Most of what we know β or think we know β about how kids learn comes from classroom practice and behavioral psychology. Now, neuroscientists are adding to and qualifying that store of knowledge by studying the brain itself. The latest example: new research in the journal Developmental Science suggests a famous phenomenon known as the "fourth-grade shift" isn't so clear-cut.
The U.S. has temporarily closed its embassy in Libya and evacuated diplomats amid what is being described as a significant deterioration in security, with rival militant factions battling in the capital, Tripoli.
"Due to the ongoing violence resulting from clashes between Libyan militias in the immediate vicinity of the U.S. Embassy in Tripoli, we have temporarily relocated all of our personnel out of Libya," State Department spokeswoman Marie Harf said.
The San Diego Comic-Con is in full swing β celebrating not just comics, but movies, TV, books, video games and really cool costumes. It's called cosplay: the art and science of dressing up like your favorite character.
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SCOTT SIMON, HOST:
This is WEEKEND EDITION from NPR News. I'm Scott Simon. When Stephen Carter's new novel opens, President Kennedy is alone in a bedroom with the beautiful intern. Did I say this was a novel? We'll let Professor Carter pick up his narrative.
Astronomers have a mystery on their hands. Two large radio telescopes, on opposite sides of the planet, have detected very brief, very powerful bursts of radio waves.
Right now, astronomers have no idea what's causing these bursts or where they're coming from. And nothing has been ruled out at the moment β not even the kind of outrageous claims you'd expect to see in tabloid headlines.
In 1994, Jeff Bezos walked out of the Wall Street hedge fund where he worked after they declined to invest in his idea, and began to sell books out of his garage.
Today, Amazon is a retail and entertainment empire, selling books and shoes, computers, overcoats, band saws, sofa beds, kimchi, canned beans, artwork, wine, grills, generators, drones, kitty litter, pool filter pumps and garden gnomes, etc., etc., and more.
When an opera company is in the midst of contentious labor negotiations, the results can be dramatic. This week, the war of words between unions and management at New York's Metropolitan Opera, the world's largest opera company, escalated. An Aug. 1 shut down now seems likely.
At the center of the debate is the ballooning Met budget, which stood at $200 million in 2006 but has since climbed to more than $325 million. Met General Manager Peter Gelb asserts that union salaries and benefits are his biggest costs, accounting for two-thirds of the operating budget.
Nearly two decades ago, a massive wave struck the Tokio Express, a container ship that had nearly 5 million Legos onboard. The colorful toy building blocks poured into the ocean. Today, they are still washing up on shores in England.
Tracey Williams and her children first happened upon the Tokio Express Legos in the late 1990s. Since then, she's created a Facebook page called β Lego Lost At Sea β where other collectors show off their findings.
Fishing purists, be warned. This story is not for you.
Yes, it's about salmon fishing on a scenic river in Alaska. But no one here is hooking a prize fish in the remote wilderness. This kind of fishing is all about crowds and slop buckets and big contraptions called dipnets β and the lengths Alaskans will go to in order to fill their freezers with sockeye salmon.
Deep in the archives of the Library of Congress' Culpeper, Va., film preservation center lie thousands of movies in cool, climate-controlled vaults. Hundreds are a century old or older, and unidentified. Their titles have been lost over the years and the library knows little about them, so it started inviting fans of early film to a yearly event called Mostly Lost to help figure out what they are.
The 93rd annual Santa Fe Indian Market is only a month away. It's the biggest and best-known destination for Native artists and Native art collectors on the planet, and this year, it's got competition β a new event called the Indigenous Fine Arts Market.
Native American art and culture is big business. If you don't believe that, look no further than the controversial or illegal sides of the market. If you've been paying attention over the last year, you've seen some lurid and fascinating headlines:
Ever since its sweeping victory in the Six-Day War of 1967, Israel has been regarded as the dominant military power in the Middle East. No Arab state has risked a full-fledged war in decades, and few question the conventional wisdom that Israel would swiftly defeat any national army in a traditional, head-to-head confrontation.
Yet for the third time in the past decade, Israel's powerful military finds itself in a protracted, messy fight with a small, elusive, Islamist group and has been unable to score a quick and decisive victory.
A dust storm reported to be more than 3,000 feet high hit Phoenix Friday, limiting visibility and threatening to reshape landscapes and leave a coating of grit in its wake. Striking photos show a wall of dust pushing its way across neighborhoods and streets in the Phoenix metro region in the Valley.
The storm is commonly referred to as a haboob, from the Arabic word for an intense summer dust storm. Today's storm hit in time to complicate the Friday afternoon commute.
A humanitarian cease-fire went into effect on Saturday, a plan agreed to hours earlier by Hamas and Israeli leaders. The truce would allow Palestinian civilians to get food and aid where it's needed, and would last for 12 hours, officials say.
The Associated Press reported that the Israeli military warned that it "shall respond if terrorists choose to exploit" the lull to attack Israeli troops or civilians.
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PETER SAGAL, HOST:
Now onto our final game, Lightning Fill In The Blank. Each of our players will have 60 seconds in which to answer as many fill in the blank questions as he or she can, each correct answer now worth two points. Bill, can you give us the scores?