The 2D Dream

I had a dream that did not seem like a dream. It was really unreal.

I woke up one morning and sat up in my bed, but things just didn’t seem right. I

pushed my covers away and got up, walked to the bathroom as I usually do. I noticed

that the doorknob was harder to turn than usual. I thought no big deal and continued

into the bathroom. I turned on the water in the sink and washed my face and started

to brush my teeth and noticed that the toothbrush and toothpaste were flat. I

thought it must be another one of those strange mornings and continued getting ready

for the day. I tried to dress. I noticed that my jeans and shirts were flat like

clothes for a paper doll. There was only a front and a back. There were no sides. I

was trying to see how I would fit into that. I put on the clothes and I noticed that

they fit! I was now flat as a sheet of paper! I no longer had sides! I opened my

bedroom door and looked for my dog Bite. He was his usual shaggy-self waiting for me

in the hall next to the wall. When I went to him to pet his back, I noticed that he

had no sides either! Bite had only a front and a back with a flat tail! I ran to the

kitchen to find my mother who was also flat, cooking flat breakfast in the kitchen

while my flat father was reading the sports section of the newspaper. My family

acted like this was normal and nothing was wrong!

I quickly took Bite outside for a walk like I usually do before I leave for school.

It was a beautiful morning with the sun in the bright blue sky with white puffy

clouds. I walked Bite on his leash down the sidewalk and noticed that the houses

looked the same from the front, but there were no sides to the houses. You could see

the cars in the driveways, but only from the rear. There were no sides. The trees

were in the same places that they always were but they were flat. I hurried my walk

with Bite and returned home. I had a flat breakfast waiting for me. It was hard to

eat and I didn’t feel full. The hardest part about breakfast was drinking liquids.

They were in flat glasses and were hard to pour into your mouth. I grabbed my

backpack and ran to catch my bus. Everything weighed the same and things were still

hard to carry. I had a hard time seeing my bus because it was also flat. Everyone

acted like this was normal.

School looked the same except it was flat. There were no long halls anymore and it

didn’t seem crowded when you entered a classroom or hall. The gym seemed smaller and

unusual which make playing games very different, but no one seemed to notice.

Can you imagine playing flat basketball or flat volleyball? Everything else about

the day seemed normal: the computer, the English, and math assignments. It only

became odd when we went to science class. The science teacher discussed all of the

dimensions that are known to man so far. He acted like we had never experienced the

third dimension. School wasn’t out soon enough for me. I couldn’t wait to get home

and go to bed and wake up from this nightmare! I skipped dinner and didn’t do my

homework. For the first time since I was small, I was in a hurry to get to bed.Just

as I was falling asleep, the alarm went off and I woke up in my bed. It was six A.M.

A regular day in my regular world.

Everything was in 3D as usual. So was it all real or just a nightmare?

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Berry Bear and Boo Bunny Travel to Bootes

Berry Bear and Boo Bunny Travel to Bootes

Berry Bear and Boo Bunny were sitting in Berry’s cave one morning. They were doing their usual thing of eating berries, honey, and carrots when Berry Bear declared that he was bored and wanted to do something different. He told Boo Bunny that he had a spaceship in the field just below his cave and said that they should take a trip. Boo Bunny asked him where would they go? Berry Bear said they should leave earth and go to the nearest star that begins with a B. They should go to Bootes since both of their names begin with B.

Berry Bear had spacesuits that he and Boo Bunny put on and climbed into the spaceship and planned their trip. They took a compass and turned it north because Bootes is north of earth far in space. Three-two-one-lift-off! They were on their way to Bootes! They passed the trees, passed the birds, passed the clouds, they even passed the moon! Yes, the moon! Up, up and up they went, far into space! The sky was now dark with bright globs of lights! It was a beautiful sight! Berry Bear and Boo Bunny were moving so fast that in a snap of your fingers, they were there at Bootes. Boo Bunny told Berry Bear to find a good place to land, so they chose the planet Bot. It was a giant blue planet that circled around Beta Bootis, one of the stars in the Bootes constellation. Bot was not hot or cold and it had bright yellow clouds with a bright red sun in the sky.

