Elementary student wins library’s poetry contest

 

 

ShES Hunter Fultz Poetry Contest 2

Hunter Fultz, fifth grader at Shrewsbury Elementary School, shown with her teacher Natalie Robar, won first place for her poem, Owls, in Martin Library’s annual Poetry Contest.

Owls

Hiding the night completely unseen,

To do that, you must be very keen,

You watch and stare with your big eyes,

Twitching and flinching at every small sound,

You glide so low without touching the ground,

How do you get your wings so strong?

Not to mention, they’re very long!

Your color is so amazing,

And your eyes are always gazing,

Even with a temper so foul,

I still wish I could be an owl!

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Catch up with the world’s satellites

This NOAA satellite image taken Wednesday, March 26, 2014 at 10:45 AM  shows a prominent storm wound up off the the Northeast US with clouds across much of the western Atlantic Basin with heavy snow and strong winds affecting Nova Scotia and coastal New England.  (AP PHOTO/WEATHER UNDERGROUND)

This NOAA satellite image taken Wednesday, March 26, 2014 at 10:45 AM shows a prominent storm wound up off the the Northeast US with clouds across much of the western Atlantic Basin with heavy snow and strong winds affecting Nova Scotia and coastal New England. (AP PHOTO/WEATHER UNDERGROUND)

The use of satellites during the search for a lost jetliner has drawn attention to those orbiting platforms. Here is a snapshot of what’s in orbit, with help from Nicholas Johnson, who retired Thursday as NASA’s chief scientist for orbital debris:

HOW MANY SATELLITES ARE UP THERE?

About 1,100 active satellites, both government and private. Plus there are about 2,600 ones that no longer work. Russia launched the first satellite, Sputnik 1, in 1957. The oldest one still in orbit, which is no longer functioning, was launched in 1958.

HOW BIG ARE THEY?

Size varies. Communication satellites can be as big as a small school bus and weigh up to 6 tons, the Federal Communications Commission says. Most weigh a few tons or less. Some that are used briefly are 4 inch cubes and weigh about 2 pounds.

WHAT EXACTLY DO THEY DO?

They have a wide variety of roles: GPS satellites aid navigation, others relay telephone or television signals, others aid in weather forecasting, national defense, science, and agriculture, as in monitoring crops and areas of drought. The Union of Concerned Scientists, a private organization that maintains a database of satellites, says about 60 percent are used for communications.

WHERE ARE THEY?

It depends on their use. Communications satellites relay signals from a fixed spot on the equator, about 22,000 miles up. GPS satellites are at 12,400 miles, high enough to be accessible to large swaths of the Earth. Others that need a closer look at Earth are lower. For comparison, the International Space Station is only about 260 miles high, and very few satellites are lower than that. While some satellites remain over fixed spots on Earth, others fly over both poles or can move from place to place as needed.

You can see their locations at the NASA satellite tracker: http://1.usa.gov/1dyKhCd

HOW HAVE THEY HELPED IN THE SEARCH?

A British communications satellite picked up signals from the plane; analysis of them led authorities to conclude that the airliner crashed in a remote area of the southern Indian Ocean. This week, Thai authorities said one of their satellites spotted 300 objects that might be from the airliner. Some satellites were moved into place to look for debris.

WHO OWNS THEM?

Governments large and small, and private companies. More than 50 countries own a satellite or a significant share in one, according to the Union of Concerned Scientists. There are 502 active satellites with a U.S. tie; 118 for Russia and 116 for China. Thailand has four satellites and shares in another, the scientist group says.

WHAT IF THEY STOP WORKING?

Old satellites can pose a risk for collisions with active ones, so there are rules and recommendations to avoid a buildup of junk in space. Satellites that fly below a certain height are supposed to be put in an orbit that will make them fall to Earth and burn up within 25 years. At high altitudes, they are to be boosted up to still higher orbits to get them out of the way.

Reported by MALCOLM RITTER of the Associated Press

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Hook, line and sinker

Click on this picture for a printer-friendly image. When the image appears against a black background, click it again for a full-size version. Finally, when you print it, click on the “scale image to fit paper” and “landscape” in your printer settings.

Click on this picture for a printer-friendly image. When the image appears against a black background, click it again for a full-size version. Finally, when you print it, click on the “scale image to fit paper” and “landscape” in your printer settings.

Are you ready for some fun fishing? Try coloring these fish — and make them really vibrant.

