Report texts: UN

>>2009/2010

The Japanese traditional house made of wood is expected to last about twenty years before having to be repaired or rebuilt. Each year it is appreciated.

The interior design is what really sets the Japanese traditional house. With the exception of the entry way (genkan), the kitchen (daidokoro), the bathing room (sento) and the toilet (benjo), the rooms in a Japanese traditional house does not have a designated use.

A room can easily be a living area, a bedroom, a dining room or any combination. Large rooms are partitioned by fusuma, sliding doors made of wood and thick paper. The paper used for fusuma is called washi. These sliding doors can be removed whenever a larger space is needed.

In large traditional houses, there was one large room, or ima (living space) that could be divided as needed. The smaller rooms like kitchen, bathroom and toilet were small extensions to one side. Rouka, or wooden-floored hallways, follow the edge of the home. Windows are made of wood and shoji paper, whichnis thin enough to let the light shine through.

Even Japanese modern houses tend to have one traditional room, called a washitsu. This room has tatami mats covered with stiched, woven rushes. Tatami arc smooth and firm enough to walk on, while making a sleeping surface more comfortable than wood or stone.

The genkan is usually a step below the level of the rest of the house. When people enter the house, they leave their shoes in the genkan, pointed toward the door so they only need to slip them on when they are ready to go out. Indoor slippers are often worn inside the house.

The kitchen in most traditional Japanese houses will contain of stove with a very small oven and broiler and an electric refrigerator. Counter space for food preparation and a sink are also located in the kitchen.

The bathing room contains a tub and is often waterproof. An adjacent area is available for showering. The Japanese reuse bathwater, either for othere bathers or for washing laundry, so it is important not to dirty the water with soap and dirt. Dirty portions of the body can be washed before stepping into the bath.

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Eskimoes live in a land where the winters are long and very cold. During the short summer months, they live in permanent homes of stone or earth. However, their homes are useless when the Eskimoes have to travel great distances to hunt for food. During such periods, they need temporary homes to live in and the only available materials that the Eskimoes canuse are ice and snow.

Given the absence of the usual building mateials, the indigenous Eskimoes have learned to utilize the snow and convert it into a snug, warm shelter called an igloo. In the language of the Eskimoes, the word ‘igloo’ simply means house. The igloo is made of blocks of hard-packed snow fitted together to make a low, doomed-shaped building. The blocks are cut out with a knife made from walrus ivory as snow does not stick to this kind of knife. Uing this method, an Eskimo takes only a few hours to build his home.

Inside the igloo, it is warm enough for the family to take off their outer fur clothing. A platform of snow, covered with fur and skins, serves as the family bed. During the cold, arctic nights, the entire family sleeps together for warmth. Cooking is done on a stone stove or lamp that burns seal fat or blubber. A small opening at the top of the igloo. Lets the smoke out and the fresh air in. Even though the air in the igloo may not be clear or pleasant-smelling, it serves its purpose as a warm, comfortable shelter for the Eskimo family.

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Although gorillas look feeocious, they are really rather quiet apes. They live in family groups in the thickest parts of the jungles.

A gorilla’s feet, hands and wrinkled face are bare and black. His fur may be short or long, depending on where he lives.

The short-haired gorilla lives in the hot, damp, tropical forrests of western Africa, and the long-haired gorilla lives in the cooler air in the high mountains of central Africa.

A gorilla’s arm are so long; they almost touch the ground, even when heis standing up!

Some wild mountain gorillas weigh as much as you, your father and your mother together.

Atnight the father gorilla sleeps on the ground. But the mother and the baby gorillas sleep in a big nest of stick and leaves on the ground, or in the lower branches of trees, where they are safer from prowling animals.

Mangrove Trees

A mangrove is a tropical marine tree or shrub of the genus Rhizhopora. Mangroves have special aerial roots and salt-filtering tap roots that enable them to thrive in brackish water (brackish water is salty, but not as salty as sea water).

There are several species of mangrove trees found all over the world. Some prefer more salinity, while others like to be very close to a large fresh water source (such as a river). Some prefere areas that are sheltered from waves. Some species have their roots covered withbsea water every day during high tide. Other species grow on drybland, but are still part of the marine ecosystem.

Mangroves need to keep their trunk and leaves above the surface of the water. Yet they also need to be embedded to the ground so they are not moved by waves. There are three types of mangrove roots:
1. Support roots which directly pierce the soil,
2. Level-growing roots which twist upwards and downwards, with the upwards twists emerging on the water surface,
3. Level-growing roots whose downward twist (sub-roots) appear on the water surface.

Any part of a root that appears above the water supplies oxygen to the plant under the surface of the water. As the soilmbegins to build up, these roots produce additional roots that become embedded in the soil.

>;;;;>;;;;2006/2007

The elephant is one of the largestvand strongest animals. It is a strange looking animal with its thick legs, huge sides and backs, large hanging ears, a small tail, little eyes, long white tusks and above all its long nose, the trunk.

The trunk is the elephant’s peculiar feature, and it has various uses. The elephant draws up water with its trunkand can squirt it all over its body like a shower. It can also lift leaves and put them intonits mouth. In fact, the trunk serves the elephant as a long arm and hand. An elephant looks very clumsy and heavy, and yet it can move very quickly.

The elephant is a very intelligent animal. Its intelligence combinedbwith its great strength makes it a very useful servent to humankind and it can be trained to serve in various ways such as carrying heavy loads, hunting for tigers and even fighting.

The Ocean at a Glance

Earth’s surface is covered by about 140 million square miles of ocean. 81 per cent of the Southern Hemisphere and approximately 61 per cent of the Northern Hemisphere are covered with water. The oceans are interconnected bodies of water including gulfs and seas.

The floor of the ocean is commonly divided into four main parts. The first is the continentalshelf which slopes gently outwards from the shore of the continent. It is about forty miles wide and four hundred feet deep at the end of the continental slope. At the base of this continental slope is the sediment which forms the third part, the continental rise. The fourth is the floor of the sea beyond the continental rise, the deep seabed. On the deep seabed are strings of mountains known as mid-oceanic ridges, isolated mountains known as seamounts, deep valleys or deep sea trenches and plateaus or guyots.

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