The spaceship landed on Bot. Berry Bear and Boo Bunny were greeted by purple three-legged people of all sizes with heads that had a mouth and one large eye. They ran constantly from side to side. The people called themselves Bottoms. They greeted Berry Bear and Boo Bunny by grabbing their paws with their hands and dancing in a circle one time. Some wore a sunglass that covered their eye. They were very friendly and so many. Boo Bunny became so dizzy and fell down after greeting all of the bottoms. All of the buildings on Bot were shaped like pyramids and every Bottom had a pet at their pyramid house. They either had a six-legged dog or a six-legged cat. Some of the pets were plaid, striped or polka-dotted.
The Bottoms decided it was time to eat, so they took Berry Bear and Boo Bunny to their pyramid restaurant to eat. The Bottoms drove three-wheeled cars and trucks. When they reached the restaurant, they had green fizzy sodas and red and yellow vegetables, but they were tasty treats. The Bottoms said that they do not eat meat, but they have great treats to eat! They eat pink, blue and white ice cream with red, yellow and green drizzles on top. The meal was delicious to Berry Bear and Boo Bunny! They were full to the top! They were taken to see some of the animals that live on Bot, like the llama looking animal that they called the boojim. The boojim was silver with lots of curly fur. It ate the pink straw that grew on the blue ground. They also saw birds of all colors flying on their backs through the sky. They saw animals that looked like half furry orange elephants called buppers. They reached a river of yellow water that emptied into a yellow lake with fish that jumped every now and then. There were boats on the river that looked like Hong Kong Junks.

The red sun began to set and the Bottoms all went to their pyramid houses to get ready for bed. One of the Bottom families invited Berry Bear and Boo Bunny into their home to spend the night. Boo Bunny found it very interesting that the Bottoms sleep while hanging upside down from a rod inside the top of their pyramid home and they never fall off the rod. Boo Bunny and Berry Bear slept on the floor of the pyramid home.

When morning came, everyone woke up and started to get ready for the day. The bottoms came down from the rod, showered, brushed their teeth and ate the breakfast that the mother Bottom made. It was brown ham and red eggs. It did not look so great, but it smelled wonderful and tasted really good! Boo Bunny and Berry Bear thanked the Bottom family for inviting them for the night and prepared for their return trip home to earth. They said goodbye to all the Bottoms as they returned to their spaceship and boarded ready for their trip back to earth. All the Bottoms waved good-bye and gave them a present of twenty bottles of green fizzy soda to take with them on their journey home. Soon Berry Bear started the engines and before they knew it, Boo Bunny and Berry Bear were home drinking their green fizzy sodas and talking about the happy memories of their trip to Bot!

The Digestion Waterworks Vacation

It’s vacation time, but the Cumberland kids,can’t start their vacation until they

complete their summer learning assignment: How do mammals digest their food?

“Are you dressed and ready for your new assignment? I’m sure you will find this a

really great way to start your summer vacation.” said Mr. Burp.

Everyone entered the Digestion Waterworks Waterpark at the giant mouth. ”All goggles

on Everyone into a raft and hold on tight. We are going to follow digestion from the

beginning to the end!”,shouted Mr. Burp.

“We’re ready Mr. Burp!”,shouted Jon, Lisa, Mateo and Wan.

“Why is this one moving up, down and side to side with water shooting everywhere?”,

asked Lisa.

“Digestion begins in the mouth with chewing and saliva or what you call spit. Saliva

wets and begins to break down the food that is ripped and mashed by the teeth when

there is chewing. When the process is complete, the tongue pushes the food down the

tube called the esophagus(ee-sof-uh-gus)—and here we gooooo!!! AHHHH!!!”,screamed

Mr. Burp.

“The first stop is the stomach where more liquids called acids,enzymes hormones and

water are added to the food to break it down even further.”,said Mr.Burp.

“This feels like a big washing machine!,said Wan.

“Some foods are quickly processed and stored in the liver for later use. The liver

is a warehouse and a filter. It stores packets of food that are processed into sugar

for the body and collects the parts that cannot be used by the body for disposal

later. The rest goes to the small intestine.”, said Mr. Burp.

“Uh-Oh! Now it’s drain time!”,said Wan.

“Wheeee!”,squealed Lisa.

“We are now entering the small intestines it is twenty two feet long in humans.”,

explained Mr. Burp.

“Most of your food is absorbed in the small intestines.”,stated Mr.Burp.

“Hey, this is like passing through a carwash! We keep passing through those fringe

curtains!”,yelled Jon.

“Those things you call “fringe curtains are called villi(vill-eye) in the small

intestine. The liquid food now passes through the villi into the bloodstream to the

muscles and tissues by the red blood cells.”, yelled Mr. Burp.

“Whoa! Where are we now?, asked Mateo.

“It sure is dark! Watch that curve!”, yelled Lisa.

