Week of November 26, 2000

Tessellation Tutorial

Art and math merge in the exciting world of tessellations, geometric mosaic patterns without any gaps. Tessellations make cool background textures for your Web sites. Check out the excellent ThinkQuest Web site, Totally Tessellated, at http://library.thinkquest.org/16661. Then join us at www.4Kids.org/techthis for the 1st 4Kids Project: Tech This!, a tutorial on making seamless backgrounds. We'll give an introduction to background tiles and what makes them seamless. Then we'll show you how to make your own using your favorite paint or photo-imaging application. We'll provide samples as well as a tool for you to test your own creations on our site. Finally, we'll offer tips for putting them on your Web page as well as how to use seamless backgrounds effectively. We look forward to seeing your tessellated backgrounds on the Web. (Tech This! is no longer featured on 4Kids)

Nominate a cool Web site at www.4Kids.org/nominations

Visit the Featured Web sites to find the answers

When was one of the first mathematical studies of tessellations done?



How much garbage is recycled at McMurdo Station?

70 percent
50 percent
25 percent


In what time period does the story "Sop Doll" take place?
1930s, the Great Depression
1940s, the War Years
1960s, the Civil Rights Years




Icy Wilderness

Put on some snow shoes and head down south, way south, to the icy wilderness of Antarctica. The Wired Antarctica Web site at www. geophys.washington.edu/ People/Students/ginny/ antarctica/index.html is filled with facts and pictures about what it's like to work and live in the southernmost continent of the world. Join geologist Ginny Catania and the rest of the folks in lessons about glaciers and the history of exploration in Antarctica. You can also learn what it's like to live in McMurdo Station, far from any city or town. Finally, be sure to check out the pictures of the penguins. (This site is no longer available.)

Spooky Southern Stories

One of the joys of childhood is sitting in the dark telling ghost stories. Now you can enjoy old-fashioned scary stories on the Internet. Head down The Moonlit Road at www.themoonlitroad.com. You'll find four spooky stories with links to further information on Southern culture and folklore as well as background about the stories. You can either read the stories or you can listen to them! Each story has a streaming audio version told by the region's best storytellers. Grab a flashlight and some friends, turn out the lights and enjoy these spooky tales.

What would you do if other kids teased you about the way you dress?

Speak Out Here!

Dear Amy: What's the earliest use of fingerprints? --William J., Penang, Malaysia

Dear William: The ancient Assyrians and Chinese used fingerprints to sign legal documents and to identify people, the earliest cultures to do so. In 1901, Sir Edward Richard Henry started the first fingerprint database where records of people's prints were kept and used to identify suspected criminals. More info about how fingerprints have been used through the centuries is available at http://onin.com/fp/fphistory.html

Dear Amy: What does it mean if something is magnetic? --Chris B., Hiratsuka, Japan

Dear Chris: When something is magnetic, the tiny atoms inside are all pointing the same direction. When the particles are arranged in this way, the material develops north and south poles. These poles have a set area of space, or magnetic field, in which they are able to attract other magnetized objects. As described at www.science-tech. nmstc. ca/ english/ schoolzone/ Info_Magnets.cfm the rule of magnets is "like poles repel and unlike poles attract."

(The second site is no longer available.)

Ask Amy a Question

Copyright 2000 www.4Kids.org All rights reserved. Distributed by Universal Press Syndicate