Tuesday, June 30, 2009

More Merienda and Alfajor Stories

On the 25 de mayo our class celebrated Argentina’s independence from Spain and the first parliament in New-Zealand so we had a merienda. We had alfajores, bizcochos and jamon y queso sandwiches. We couldn’t have empanadas because they are not easy to find in New Zealand, so instead we had meat savoury pies which are a very traditional NZ party food.
These are some alfajores and bizcochos from Argentina. Mrs Vincent cut the alfajores into small pieces so there were enough to go around.

We also tried mate, which is an Argentine drink made with yerba mate leaves and hot water. People in Argentina use bombillas ,which are metal straws with a filter on the end so the leaves don’t go up the straw and into your mouth.

When Senora Vincent brought Senora Lee’s bombilla and mate cup to show us, Senora Vincent told us that in Argentina it is the custom for people to share the bombilla, but we don’t do that in New-Zealand, so we were not allowed to use it. The drink was very very very strong! I had to have a drink of water afterwards.

We had to ask for our food in Spanish. There were people that offered us food by saying, "¿Te gustaria un bizcocho?” and we replied saying, “ ¡Si, mi gustaria un bizcocho!”

Here is a picture of me saying to the person offering me some biscuits, “ ¡Si, mi gustaria una galleta!"



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This is Rebekah in March.
By Rebekah.
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On 25th May, Huia 1 celebrated both the first NZ parliament and the rejection of Argentina being run by Spain. We had a little taste of yerba mate tea. We did not use filtered straws, but we only used plastic straws and plastic cups. It was very very very bitter at first. We had a go at eating bizcochos, and man, they are really delicious!

We didn't have empanadas, but we had a NZ type called meat and savoury pies. The empanadas would have been really expensive at the shop - if we could even find them here. We had a little serving of alfajore, and we tried some delicious dulce de leche on crackers. I had a try at rectangle sandwiches with cheese and ham inside. During the afternoon tea, we had some NZ orange juice. You should try it.

I really hope to have another afternoon tea some time again.

Mighael and his alfajor.
by Mighael.


A few weeks ago, six other people and I made alfajores. We made them in the food tech room in Poutama. Mrs Vincent got the idea from her time in Argentina. She brought some back for us to try - they were very sweet .

I liked it when I dropped my alfajor in the the melted chocolate to get covered. It tasted very very sweet but I could not spit it out. I guess you guys like them so I should get used to the sweetness.

My favourite part was when we tasted the difference from normal Highlander caramel and dulce de leche. I liked the the dulce de leche more than the other stuff.
Kenneth, Andy and Shane tasting their alfajores.

by Shane

Stories About Our Students

We all described our bedrooms so we could compare what they are like with other people's bedrooms - now, in the past and in the future. This is Ameleigh's story.

When you stand at the doorway of my bedroom, the first thing you see are the beds. There are two beds in my room because I share a room with my little brother. We both sleep on single beds which are next to each other. There is a piece of wood in between our beds so we don’t roll on to each other's bed. I have eight pillows on my bed including the one I sleep on. My brother has two pillows on his bed including the one he sleeps on.

My bed is pretty comfortable but I am still trying to get used to it. My brother has the same kind of bed as me, but the only difference are our duvet covers, our pillows and our blankets.
My pillow has pictures of flowers on it. My duvet cover is yellow and my blanket has Chinese writing and patterns on it. My brother's blanket is yellow with blue flowers on it, His pillow has Chinese writing and patterns on it and his duvet cover is purple.

I keep my stuff in my Dad's room and my sister's room because there is no space in my brother's and my room. My brother's and my room is very messy because my brother is a messy boy. No matter how many times someone tells him, he never cleans it up.

The second things you see are the silver shelf, the green shelf and the black drawers. The silver shelf is mine and I keep my books on it. The green shelf is my brother's and he keeps his books on it. The black drawers are also my brother's and he keeps his clothes in them.