“You are now in the large intestine. This is where some of the water you drink and

water from the food you eat is collected and absorbed by the body.”,explained Mr.

Burp.

“It’s the real waterworks of the body!”,said Mateo.

“Yes. You are right, Mateo!”,said Mr. Burp. “It is also where the solid waste is

processed for disposal. The water from the large intestine is used to form stool or

feces(fee-sees) that is passed out of the body through the anus(A-nus).”

“Here we go!” yelled Jon, Lisa, Mateo and Wan as their raft shot out into a large

pool of fresh water. Wan said,”And now we are in a large toilet bowl waiting to be

flushed away!”

“That’s right, Wan!”,said Mr. Burp.”And that‘s how we digest food. Are you ready

for your summer vacation?”

“YEAH!”, shouted Jon, Lisa, Mateo and Wan.

References

http://www.niddk.nih.gov/health-information/digestive-diseases/digestive-system-how-it-works
http://www.kidshealth.org/en/kids/digestive-system.html
http://www.wonderopolis.org/wonder/how-do-you-digest-food

The Cave of the Ear

“Wow, Mr. Burp! Another learning adventure? We have our cave exploring equipment ready to go. The spelunking gear is ready!”, said Jon.

“Yes, today, away we go into the ear and look at how it works!”, said Mr. Burp.”Is everyone attached to your tethers? We don’t want to lose anybody.”

“Yes Mr. Burp!” the group said.

“We will start with the auricle. The outer ear that directs sound. Headlights on as we go deep into the ear!” whispered Mr. Burp.

“Hey! There’s this sticky, slippery stuff on the bottom! I can hardly keep from falling!”, cried Lisa.

“That’s cerumen or what you call ear wax. It keeps insects and dirt from collecting on the eardrum or the tympanic membrane.”, explained Mr. Burp.

“There’s hair all around here on the top, the walls and the bottom. It’s like walking through a carwash!” said Jon.

“The hair helps push the wax and dirt out of the ear canal.”, said Mr. Burp.”Sometimes it builds up and needs a doctor to help move it out, Wan”.

“That is the tympanic membrane, also known as the eardrum. See it move as we talk?, asked Mr. Burp.

“What’s that on the other side of it?”,asked Jon.

“That is what is called the middle ear. We will explore further. Normally we would not be able to pass through the tympanic membrane, but we will today. Step through this hole.”, said Mr. Burp.

“When the tympanic membrane vibrates or shakes, it makes the three bones of the middle ear move. The bone next to tympanic membrane is the malleus or hammer, which strikes the incus or anvil which shakes the stapes or stirrup. The stirrup vibrates the hairs in the vestibule of the cochlea.”, said Mr. Burp.

“That big snail looking thing is the cochlea?”, asked Lisa.

“Yes.”, said Mr. Burp.”The cochlea is the beginning of the inner ear. There are many hairs in the liquid inside the cochlea that move the auditory nerve which goes to the brain and is recognized as sound.”

“What’s that big tunnel at the bottom of the middle ear under the bones?”, asked Mateo.

“That is called the eustachian (you-stay-shun) tube. It keeps the middle ear dry and maintains the air pressure so that the tympanic membrane and the bones of the ear vibrate without any problems.”, said Mr.Burp.

“Where does it end?”, asked Wan.

“Well, this is how we will leave, so let’s find out!”, said Mr. Burp. “Hold on to your tethers as we slowly descend! When you yawn, this tube opens to let a small amount of air in. It’s that “pop” you hear when flying on an airplane. The air it lets in keeps the middle ear bones dry and keeps the tympanic membrane from rupturing.”

“Weeeeee!”, said Lisa. “That was a straight drop with no curves.”

“Correction. That was a slightly slanted drop without curves.”, said Mr. Burp.

“We are in the mouth!”, said Jon.

“What happens when someone can’t hear?”, asked Mateo.

“It can have three causes or a mixture,” explained Mr. Burp. “The tympanic membrane can be torn as it was when we entered the middle ear, or the bones can become gooey and sticky and won’t vibrate.This is what happens with a cold, allergies or an ear infection. They also will not vibrate if they are under water. This usually happens with allergies or a torn tympanic membrane.”

“If the nerve is damaged,which can be from a virus, medications, or head injury, then the sound is still not transferred to the brain and sometimes there may be a combination of all three!”, stated Mr. Burp.

“Wow! You almost have to be a mechanic to repair the ear!”, said Jon.

