Archive for April, 2010

The Queen Visits Roywood Public School in Toronto

On April 12, the Queen and I visited Roywood School, near York Mills and Victoria Park, to do the King Tut version of the Kids Who Rule presentation. What a great time we all had! The students were so enthusiastic, jumping into the air and yelling whenever their team got the right answer in the quiz. I can’t remember another school where the kids were quite so energetic. As usual, once I got them going it was hard to quiet them down enough so they could hear the next question.

I have to say, I love it when the kids get that lively! It’s just as much fun for me as it is for them.  Sometimes I feel like I’m a game show host, playing up the drama before I tell them if their answer is right or wrong.

Anna Dutfield, the host teacher, told me afterwards that she thought the kids had absorbed more in that hour with me than they had in three months of Ancient Civilisations classes. Music to my ears! This is what I mean when I tell teachers that my presentations enhance the curriculum. The historical figures really come to life for the students.

Here’s what Anna said in an email to me after the presentation:

“Dear Charis,

Thank you so much for your visit to our school this morning.  The students were still talking about the fun facts they learned about the “Kids Who Rule” after lunch.  They were fascinated by your stories and truly engaged by the trivia game.  Our students were even making connections between what they learned during your visit and our exploration of different historical figures during our study on Biographies.

On behalf of all the Grade 4 and 5 students and my colleagues, we hope you will come visit us again one day!”

And what did the Queen think of the Roywood students?

“Lovely children, very attentive and excellent curtsies! I’ve invited them all to Buckingham Palace for tea and biscuits!”

The Queen in her carriage


April 26, 2010 at 10:47 am Leave a comment

The blog begins

Charis at Ferryland

Picnic Lunch at the Ferryland Lighthouse

It’s a sunny April day in Toronto and my blog begins.   This picture was taken on a sunny August day last summer in Newfoundland.  The Ferryland picnics are a popular treat for tourists and locals: you order your lunch ahead and walk out to the lighthouse, where they give you the goodies in a wicker basket, with a blanket to sit on.  I sat with my nephews watching two exhibitionist whales put on an amazing jumping show while we devoured our delicious lunch.

So as you can imagine, I am counting the days till my annual migration to Newfoundland in June. Meanwhile, I’m visiting schools in Toronto with my Kids Who Rule presentation and gearing up for a week-long trip to British Columbia in May. The Richmond Public Library is sponsoring me to come to visit libraries and schools as a Red Cedar Award finalist.

The Queen (Her Royal Highness Queen Elizabeth II) and I are looking forward to playing “Rule Your School” with 400 Red Cedar readers in Richmond, Vancouver, North Vancouver and Victoria.

April 20, 2010 at 6:48 pm 1 comment


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