– by M.M., J.H., and A.M.

Under the big blue sea

there is a creature named anemone.

She has many wavy tentacles

that each have some chemicals.

She lives on top of a rock

And doesn’t have legs, but can actually walk!

The anemone loves to eat.

Fish and crab are some of her favorite treats.

She has many friends, especially the clownfish.

This friend is bright orange, shiny white, and jet black.

He is so friendly, anemone doesn’t attack.

The clown fish keeps anemone clean,

Always trying to keep his best friend pristine.

He protects anemone from enemies

And works hard to take care of his eggs.

600 hatching might take 6 to 10 days

That seems like a lot, but it’s all A okay!

Clownfish can’t wait to meet his kids,

And with any luck, before any squid.

If clownfish doesn’t share, that’s pretty rude.

So he always gives anemone some leftover food.

As a thank you, anemone gives clown fish a place

To live and a place to sleep, free of charge and full of fun.

When both friends are fed, their day is done.

And they drift to sleep to the ocean’s hum.

Just down the road,

Still under the sea,

Swims another little fish – the Goby!

Of the vigilant kind is he,

And is always on the lookout for predators

Who might find him tasty.

But at the end of the day he needs to rest,

And can’t seem to find a safe place that is best.

But look!

All of a sudden Goby spots,

A Pistol Shrimp digging up lots

Of sand to make a burrow.

“Little shrimp, your home is grand,”

Says Goby, looking at the piles of sand.

“Yes,” says the Shrimp, “grand it may be,

But the problem is I cannot see

Very well and am always scared,

That hungry predators will catch me unaware.”

“Well how about this,” the Gogy says,

“I’ll be your eyes if you be my hands.”

“I’ll watch for gouls prowling the deep,

While you build us a home in which to sleep.”

“That’s perfect!,” the shrimp said.

“I’ll start making up your bed!”

Somewhere within the colorful tropical reefs of the Red Sea exists a giant, slimy green colored Eel named Moray. Despite being eight feet in length, Moray lives within a dark narrow crevice within the otherwise brightly colored reef.

Elsewhere in the reef exists a large, speedy and well camouflaged fish named Grouper. Grouper has a large gaping mouth capable of engulfing anything that gets too close.

Despite the frightening appearances of Moray and Grouper the two are best friends and often eat dinner with one another. Moray loves to eat small reef fish, but unfortunately the reef fish are too quick for Moray to catch.

Grouper also loves to eat small reef fish, but unfortunately Grouper is too big to fit into the small crevices the reef fish hide in.

Working together however, both Moray and Grouper can cook up a perfect fish dinner. Grouper swims to the crevice where Moray lives and asks Moray for help.

Eager for dinner, Moray agrees on the condition that Grouper helps Moray get dinner as well. In response, Grouper chases all the little reef fish into the crevices within the reef. Moray then leaves his dark home and wiggles into the crevices the reef fish are hiding in and chases them right into the large gaping mouth of Grouper.

In return Grouper once again chases the remaining reef fish back into the crevices in the reef and right into the mouth of Moray.

Working together Grouper and Moray are able to full their stomachs with nutritious fish and remain friends and fishing buddies happily ever after.


The Elements of Bedtime

– By C.M., E.H., and S.B.

You’re finally home after a long day of school. Exhaustion from causing mischief with your best friend, doodling in the corner of your addition worksheet, and, on occasion, learning something, is suddenly swept away when your parent’s bellowing voice echoes from the kitchen:

“Dinner’s ready!”

A feast of french fries lies before you and you waste no time in scarfing them down by the handful, salt stinging your tongue.

The sensation makes you pause. Perhaps you did learn something today because the term NaCl suddenly comes to mind.

You remember your teacher saying it’s another name for salt, and that salt is actually two different elements called Sodium and Chlorine combined. According to the teacher, sodium and chlorine are best friends, and never wanted to be separated.

You can understand that. After all, you hate being apart from your best friend during quiet time. It feels wrong to not have them by your side at all times.

The teacher also said that whenever sodium and chlorine hold hands, they are connected by a bond and act as a single unit: salt.

Your pranks and adventures with your own best friend come to mind. Holding hands as you walk through the hallways, running across the playground together, and sticking crayons up your noses… It’s almost like the two of you share a mind sometimes, and it tends to drive adults crazy.

Hunger consumes you again, and you don’t waste any more time thinking about someone else’s best friend. You eagerly grab the ketchup, and in your haste, squeeze the bottle too hard! Its oozing red goo splashes all over yourself and the table.

Even though you don’t think the mess you created is that big of a deal, your parents certainly do, and they send you straight to the bath. You start running the water by turning on the faucet.

You remember how you and your best friend talked about how you like taking baths as long as you have bubbles and rubber ducks to play with. Otherwise, what’s the point?

You then remember why you were talking about taking baths in the first place. In class, your teacher asked everyone if they knew what the faucet in the bathtub is made of. Apparently it’s made of an element called Zinc which is also a metal.

The teacher explained how metals have many little parts that are strongly held together in a fixed formation, and that little electrons bounce around them. Similar to the hackysack you and your friends kick around at recess.

You then notice the mirror above the sink is all fogged up by the steam of the bath you just took.The teacher told you how water is made by two Hydrogen atoms and one Oxygen atom.

The teacher said that when water becomes steam, the parts that make it up are just further apart. Sort of how when you and your best friend are together in school, you’re like the parts in water. But when you go home to your house, the two of you are like steam because you’re further apart but still connected through a quick phone call.

You go up to the mirror, wipe away the steam, and get ready to brush your teeth.

