Although spiders make many people squeamish, these eight-legged arachnids are undoubtedly fascinating. Here’s an overview of how spiders create their beautiful webs.
First, the spider climbs up to a high point and creates a long thread of sticky silk called a bridge thread. This thread is carried by the wind until it sticks to another point.
Once in place, the spider spins another thread while crossing the bridge. The weight of the spider bends this thread into a V shape.
At this point, the weaving begins. The spider creates radial threads by attaching them to surrounding anchor points. When all the threads are made, the web looks like a star with several branches.
The spider then reinforces the web by weaving a spiral in the middle. This is where it will sit comfortably to await its prey.
On average, it takes 30 to 60 minutes for a spider to spin a web.
Silk is secreted from glands in the spider’s abdomen. This silk is a liquid. However, it becomes solid when exposed to air.
10 interesting facts about elephants
Like hippos and rhinos, elephants are pachyderms. These imposing animals have thick skin and heavy gait. In fact, elephants are the largest land animals on the planet. Here are ten fascinating facts about them.
1. Elephants can’t jump because they’re too heavy. Their bones would break on landing.
2. Elephant trunks are very flexible and contain up to 150,000 muscles. This essential appendage functions as a nose and arm. Elephants use their trunks to communicate, clean themselves, and gather food. However, elephants don’t eat through their trunks.
3. Elephants spend around 16 hours a day eating. They can eat more than 440 pounds of plants and drink over 26 gallons of water a day.
4. Although elephant skin is thick, it’s also very sensitive. In fact, an elephant can feel a small insect land on its back. Additionally, elephants cover their skin with mud to stay cool in the hot sun.
5. An elephant’s powerful trumpet-like call can be heard up to five miles away.
6. Contrary to popular belief, elephants aren’t afraid of mice. However, they fear ants and bees that can crawl into their trunks.
7. Elephants can swim several miles at a time. Additionally, they use their trunks as snorkels to breathe underwater.
8. Elephant feet are very sensitive and can feel ground vibrations more than six miles away.
9. Female elephants carry their young for 20 to 22 months before giving birth. That’s almost two years!
10. Like humans, elephants lose their teeth. However, elephant teeth can fall out and grow back several times.
You may be able to see an elephant at a zoo near you.
7 interesting facts about eggs
How do you like to eat your eggs? Hard-boiled? Poached? Scrambled? Fried? Here are seven interesting facts about eggs.
1. The color of the egg yolk depends on the hen’s diet. If the egg yolk is light yellow, the hen probably eats a lot of wheat. However, if the egg yolk is dark yellow, the hen likely eats a lot of corn.
2. The United States produces about 97 billion eggs each year. Annually, 1.2 trillion eggs are produced worldwide.
3. Large eggs are the standard. There are six egg size designations: jumbo, extra-large, large, medium, small, and peewee. However, most recipes call for large eggs.
4. Egg whites can expand up to eight times their volume. Whipping air into egg whites brings lift and lightness to desserts like mousses, sponge cakes, and meringues.
5. Eggshells have their own ventilation system. Eggshells contain between 7,000 and 17,000 microscopic pores that allow oxygen, carbon dioxide, and moisture to escape.
6. Most of the fat in egg yolks is good for you. Fat is an essential part of a healthy, balanced diet. Fortunately, two-thirds of the fat in egg yolks is unsaturated and contributes to good heart health.
7. Hens don’t need a rooster to lay eggs. Hens will lay eggs whether there’s a rooster around or not. However, a rooster is needed to fertilize the eggs and hatch them into baby chicks.
Eggs are a versatile food that can be enjoyed alone or in a variety of recipes.
4 easy no-bake recipes
Do you feel like cooking or baking but don’t want to use the oven? Here are four easy recipes you can try.
1. Pink maple lemonade
Fill a pitcher with cold water and juice five lemons. Mix the juice and the water together. Add a splash of grenadine or cranberry juice and add about 3/4 cup of maple syrup for sweetness.
2. Peanut butter balls
Stir together with a cup of peanut butter, two tablespoons of corn syrup, a cup of graham cracker crumbs, a handful of chocolate chips, and a cup of powdered sugar until a dough forms. Shape the dough into small balls. Place the balls on a cookie sheet and refrigerate for one hour.
3. Apple and carrot salad
In a large bowl, mix broccoli florets, cut carrots, sliced apples, and sultana raisins. In a separate cup, whisk together a few spoonfuls of mayonnaise or plain yogurt, lemon juice, maple syrup or honey, and salt and pepper. Pour the creamy dressing over the salad ingredients.
4. Mini cheese sticks
Thread half a cherry tomato, a cube of cheese, and a grape on a toothpick. If you prefer, you could use cucumber slices or peppers.
To make these recipes even more delicious, get creative by including different ingredients you find in your kitchen.
Homework: 5 things that can affect your concentration
Do you sometimes find it hard to study or do your homework? If so, here are five things that may be affecting your ability to concentrate.
If you haven’t eaten in a while, munch on a healthy snack to give your brain energy.
Dehydration can affect your memory. Therefore, keep a water bottle on hand and take frequent sips.
Being too hot or cold is uncomfortable and can prevent you from being able to concentrate. If you’re warm, you can turn on a fan or open a window. If you’re chilled, put on a sweater or grab a blanket.
Getting enough sleep allows your brain to function at its full potential. Listen to your parents when they tell you to go to bed, and don’t stay up late watching TV or playing games.
Keep your phone, computer, or tablet out of your line of sight. These devices can be distracting, especially if they make loud sounds.
8 ideas for mud play
Playing outside in the spring can get messy. However, with the right clothes and your parent’s permission, playing in the mud can be a lot of fun. Here are eight muddy games to try this spring.
1. Decorate mud cakes using things like pebbles, small branches, and dead leaves.
2. Make funny footprints in the mud with your feet or objects to make it look like a strange creature wandering by.
3. Dig channels in the mud and fill them with water to float a toy boat.
4. Walk barefoot in the mud and watch the earth crack as it dries. Make sure the mud isn’t too cold and that there aren’t any nails or shards of glass in the ground.
5. Draw patterns and characters in the mud.
6. Make a mud hill to drive your toy trucks up and down.
7. Throw mud balls at a target. However, you should never throw mud at someone unless they say it’s OK.
8. Jump into a muddy puddle with both feet and try to make a big splash.
This spring, enjoy playing outside in the fresh air.
Eco-responsibility and the environment: True or false quiz
Are you concerned about global warming and pollution? Do you want to help protect the planet? If so, answer these questions to test your knowledge about these important issues.
True or false
1. Methane is more potent than carbon dioxide.
2. You must use a reusable grocery bag at least 15 times to make it more eco-friendly than a plastic bag.
3. One bus can take 30 to 40 cars off the road.
4. Nearly half of a video game console’s annual power is consumed in standby mode.
5. Vegetables produce the most greenhouse gas emissions.
6. Becoming a vegetarian is one of the best things you can do for the environment.
7. About 10 percent of the world’s electricity comes from coal-fired power stations.
2. False. It must be used at least 35 times.
5. False. Animal products like beef, fish, and milk produce the most greenhouse gases.
7. False. It’s about 40 percent.