN THIS FAR AWAY.
THEN THE SKY TURNS BLACK WITH ASH
AND THE OCEAN TURNS GOLD FROM
THE SUN’S REFLECTION.
OUT OF THE OCEAN, MOUNTAIN PEAKS ARISE?
MORE ERUPTIONS; ASH AND CLOUDS.
THEN MOUNTAIN PEAKS RISE HIGHER
AND A BRAND-NEW ISLAND IS FORMED!
CREATION OF MOUNTAINS
CAN YOU IMAGINE THE THRILL OF BEING
THE FIRST AND ONLY PEOPLE TO WITNESS
A NEWISLAND BEING CREATED, WHERE
THERE WAS NOTHING THERE BEFORE?
Photos courtesy Jesse Allen NASA Earth Observatory
An amazing discovery! The “beach-like” raft of lightweight, frothy volcanic rock floating on the ocean surface are known as “pumice.” Pumice rafts are not an everyday occurrence, but they have been observed before. In 1986, a pumice raft
of unknown origin caused engine trouble for a Dutch vessel in the South China Sea. Biologists have also proposed pumice rafts as a way to explain how plants and animals spread from island to island in marine environments. Learn more about this forming island, now known as Hunga Tonga or “Hunga Ha’apai,” here
May 1, 2013 at 12:23 pm
To all of Chipper’s animal friends: BAMBI & THUMPER REALLY DO EXIST!
May you always have
Love to Share,
Health to Spare,
And Friends that Care!
Here are the REAL life animal friends that remind Chipper of the Disney Classic, Bambi. In the beginning of this heart-felt film, Thumper and Bambi become quick friends and help each other grow and build confidence.
Pictures taken by Tanja Askani. What an amazing photographer to have caught these shots!
“Eating greens is a special treat, It makes long ears and great big feet.” -Thumper
Friends are there to support us during hard times and laugh with us during the easy ones. For example, when Bambi’s mother gets killed by a hunter or when Thumper meets a young female rabbit (ironically called a doe), the two unlikely friends stick together and help each other through it all. No matter where you come from, how you grow up, or what you look like, friendships can be made in the most unlikely places and can last a lifetime.
Although from two completely different species, Rabbits and Deer have more in common than most of us realize! Both are mammals and are indigenous or over time have been introduced to most regions of the world.
“If you can’t say something nice… don’t say nothing at all.” – Thumper
Both animals are great jumpers and can easily out run most predators unless taken unaware.
Both rabbits and deers are herbivores and they are also a huge source of meat for humans and animal carnivores alike.
Kiss on the head!
Similarly to deer, male rabbits are called bucks and females are called does. Baby rabbits are called kittens though (who knew?) while baby deer are usually called fawns.
Rabbits and Deer both live in groups (called a ‘herd’ when a group of deer) and when they are eating one stands guard (usually the buck for deer); if danger is sensed the guard signal to the others to run away. To spot deer or rabbits, they are usually out and about to feed at dusk and dawn.
Various cultures view each of these adorable creature differently. China raises more rabbits for food than any other country where as the United States primarily raises rabbits for pets and medical research. Deer are hunted all over the world and commonly seen as a nuisance to gardens and crops (same as Rabbits) but deer have also been a sacred and holy symbol in a number of cultures and religions. Learn more about deer in mythology.
DID YOU KNOW that Deer are the only animals that have antlers? They are the fastest growing living tissue on earth! Antlers are usually only found on males, but in some species, like caribou, you will also find them on females too. Moose have the largest antlers. Antlers grow from spring until fall. While growing, antlers are covered with a soft tissue known as velvet. This tissue contains a network of nerves and blood vessels and is very sensitive. In the fall, the velvet is shed and the antlers harden. In the winter, the antlers are shed. Antlers should not be confused with horns. Horns are never shed and continue to grow throughout the animal’s life. If they are broken, they won’t grow back!
Meet Chipper’s Rabbit and Deer friends! Daffodil is a white-tailed doe, , the smallest members of the North American deer family, and Jasper is a Jack Rabbit, who is actually a hare, not a rabbit. Hares are larger than rabbits, and they typically have taller hind legs and longer ears. These two friends both are from North America and like to stay with the warm weather.
Daffodil and Jasper
When was the last time YOU saw a deer or a rabbit? What time was it? Where were you? Share with Chipper!
