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Teen Kids News (Episode 1422)

22 minutes

(Describer) In computer animation, different news scenes in rectangles move fast around a turning globe.

(Describer) In front of a blue background with a triangle and circle, title: Teen Kids News. A girl sits at a desk with monitors behind her.

Welcome to Teen Kids News. I'm Veronique. Let's begin with our top story for this week.

(Describer) The Teen Kids News logo is on curved screens that form a turning cylinder. Passing around it, title: Top Story.

In many parts of the world today, being female means you'll spend your life in hardship and poverty. Emily tells about one woman who's working to change that. The problem is huge. For millions of girls around the world, every day is a struggle just to survive. There are things we can do to make their lives better. Betsy Teutsch is the author of the book, "100 Under $100: One Hundred Tools for Empowering Global Women." Welcome to Teen Kids News, Betsy. Thanks for having me. Great to be here. Why are so many girls and women living in poverty? Around the world, about two to three billion people live on just a couple dollars a day. That's in Asia, Africa, Latin America. And the main factor is that a lot of those cultures are very male-dominated. Girls and women are not considered equal citizens. Therefore, they're discriminated against. What are the biggest issues they face? A huge issue for girls in the developing world is getting to school at all. They spend a lot of time on chores every day that you or I use manual tools for. They don't have any of those tools-- no electricity, no running water. They spend a lot of time on that, and it's hard for them to get to school. They also lack healthcare. It's more common-- if boys are sick, they take care of the boys. If girls are sick, sometimes they overlook it. In many places, they marry girls off when they're young teens-- 12 or 13 years old. They don't go to school anymore, then they have babies when they're young teenagers. Everybody stays impoverished-- men and women. How can your book help these women? There are lots of solutions that are very affordable and really smart to help girls and women do their job faster, so they have more time for school, and that will improve health, and that can get people basic things like electricity. Imagine living without electricity. You call these things "tools." Let's talk about a couple of your favorite tools. Tell us about the water roller.

(Betsy) Well, girls and women are assigned the task of carrying water. If you don't have a tap, like most people do in our country, then you go to where the water is. The water might be really far away--a mile or two. If you don't have a well, you go to the stream or river. Generally, it's carried in a jerrican. I can lift this because it doesn't have water in it.

(Describer) She picks one up.

But once it does, it has 44 lbs. of water. Imagine carrying that. Children--particularly girls-- are often doing that job. It takes a lot of time and physical strain. Cynthia Koenig has developed something called the water roller.

(Describer) A round can attached to long handles on both sides.

The water roller has a volume that is twice this, so it takes half the time to carry the same amount because you're carrying twice as much. And you're rolling it, so instead of having to have the muscles to carry it, you just push it.

(Describer) a lawn mower.

And it's much faster, it will cost about $30, and boys like to do it because it's fun. It feels like a game, like pushing something. Just getting the water home isn't enough. In many areas, the water isn't safe to drink. That brings us to the other tool.

(Betsy) We take safe drinking water for granted because our water is purified before we turn the tap on. But not in the developing world. Everybody does it for their own household. It's a lot of work, and many don't know how to do it. So they get sick a lot. When they get sick, everybody else catches it. If you can purify water, you're helping people's health enormously. One way to do it is called solar disinfection. It is as simple as a two-quart plastic bottle.

(Describer) She holds one.

You just fill it with water that hasn't been treated with any chemicals or anything, to purify it. You put it in the sun, and the light shining in on this closed bottle will raise the temperature inside to 147 degrees, and that is what you need to purify water. And it's just a plastic bottle. How do you know for sure that the water is purified? That is a huge problem because people that understand that pathogens in the water will make you sick don't believe that just sticking a plastic bottle in the sun is going to solve that problem. So some scientists in Austria designed a gauge. This is called the Helioz, and it fits onto the bottle. They have three different bottle-top sizes. Depending on where you are, they use different sizes. And the sun shines into the register here. It has four bars, like a cell phone charging. When the temperature is hot enough, according to this gauge, a smiley face comes up. Then you know the water is safe. You could put this on one bottle, but have 10 or 15 others in the sun at once. That improves confidence that their water is safe. Wow, that's pretty amazing. Just with a plastic bottle. When we return, Betsy will show us one more tool. Teen Kids News will be right back.