The third thing you notice are the two boxes on each side of the room. One of them is grey and the other one is see-through. They are both filled with my brother's clothes.

The curtains of our bedroom are yellow.

Our room is pretty dark but at least my brother and I are not scared of the dark.
Ameleigh with the alfajor she made at school.

Another topic we have been writing about is "Things that used to scare us when we were little". This is Caitlin's story.

When I was little I used to be scared of lots of things but I only want to write about three of them . When I was two and in daycare (pre-school) there used to be a slide that we went down. Everybody but me. I only went down with friends because I was scared I would hurt myself. I don’t know why I was scared but I just was.

This is a bit further away from two years old. This is when I was nine. My cousin, Aaron, used to tell me he would drop me down to the hall near Nana’s computer room. I used to cry and tell Nana but she said, “ Aaron is just fooling around.” Aaron was about thirteen. So now if he does it, I kick him. He will laugh but if I kick him again, he will stop.

My third fear was in 2008 when I think I was eleven. I was on a horse camp and we went on a trek. We were walking through the water when my horse suddenly bucked. Luckily it was deep water so I did not get hurt. My horse after that went out of control so we had to calm it down with a carrot (this worked). So the rest of the trek was fine, but I am still a little scared of that particular horse.
Caitlin making an alfajor.
Caitlin tasting the alfajor.

Tuesday, June 23, 2009

Making Alfajores in New Zealand

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On Thursday a while ago, I made alfajores. We worked in the food technology room, in the Poutama centre. The Poutama centre is a building in our school where we do technology. I was in a very small group and after we washed our hands we got to taste the difference between dulce de leche and Highlander caramel on separate ends of a teaspoon. We also got to try an alfajor which Mrs Vincent had brought back from Argentina. For me, it tasted like one of my birthday cakes I had when I was little.

After that, we spread the caramel on round water crackers. I enjoyed stacking them over each other as if they were a little tower of goodness. Mrs Vincent got the melted chocolate, gave it a stir and then dipped our crackers into it. I watched closely as the excess chocolate just dripped off our alfajores. Then they went onto the grease-proof paper which was on a plate.

Some people were lucky enough to lick the spoon (including Mrs Vincent) and then we tried our alfajores. I decided to save mine for later so I dried the dishes that Pooja washed and I put them in the appropriate places.

When I tried my biscuit, I could taste the sweetness of the chocolate and I could feel the crunch of the water crackers. I could also feel the gooeyness of the caramel. I enjoyed having the alfajore biscuit.

This is Highlander Caramel, Dulce de Leche and two different types of alfajores that Mrs Vincent brought back from Argentina.


This is me about to spread the Highlander caramel between the water crackers.


This is Pooja and me doing the dishes after making the alfajores.

By Gulnoza, aged 11

Thursday, June 18, 2009

¡Feliz Cumpleaños Mariela en Paraná!

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To Mariela at the Step English Language Center inParaná, Argentina, from the students in Huia 1 classroom, The Gardens School, New Zealand. We hope you have a good birthday.

Mariela helped look after our teacher when she went to Argentina. Mariela also is an AFS volunteer in Paraná. We had four AFS students visit our school and talk to us about their countries and about being AFS students. They were from Brazil, Chile, Costa Rica and Holland.

These are the AFS students who came to visit our school. We think it would be fun to go to a different country as AFS students to learn their culture and language and then share our knowledge when got back to New Zealand.


Wednesday, June 17, 2009

Unas Preguntas (Some Questions)

Our class is learning to write reports. We are writing reports on things to do with Argentina such as: Gerneral Belgrano, The Dirty War, Carlos Tevez, yerba mate, Eva Peron, the May Revolution and others. We would like to ask for information to help us finish writing our reports. We are asking for information that we can't find ourselves. We hope that you can share your knowledge of Argentina with us. When we have finished our reports we will post them on this blog to share them with you.

