Monday, November 7, 2016

Meet Walter the Wombat!

Today the class got a surprise package! We were expecting a package that contained a mascot from one of our blogging buddies who are participating in the #GlobalPal project.  It was not from one of those classes. 

The package was big, and it was soft. As Mrs. Yollis tore open one end of the package, she smiled. What emerged from the surprise package?

Meet Walter the Wombat! 

First, we read the fact sheet about Walter the Wombat. 

No one had ever heard of a wombat! 

Walter the Wombat is a special mascot from our good friend, @RossMannell, a retired teacher from New South Wales, Australia. Walter comes to us through Mr. Mannell's support of a group called Backyard Buddies. Not only is Mr. Mannell kind, he often leaves us comments on our class blog. He just left us a comment on our Family Blogging Month post.

Here is Mr. Mannell's Family Blogging Month comment: 

Ellie's mom commented back. What an excellent blogger! 

Here is Walter the Wombat getting to know our students.

Would you like to take Walter home with you for the evening?
What kinds of activities do you think he'd enjoy? 

What are some facts you learned about wombats? 

What do you say to Mr. Mannell for his thoughtfulness? 


  1. @ Mrs. Yollis,

    I like the pictures of Walter.
    My favorite picture is where Walter has the head phones on him. He is so cute!

    I like Walter because he is cute and because he is so soft.

    What do you like about Walter?
    Can you think of anywhere Walter might want to go?


    1. @ Allie,

      Thank you for your comment. I agree that Walter is cute and I too like that he is soft. :)

      I also like that he came to us as a very special surprise gift from Mr. Mannell and that he did so through Mr. Mannell's support of the group Backyard Buddies.

      Have you had the chance to look at Backyard Buddies' website? I found it neat and inspiring that they value, love and protect native wildlife.

      I especially like that they offer simple tips to help one transform their backyard into a "safe and inviting habitat haven."

      Has anyone found any of their tips helpful and easy to implement in their own backyard to that effect?

      Liat (Elie's Mom)

  2. Hello Mrs. Yollis' Class,

    It's Dylan B., I'm that guy with the Variety Show shirt on. Walter has particularly c♥te incisors.

    He is in a collector series, and like Mrs. Yollis said he is a Backyard Buddy

    I think Walter would like going to Hawaii.

    Thank you for this mind-blowing wombat Mr. Mannell,
    Dyl☑n B.

    1. @ Dylan,

      Thank you for your fun and appreciative comment.

      I love that you recognize yourself in the photo as "the guy wearing the Variety Show shirt." :)

      I also love that you noted Walter's incisors.

      What do you suppose he uses them for?

      Liat, Elie's Mom

    2. @ Liat (Elie's Mom)

      In your previous comment you asked me, what I think he uses his incisors for. I think he uses them for digging & to chow down on food.

      I like the picture where Walter has the headphones on him! He kind of looks like a DJ.

      Maybe he'll become a DJ, imagine his name. DJ Walter.

      Here are are some facts you probably did not know before about wombats.

      1. Wombats are about 32 to 80 lbs.
      2. When wombats are in a group, it is called a Mob or a Colony.
      3. At night wombats feed on grasses, roots, and bark.

      Dyl☆n B.

    3. @ Dylan,

      I love your imagination! Especially as regards DJ Walter. I think he would make a great one!

      Thank you for the additional facts about Wombats. You are correct in stating that I probably was not aware of them.

      Can you imagine what an 80 pound Wombat would look like? What else that you can think of weighs approximately 80 pounds?


  3. Hello Mrs. Yollis' class,

    I've never heard of a wombat before today. Online, I found these wombat facts:
    1. Wombats are marsupials (have pouches)
    2. They burrow with their teeth and claws
    3. They are nocturnal (active at night, sleep during daytime)
    4. They eat grasses

    I think wombats would make good pets because dig holes so you could plant things.


    1. @ Chaolin,

      Thank you for your informative comment. I appreciate that you took the time to research facts about wombats and that you listed them for us. :) I too had not heard of a wombat before.