(Describer) Spinning with the triangle and circle, title: Teen Kids News.

(Describer) Emily:

We're talking with Betsy Teutsch, who showed us cool tools to get and purify drinking water. Now we're moving on to another bright idea, a tool called a Liter of Light. A Liter of Light is really clever. It's a way to get light into a house that's dark during the day because it has no windows. It is simply made out of a plastic bottle filled with water. It's gonna go right in the roof. People in the developing world that live in warm climates have fairly flimsy houses. They often have a sheet of metal for a roof. If they're in a row, they don't have windows on the sides because they're up next to another house. So this Liter of Light-- you cut a hole in a piece of metal, put the bottle of water in it, and cut a hole in the roof and stick it up there.

(Describer) ...filling any gaps.

The sun comes in during the day. It gives the equivalent of 60 watts of light that will light up that house with no electricity or oil or kerosene or any fuel. It's just from the sun, water, and a plastic bottle. It was developed by a man in Argentina who had a factory. The lights were always going out during the day. The grid was unreliable. He came up with this solution. It has spread all over the developing world from continent to continent. That's awesome. How can we teens in America help girls and women around the world live better and safer lives? There are many, many tools like the ones I showed you and many more that I included in my book. For each tool, I've included something that you, a reader, can do. It might be organizing with your friends at school, doing a service project. If you're in Scouts, if you're in a service club, you can focus on water, you can focus on education, you can focus on health. And you can raise money and raise awareness. You can write to your congressmen when these things come up-- "Should we fund these things?" You can get involved through the United Nations. There are many different avenues. Figure out what the problem is and what the solutions are. Then get onboard to try to help. Thanks, Betsy. This is incredibly inspiring. Great to be here. I love telling people that there's good news in the world. Over the coming months, we'll get more suggestions from Betsy on tools that don't cost a lot, but do a lot of good. For Teen Kids News, I'm Emily.

(Describer) Alexandra:

To achieve a healthy weight, all you need to do is...wait. When your stomach is full, it sends a signal to your brain, which takes more than 10 minutes to arrive. During that time, if you continue to eat, you're not still hungry, you just think you are. That's why waiting is important. It gives your brain time to get the message that your stomach is full, saving you from eating more than you should. Don't wait to try waiting to improve your weight. Got that? Coming up on "Make the Grade," tips for studying in a flash. Teen Kids News will be right back.

(Describer) Veronique:

As you'll see, a state flag can say a lot. Here's "Flag Facts."

(Describer) Different flags flash by, with various colors and seals. A couple dozen are shown together, then appear in the word “flag”. Title: Flag Facts. It’s on a flag.

(male anchor) California's state motto is "Eureka," Greek for, "I found it!" The motto dates back to the Gold Rush of 1849.

(Describer) Eric:

California had gained independence from Mexico the year before, but it was not yet a state. Ironically, though, it already had a flag.

(Describer) Randy Howe:

What I find most unique about the California flag is how it came into existence as the product of a rebellion. There were pioneers trying to settle the land. There was an attack on a fort at Sonoma. The American settlers took the fort. A fellow by the name of William Todd got a white bed sheet, a couple cans of paint, and painted the original bear flag, which is still today the flag of California. That revolt became known as the "Bear Flag Revolt." The bear symbolized strength. The star referenced the Lone Star of Texas. The Californians saw Texas as an ally in their struggle with Mexico. The original flag was destroyed during the San Francisco earthquake of 1906. However, early photos of it still existed, and a slightly modified version became the official state flag in 1911. By the way, William Todd, the pioneer who drew the flag on a bed sheet, was the nephew of Mary Todd, Abraham Lincoln's wife. For "Flag Facts," I'm Eric.

