Sunday Observer Online


Sunday, 12 October 2014





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Meet Karan, the ‘World’s tallest toddler’

Karan Singh is just like any other five-year-old – except for the fact that he is 5 feet 7 inches tall! He was born weighing an impressive 15.4 pounds – the average weight of a newborn baby boy half that – and measuring 24 inches, four inches longer than the average baby.

Because of his height and weight at birth, his father Sanjay thought he might have a medical condition, but doctors revealed he is healthy and totally fine. Before he could walk or talk, Karan made it into the Guinness Book of World Records in 2008 as the tallest and heaviest baby born.

(That record has since been broken.)Karan clearly takes after his mother Shweatlana who is 7 feet 3 inches tall and one of the tallest women in South Asia. Sanjay is also quite tall at 6 feet 7 inches. Being so tall isn’t always a great thing for Karan and his mother. Karan used to get bullied about his height, but he doesn’t anymore.

“But they all say that I am cheating when we play - basketball or cricket,” Karan said.

Shweatlana also had trouble finding diapers that fit him when he was little and still has trouble finding children’s clothes for him sometimes.

”Now I just buy him adult size garments. They fit him perfectly well,” she said. She is also worried about her health and that her son could have inherited the same condition she has that causes her body to produce extra growth hormone.“

I gain about 1.5 inches of height every couple of years. This is due to excess growth hormone. I sometimes fear that might even have consequences for Karan. But I know he is doing fine and he will grow up to be a nice and healthy person.”


Mars mission enters orbit

After launching their latest Mars satellite, NASA’s creation, named Maven, has successfully entered Mars’ orbit.For 10 months, Maven had been hurling through space when its thrusters were fired to slam on the brakes. This sudden braking allowed Maven’s speed to decrease enough for the satellite to be captured by Mars’ gravity.

Maven has been sent to study the atmosphere of Mars and discover why most of its air has vanished. Scientists believe that water once existed on the Red Planet. Today however, any water on the surface of Mars would boil away rapidly due to extremely low air pressure.

The aim of this mission is for scientists to gain a better understanding of not only Mars’ current climate, but also gain knowledge of its climate from billions of years ago when the climate was warmer and possibly liveable. The Sun’s influence on the planet will be one aspect studied focusing on how much energy it puts into Mars and its surrounding atmosphere.


Study shows that bedtimes affect reading and writing ability

Late nights and different bedtime routines can affect children’s ability to read and write, new research has suggested. The findings on sleep patterns and brain power come from a UK study of more than 11,000 seven-year-olds.

Youngsters who had no regular bedtime or who went to bed later than 9 p.m. had lower scores for reading and mathematics. Lack of sleep may disrupt natural body rhythms and impair how well the brain learns new information say the study authors.

They gathered data on the children at the ages of three, five and then seven to find out how well they were doing with their learning and see if this might be related to their sleeping habits.

By the age of seven, more than half the children had a regular bedtime of between 7.30 and 8.30. What time do you go to bed and do you think getting to bed early helps you with your school work?



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