NG Kids reporter Trevor Jehl, age 10, attended an event for us today. Here is his report.
On Tuesday, June 11, Mr. James Cameron came to Washington, D.C to talk about the Deepsea Challenger (the submarine he built to go to the deepest spot in the ocean, the Mariana Trench). The submarine is shaped like a torpedo to maximize time to the bottom. The sub is bright green and there are many different things attached to it, such as batteries, cameras, lights, and more.
There were lots of activities at the event, and kids and adults were mulling about for 15 minutes. Then Mr. Cameron came out to speak about the submarine and all the interesting details and facts.
I got to interview Mr. Cameron and ask him some questions. The first was: What was the weirdest thing that happened on the sub/project? The answer was: All the power and computers on the submarine shut down and all that he could do was release weights to go up. That sounds scary, right?
The second question was: Why do you think it’s important to explore? The answer was: Because it’s coded in human DNA and as human beings we need to explore.
Did you know that for a period of time Mr. Cameron was a high school janitor? Also, did you know that if you added up the depth of all the trenches in the world it would equal about the size of North America?
I also got to interview some of the engineers and to ask them some questions.
How did you make the batteries seawater proof? One engineer said that in truth they didn’t, but what they did was put them in cages filled with oil inside (oil and water don’t mix).
How many times did you test the weights that drop to make the submarine float back up? He said that probably about fifty different angles/times.
National Geographic explorers working on projects all over the world are convening at NG headquarters in Washington D.C. this week to share their latest fieldwork. Learn about their projects, meet the 2013 Emerging Explorers, and check out the interactive Nat Geo E-Team online!
The first time I saw the Mount Mulanje Massif it was covered in clouds, but I could feel its incredible power. We spent a few days in the village at the foot of the mountain before we started our amazing ascent. The little town was full of verdant tea plantations. As we wandered around everyone looked at us like we were aliens because they rarely see white people here.
One afternoon we rode bikes to the community mill. The village people take their corn, often their most prized possession, and put it down a funnel until it comes out as sima, (also known as polenta, grits, nshima or corn meal). The following day we went with a missionary from Scotland to a local farm that he helped create. Pride beamed on their faces as they showed us their rows of crops and their new well.
Clean fresh water is hard to come by here. You have to dig down at least 150 feet to reach water, so the fact that they have water to irrigate their farm is extra special. We then went to the local teacher’s home and played with her children and some of their neighbors. Even though we spoke different languages we had a great time. It is crazy what a smile and a soccer ball can get you.
We woke up early the next morning and started our climb with our guide Unix and our porter Daniel. The mountain was a thousand shades of lush green and filled with gurgling streams. When we were about an hour away from our first hut it started to pour. When we arrived we were soaked and ready for a warm fire, a hot cup of tea and yummy Malawian coconut biscuits. The next morning we woke up to a beautiful day with lots of sunshine. We decided to start the day with a swim in a stream that was so cold I thought my fingers might fall off. The freezing water thundered over the edge of the mountain and gave us energy to hit the trail again. Another afternoon storm rolled in before we arrived at our second hut. The lightening looked like it was just seconds away and the thunder sounded like it was booming in my ears. Unfortunately we weren’t able to climb to the highest peak due to weather, but the view from our last hut took my breath away.
I loved our huts, huddling around a little crackling fireplace and making home cooked meals. Our final day may have been the best. We hiked down with a spring in our step. The sky was blue and we were all singing and happy. We stopped at a gushing water fall and plunged into the spinning currents. After 40 miles and an 8,000 foot vertical incline up Central Africa’s highest peak, we were all super proud of ourselves. I will never forget the sparkling lake, breathtaking mountains and kind, smiling people of Malawi, but tomorrow we are off to the brilliant shores of Mozambique.
The team at the National Geographic Kids website is always looking to give kids more of what they want. That’s why we need your help! If you’re under the age of 18, you can participate in our survey. It takes about 15 minutes to answer all the questions. You can sit with your Mom or Dad if you want, but we really want to see YOUR opinions. Remember, we want you to be honest–there are no right or wrong answers! You will get a free wallpaper for completing the survey.
The Diary of a Young Girl by Anne Frank is a memoir of a young girl’s life in hiding during the Holocaust.
It is World War II and the Nazis are persecuting Jews all over Europe. Thirteen year old Anne Frank, her elder sister Margot, father, Otto, and mother, Edith are a Jewish family living in Amsterdam, in the Netherlands. In July, 1942, when tensions rise, the Frank family goes into hiding. They hide in the Secret Annex, a three-story space of small rooms and stairways. The entrance to the Secret Annex is hidden by a moveable bookshelf. With eight people sharing limited space and supplies, quarrels are persistent in the tense atmosphere. Amidst this, Anne finds her diary as a source of comfort and shares her feelings with this friend whom she calls Kitty. Anne’s last diary entry is dated August 1 st, 1944. Three days later, on August 4th, the Gestapo arrest all the Annex members due to an anonymous tip. Read this tragic story to find out who lives on and who perishes.
The Diary of a Young Girl by Anne Frank is an intriguing book which gives a detailed insight into the struggles and hardships Jews faced during the Holocaust. Since it is in a diary form and vividly portrays the families’ day to day struggles, the reader feels as though they are in the Secret Annex. The information in the end explains to the reader about the fate of each character in the concentration camps. This can also serve as an excellent primary source in research projects about the Holocaust.