(Describer) Veronique:

It's time for "Make the Grade." Here's Christin. Back in the old, old days

(Describer) In a study...

when our parents were kids, they didn't have all the technology we have. They couldn't text, email, or easily surf the web. But they did have an old-fashioned way to study that is still useful-- they made flashcards. I know flashcards are easy to get through sites and apps like Quizlet. But there's something to be said for grabbing a pen and index cards and creating your own flashcards. The simple act of writing out the cards improves your recall of the information. Plus, if your cards need diagrams, it's often easier to draw those yourself. So, while these flashcards are pretty old-school, they're still pretty cool.

[whispering] Of course, I would never admit that to my parents.

I'm Christin, here to help you "Make the Grade." For new drivers, there's a lot to keep in mind. So we're bringing you another important message from the National Road Safety Foundation.

(Describer) On a sidewalk...

This is Katy, and I'm-- well, you know who I am.

(Describer) Death.

(Describer) He carries a scythe.

Life's going great for Katy. Class president, captain of her soccer team, and just aced her SATs. And she loves to text.

(Describer) She texts while she walks.

I know something she doesn't. See that intersection? A car will be going through it in three seconds.

(Describer) A Don’t Walk light is on, but she steps off the curb. Death pulls her back and the car misses her.

I'll give her today. But tomorrow, who knows?

(Describer) Don’t let your smart phone outsmart you.

(Describer) A viewer email says, “I watch your show every Sunday. It’s far more educational and presented in a fun fashion than these so-called adult programs! I have learned facts I never knew about and I have a college degree. Keep up the good work.” Signed, Larry R.

We're taking a short break, but don't go away because Teen Kids News will be right back.

(Describer) Veronique:

There's a new approach to teaching that's turning the education process upside down. Scott tells us more. It's called a flipped classroom, and it's being tried out in schools across the country, such as New York's Eastchester Middle School. John Blaser teaches sixth, seventh, and eighth graders there. Welcome. It's a pleasure to be here. It's great to have you. What is a flipped classroom? A flipped classroom is where you do the classwork at home and the homework in class. Okay. How exactly does that happen? What we do is record screencasts, or videos, of me teaching the class. We put them online, so you can watch them at home, and when you come into class, you're ready to do the assignment here. This is a combination of two ideas, then? It's a flipped classroom, but it's also online learning. Yes, because the videos of me teaching the class are online, and you go to the website where they are and that's where you view the videos. Why did you decide this was a good thing? I wanted the students to be able to work at their own pace. Some students like to go faster, some slower-- take more time on an assignment. It gives me more time to work with you individually in class. Have you seen any improvement in students' work? Yes. First of all, everybody is much happier in class when they're working because they're able to work on the assignment they want to be working on. It also allows the students to spend more time on an assignment when they need to for better quality. I guess there's less homework, in a way. Yeah, a lot of people would rather watch a video than do the worksheet at home. So, nationally, is this becoming a trend? Yes. It started in Colorado with a couple of high-school teachers, and has just spread. Many teachers on different grade levels are trying it. What do you think is the best thing to come out of both the online learning and the flipped classroom? I think the best thing is that students are able to work at their own pace and are able to spend the amount of time on an assignment that they want to. Terrific. Well, sir, thank you for joining us. My pleasure. Let's get reaction to this flipped-classroom idea from some students. I think it's a really beneficial way of teaching because it teaches us to be independent in our studies. As we mature, and go to higher grades, we're going to be faced with more independent studies. It helps to explain things to-- you know, things that you wouldn't normally think of. And it helps with research-- stuff like that. I think it really benefits the students. It helps them learn more, in a way. Students are usually pressured by asking questions and learning, and this helps have less pressure and learn more. Instead of teaching you, like, in person, he teaches you about an assignment on a video. So, if you have trouble with something, you can go back to the screencast, look for answers for your questions, and that'll help you on your assignments. More work in school means more time to relax at home. It makes homework easier because you can look back at your assignment and see what you need to do. While flipped classrooms are still new, it seems that the idea is catching on. The students think it's a good way to learn.

