Oregon State Facts

Students take the shape of the state of Oregon in celebration of the 150th anniversary of the state's formation on February 14, 1859

We are the 5th grade students of DreamExtreme at Kennedy Elementary School in Medford, Oregon. This year, we have had an amazing time collaborating with and meeting with other students around the country using Skype. It is exciting to now be part of this 50 States Project, as well!

Below are some facts about our state, our region, and our class. We have spent time this past week collecting information to share during our Skype call on Thursday, April 9.


Oregon's state capital is Salem, but our biggest city is Portland.
Oregon's entire state population was 3,747,455 in 2007. Only about 12,000 people lived here in 1849.
Our state is about 96,000 square miles, making it the 10th largest state in the U.S. We have 296 miles of Pacific Ocean coastline.
The Oregon State Animal is the Beaver. In fact, Oregon's nickname is The Beaver State.
The Oregon State Beverage is Milk!
The Oregon State Bird is the Western Meadowlark. It was chosen by Oregon's school children in 1927.
The Oregon State Dance is the Square Dance. Alamande left, now, do-si-do!
The Oregon State Fish is the Chinook Salmon.
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The Oregon State Flag is the only state flag in the U.S. that has different designs on each side. On one side, there is the state seal. On the other side is a...BEAVER!
The Oregon State Flower is the Oregon Grape. It doesn't look like a flower and you wouldn't want to eat it, but we have one growing right outside our classroom.
The Oregon State Fruit is the Pear. Pears are very important to our region. We have many fruit orchards in Medford and the Harry & David company began here a long time ago!
The Oregon State Motto is Alis Volat Propriias: She Flies With Her Own Wings. I think that means we like to be independent and adventurous. Afterall, thousands of independent and adventurous pioneers took the Oregon Trail to get here!
The Oregon State Tree is the Douglas Fir. There are many thousands of acres of beautiful evergreen forests in our state and, chances are, if you visit one of them and you walk a few feet in any direction you'll bump your head on one!
The world's smallest park is in Portland, Oregon. It is only 452 square inches and is used for snail races.
Oregon is a coastal state in the Pacific Northwest. We have many different kinds of terrain and climate, from temperate rain forests to high desert to rich farm land to raging rivers. Three of Oregon's borders are made by water: The Pacific Ocean, the Columbia River, and the Snake River.
Crater Lake, which is a little more than an hour away from our school, is the deepest lake in the United States. It is also the only National Park in our state.
Oregon is made up of 36 counties. Medford, our town, is the county seat and largest town of Jackson County.
Oregon is home to the University of Oregon Ducks and the Oregon State Beavers. Each year, the two college football teams battle in the Civil War Game. Our class has fans of both teams. We haven't had any major battles about it, though.
Oregon's professional basketball team is the Portland Trailblazers.


We live in an area of Southern Oregon called the Rogue Valley. It's named that because the Rogue River flows through it.
The Rogue Valley is famous for its orchards, especially pears. Every spring we have a Pear Blossom Festival that includes celebrations, a parade and a marathon.
The Rogue Valley is also growing in popularity for its vineyards and wineries.
Some places you see near Medford are the Table Rocks, which are large mesa rock hills that you can climb up, and Mount McGloughlin. It is named after Dr. John McGloughlin, who is called the Father of Oregon.
Medford's population is about 76,850. The whole Rogue Valley, though, has several towns and about 130,000 people.


We call ourselves the DreamExtreme Team. The name means that you can accomplish incredible things when you dream without limits.
Mr. David Cosand is our teacher. About half of the people in Mr. Cosand's 5th grade class this year were also in Mr. Cosand's 4th grade class last year!
We have 27 students in our class right now. (At 8:48am on April 7, 2009)
UPDATE: We have 33 students in our class right now. (At 9:05am on September 30, 2010)
We have kids from different cultures in our class.
We like doing new things. Learning shouldn't be boring!
Technology is very important in our class and it's used in learning everyday. We use an ActivBoard, a document camera, video cameras, microphones, wikis, podcasts, blogs, Skype, and other tools. We are very lucky to have many resources that most other classes in our town don't have.
Our class loves to Skype with other people. We're the only class at our school (and maybe in our school district!) that uses Skype.