During our recent IPC topic ‘Active Planet’ the children in Grade 2 learned just how active our planet is! The children particularly enjoyed learning about volcanoes and earthquakes. They learned about the structure of the Earth, its tectonic plates and how the movement of these plates causes natural disasters such as volcanic eruptions and earthquakes. The children made salt-dough models of the structure of the earth, erupted their own ‘volcanoes’ while learning about the chemical reaction of baking soda and vinegar and even wrote and performed a freeze-frame play about the eruption of Mount Vesuvius in 79AD which buried the city of Pompeii under layers of volcanic ash for over 1800 years. The children also drew comparisons with archaeological sites in China with an excursion to the Jinsha Site Museum. The children saw how the artifacts there were also buried under the ground for thousands of years only to be discovered by accident, as was the case with the ruins of Pompeii. At the museum, we were also able to see a temporary exhibit about Mayan culture which served as an introduction to our current unit ‘Chocolate’, which was invented by the Ancient Mayans in the form of a bitter drink used during ceremonies and sacrifices.