We have more fish and aquatic coloring pages for you too. Check them out:

Click on the image for a printer friendly version of this drawing, color it and then mail it back to us so we can post it here. Get even more coloring pages at the Junior Dispatch’s COLORING PAGE section!

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Kids get the info on spotting a stroke

Third-graders, from left, Hunter Thomas, Matthew Velez, Sebastian Mendez, Jayden Gonzalez and Elijah Farias examine a plastic model of a brain at Montefiore Hospital in the Bronx borough of New York. The hospital teaches children to recognize stroke and get victims to a hospital quickly. (AP Photo/Jim Fitzgerald)

Third-graders, from left, Hunter Thomas, Matthew Velez, Sebastian Mendez, Jayden Gonzalez and Elijah Farias examine a plastic model of a brain at Montefiore Hospital in the Bronx borough of New York. The hospital teaches children to recognize stroke and get victims to a hospital quickly. (AP Photo/Jim Fitzgerald)


Andrea Esteban tried to smile with half her face, crossing her eyes in the process, and her third-grade classmates giggled. Matthew Velez struggled to speak, “Luh, luh, uh, gronk,” and the kids erupted in laughter.

But the funny faces, the gibberish and some arm flapping were all part of a serious lesson to help kids learn the telltale signs of a stroke by imitating them. The idea is to enlist children, particularly those who may live with older relatives, as an army of eyes to help recognize the warning signs, get help for victims more quickly and hopefully save lives.

“If my mom has a stroke, I’ll know what to do,” said 10-year-old Madison Montes. “Run to the phone and call 911.”

The experimental health education program at Montefiore Medical Center in the Bronx is aimed at the most crucial factor when it comes to a stroke: Time.

Each year, about 795,000 Americans have a stroke and about 130,000 die. Some are caused by bleeding in the brain, but the vast majority is caused by a clot that blocks blood flow, starving brain cells. A drug, called TPA, can dissolve those clots, but only if it’s given within three to four hours of the first symptoms, and the sooner the better.

The early warning signs of a stroke include a droopy side of the face, slurred or strange speech, and the inability to keep arms raised.

Pencil erasers in the shape of the human brain lie on a table at Montefiore Hospital in the Bronx borough of New York. The erasers were given to third-graders who attended a class that teaches them to recognize stroke and get victims to a hospital quickly. (AP Photo/Jim Fitzgerald)

Pencil erasers in the shape of the human brain lie on a table at Montefiore Hospital in the Bronx borough of New York. The erasers were given to third-graders who attended a class that teaches them to recognize stroke and get victims to a hospital quickly. (AP Photo/Jim Fitzgerald)

“There’s a pretty good chance some children might witness a parent or a grandparent having a stroke,” said Jim Baranski of the National Stroke Association. “So if they’re armed with the signs and symptoms, they could likely save a life.”

Montefiore’s program has been used since 2012 with private schools in its neighborhood, where children are often in a grandparent’s care because parents are absent or both working. The goal is to study the results and, if successful, replicate the program across the country.

“The kids get a kick out of it because they get to do a little acting,” said Dr. Robert Glover, a neurologist who helped develop the program. “But when they’re done, they know about stroke and they can teach their families.”

At the start of the stroke class last month, in a first-floor room at the hospital, Dr. Kathryn Kirchoff-Torre asked, “Who knows what a stroke is?”

“A heart attack?” one child offered.

“Well, we like to call it a brain attack,” Kirchoff-Torres said. “It’s a problem with the brain.” She then taught the children to use the word “FAST” as a memory device. With cartoons and music bringing the point home, they learned “F” is for face, “A” is for arms, “S” is for speech and “T” is for time.

After the play-acting and the multimedia show, the doctor invited questions from the children.

“How do you catch a stroke?” one boy asked. The doctor assured him that strokes are not contagious but can be caused by “high blood pressure, smoking cigarettes, junk food.”

“What if we don’t have a phone?” a girl asked. Kirchoff suggested asking a neighbor or running to a storefront.

“What if you live in the desert?” was the follow-up question, to which Kirchoff smiled and said, “It’s a good thing you live in the Bronx.”

———

Reported by JIM FITZGERALD of the Associated Press from NEW YORK, N.Y. AP Medical Writer Lauran Neergaard contributed to this report.

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Get some turtle power with this coloring page

Click on this picture for a printer-friendly image. When the image appears against a black background, click it again for a full-size version. Finally, when you print it, click on the “scale image to fit paper” in your printer settings.