1. Do you know how General Belgrano died? Do people still feel he is important in your country's history? ( asked by Te Ana).

2. What are the common fillings that people like in empanadas? How often do you eat empanadas? Do you eat them as a main meal or for snacks? Where do you buy empanadas? (asked by Kenneth),

3. In what part of Argentina were most of the kidnappings in the Dirty War? Were there any kidnappings near where you live? (asked by Aminder).

4. What do people think of the Boca football team? Who is their star player? (asked by Andy).

5. Do people wear special clothes at Christmas time? What do people eat at Christmas time/ (asked by Jenna).

6. How long was the May Revolution? Do you learn about this in school? (asked by Nathan).

7. Do people visit the pampas as tourists? Are they like a tourist attraction or do people just drive past to look at it? (asked by Rebekah.)

8. Do people like to visit Buenos Aires often? Is it a fascinating place to visit and why? What festivals are held in Buenos Aires?(asked by Pooja).

9. How often and when do people drink mate? (asked by Katelyn)

10. Where is dulce de leche made? What are the most popular or the best brands of dulce de leche? (asked by Brittany)


11. What brands of alfajores are the best and why? (asked by Caitlin.)

If you know the answers to any of these could you write them below in the "Comments" . It is OK if we have more than one anwer for each question. We look forward to your answers. You can ask us questions about our school or NZ too.

Tuesday, June 16, 2009

Feliz Dia de la Bandera

Feliz Dia de la Bandera to all our Friends in Argentina from your friends in Huia 1 class at The Gardens School in New Zealand. We have learned that the flag was adopted in 1812 then four years later Argentina declared independence from Spain.

Some think that the blue and white on the flag represents the blue sky and white clouds. Others think that it represents the Virgin Mary's colours (Virgen Maria). The sun in the flag is called "The Sun of May". General Belgrano chose the colours of the flag. He was the leader of the revolution against Spanish rule. The revolution began in Buenos Aires on 25th of May, 1810.

General Belgrano died on the 20th June and there is now a holiday to remember him and the making of the Argentinian flag.

http://www.monumentoalabandera.gov.ar/ Follow this link to find out more about the flag of Argentina and the special monument to General Belgrano in Rosario which is a city in Argentina. The site is in Spanish so English-speaking readers might want to look at the pictures.


We have a flag of Argentina on the wall of our classroom. We took a photo of the flag with some of our class to wish you "Feliz Dia de la Bandera" . The yellow clock (in the photo) tells the time in New Zealand and the white clock tells the time in Argentina.

Thank you Ana Laura in Sante Fe, Argentina, for giving us some information. And thank you for your message about mate and its importance in Argentina.

We are having difficulty writing with accents on our computer so we had to leave them out of dia and Maria - but we know they should be there.

By Cailin and Mikayla

Monday, June 15, 2009

My Friends and What We Do

My name is Caitlin and my friends are called Tayla and Caitlin. We are the best of friends. I don’t see them often because Tayla lives on a farm in Taupo* and Caitlin goes to a different school in Papatoetoe which is a suburb of Auckland.

When I go to Taupo I usually go to Tayla’s house and farm. It takes three hours to get to Tayla’s house but its worth the wait. We ride on her horse called Gem and play with her mini farm set. We always have lots of fun together. Sometimes Tayla and I (when we are meant to be asleep in her room) chat and play a little game called “Find the Dog”. It’s when we get her miniature poodle and let him go hide (he’s good at this) and we have to find him. Tayla owns a campervan so when she comes to my house in Auckland we sleep in the top bed of the campervan.

Caitlin is my other best friend. I call her on the phone often because we are really good friends. I see her quite a lot because my Mum and Dad are good friends of her Mum. Caitlin and I are usually having sleep- overs at each other’s houses. Caitlin and I play Sims 2 and soon she will be getting Sims 3. Sims is a PC game where you can make your own virtual houses and families. When we are in her room at night, before going to sleep, we watch a movie in bed. We have popcorn and hot chocolate while watching the movie. The last movie we watched was “Grease”. It was so so so so so so cool because I liked all the songs.

