Articles on Curious Kids

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Writing wasn’t just invented once by a single person. Many different ancient societies invented writing at different times and places. www.shutterstock.com

Curious Kids: who came up with the first letters?

Writing has only been a part of the human story for the last 5,000 years. In comparison, humans began to communicate using speech some 50,000 years ago.
Leeches suck blood because it is a very good food for them. Some leeches only need to feed once a year. Pixabay

Curious Kids: why do leeches suck our blood?

The short answer is that leeches need blood to grow and reproduce. But it's in their interests to do it carefully, without causing too much pain, and in spots that are hard to find.
Around 66 million years ago, a huge rock from outer space (called an asteroid) smashed into the Earth. Michael J/flickr

Curious Kids: why did the dinosaurs die?

Dinosaurs ruled the Earth for about 180 million years. But around 66 million years ago, a huge rock from outer space (called an asteroid) smashed into the Earth. Then things got worse for dinosaurs.
Anglerfish have an enlarged fin overhanging their eyes and their mouth that acts as a lure – much like bait on a fisherman’s line. Shutterstock

Curious Kids: how would the disappearance of anglerfish affect our environment?

We know very little about the deep sea and how its inhabitants, including anglerfish, will respond to change. In fact, more people have walked on the Moon than have been to the bottom of the ocean.
A lot of chemical reactions happen in the very short time it takes to light a match. Shutterstock

Curious Kids: when I swipe a matchstick how does it make fire?

I have been interested in the science of fire and fireworks for a long time, and can tell you there is a lot happening in the very short time it takes to light a match.
Gravity helps stars to form. UNIMAP / L. Piazzo, La Sapienza – Università di Roma; E. Schisano / G. Li Causi, IAPS/INAF, Italy

Curious Kids: how long has gravity existed?

Gravity exists because the universe is full of 'stuff' – here's how it came to be.
Everything in an animal’s body is made out of cells. And these cells need chemicals, such as salt, in and around them to work properly. The chemical balance needs to be just right. Alyse & Remi/flickr

Curious Kids: how do sea creatures drink sea water and not get sick?

Some animals, such as ghost shrimps can even cope with water that is saltier than normal seawater. It's all down to evolution.
Nina Maile Gordon/The Conversation

Curious Kids: why are there waves?

Waves occur in all sorts of places, and it's possible that waves you might see breaking at the beach are at the end of a very long journey.
Earth is really ancient, and humans have only been around for a tiny part of that time. NASA

Curious Kids: how was the Earth made?

All the buildings and the cars and the restaurants, and the phones and even everything that's inside of you... it all started with an exploding star, billions of years ago.
The world’s current tallest skyscraper is the Burj Khalifa in Dubai. It’s 828 metres tall. But we could go taller. Flickr/Cristian Viarisio

Curious Kids: what’s the tallest skyscraper it’s possible to build?

It would be difficult, but we could probably build a tower over 2,000 metres tall, which would be like ten normal skyscrapers on top of each other! This is probably not a very good idea though.
The more fuel there is for the fire to burn, the bigger the fire. Leaves, trees and grass fuel the fire. Flickr/bertknot

Curious Kids: how do bushfires start?

Bushfires require three key ingredients to ignite: heat, fuel and oxygen.

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