Click on this picture for a printer-friendly image. When the image appears against a black background, click it again for a full-size version. Finally, when you print it, click on the “scale image to fit paper” and “landscape” in your printer settings.

Looking for a cool turtle to color? This might not be the ninja turtle you’re looking for, but its still pretty awesome.

Click on the image for a printer friendly version of this drawing, color it and then mail it back to us so we can post it here. Get even more coloring pages at the Junior Dispatch’s COLORING PAGE section!

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12 amazing sports facts

Why are tennis balls fuzzy? Check out the trivia below as Novak Djokovic, of Serbia, returns a shot from Roger Federer, of Switzerland. (AP Photo/Mark J. Terrill)

Why are tennis balls fuzzy? Check out the trivia below as Novak Djokovic, of Serbia, returns a shot from Roger Federer, of Switzerland. (AP Photo/Mark J. Terrill)

With all the snow this winter, I spent a lot of time indoors reading my collection of sports books. I think books are more fun than television or video games. Here’s some amazing sports stuff I learned from my books:

  1.  The original World Cup trophy was permanently awarded to Brazil after that country won its third World Cup soccer championship in 1970. The trophy was stolen in 1983 and has never been recovered.
  2. The current trophy was created for the 1974 World Cup and weighs about 20 pounds.
  3. Because the Winter Olympics didn’t begin until 1924, the first men’s and women’s individual and pairs figure skating Olympic championships, in 1908, were conducted during the Summer Olympics in London.
  4. Some sports that were once in the Summer Olympics are no longer part of the Games: tug-of-war, motorboating, rope climbing, cricket, croquet, rugby and one-handed weightlifting.
  5. The flip turn in swimming was invented by backstroker Adolph Kiefer and his coach, Julian “Tex” Robertson, while Kiefer was training for the 1936 Olympics.
  6. Speaking of swimming, National Basketball Association superstar Tim Duncan was a top swimmer in Saint Croix in the Virgin Islands until he was 13, when a hurricane destroyed the pool where he swam. Then Duncan started playing basketball.
  7. Most National Football League games are played on Sunday because in the early days of the NFL, most players did not make much money. They had to work regular jobs during the week and could play only on the weekends. The NFL did not play on Saturday because that’s the day college games were played. In the early days of the NFL, college games were much more popular than pro games.
  8. The first pro baseball teams to go south for spring training were the Cincinnati Red Stockings (now Reds) and the Chicago White Stockings (now Cubs). The teams traveled to New Orleans in 1870.
  9. Left-handed pitchers in baseball are called southpaws because early baseball stadiums were built so the batter was facing east. That way, the sun would not be in the batter’s eyes. (Remember, in the early days, baseball was played only during the day.) When the pitcher stood on the mound, his left arm was facing south.
  10. Tennis balls are covered with felt, a material that makes them fuzzy. The fuzziness slows the ball down and makes it easier to control.
  11. The dimples on a golf ball make the ball fly farther because there is less drag — or pull in the opposite direction to its motion — on a dimpled golf ball than a smooth golf ball.
  12. Shots in ice hockey travel at speeds up to 100 miles an hour.

Reported by Fred Bowen for the Washington Post. Bowen is the author of 18 sports books for kids that combine sports fiction and sports history. His latest book is “Perfect Game.”

Canadian Olympic women's team goalie Shannon Szabados makes a save on Nail Yakupov as she takes part in the the Edmonton Oilers NHL hockey practice in Edmonton, Alberta, Wednesday, March 5, 2014. (AP Photo/The Canadian Press, Jason Franson)

Canadian Olympic women’s team goalie Shannon Szabados makes a save on Nail Yakupov as she takes part in the the Edmonton Oilers NHL hockey practice in Edmonton, Alberta, Wednesday, March 5, 2014. (AP Photo/The Canadian Press, Jason Franson)

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Local middle school places in PA Chess Championships

 

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West York Middle School Chess Team members from left, Augie Citrone, James Ye, Elizabeth Arbogast and Jack Citrone, display their trophies from placing 4th in the Pennsylvania State Scholastic Chess Championships.

 

 

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West York Middle School 6th graders Augie Citrone and Jack Citrone are shown with their individual trophies. Augie won 4 of his 5 matches, finishing in 5th place; and Jack also scored 4 victories, winning 3rd place.

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