April 9, 2013 at 7:37 pm
Let’s Go Chipper!™ is an award-winning eco-educational series playfully teaching children good character & a love for the environment. This year we’ve partnered with Hyatt Place® Phoenix/Mesa to bring Chipper into the classroom and inspire conscientiousness in kids. Call to receive your classroom kit or to book a story time with one of our Chipper Ambassadors, or let us create a program for you school, church, or community organization.
Meet Chipper’s Hyatt Helpers and have your kids color and name our five new desert friends from Arizona! Connect with Chipper and the Hyatt Helpers on Facebook to receive great downloads, and updates on events and activities and join us for a Chipper getaway enhanced with on-site or take-home activities that will enrich and educate your children.
Join Chipper and our Hyatt Helpers in connecting, celebrating, and conserving the environment.
Learn about our 5 new Arizona friends and help us name them!
How to participate:
- Click on a character above (choose one or go through all five!).
- Save and print the PDF.
- Have your little one(s) color and name the character(s).
- Snap a photo and upload your photo(s) of your little one(s) holding their character(s) online to our Facebook contest tab online (make sure your character’s name is visible but NOT your name and address!)* OR mail your character(s) to:
Hyatt Place® Phoenix/Mesa 1422 Bass Pro Drive Mesa, AZ 85201
Submissions must be uploaded online or received by mail by March 8, 2013. Vote on the I’m Chipper 4 Hyatt Place Facebook page tab through March 21, 2013.
FIVE WINNERS will be announced on March 28, 2013 and receive*:
Two nights stay at the Hyatt Place® Phoenix/Mesa for family up to four, a Gallery Cafe Certificate of $25, and a I’m Chipper 4 Hyatt Place Summer Fun Gift Pack! (Total value=$350)
*The “Name our Hyatt Helpers Contest” and prizes are exclusive to Hyatt Place® Phoenix/Mesa. Parents, we respect the privacy of your children. Please use your discretion in including your child in the image you upload when sharing your submission.
Let’s Go Chipper and get creative naming our Hyatt Place Helpers!
January 29, 2013 at 2:33 pm
Let’s Go Chipper!™ is an award-winning eco-educational series playfully teaching children good character & a love for the environment. This year we’ve partnered with Hyatt Place® Phoenix/Mesa to bring Chipper into the local Arizona community and into the classroom in order to inspire conscientiousness in kids. Come visit on your next business trip or come stay for a family weekend getaway filled with Chipper fun. Learn more about our upcoming events at our Chipper for Hyatt Place®Phoenix/Mesa website.
The Let’s Go Chipper series featuring books, apps, movies school- and community-based programs that playfully teach children respect, good character, and a love for the environment. Contact Chipper for your classroom kit or to book a story time with one of our Chipper Ambassadors, or let us create a program for you school, church, or community organization!
Ready to learn about Arizona? Check out these fun facts about the state’s history, people and official state symbols.
- Statehood: February 14, 1912. Arizona was the 48th state to join the United States.
- State Flag: Adopted in 1917, the lower half of the flag is a blue field. The upper half is divided into thirteen equal segments, six light yellow and seven red. In the center of the flag is a copper-colored five-point star. The red and the blue are the same shades as the flag of the United States of America, and it measures four feet high and six feet wide.
- State Seal: Arizona’s main enterprises and attractions are represented in the seal, which was adopted in 1911. In the background of the seal is a range of mountains with the sun rising behind the peaks. At the right side of the mountains are a water storage reservoir and a dam, with irrigated fields and orchards. There are cattle grazing on the right, and a quartz mill and a miner with a pick and shovel on the left.
Population and Geography
- Population: 6.5 million (2008 estimate)
- State Capitol: Phoenix
- Largest Cities: Phoenix, Tucson, Mesa, Glendale and Scottsdale
- Border States: California, Colorado, Nevada, New Mexico, Utah
- State Size: 113,909 square miles, the 6th largest state in the USA
- State Motto: Ditat Deus (“God Enriches”)
- State Nickname: Grand Canyon State
- State Songs: “Arizona March Song” and “Arizona”
- State Flower: Saguaro Cactus Blossom
- State Gem: Turquoise
- State Tree: Palo Verde
- State Bird: Cactus Wren
- State Fossil: Petrified Wood
- State Mammal: Ringtail
- State Reptile: Arizona Ridge-Nosed Rattlesnake
- State Fish: Apache Trout
- State Amphibian: Arizona Tree Frog
- Official Neckwear: Bola Tie
Nature-inspired, play-based learning, enjoy hands-on crafts that will engage children while teaching valuable lessons in science, art, and social skills. Have you made a Helping Hands tree?
