English is an international language. As I travel, both domestically and overseas, I like to keep my eyes open for things from around the world that I can use in the classroom.

Practically speaking, what this means is that I often visit toy stores in cities I visit. Here are some of the things I’ve discovered.

In Vietnam, I bought a shrill chicken, that I use for the ‘hot potato’ game. When you squeeze the chicken, it makes a funny noise that kids seem to find hilarious. (I’ve found this product at Amazon.com, and it turns out to be a dog toy!)

Speaking of hot potatoes, I found a hot potato toy in the United States (online), that I purchased from Amazon.com. (It seems most things can be bought Amazon.com!)

In Taiwan, I found ten, twelve, and twenty sided coloured dice. (I’ve since found these in a local games store, and think they may be a part of a popular board or card game).

And, in Australia, we have National Geographic stores. They stock a range of local and international nature-related toys, games, and projects. I picked up some science projects there to use in my classes.

I’ve found shopping for toys and resources internationally not only a lot of fun, but a way to keep myself thinking generatively about how I can continue to improve my classes for the children I teach.