A 150-million-year-old clutch of fossilized dinosaur eggs is providing scientists with new evidence of how eggs evolved. The eggs were laid by a dinosaur belonging to a group of species called theropods. Tyrannosaurus rex, as well as today’s birds, belong to this group. Most of the time, scientists can’t tell what kind of dinosaur laid the eggs they find, but the fossil embryos inside the eggs were developed enough for scientists to tell which group of dinosaurs they were from.
Scientists discovered that the eggs had fewer layers than eggs from later dinosaurs and birds. They also know that the eggs were buried to incubate, because of the amount of pores in the eggshell.
Joseph Ordono, a 7th grade student from St. Louis, Missouri, has been chosen as the winner of the Big Cats Sister School Program Essay Contest! Joseph’s essay is about how hunting and habitat destruction threaten big cats in Africa. All four finalists in the contest will receive a year’s subscription to National Geographic Magazine. In addition. Joseph will receive a National Geographic globe and will get to have a one-on-one conversation with Nat Geo WILD naturalist Casey Anderson.
The Big Cats Sister School Program, launched by National Geographic Society and Nat Geo WILD, provides teachers and students an ongoing opportunity to “Cause An Uproar” to help save big cats throughout the school year as well as engage in a cultural exchange.
After 24 hours on a bus we were all a bit tired, cranky, and hot, but the moment we saw Norman Carr Cottage and the dancing waters of Lake Malawi out front we took a deep breath and the whole world changed. We instantly knew we were going to love it here and soon three days turned into eight.
Every morning we went out on their rustic and charming boat Alfie. We bought fish from the local fisherman floating around in their dugout canoes and as we threw them into the air fish eagles would gracefully swoop down and grab them in their claws.
We snorkeled and took in the incredible medley of fish. Some had polka dots, some had neon stripes, and others were even black and white. We jumped off boulders into the warm water and each evening we would swim again as the sun dipped behind the shores and return to a candlelight dinner on the veranda.
On market day we went to the village. The market was full of piles and piles of old clothes.
There isn’t a Gap or any store around and even if there was the families are too poor to buy anything. It made me a bit sad but we decided to do a costume party with my family, Jenny, Taffy, Alida, and Alice (the owners of our amazing home for the week and two of their friends.) The theme was movie characters and we all had to buy for someone else. I bought a Maria costume from The Sound of Music for Alida, and Alice bought a flapper costume for me. We looked ridiculous but no one cared. After our fun night we donated all the clothes back to the community.
Throughout the week we listened to the beautiful sounds of the local people singing in their huts just steps away. Our final day it hit me that the end was near and that we needed to enjoy every last second so we hopped in some kayaks and explored the lake for hours. The setting couldn’t have been more picturesque; the mountains in the background, the fishermen in their wooden boats and the sparkling turquoises water. We had such an amazing stay that this was one of the most difficult places to leave. Thank you Jenny and Taffy, and goodbye Lake Malawi!
If you have ever eaten a bug, chances are it was on a dare! According to the United Nations, though, we should all start eating more bugs. About two billion people across the globe eat insects.
Why eat bugs? They’re high in protein, an important building block for the human body. You don’t need to feed bugs as much as livestock such as chickens or cows. Plus, eating bugs is a more environmentally friendly way to get rid of extra bugs than pesticide!
Have you ever felt unsure of yourself when venturing into the unknown or making a decision? It may have been something small like “I wonder what color socks I should wear today”. Now imagine if it wasn’t something small, but a choice that could change your whole life. This pressure and uncertainty is exactly what Charlotte feels in this book and trust me, the journey she makes is a lot more important than what color socks she is wearing! Charlotte Doyle is a thirteen year old girl who lives in England in 1832 where she receives the finest education money can buy at the Barrington School for Better Girls. She has lived in England since she was six, but was born in America. The rest of her family lives in Providence, Rhode Island. So now Charlotte is set to sail on the Seahawk on a voyage across the Atlantic Ocean to live with her family. She can barely remember America so it is almost like moving to a whole new country again! Despite the unknown, she is excited to go because there will be two families with kids her own age travelling with her. However, at the last minute Charlotte finds out that the two families cannot accompany her to America so now she must travel alone.
At first Charlotte is uneasy about being the only lady aboard the ship. But the captain is well known and works for her father and she begins to make friends with the crew. After a time, she finds that there is a peculiar hatred of the captain of the ship. Charlotte now has to decide if she believes the rumors of the captain’s cruelty or if she should betray the sailors she has befriended.
I usually don’t read that many adventure books, but this one immediately captivated me. I had recently learned sailing at summer camp and thought I could test my knowledge since this book is set on a ship. Still, many words were unfamiliar to me, so I thought it was really handy that it had a diagram of the ship so I would know what they were referring to as I read along. I also thought it was amazing that I could relate to Charlotte even though she lived in 1832. I couldn’t believe the trip she was taking at age 13 and it helped bring to life the fact that my great-grandmother made a similar trip when she was only 16. I can better appreciate how I would feel if I had to move to an unfamiliar country without the support of my family. This is definitely a book that will stick with you through the years and I guarantee if you read it, you will be rereading it a couple of years afterwards.