Chipper Ambassadors are available for story time activities in the classroom, community, or visit us during a Chipper family getaway providing fun for kids while parents reconnect.
Fun Things to do with the Kids in Arizona
Desert Botanical Garden | Located within Papago Park, this beautiful botanical garden has stunning plants and flowers as well as special exhibits. Children’s program activities, like weekend face-painting, are included in the admission price and are supervised by the head of the garden’s nature preschool program, which runs for three weekly 90-minute sessions in spring and fall. One exhibit you won’t want to miss is the butterfly habitat.
Hall of Flame Firefighting Museum | This is the ultimate playground for every kid who fantasizes about sliding down a firehouse pole. Visitors climb aboard the historical fire engines and try on real firefighters’ hats and gear. In addition to exhibits that bring Arizona’s firefighting history to life, don’t miss the presentations about fire safety. The staff and volunteers who give these talks are so animated that the kids become mesmerized and don’t even realize they’re learning valuable life lessons.
Pioneer Arizona Living History Museum | Young visitors meet the Old West at this re-created pioneer village, where your family can explore life as it was in Arizona a century ago. Stroll past historic buildings that range from a schoolhouse to the blacksmith’s shop to an opera house. Since this was rancher country, there’s plenty of livestock on hand to capture your kids’ attention. Arrive in time for the re-enactment performed daily at 11:30 a.m. and you’ll even have an encounter with the sheriff, his deputies, and the bank robbers they’re pursuing. The show culminates with a shoot-out, after which the actors sign autographs.
January 14, 2013 at 2:31 pm
The Harvest Season is here and Halloween is right around the corner! Let’s Go Chipper and get outdoors to enjoy the cool weather with some of these fun activities!
Halloween is a time for tradition and connection–not just Christian connection of the All Saint’s Day tradition, or any older pagan or Celtic traditions that have blended into our present day vision of Halloween. But today’s traditional rituals of costumes and candy and our connections of community and family. Halloween’s grand tradition of Trick or Treating encourages people to knock on strangers’ doors. It connects us to the ritual of meeting our neighbors and knowing our community. Being outside is not only about communing with nature. It also is about having an appreciation for the place you live. For kids, Halloween is a fun-filled holiday of make believe and tasty treats, but it is also a time to walk around and get to know our neighborhood.
Have a wonderful Halloween and make sure you are safe and visible! Safety reflectors help you be seen and be safe in the dark so cars can see you. If your child uses a reflector you can reduce the risk for being hit by a car by 85%. Without a reflector the driver of a car may only see you when you are 25-30 meters away, but a reflector can be seen 140 meters or more in the headlights. This can give the driver 8 more seconds to see you and react!
Connect with Family, Friends and Nature this Halloween:
1. Go pumpkin picking to your local pumpkin patch!
Learn how they grow, get outside, have some fun! Pumpkin harvesting happens in late September and October so find a local pumpkin patch near you today! Here are some tips to choosing the perfect pumpkin:
- Look for a smooth, evenly colored pumpkin free of bruises and mold.
- Make sure it has a flat bottom.
- Don’t carry it by its stem.
- For children, try to select a lighter-colored, softer pumpkin. Although they don’t last as long, they’re easier to carve.
Try carving a different image into the back to have a dual-image Jack-o-Lantern!
2. Carve a Jack-O-Lantern! After you have your pumpkin, break out your Exacto knife and a black sharpie and then get creative. There are so many types of styles and designs, the hard part will be choosing what to carve! If you have a younger child that can’t handle a knife, there are tons of kits full of stickers and decorations you can buy or just let them go crazy with some permanent markers!
Here are some tips for carving, lighting and preserving your Halloween Jack-O-Lantern:
- Draw a lid on top of the pumpkin.
- Draw a “tooth” at the back of the lid as a guide for replacing it. Cut along the lines and angle the blade toward the center of the pumpkin.
- Clean out seeds and strings.
- Scrape inner pulp away from the area you plan to carve until the pumpkin is about 1-inch thick.
- If using a pattern, trim it, leaving a 1/4 inch border around the design. Tape the pattern to the pumpkin. You can make your pattern fit any size pumpkin by reducing or enlarging it on a photocopier, or take it with you when you’re pumpkin shopping to get the right size/shape.