      Elie had Walter the Wombat visit us yesterday. It's a great thing that wombats are nocturnal as it was a long election night. Because he is nocturnal, Walter was able to stay up and watch the election results so he could pass them along to Elie who had to go to bed. :)

      I see that you are interested in planting.

      Do you have a garden? If so, what have you planted in it? If not, what do you imagine your garden to be? What plants would you plant in your dream garden?

      Liat (Elie's Mom)

    2. Dear Chaolin,
      I am interested in Walter the Wombat do you like marsupials? If you do not remember kangeroos are marsupials! I hope you like them I do. If you do which is your favorite and why!

    3. @ Chaolin,

      I had never heard of Wombats either... until November 7.

      I love your explanation on why you think wombats would make good pets, which brings me to my explanation. I think wombats would make good pets because I could study them while they are inside their cages.

      Thanks for the wonderful Walter the Wombat, Mr. Mannell.

      Dyl♕n B.

  4. Hello Mrs. Yollis and class,

    Wombats are native to many parts of Australia, including where I live. I have seen them when hiking although they normally aren't out in the day. They are very strong and have been known to knock people over if the people stand between one of them and their burrow but they aren't really an aggressive animal.

    Like kangaroos, they are marsupials and therefore the females have pouches in which to carry their young. Aussies tend to call the young of marsupials, joeys.

    I thought I would share some extra photos and video of some of the marsupials I have seen but, as I can't do that here, I ended up with a post on my Extended Comments blog.

    I can see Walter has already made himself at home. :)

    Ross Mannell
    Teacher (retired), N.S.W., Australia

    1. @ Ross Mannell

      Hi it's Walter. Thanks for sending me to my wonderful owners Mrs. Yollis herself and her students.

      I've had some marvelous adventures so far like: when I went Nolan's house and we made a slideshow together on
      Google Slides,
      or when I went with Elie and watched the presidential election, and when I went and learned to play the piano with Chaolin, or when I practiced my skills on the piano with Hayden.

      I'm having a great time Mr. Mannell, no need to worry.


    2. Dear Walter,

      Hello, it's Dylan again. You've been great getting along with our class. You're so patient when you wait for the day to be over. We know you want to go home with your fellow companions.

      How do you like getting stuffed in people's backpacks every day? What do you like to do at other peoples houses?

      Your friend,
      Dyl♥n B.

  5. Hello Mrs. Yollis and class,

    I'm not certain my comment made it through to your blog but I just wanted to share some photos, video and information about wombats and other marsupials. I needed to put a blog post together to do so. Here is the link...

    Ross Mannell
    Teacher (retired), N.S.W., Australia

    1. @RossMannell,

      Wow! Thank you for sending Walter the Wombat our way and for creating such an informative blog regarding wildlife and its protection in your region. In particular, as it pertains to wombats and other marsupials.

      I love your 6 word autobiography "Seeking ways to make a difference." :) I also love that Walter comes to us through your support of the group Backyard Buddies. You are a true inspiration!

      I am at awe and admiration of your friend, and wildlife hero, Alexandra Seddon. Thank you for sharing her recently released autobiography.

      We have local individuals and groups in our area that have devoted their life to the protection of our native wildlife and the environment as well.

      More recently, great emphasis has been placed on Mountain Lions and Bobcats within our mountainous regions and their challenges due to development and highways that obstruct their movement and place them in dangers way whence crossing roads. These developments and/or highways have also affected their ability to mate and reproduce, thus placing them at risk of extinction here.

      Hence, wildlife corridors that allow for a safe haven of travel have been the focal point of activists of wildlife and the environment within our area. More stringent development laws have been placed to protect areas of natural wildlife, habitat and their 'corridors' as well as creating new wildlife corridors in areas whereby the only crossing option is currently a road or highway.

      Thank you again for your beautiful gift, posts and, blog. You have greatly enriched our blogging community and experience. :)

      To all who are reading, what wildlife is native to your region? Are any in danger of extinction? If so, are they protected? And, how are they being protected?

      Your thankful blogging Mom,

      Liat (Elie's mom)

  6. Ethan (Allie's Brother)November 8, 2016 at 6:57 PM

    @ Mrs. Yollis's class,

    Walter looks cute.
    He looks funny because he has headphones on in the first picture. He looks like a superhero.

