Cheese, Turtles, and Bikes!

Cheese Heads
Sports fans in Wisconsin sometimes wear cheese on their head.  Well, not real cheese!  They wear a foam hat that looks like cheese.  This is the way they show their spirit at sports events.  Wisconsin is known for making great cheese.  It is a symbol for their state!  The man who had the idea for the cheese hat is named Ralph Bruno.  He made the first cheese hat in 1987.  That is more than 20 years ago!  Cheese hats are sold in all 50 states and more than 30 countries.  This week, Wisconsin is giving Mr. Bruno a special award for coming up with such a neat idea for a hat.  

Traveling Turtles
Scientists made a new discovery about sea turtles.  They put a special device on baby sea turtles to see where they swam while they were young.  Scientists were very surprised at what they learned.  Young turtles traveled from Costa Rica all the way to Bermuda.  This is a trip of more than 10,000 miles.  That is a very long way for a little turtle!  Scientists found that Bermuda is where many turtles like to live while they are growing up.  When they are all grown up they will be about the size of a bathtub.  Then they travel to a new, adult habitat.

Bikes as Art
Many people love to ride bicycles.  Not only are bicycles a fun activity on a sunny day, but they are also a great way to get where you need to go.  Many people even ride their bikes to work instead of driving a car.  This saves them money on gas.  More cities are adding bike lanes to many of the roads.  All of this biking means the bike business is booming.  People are buying more bikes than ever!  This week was the North American Handmade Bicycle Show.  More than 8,000 people were at the show in Sacramento, California.  Bikes at this show were made completely by hand—not in a big factory.  They are true works of art!

Lucky Pets, Flying Cars, and Bouncy Shoes!

Spoiled Pets
People spend a lot of money on their pets!  This year, people in the United States spent over 50 million dollars on their pets.  This is the most money ever spent on pets in one year.  So, what are pet owners buying for their pets?  Well, owners have to pay money for their pets to go to the vet when they are sick.  Owners also have to buy food for their pets.  These costs have not changed much in the past few years.  But, now people are spending more to spoil their pets.  Dogs go to the beauty shop.  Kittens ride in strollers.  Hamsters eat gourmet food.  All of the costs add up to a booming business for pet care items. 

Flying Cars
For many years, people have been trying to build a car that could fly.  It would be very helpful for a vehicle to drive down a road and then lift into the air and fly.  This year, in April, a flying car called the Transition will be shown at the New York International Auto Show.  The transition has wings that are folded on the side of the car.  When you want to fly, you press a button, the wings unfold, and you can take off into the air.  The Transition will even fit inside a regular garage.  But, it will cost $279,000.  For that price, you could buy about 9 regular cars. 
Kangaroo Shoes
Have you ever wanted to jump like a kangaroo?  It sure would be good exercise to jump around all day!  A new exercise class in Spennway, WA lets kids wear special shoes called Kangoo Shoes.  When you wear these shoes, you can bounce very high.  In the class you do different jumping moves to get exercise.  It’s like wearing little trampolines on your feet.  There are classes for kids and classes for adults.  There are even classes that a whole family can take together.  Exercise, family time, and fun all in one!

Restaurants, Penguins, and Dogs!

Restaurant Rules
Do you think dogs should be able to go into restaurants with their owners?  In Los Angeles, dogs were banned from all parts of a restaurant.  This included inside seats and outside seats.  Some people thought this was not a good rule.  They thought that dogs should be able to stay with their owner if the owner ate outside.  This week, the rule was changed.  Now dogs can stay with their owner if the owner eats outside.  But, not all restaurants will offer this new feature.  Each restaurant can decide if they want to allow dogs in outside eating areas.

Big Penguins
Can you imagine a penguin that is as tall as a person?  This week, scientists made a model of a penguin that lived 25 million years ago.  The model was made using fossils of the bones of the penguin.  A model of each bone was made and then they were put together like a puzzle.  When the whole model of the penguin was complete, it was over 4 feet tall.  It is estimated to have weighed 130 pounds.  It is the biggest penguin species ever discovered.  It lived on the Island of New Zealand.  The biggest penguin that lives today is the Emperor penguin which is about 3 feet tall and about 80 pounds.

Favorite Dogs
Many people love to have dogs for pets.  Dogs are smart.  Dogs are loyal.  Dogs are fun.  There are so many different kinds of dogs for people to choose from!  Some people like large dogs and some people like small dogs.  Some people like playful dogs.  Some people like calm dogs.  So, what are the most popular breeds of dogs?  In 2011, the most popular dogs were the Labrador Retriever, German Shepherd, Beagle, Golden Retriever, and Yorkshires Terrier.  This list shows that more and more people want big dogs as pets.  The Labrador Retriever has been the most popular dog for 21 years in a row!

Movies, Toys, and Pancakes!

Do you like movies? Many people do. There are so many good movies that now there is a competition to find the best movies each year. The competition is called the Oscars. The Oscars have been around for 84 years! This weekend was the Oscar awards for 2012. One very special movie won five awards. The move is Hugo. Hugo is based on a great book called The Invention of Hugo Caberet. The book has really great pictures drawn with a pencil. It is great that a movie made from a book won so many Oscars!

