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Archive for April, 2010

Eighth graders recently spent time learning about how severe earthquakes take a toll on the metropolitan cities and towns surrounding their epicenters. Students were also exposed to the infrequent but present history of earthquakes in Massachusetts. Then a question was posed: As a government official in these difficult economic times and knowledge of the area’s geologic history, would you choose to spend government dollars on putting in earthquake-resistant supports to public buildings such as schools, fire stations, and hospitals? Here are some of the responses of our future politicians:

In favor of the earthquake-resistant treatment spending, representative Kaylee of Reading.

I say yes. We may not be having them now but what is stopping them from happening? We need to be File:Chuetsu earthquake-earthquake liquefaction1.jpgsure that our children and sick are taken care of and that the fire and policemen can get to us. Public buildings like schools, hospitals, fire and police departments are very important on any occasion, which means they have to be saved in an emergency. If someone is stuck under a fatal load and the fire department can’t get to them then what is their purpose?

These may be tough times but they will be worse if everything comes tumbling down like a child’s building set. Having the construction done isn’t that expensive. Just some replaced boards and extra support. You could even do these things around your own house. Support your foundation, heater and chimney in place. Also put a few boards to support your walls and ceiling. We have the choice to be safe, will we take it?

… and opposed to the referendum we have Representative Megan of Reading:

Most public buildings in New England are made of bricks. Police and fire stations, schools, town halls, and many more are made from bricks. It just happens to be that bricks are one of the most weak and dangerous in an earthquake. They break and fall most easily and when one occurs it’s almost certain that buildings made of bricks are not going to survive through it like if you drop a glass cup sometimes the don’t break but most the time they shatter.

I don’t think we should use tax dollars to make public buildings earthquake resistant. Even though it is a lot more safe, I believe that people can survive without it. There are plenty of other things to spend tax dollars on. Earthquakes are’nt common in New England now; they used to be but now they aren’t and it wouldn’t be the most pressing issue on my list if I was the mayor. Also, this would mean the taxes will rise and now lots of people can’t afford that especially in these times. A lot of people would not be happy with knowing that their tax money is going towards earth-quake resistance when they believe that there will never be one here.

The truth is a lot of people will experience an earthquake in their lifetime. If we learn from other earthquakes and did what other people did to be successful, I think that earthquake resistance is not necessary and people can be safe and happy with their family.

Photos Courtesy of WikiMedia Commons

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by Simran P. – 6th Grade

 

    On Thursday, March 18th, our Chorus group wen ton a trip to the Boston Opera House to watch a great Broadway musical, The Lion King, stage directed by Julie Taymor. With a total length of about three hours, the musical is about a little lion named Simba who dreams of following his father’s footsteps to become king of the pride lands. One day, Mufasa, Simba’s father, reminds his son that he won’t always be around. When his father does die in the story, Simba learns that it is all up to him. He gets tricked by his cruel uncle Scar, and runs away. Much later, he is reminded that his father lives in him, which is finally when Simba discovers his royal power. With many action-packed scenes, The Lion King is powerfully weaved together to be a sensational musical.
    One thing that I greatly enjoyed about the production was the amazing costumes and stage decor. It File:BuyiZama Rafiki Taiwan.jpgfelt like everything fit into place amazingly. Much of the stage effects used were very creative, and helped make the story even more powerful. The characters did a great job with each of their roles, and the whole performance overall was theatrical.
    My favorite character in the play was Simba, the cute little baby cub that every member of the audience completely fell in love with while watching the show. While starting off as the playful baby lion with a curious personality, Simba grows to be a strong, powerful king, reflecting the strength of his father. With the help of Rafiki, the crazy baboon, Simba realizes who he really is, the king of the pride lands. This is definitely one reason why I am such a big fan of The Lion King. It was a great field trip, that will certainly become one of my favorite memories of sixth grade. 

Photo Courtesy of WikiMedia Commons

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The Don

by Tristan A. – 8th Grade

I drew this because I was inspired by my Sicilian background. I was so inspired I bought both of the Godfather video games, and I also saw the first Godfather movie.

It took very long to make this picture because I needed to keep every part in proportion so he didn’t look disfigured. I did this countless times until I got it just right. I do multiple drafts of drawings, just like when you write a novel.  You never really get it right the first few times.

I am best at drawing portraits of men. I think it is because their features are more defined and hard. With the Don I spent a lot of time on his nose (Probably because it took up half his face; I traced over it lightly and then darkened it up). Eyes, however, are my favorite part of the face to draw, because I think you can really read a person when you look deep in their eyes.

I always carry a pad of paper around with me, a few very sharp pencils, and a sharpener.You never know when the urge to draw will spike up in me.

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Dry Ice

James S. – Grade 6

Dry ice, Dry iceFile:Liquid awesome.ppg.jpg
It burns in your hand.
However, it’s cold-
I don’t understand.

Dry ice, Dry ice
It slides all around.
Could’ve had tons of sugar
Perhaps a pound.

Dry ice, Dry ice
Carbon dioxide in solid
Unlike water-made ice
Mud does not make it squalid.

Dry ice, Dry ice
With a mind of its own
Its mad crazy nature
Sets dry ice alone.
Don’t mess with Dry Ice!

Dry ice, Dry ice
Sublimating away
It won’t be here tomorrow
But it is here today.

Dry ice, Dry ice
It refuses to melt
And it will sting you
If it is felt.

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