    He looks like he is going type on the computer. It looks like he is writing in the math book!

    I saw that you have a eagle friend in your classroom. He looks friendly and cute!

    Dose Walter like to dig?
    Is Walter friendly?

    Ethan (Allie's Brother)

    1. @ Ethan,

      Thank you for your comment and for being part of our growing family of blogging relatives. :) I especially love when siblings of our class members chime in.

      Walter loves to dig strong burrows that protect him from predators and brush fire and keep him in a controlled temperature during the heat of the day.

      Do you know of any local wildlife that dig burrows?

      Liat (Elie's Mom)

  7. @RossMannell

    Dear Mr. Mannell,

    Thank you so much for sending Walter over. That was so thoughtful of you. The kids are so excited! My son, Hayden, was lucky enough to bring Walter home on Thursday for a long weekend. We are thrilled to host him! Walter has been very busy here. Hayden will share his adventures in his own post and has pictures to share on the 365 project as well.

    I looked up Backyard Buddies because I was interested in this organization that you support and acquired Walter through. I see that it is an educational program run by the Foundation for National Parks & Wildlife in Australia to educate and preserve the native wildlife. Organizations like that are crucial. Thank goodness for it and for those like you who support it. Australia definitely has unique native wildlife like wombats! It is important to the whole world to protect such animals! I have been to Australia and was so excited and lucky to see wild kangaroos, koala bears and wallabies. I don’t recall seeing wombats in the wild though. I see from your post though that they mostly come out at night so thats probably why.

    You said that wombats are located throughout the country. Do you know if wombats are located in any other countries?

    Thank you again Mr. Mannell. Look for Hayden’s post and pictures soon to see what Walter has been up to.


  8. Dear Mr. Mannell,

    Thank you for sending Walter to us! We are very happy with Walter here. He is adorable! I am lucky to have him at our house this weekend. We have been having so much fun!

    He has gone on plenty of adventures so far. Walter would like to share those with you himself.


  9. Dear Mr. Mannell, Mrs. Yollis and class,

    This is Walter and I would like to start by thanking Mr. Mannell for sending me to America and, especially, to Mrs. Yollis’ class. They were all excited when I arrived and I was so excited to be here! I have been very well taken care of.

    I am at home with Hayden right now. When I first arrived on Thursday, I watched Hayden take a piano lesson and I even got to try playing myself!

    Friday was a very special day. It was Veteran’s Day here. Hayden and his brother and sister had the day off so the family decided to go to the Ronald Reagan library to participate in honoring the men and women who have served in the United States military. I got to go along! I got to sit in front of Ronald Reagan’s burial site. He was one of the president’s of the United States. I also watched a film about the sons and daughters of men who died serving in the Vietnam war. I met some women in the military and I sat in front of a piece of the Berlin Wall, which was a gift to the library. I got to help shoot a cannon and I sat in a military vehicle. We all learned a little more about what Veteran’s Day is all about.

    After leaving the Ronald Reagan library, we all went to visit Hayden’s grandpa. We had a nice visit.

    Today, we are relaxing at home. We might go visit the family’s horse but they said that they will make sure I don’t get dirty! I like digging in the dirt and getting dirty because I am a wombat but I also understand that the families in Mrs. Yollis’ class are not very interested in taking me home if I am dirty and smelly.

    Look at my pictures on the 365 project coming soon!

    Your adventurous pal,
    Walter the Wombat

  10. Dear Mrs. Yollis and class,

    Walter the Wombat is quite the world traveller! He seems so soft and furry, and fun to have around!
    I wonder how many miles he has actually travelled...? Do any of you like to travel? Where was your favorite place?

    Cora's Dad

  11. Chloe (Elie's sister)December 2, 2016 at 7:25 AM

    Dear Mrs. Yollis and class,
    Walter the Wombat previously paid my family a visit. He has great manners, and enjoys a nibble on our trees in the yard. Although he is quite the snorer, we enjoyed his time at our house. Elie had told me all about wombats when Walter came, and I learned that he is native to Australia! I wish I could travel the world!
    What do you know about wombats? Has Walter visited your house yet?
    Chloe (Elie's sister)


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