“I guess that’s what you would call the doctor that works on the ear. The doctor for the ear is called an otolaryngologist (Oh-toe-laren-goll-oh-jest). Commonly known as the ear-nose and throat doctor.” said Mr. Burp. “They don’t like it when you put things in the ear canal. It is hard to retrieve them when they get stuck and they can cause a lot of damage to the ear by punching holes in the tympanic membrane and breaking the bones of the middle ear. It is not easy to make those repairs. There are very few replacement parts.”

“So we should take care of our ears like we take care of our cars.”, said Lisa.

“Yes.”, said Mr. Burp. “ We need to also keep them protected from loud noises. It damages the hairs in the cochlea. You don’t want to have to use hearing aids before you are 30 years old.”

“Well, this ends today’s adventure. Get ready for the next one, gang!”, said Mr. Burp. “Goodbye!”

“Goodbye Mr. Burp!”, said the gang.”See you next time!”

References

http://www.asha.org
http://www.mayoclinic.org
http://www.healthyhearing.com

The R Story Too!

Reviewing the last episode of our rocket crew’s adventure, Roger, Rita, Rachel and

Raymond were in trouble and about to wreck the razzmatazz rocket in the river rock

rainstorm. The rocket was rolling out of control, it was rusted and the rudder and

gauges were damaged. The crew were not sure what to do next.

Rita radioed to the nearest planet for help. The closest planet was Ruso. It was

only 4 million miles away. The air traffic controller answered on the radio and

instructed their safe landing on the emergency wreck tarnac. The rocket wrecking

crew was waiting for their landing and used their giant wrecker to tow the rocket to

the rocket repair hangar for repairs.

In the meantime, the rocket crew went to the rocketport to rest and recuperate.

There were restrooms, restaurants and three recreation rooms at the rocketport.

Ruso was a planet where everyone went to vacation. It was known for its resorts,

restaurants, rodeo, rock climbing, river rapids rides and roller coasters. Ruso was

inhabited by rats, rabbits, raccoons, roosters, red river hogs, river dolphins,

rheas, reindeer, ringtails, rhinoceroses, robins, rufous rat-kangaroos and rock hyraxes.

There were no humans on the planet. All of the animals appeared to get along

together and were not concerned when others from different planets visited. After

all, Ruso was a vacation resort. The rocket crew relaxed and ate ratatouille and

ravioli and drank raspberry juice for two days, while their rocket was being

repaired.

On the third day of their stay, the door to one of the recreation rooms was suddenly

rammed open. There were three large rhinoceros standing in the broken door demanding

answers to the questions of who were they, where were they from, and why were they

there? The crew could hear the other guests running, screaming and hiding in fear.

Rachel introduced the entire rocket crew to the rhinos and explained the purpose of

their mission. Roger explained what happened to their rocket. The leader of the

rhinos was Roxanne. She was the largest of the three and she had no problem showing

her wrath that day. The other two rhinos, Rabia and Ramona did most of the ranting

and raving which scared most of the guests. Roxanne reminded the crew that their

stay was to be very short and to get out and do not return! The rhinos rudely

retreated from the recreation area. The rabbit in charge removed the rammed doors

and calmed the guests down and said that this was normal for the three rhinos to

rant and rave, they always tried to bully any guest that was human and wreck the

resorts. Rabbit said that their rambunctious raids would have to end soon or the

entire planet would suffer. The rocket crew reviewed the problem and decided to

help. Raymond checked on the progress of the rocket repair. He went to the hangar

where the rocket was being repaired and the raccoon in charge reviewed his roster as

he walked around it. The rocket was on a rack in the air with ten or more rats

making all of the repairs. The rudder was replaced, the rocker cover, and the radio

too. The rocket was sanded to remove the rust and painted razzmatazz red. The

raccoon continued to check his list. He announced that the rocket would be ready to

ride in four hours. Meanwhile, back at the rec room, Roger, Rita and Rachel planned

a way to save planet Ruso from the roaming, ruthless, ruckus of Roxanne and her

rhino gang. The rocket crew challenged the rhinos to a rocket racket ball game where

the loser must stop bullying and ripping up the planet. Roxanne and her rhinos

accepted the challenge. Raymond radioed to Roger that the rocket would be ready in

48 hours. Rita and Rachel shopped for the rackets and balls that they would need for

the rocket racket ball game. Roxanne and her rhinos replaced the worn parts on their

rhino rocket. Raymond soon returned with the razzmatazz rocket ready for the racket

ball game. The racket ball game began at two at the Grand Ruso Sport Stadium. The

game was sold out! It looked like all of the animals and visitors on vacation were

at the game. The rocket crew were in their ship reading the gauges and getting the

rocket ready for the game. Roxanne and the rhinos were in their ship which looked

like a giant surf board with a glass domed top. The game began with the red rubber

racquetball sailing toward Roxanne with rapid speed. Roxanne and her rhinos missed!