- Make your dots small and close together. For detailed designs, try using a corsage or push pin. If you’re having trouble seeing the pattern you’ve transferred, rub flour over the dots to make them more visible.
- When you’re ready to carve, hold the pumpkin in your lap. Hold the pumpkin saw like a pencil and saw steadily in an up-and-down motion. Saw at a 90-degree angle using gentle pressure.
- When using a candle, cut a hole on the upper, back part of the pumpkin. The hole will work like a chimney, allowing the candle’s heat to escape.
- If you want your opening on the bottom of the pumpkin, rather than the top, attach the light source to the bottom lid and place the pumpkin over it. Try drilling a hole to secure the candle. This provides more stability, helping with the flickering effect.
- For a multicolor display, use a battery-operated light with LED bulbs.
- A flashing light, like the Pumpkin Masters Ultimate Strobe Light, helps create a spooky look.
- Sprinkle a little cinnamon, nutmeg or pumpkin spice on the bottom of the pumpkin lid for a seasonal scent.
- Pumpkins are 90 percent water. Depending on the weather, an untreated, carved pumpkin can last anywhere from a week to just a day.
- To make it last longer, coat cut edges with petroleum jelly, inside and outside.
- Spray the pumpkin with water, cover it with plastic wrap and store it in the refrigerator when it’s not on display.
- Soak or spray the pumpkin with water mixed with a little bleach to ward off mold and kill insects.
- To revive a shriveled pumpkin, soak it in water in a bucket or bathtub for one to 8 hours. The worse it looks, the longer it should soak. After removing it, let it drain for 30 minutes and then dry carefully with a towel.
3. Make a Pumpkin Scarecrow!
Fill an entire weekend based around building pumpkin scarecrows for the perfect combination of playing, house chores, family outing, harvesting and lots of arts and crafts!
Challenge your kids to find pumpkins that are the same size as their heads! Then you can make kid sized scarecrows together. Another component for scarecrow building is lots of leaves to stuff with. Raking leaves will suddenly become more important than just a cleaning exercise–it’s fun! Of course, spend some time playing in the leaves and invite the neighborhood friends to join the play!
To make your Scarecrow you’ll need:
- Leaves for stuffing
- Old clothes, pants and shirt or baby sleeper
- Wire, twine or nails
- Black marker
First, tie knots in the ends of the pants and stuff with leaves. Sew the shirt to waist of the pants. Make a whole in the crotch of the pants.
Second, make a cross out of sticks and shorten the length to match arms. Put the vertical stick through pants and stick in the soil. Put the horizontal stick through the shirt arms. Stuff it with leaves.
Third, measure pumpkin on the scarecrow. Make sure you do a cut where the head fit best on the scarecrow. Make a hole in the lower back part of the pumpkin so the stick can hold the head up.
Fourth, start carving and scooping out the seeds and pumpkin flesh. Use a marker to make a face on the pumpkin or carve it! Add decorations to make it scary or happy. Plan on carving out faces on Halloween day and putting lights in them to make them scary!
4. Make a Halloween Branch!
Go for a walk in your community, and look for fallen branches. When you are home, tie your branches together with fish line. Hang it up at your porch or by your door. Decorate with spiders and spider webs and get ready for your spooky visitors!
What you need:
- Good shoes and clothing for the weather
- Spider Web decorations
- Some home made or store bought spiders
- Fish line
5. Make a Chestnut Spider!
You will need:
- 1 chestnut
- 8 pieces (3 cm each) of pipe cleaners
- 1 Pair of scissors
- 1 string or steel wirer
- 7 toothpicks
First, use a pair of scissors to poke holes in the chestnut (paint the chestnut for a bit of added color).
Second, cut one end of each toothpick and push the sharp end of the toothpicks into your holes.
Third, put string or wire around the toothpicks, until it looks like a spider web.
Fourth, bend each pipe cleaner into the legs of your spider. Fold each pipe cleaner from the chestnut and wrap it around the spider web. When you have done all 8 of them you, have a spider in a web!
Let’s Go Chipper into the Great Outdoors this Halloween!!!
October 22, 2012 at 8:54 pm
Wonderful way to connect with nature and explore the great outdoors as a family or class: Nature Autumn Treasure Hunt!
October 10, 2012 at 11:56 am