11 Things We Learned this Week

This week, we learned …

… how industrial runoff can kill us in ways we could never even imagine. Read of the week!

Oysters are filter-feeders that clean the water of substances toxic to humans. All those toxins end up concentrated in its shell.
Photograph by David Littschwager, National Geographic

How else does runoff impact the environment? Use our picture-of-practice to learn more.


… global carbon emissions have reached an all-time high.

Illustration by Nigel Holmes, National Geographic

What are carbon emissions? Use our picture-of-practice to learn more.


… dogs and cats burned by the California wildfires are being treated (successfully!) with fish skins.

UC Davis veterinarian Jamie Peyton applies a bandage made of tilapia skin to second-degree burns on a dog named Olivia. Photograph by Karin Higgins/UC Davis

Read through our article to learn why being a little fishy is not a bad thing.


… London plans to make the Tube carbon-neutral by 2050.

People enter the London Underground, or Tube, station at Piccadilly Circus.
Photograph by Simon Norfolk, National Geographic

Where is the world’s first carbon-neutral national park? Use our study guide to learn where, and how.


… the whaling culture of one of the most cooperative societies on Earth.

The Lamalerans of Indonesia still get most of their calories by spearing sperm whales like this one with bamboo harpoons.
Photograph by Brian J. Skerry, National Geographic

Use our lesson plan to help students investigate different peoples’ historic relationship with whales.


… what it’s like to walk every block in all five boroughs of New York City.

What are New York City’s toponyms?


… the sage grouse is running out of protections.

Map by Clare Trainor, National Geographic

Investigate the sage grouse and other endangered animals of the Americas.


… Tehran is sinking.

Tehran, Iran, is home to 13 million people, and sinking by 25 centimeters a year.
Photograph by Ninara, courtesy Flickr. CC-BY-2.0

What other city is sinking? Use our gorgeous infographic to learn more.


… sea monsters had blubber.

A new fossil of an ichthyosaur revealed the ancient marine reptile was insulated by blubber.
Illustration by Matte FX, National Geographic

Use our activities, lessons, and resources to swim with sea monsters.


… women may be better-suited for ultramarathons than men.

Ultrarunners traverse the Namib Desert as part of the 250-kilometer (155-mile) Desert Ultra in Namibia.
Photograph by Worldwide Happy Media, courtesy Wikimedia. CC-BY-SA-3.0

What are ultramarathons? Use our article to find out what they are, and what it takes to run them.


… the books Bill Gates loved reading this year.

What booklists have we compiled?

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