You grab your toothbrush and place a small amount of toothpaste on it. You add some water and then begin to brush your teeth. You make sure to brush every part of your mouth, even your tongue! As you brush, you suddenly remember what your teacher told you during class.

Your teacher said that toothpaste contains something called fluoride. Fluoride has the special power of cleaning your mouth and protecting it from germs. When you clean up your toys, you are protecting the floor from getting dirty. You can always remember that fluoride cleans up your mouth just like you clean up your toys!

You finish brushing your teeth and use some water to rinse your mouth. As you are putting your toothbrush away, you notice the mirror fog up again when you breathe on it. You are curious. What comes out of your mouth that causes the mirror to fog? You continue breathing and the mirror continues to fog. What is this mysterious fog made of? You then remember what your teacher taught you during class.

Your teacher explained that everyone breathes out something called carbon dioxide. Carbon dioxide is an invisible gas, that is made up of carbon and oxygen. In this case, carbon and oxygen are like best friends that live in different countries. They are very far apart but still connected at heart. When you breathe, the carbon dioxide exits your mouth and sticks to the mirror. As a result, you see fog on the mirror.

You admire your ability to create fog on the mirror and then make your way to your bedroom to put on your pajamas.

You slip into your onesie and climb into bed, thinking of all the different combinations of elements who are best friends, and how they’re always together even when far apart. It makes you think of your own best friend, and how you know you’ll always be together as well. You finally fall asleep, eager to see your best friend in the morning.


DNA and the Bonds Supporting Life

-by H.F., A.B., and S.F.

Once upon a time there was a group of friends who worked together. They each
served special roles, but only as a collective could they accomplish their goals. This story is about two pairs of best friends, Trixie and Adam and Connor and George. All four kids know each other and love to play, but each pair has a friendship bond that is so strong they know they will be friends for life.

Trixie, who really enjoys playing soccer, has a big family who she loves to be
around, especially when they are silly and dance around. Her parents brought her to her brothers soccer game one day, and playing on the swings, also watching his brothers game, sat Adam. Adam does not like sports very much, he is interested in music instead. After they began talking, they realized that each of them enjoy family time, especially with their older brothers and both of them absolutely love dancing. The realization of these two common interests between Adam and Trixie allowed them to talk and play on the playground for hours, and ever since that day they have been inseparable.

Years later in their art class at school they met George and Connor, who were
also best friends. George and Connor met when they competed against each other at a chess tournament. When Connor went to congratulate his opponent, George, on winning, they began talking and George asked if Connor wanted to come with him and his family to get celebratory ice cream. Both families went to get ice cream, and since that day the boys have been best friends, with their common love for ice cream, chess and a TV show they watch together about dinosaurs. These three interests have bonded Connor and George for life, and now whatever life throws at them, they know that they have each other.

Both pairs of best friends like to hangout with each other, and all four are on the
quiz bowl team at school. Although each of them come from families with different religions, parents, siblings and heritage, they all enjoy debate and want to win the championship against their rival high school. Trixie, Adam, Connor and George needed a team name, so they worked together and came up with DNA, Delivers Nonstop Answers. They thought of this name because their diversity allows for all of them to be really good with different types of questions, so their knowledge covers a lot of areas. Trixie is really good with sport questions, Adam is really good with music, Connor is good at mathematical questions, and George is a huge history buff. In order for them to
win the championship, they all need to be on their game and ensure they fulfill their special jobs. If they can successfully do this, the team will win.

Win or lose, this team will live very successful lives, because they each have
their best friend, their own groups of family and friends as support systems and their past shaping who they are. This backbone consisting of a support system group and their pasts is what allows their friendship to be so strong. As these two inseparable pairs work together, they become even stronger because friendships are the building blocks of life.


MARIE CURIE, the curious scientist.

-by L.K.

Marie Curie was born more than 100 years ago, in 1867. As a young child, she would listen very carefully to her father talk in different languages about science, geography and many other things. From the age of four, she would spend her days staring through the glass cabinet at her father’s scientific equipment, curious about what they could do. Marie had a real passion for learning and was always the top in her class at school. She would spend most of her days reading about new things and perfecting different languages – she could speak five languages!

Marie lived in Poland a long time ago when life was very complicated. Although she was very smart and hardworking, she was not allowed to have a job because she was a woman. However, Marie continued to work hard and study on her own. Finally, Marie was able to move from Poland to France. In France, she lived with her sister and started to study Physics and Mathematics at a university. Physics is the study of matter (what all things are made of) and energy. Marie was interested in different materials and what they do. She worked very hard in her laboratory and was the first to create the term “radioactivity”. Radioactivity is the rays or particles that are given off when atoms break apart. Things that are radioactive can be very dangerous, but Marie was very curious about radioactivity. Her work was difficult, but she never gave up and always tried her best. Finally, she discovered the element Radium, which she realized gave off a lot of radioactive energy. Radium also glowed in the dark – just like fairy lights. Marie discovered another radioactive element, which she named Polonium after her country Poland.

For all her hard work in discovering two molecules, Marie was awarded the Nobel Prize.

The Nobel Prize is one of the greatest achievements that anyone can receive. Winners get a big gold medal and a lot of money from the King and Queen of Sweden. Marie was the first woman ever to win a Nobel Prize. She then won another Nobel Prize and became the first person to win two Nobel Prizes. Marie was so happy receive such a special prize because she had worked so hard to understand radioactivity.

All the hard work that Marie dedicated to her research paid off as she made new discoveries, but she has also helped so many people. Radioactive metals, like the two materials that Marie discovered, are now used to treat horrible diseases like cancer. Overall, Marie Curie made a great contribution to humankind everywhere because we use her scientific discoveries in our everyday lives.