Toy Fair
Have you ever wondered where stores find the great toys that they put on their shelves? Well, some stores go to the Toy Fair each year to see all of the new toys that have been created. Then, they can choose which toys they want to have in their store. Last week was the Toy Fair for 2012. There were more than 1,000 companies showing their toys. There were more than 10,000 visitors looking at the toys. Most of these visitors own or work at a store. The most popular toys this year had an online computer game that went with the toy. That sounds fun!

Free Pancakes
Get ready to eat some pancakes! Tuesday is National Pancake Day. This is a whole day just to celebrate pancakes. One restaurant has a very special deal on National Pancake day. The International House of Pancakes gives free pancakes to all customers on this day! Pancakes can be topped with your favored toppings: syrup, butter, fruit, or whipped cream. Yum! Yum!

Lizards, Pigeons, and Cars!

Tiny Lizard
Lizards are small and quick.  Some lizards, called chameleons, are able to change color so that other animals cannot see them.  Scientists recently found the smallest type of chameleon ever discovered.  The tiny lizard is less than 1 inch long. That is smaller than a paperclip!  This species of chameleon lives on an island called Madagascar.  It spends its time on the ground of the forest under leaves.  This made it hard to find.  Scientists had to use flashlights to find them while they were sleeping. 

Smart Pigeons
Would you believe that pigeons can do math?  Well, scientists found out that they can!  A group of pigeons were shown pictures of different groups of objects on a computer.  Each picture had a different number of objects.  The pigeons were taught to peck at the computer screen to move the pictures.  Then, they were taught to put the pictures in order from fewest objects to most objects.  Each time the pigeon got the answer right, it got a treat.  So, it learned to county up to nine.  That is a pretty smart bird!

Rainy Race
Every year there is a very big car race.  It is called the Daytona 500.  Today, 150,000 people went to Florida to see the race.  The best drivers would be racing some of the fastest cars in the country.  It was expected to be a very exciting race.  But, the race had to be postponed.  It was raining really hard!  It would not be safe for the drivers to race.  So, all of the people had to go home.  They will try again on Monday.  It was disappointing for the fans, but safety comes first.

Google, Baby Princess, and Waiters!

Google Glasses
You may have heard of Google.  Google is a tool on the internet that helps you find information. It is called a search engine.  Google is working on a neat new tool.  They are called Google Glasses.  These glasses would be like a computer that you wear!  Instead of needing to search for information, you would just need to look around.  The glasses could give you directions to where you want to go.  Or, they could give you facts about an animal or plant that you are looking at.  They might even be able to help you with sports.  A computer in your glasses—pretty cool!

A New Princess
Princesses are not just found in movies.  Some countries have royal families that include kings, queens, princes, and princesses.  This week, in Sweden, a real princess was born.  The new baby princess has two royal parents: Princess Victoria and Prince Daniel.  The grandfather of the new baby princess is the King of Sweden.  One day, the new baby princess could become the Queen of Sweden!  Royal families do not get to make all the rules in their country, but they are treated with honor and respect.  There are 48 countries that have royal families.   

A Great Waiter
Have you ever wondered what a waiter is thinking while standing by your table?  In the past, a waiter would say the same thing to every table.  This is called a script.  They would also provide the same type of service to all people.  Now, some waiters are giving more personal service.  They are looking for clues to see what the customers want.  If the customers have movie tickets, the waiter knows they might be in a rush.  If they have computers, the waiter might think that they plan to work while they eat.  The waiter will try to give them the type of service that they want.  How thoughtful! 

Pennies, Exercise, and Houses!

No More Pennies?
Have you ever wondered who makes coins?  Our government makes the coins we use every day.  But, there is a big problem.  Making coins is very expensive.  In fact, it costs 11 cents to make a penny that is only worth 1 cent!  Making coins costs our country 200 million dollars each year.  President Obama is trying to save money.  So, he wants to find a less expensive way to make coins.  One idea is to use a different mix of metals to make the coins.  Another idea is to get rid of pennies.  The cost of items would have to be rounded to the nearest 5 cents.  We will have to wait and see if the penny will become a piece of history. 

Fuel for Your Brain
We all know that exercise is good for your body.  It makes your muscles strong and your heart healthy.  Exercise is also good for your mind.  Scientists in Japan recently found out why.  They found that when you exercise, your brain is sending many messages to your body.  It sends messages about balance, vision, and breathing.   All of that work your brain is doing is good for your mind.  The scientists found that this helps your memory and thinking all day long.  Make sure you exercise every day to help your body and your brain!

Selling Houses
For a few years, the United States had a problem.  The value of houses was falling.  Also, less people wanted to buy a house.  This caused there to be too many houses for sale.  People who needed to move could not move because they could not sell their house.  This week, there is some good news about houses.  Home sales have increased, or gotten bigger, since last year.  People are now starting to buy houses again!  This will help people who need to move to a different house. 

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