The crowd roared as the razzmatazz rocket crew scored! Roxanne served and the rocket

crew returned the ball and Roxanne missed again! This went on for more than an hour.

It was clear that the rocket crew had won this game of rocket racketball! When the

game ended, Roxanne was presented with the Rules of Ruso which included no bullying,

no reckless or rambunctious behavior. Roxanne agreed to repair all damage she and

her rhinos made on the planet. Roxanne and her rhino gang will be watched by radio

television and if they break the rules, they will be removed from the planet and not

allowed to return.Roxanne signed two copies of the agreement. The Razzmatazz Rocket

crew presented Roxanne and the rhinos a gift of peace and friendship. It was a big

basket of ramen noodles, radishes, raisins and ricotta cheese;snacks that the rhinos

really liked.

The residents and visitors of Ruso cheered with happiness because their planet was

saved!

It was again time for Roger, Raymond, Rita and Rachel to return to the razzmatazz

rocket to explore new galaxies, solar systems and planets and spread peace and

friendship. The next adventure was to the Rhombus galaxy!

The R Story

Roger, Rachel, Raymond, and Rita are ready for a new adventure as they will leave

the Milky Way Galaxy and explore new galaxies, solar systems, and planets in the

universe. They will be traveling in their razzmatazz rocketship to their first

destination, the Rhumba Galaxy, ten million light years away from earth. Rhumba

Galaxy has eight thousand solar systems. They decided to visit the Radon Solar

System and its planets to learn more about life in other galaxies and to spread

friendship. The rapid ride of their razzmatazz rocket ship took Roger, Rachel,

Raymond, and Rita to the red planet of Radius.

Radius looks a lot like earth except everything is red. Roger, Rachel, Raymond, and

Rita landed in an area that looked like earth’s Russia. On Radius it is called

Root. The people that live on radius have gold skin and blue hair. They are three

feet tall and have three eyes, arms, and legs and run really fast. All of the

buildings on Radius are round and are red, of course. The houses are round, the tall

buildings and short buildings are round. The cars and planes are round. The trains

are round. The only thing not round and red are the people. Roger, Rachel, Raymond

and Rita gave red rubber rafts, jump ropes, raspberry fudge and red hot bark as

gifts to the citizens of Radius. They also played red rover, red light-green light,

and rugby with the people. Soon it was time to board the razzmatazz rocket to go and

everyone waved goodbye. They were now off to the next planet called Reverse.

Reverse was a strange planet to Roger, Rachel, Raymond, and Rita. Everything was

backward! They landed in a place that looked like Rome on earth, but the statues

heads were on backward, the doors were on the roof of the buildings and houses and

the chimneys were on the ground. The people and the animals walked and flew backward

and their heads were on backward too! Everything moved backward. The cars, planes,

trains, bicycles, motorcycles, trucks and buses all moved backward and they were

rapid too. The people spoke Ruswanda, which sounded like backward English. Roger had

a special translator machine that he kept in his spacesuit pocket for times like

these. The favorite food here was rootbeer and rutabagas. The crew really enjoyed

watching the people eat and drink. It was like watching a circus or magic act where

the people folded themselves into painful shapes. Raymond took pictures with the

families and their relatives. The people were very friendly, but always in a rush,

moving and talking at a rapid pace in reverse. The crew decided it was time to

board the razzmatazz rocket and blast off to the next solar system eight billion

light years away. The trip this time was very rough. They had to pass through a

rainstorm of small river rocks that made rust marks on the razzmatazz rocket. The

rainstorm was so strong, that it broke one of the readings of the gauges on the

dashboard of the rocket! The special red ray lights in the rocket kept blinking on

and off until they went out! There was so much rubble and the rocket began to roll

as it passed through the rock rainstorm. Rita reported a rip on the right side of

the razzmatazz rocket, but no one is able to make any repairs at this time. The rain

is coming down harder now! Will Roger, Rachel, Raymond, and Rita make it to the

next solar system? Will the rock rainstorm wreck the razzmatazz rocketship? Stay

tuned next week to reveal the real answers as the R Story continues!