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What are snakes? Evolution and biology

By |2018-04-15T00:32:41+00:00September 16th, 2017|Biology|

Two pythons Snakes evolved from lizards only about 150 million years ago, during the Jurassic Period. This is during the time of the dinosaurs, about the same time that the first birds evolved from small dinosaurs. Like birds and mammals, though, snakes really began to take over after most of the dinosaurs died about 95 million years ago, at [...]

South American environment

By |2018-04-19T15:03:07+00:00September 8th, 2017|Environment, South America|

The Andes mountains run down the Pacific side of South America South America is a long, narrow continent running from the equator down nearly to the South Pole. So the north part of South America, near the equator, is generally hot and wet. In the south part of South America, near the South Pole, [...]

Maimonides – a Jewish doctor in medieval Cairo

By |2018-04-08T01:10:54+00:00July 27th, 2017|Islam, Science|

Saladin's castle in Cairo, where Maimonides worked In the 1100s AD, when Maimonides wrote his book about medicine, doctors didn't have very many medicines or medical treatments that worked. Most of the things they tried just made people even worse. Maimonides was smart enough to realize this. So he wrote his book mainly about how to stay healthy and [...]

Perseus and Andromeda – Greek mythology

By |2018-04-23T11:45:26+00:00July 16th, 2017|Greeks, Literature|

Medusa's sisters, from an Athenian Proto-Geometric vase about 675-650 BC So Perseus took the winged sandals and the sword and the shield and he said thank you and he flew to where Medusa's cave was. She lived there with her two sisters who were ugly too like her. When Perseus got there all three sisters were asleep. Perseus remembered [...]

Shang houses and altars – Shang Dynasty China

By |2018-04-18T09:53:25+00:00June 5th, 2017|Architecture, China|

The Shang Dynasty city wall around Zhengzhou (thanks to Gary Todd) There was a city wall of rammed earth around the Shang capital at An-yang, and around other cities like Zhengzhou, a little south of An-yang. These were built by piling up dirt and pounding it (probably with stones or wooden mallets) until [...]

What are reptiles? Biology and Evolution

By |2018-04-21T11:56:35+00:00May 26th, 2017|Biology|

Boa Constrictor snake Some kinds of amphibians evolved into reptiles about 300 million years ago. At this time, plate tectonics had moved more and more of the land on Earth into one big continent called Pangaea. All the land being together changed the weather so that it was drier and colder than before. That [...]

How Anansi gave people stories

By |2018-04-12T09:59:36+00:00May 21st, 2017|Africa, Literature|

A West African story Long, long ago, according to this West African story, the sky god Nyame kept all the stories locked up in a wooden box, up high in the sky, and the people down on earth had no stories to tell. Lots of people and animals had tried to get the stories from [...]