(Describer) A courthouse with tall columns is shown. A cartoon judge in a white wig waves a gavel. On the cover of a book, title: Weird, Wild Wacky Laws. Emily:

If you're in New York City and want to say hi to someone, don't do this.

(Describer) She puts her thumb on her nose and wiggles fingers.

First of all, because it's silly. But more importantly, it's actually against the law to greet people by, and I quote, "putting one's thumb on the nose and wiggling the fingers." Glad I know to be careful of doing that in the Big Apple. Not that I would-- but still. HooplaHa is a website that gathers cool videos from across the country. We'll show you one when we continue. We'll be right back.

(Describer) Daniela:

Whether you're thinking about running for student government or joining a club or about to apply to college, honing your leadership skills will be a big help. Our HooplaHa pick of the week shows where you can do that.

(Describer) As sun shines on a lake, title: Count Me In Leadership Summit.

(girl) The best part of Summit was meeting people from around the world and talking to people that you usually wouldn't. I got to make friendships that last outside of Summit, got to know people, and build close relationships. Everyone at Summit is super happy, positive. You can make eye contact with someone and they'll smile, introduce themselves. It's amazing and unlike anything else.

(girl #2) What's different at the Summit weekend is the community that gets built. The scale builders, the staff-- everyone works to make sure you belong and matter. My experiences as a FIT-- Facilitator in Training-- were absolutely amazing. I'm in university and I needed a change of pace. The level of understanding that you feel there, the level of belonging, the level of love, is amazing. You're not going to find anywhere in the world like the Summit, where you feel so loved and cared about by friends and peers. The Summit helped me with my transition to university because I became more social. And I know how to communicate with people better and understand them on a different level. You can never stop learning to be a leader. No matter how successful you are, if you're at the pinnacle of your existence, learning to become a leader is never-ending. Getting out of my shell and seeing how my opinion can make a difference, that was wonderful. I liked listening to the speakers and hearing their life stories.

(male) Everybody comes from different backgrounds and has different life experiences, and it's so cool learning about them and growing with them at the Summit. I came into the Summit not knowing anyone, and I came out knowing so many people. I connected with people in three days. They felt like family.

(Describer) A girl wipes away tears.

The hardest thing was saying goodbye. I didn't want to leave.

(male #2) It's an organic mixture of incredible individuals. Each person has something special to share and bring. I find myself learning more about people, about the world. To be given this opportunity to be here at Summit, to be able to experience and meet these new people, it's truly rewarding and I'm thankful for the opportunity.

(all) Count me in! Count me in! Count me in!

(Describer) Dozens of young people dance in unison indoors and outside.

For more information on the Count Me In Leadership Summit, follow the link on our website. For Teen Kids News, I'm Daniella.

(Describer) Veronique:

That wraps up our show. We'll have more Teen Kids News for you next week.

(Describer) Titles: Director: Alan J Weiss. Producers: Tania Wilk, Marilou Yacoub. Copyright Eyewitness Kids News LLC, 2017, all rights reserved. Follow us on Facebook, Twitter and Instagram. Funding to purchase and make this educational program accessible was provided by the U.S. Department of Education. Contact the Department of Education by telephone at 1-800-USA-LEARN, or online at

Funding to purchase and make this educational production accessible was provided by the U.S. Department of Education:

PH: 1-800-USA-LEARN (V) or WEB:

(girl) Write to us at

(Describer) Alan Weiss Productions.

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In many parts of the world today, being born female means a life of hardship and poverty. In this two-part story, Emily interviews Betsy Teutsch. She has written a book about 100 tools that can help empower woman around the world. In flag facts, Eric gives the history of California's state flag, and Christin discusses a study technique that is sure to work. Other segments include the flipped classroom, wild and wacky laws, and a great place to improve leadership skills. Part of the "Teen Kids News" series.

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