KIDS IN BRAZIL
Ever been to Brazil? I haven't but it's on my bucket list. Brazil, a vast South American country, stretches from the Amazon Basin in the north to vineyards and massive Iguaçu Falls in the south. Rio de Janeiro, symbolized by its 38m Christ the Redeemer statue atop Mt. Corcovado, is famed for its busy Copacabana and Ipanema beaches as well as its enormous, raucous Carnival festival, featuring parade floats, flamboyant costumes and samba.
Tropical and subtropical; some areas have an annual rainfall of more than 6 feet.
- The school year runs from February through December. Kids attend school for about four hours in the morning or the afternoon. Most schools require uniforms.
- An estimated one-quarter of children in Brazil do not attend school at all, but work, especially in cities.
- A traditional pastime is Queimada, a game of tag that is played in two teams. Jump rope, card games and checkers are other favorites.
- Soccer is the number one sport. Brazil's beautiful beaches also make swimming and volleyball popular
- Brazilian families are often large; having five or six siblings is not unusual. Nearly one-third of the population is under eighteen!
- Most Brazilians live in cities. About a quarter of city dwellers live in hillside shantytowns called favelas.
- Feijoada, a stew of black beans and different meats, traditionally served with rice and oranges
- Farofa, a condiment of toasted flour made from cassava (a starchy root); it is sprinkled on feijoada or any meat, fruit or vegetable
- The golden-rumped lion tamarin, a small, long-haired forest-dwelling monkey that weighs just over 1 pound
- The pacarana, a nocturnal rodent that weighs about 30 pounds and resembles a guinea pig
- Unique holiday: Festas Juninas, the Feasts of June, is a series of huge parties (sometimes even bigger than carnival) that celebrate saints Anthony, John and Peter. Festivities include costumes, dances and—because June is winter in Brazil—bonfires.
- Did you know? Brazil has the largest area of rain forest in the world—almost a billion acres. It includes more than a million different insect species, tens of thousands of different plant species and more than a thousand different bird species.
Clancy's comment: Yep, I can see myself taking thousands of photographs when I finally get there.