Caitlin and I also usually go for lunch with our parents to Finn M’Cool’s which is and Irish pub. I usually get a wrap or pizza with chips and vegetables. A “wrap” is cheese, onion and bacon wrapped in naan bread.Sometimes when we are at Finn’s we meet up with our other friend Lauren. Lauren, Caitlin and I usually play pool for $2.

* Taupo is about three hours south of Auckland. It snows there in winter. Taupo is famous for its lake which is the largest lake in NZ. It is also famous for trout fishing and people go there on their way to the mountains for skiing. Taupo is a good place to go for a family trip because you can have fun whether it is sunny or snowing.

Chau, ‘Bye, Adios

by Caitlin. Age 11

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Thursday, June 11, 2009

Our Argentine and New Zealand Merienda

On the 25th May we had a merienda. Merienda means snack. We had a special afternoon tea because on the 25th of May Argentina remembers the Liberation Demonstration in Buenos Aires and in New Zealand it is the anniversary of the first parliament in Auckland.

First, some of the students prepared the food. We had mince pies, dulce de leche on water crackers, sausage rolls, alfajores, jamon and queso sandwiches, chocolate chip cookies, potato top pie, bacon and egg pie, mate and orange juice.

First we had the mate. Mrs Vincent gave us a small cup and a bendy straw. She put a little yeba mate in our cups then she put a little hot water in each cup. I really hated the taste and it smelled like green tea. Then we rinsed our cups and the people who made the food served it to us. When we wanted something we were to suppose to speak Spanish.

“Me gustaria un alfajor, por favor.”

Then Mrs Vincent gave us orange juice. The food was really nice. I learned that Argentinians like mate. Mrs Vincent told us when she was in Argentina she saw lots of kids were holding a thermos and a mate cup. When they wanted mate they have this metal straw called a bombilla that has a filter and they drink it through that.

Hi Argentinian people! You guys rock! Keep on rocking !!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!! Empanadas rock!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!

(That means Argentine people are the best, and keep on being the best and that empanadas are really nice.)

By Kenneth
Age 11We had small mince pies, small potato- top pies and small bacon and egg pies to represent typical NZ food. The mince pies are a little bit like empanadas.


We tried drinking mate in a cup with a straw. We learned how people used mate in Argentina. There is a map of South America and Argentina on the wall, and a marker to show where Parana is. "Me gustaria un alfajor, por favor." These are some alfajores and some bizcochos that Mrs Vincent brought back from Argentina. We had to ask for the food in Spanish.
These are chocolate chip biscuits. They are a typical NZ snack.

Huia 1 – Our Story:

Hola! We are the students from The Gardens School. Our class is called Huia 1. A huia is a native New Zealand bird.

Some of you might have spoken to us on Skype. We wanted to speak with all you wonderful students so we thought we could write down a blog about our school, the students, the teachers and what we do at home and school.

We start school at 8.50am in the morning and we finish school at 2.50 in the afternoon. When the bell rings for class time we get ready for the teacher to come, so what we do to make the teacher smile is we get our books ready and start reading or finishing off our work. Sometimes we are a bit cheeky (a little bit naughty) and start whispering to our friends. After the teacher has marked the roll (attendance) we go to maths class. We have 4 maths groups in different classes.

In our class we have lots of things on our wall - pictures, research, and a little bit about us. We also learn Spanish. We might not be as good as you because we have just started learning Spanish. We learn how to introduce ourselves, to say good bye, and hola! Not forgetting how to ask for lollies when you need them.

So what do you do at school? We wish we could come and visit you in your school. We would love to hear from you!

Hasta La Vista! ’Bye, Hope to hear from you.

From: Nikeeta and So Yeon.

This is some of the younger students' art work on display in our school.