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Music-loving Plants and Music-giving Plants

A vine that looks like a clef.
Are your ferns drooping more than usual? Perhaps a bit of music may perk it up, for it is a known fact that music plays an important role in plant growth. But plants are choosy about the kind of music they want to hear.Experiments show that plants thrive if soothing instrumental music is played in the background. On the...

The Friends of Custard House

Robert Custard was a gentleman to be sure. Though he was only three-and-a-half feet off the ground and sometimes he even sported a milk moustache, he was still, quite definitely, a gentleman at the age of nine.Now, you must consider that we are talking about the India of the 1930s. The British were ruling the country. Little boys and...

Do Computer Games Make You Violent?

August 12: Four children aged four and five were suspended from their nursery school in New Jersey, US, for using their fingers for guns in a game of cops and robbers. The children were heard shouting 'I shot you' and 'Boom, boom' during break time."It may be just a game …but it can be taken differently by other children,"...

The World’s Hottest Chili

Do you like your chilies hot? For the spiciest, tongue-burning experience yet, head for Assam - that's where the hottest chilies are grown.For years, Mexico's 'Red Savina Habanero' was believed to be the hottest chili in the world. But now a chili grown in Tezpur, Assam, in northeastern India, is being touted as the hottest chili ever. And coming from a state,...

What Kind of Horses did Knights Ride?

Armored horse rider with lance
In 1066 AD the Normans (people who came from Normandy in Europe) conquered England and introduced feudalism in England. Feudalism was a system of contract where society was divided into four classes: royalty, barons (noblemen) and bishops, knights (a title or a rank) and lastly peasants. Merchants and artisans were placed just above the peasants.From 1066 to about the...

How Did Pencils Originate?

Common yellow pencils.
Not many people know that the pencil they use everyday can trace its history back 2000 years! Early writers, or scribes as they were called, of ancient Egypt, Rome and Greece wrote on forms of paper called papyrus.They used a stylus which was a metal rod made of lead. That is why we still call the black core of...

The Snake with the Golden Teeth

There was once a man called Paolo Maria Encarnacao Esplendido. He lived at Manaos in Brazil. He was a very rich man. He owned two gold mines and a silver mine. You might think one got more money from a gold mine than a silver mine because gold is worth more than silver. But, as a matter of face,...

My Magic Collar Stud

I suppose you think there aren’t any more fairies nowadays, or witches or wizards or goblins. Well, of course they don’t go about dressed up like the ones in picture books. You don’t see little fairies with butterfly wings perching on the chimneys at Hendon, or old ladies in pointed hats riding down Oxford Street on broomsticks and waiting...

The Vultures are Dying

Portrait of a Vulture
What's all this hullabaloo about 'making connections'? You must wonder why Gobar Times harps on 'making connections'. Another favourite mantra is - 'be informed'. Such boring stuff, isn't it? No tree-plantings, painting competitions, 'queez'. No 'Save the cuddly leopards'. Instead, we're asking you to spare a thought for the bald, wrinkled, smelly vulture.The vultures of Keoladeo National Park in...

Indira Gandhi

Indira Gandhi, née Indira Priyadarshini Nehru (1917-1984), was born on November 19, 1917, in Allahabad, the only child of Jawaharlal Nehru, the first prime minister of India. A graduate of Visva-Bharati University, Bengal, she also studied at the University of Oxford, England. In 1938 she joined the National Congress party and became active in India's independence movement. In 1942...

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