In This Issue: All About the Benjamins, Earth Day, A Volcano's Name-O
U.S. Treasury Makes Change Come February 2011, Benjamin Franklin is going to look like a million bucks. As the face of the $100 bill, Ben has the dubious distinction of being the most frequently counterfeited note in circulation. The U.S. Treasury is going Hollywood high-tech and using 3-D to keep criminals from copying it. The redesigned $100 bill's bells and whistles—or digits, for accuracy's sake—on the 3-D security ribbon appear to move and change.
Activity Ideas - Math
Your family has dinner at a restaurant in town. The meal cost $100. Your dad asks you to calculate a 20% tip. How much money is that? $20 ($100 x 0.20 = $20
One week of groceries costs a family of four about $225. The Super Duper Supermarket has two specials: either 10% off or $15 off. Which is a better deal? 10% off ($225 x 0.10 = $22.50 off)
Your piggy bank is filled with $75 in change. You go to a bank to roll and deposit your coins. The bank keeps 1% of the money it rolls. How much does it take from your account? 75¢ ($75 x .01 = 75¢)
You will earn 5% interest during the first year. How much is that? $3.75 ($75 x 0.05 = $3.75)
Green Day Earth Day is 40 years old and counting. In its first year, nearly 20 million Americans participated in the celebration. Since then, the movement has grown worldwide, with thousands of events in more than 180 countries.
Activity Ideas - Language Arts
Together with your child, discuss ways that you can conserve energy in daily living.
Come up with an Earth Day Challenge for your family and friends; ideally one that you can do for at least 40 days in honor of the anniversary. (For even more motivation, participants could be divided into two groups, to compete and compare accomplishments.)
Name your team, write a mission statement, and identify goals to cut back on your energy usage and reduce waste. For example, Week 1: Go paperless - don't print material off of the computer, re-use scrap paper, forgo paper towels for washable hand towels; Week 2: Carpool, walk wherever you can, take public transportation.
After 40 days: Make a pledge to live more conscientiously.
The (Say What?) Volcano For more than a week, the world has been riveted by the Eyjafjallajokull volcano, in Iceland. The eruption on April 14th stranded millions of passengers for days and left the media tongue-tied at the prospect of pronouncing the name on-air; as far as we can tell, it's EY-ya-fyat-lah-YOH-kuht. At its peak, the volcano disrupted travel for 1.2 million passengers a day. Activity Ideas - Language Arts
Eyjafjallajokull is made up of 16 letters, has six and a half syllables, and would amass 47 points in a game of Scrabble.
One way to ease pronunciation is to break a word down into its distinct parts: "Eyja" is the Icelandic word for island; "fjalla" means mountain; and "jokull" is glacier. Another trick is to come up with a saying to remind you, such as "Hey, ya fergot La Yogurt," as suggested in the New York Times City Room Blog.
Come up with a few extremely long words in the English language. (For example, "Supercalifragilisticexpialidocious," which means "a word that you say when you don't know what to say.")
Count the number of letters in the name, as well as syllables.
Determine the number of vowels and consonants and the number of legitimate words that make up the longer word.
Challenge your friends or family to an irreverent game of Scrabble: See who can create the longest word by stringing together a series of shorter words. Come up with definitions based on words within the word.