Week of July 8, 2001

Invention Dimension

Put on your thinking cap at Innovative Lives, a site about some of the most remarkable inventors of our time. Located at http://invention.smithsonian.org/
this Web site features more than 30 inventors who have made awesome discoveries in a variety of fields, from electronics and transportation to medicine and the human body. Check out Mike Augspurger's innovative All-Terrain Handcycle for people who use wheelchairs. Then head to Charles Townes' maser, an invention that inspired the laser. Stop by Akhil Madhani's microscopic robots, which doctors can use to do surgery from thousands of miles away! These outstanding inventors will inspire you with their advice to aspiring inventors everywhere.

Nominate a cool Web site at

Visit the Featured Web sites to find the answers

In what year was Newman Darby's windsurfer first tested?



What are the three basic parts of braces?

rubber bands, clips, copper wire
spacers, caps, retainers
brackets, bonding, arch wire


About how many languages are spoken in Africa?
Over 500
Over 1,000
Over 1,500




Say "Cheese"

Smile at the birdy, then head to www.healthyteeth.org. Healthy Teeth is filled with great advice for a healthy smile. Learn about the different parts of your teeth. Get advice about how to brush and floss so you don't get cavities. You can also learn what fluoride is and how it works. Finally, try the cool experiments. Remember: Smile and the world smiles with you.

Ancient Civilizations

Journey to the ancient lands of Egypt, Greece, Rome and Africa at http://carlos.emory.edu/ ODYSSEY/ MidElem_Home.html. Each section of Odyssey Online features info about that culture's daily life, mythology and ceremonial customs. Find out what Romans painted on their apartment walls, what types of food Greeks ate and how Egyptians made mummies. Learn what these ancient cultures offer to the world.

Do you think high school kids should be lifeguards at public swimming pools?

Speak Out Here!

Dear Amy: I love playing basketball, but I don't know all the rules. Can you help me? -- Asif, Gombak, Malaysia

Dear Asif: I love basketball too, but knowing all the rules of the game makes it much easier to understand. At www.learn2.com/05/0543/0543.asp you can learn step-by- step about the game. From its inventor, James Naismith, to what moves are considered fouls, this site will give you a great base of knowledge. If you want to learn more, www.fiba.com has a complete set of basketball rules that you can download. There are a lot of rules, so I hope you like reading. (The first site is no longer available.)

Dear Amy: Why can't astronauts go to Mars? -- Chrissy, Washington, D.C.

Dear Chrissy: A trip to Mars sounds intriguing, but making the more than 35 million-mile flight is a stretch for today's technology and astronauts. There's a fun rendition of what a trip to our neighbor planet would entail at www.discovery.com/area/science/mars/ mars.620.html. Perhaps the biggest challenge would be if astronauts did go to Mars, they might fly off the planet because Mars' gravity is only one-third of Earth's. (This site is no longer available.)

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