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Science – Lessons from Nature


Written by Xuan




The Sun

We all know that the Sun is the sustainer for all life on Earth. What would happen if the Sun goes out? In its absence, Earth’s temperature drops to -240 degrees Celsius. At such extreme conditions and without sunlight, all photosynthesis would stop, and plants die off shortly after. As animals and humans rely on plants for food, survival on Earth would be nigh impossible.

Thankfully, the sun rises every day regularly for us.

Lesson 1: We don’t know the importance of something until we lose it. Appreciate your loved ones everyday. They are our ‘Sun’.


The Sun not only keeps the Earth warm enough for plants and animals and provides light for photosynthesis but also enables the human skin to generate Vitamin D when exposed to sunlight. This is essential for healthy bone formation.

Lesson 2: You have many talents, discover them.


The sun shines on everyone equally. Unless we hide in the darkness, its warm rays are always available to us.

Lesson 3: Knowledge is ever present. Seek it and use it again to improve the lives of others.


(Source: https://wonderopolis.org/wonder/what-would-earth-be-like-without-the-sun)






Water

The Sea

Usually the sea is calm, most times it is not. When swimming in the sea, we need to know when to swim and when to float. You will never know when you might be caught in a rip current. A rip current is a strong, narrow current flowing outward from the beach through the surf zone.


Safety tip taken from (https://www.earthnetworks.com/blog/10-worst-beach-hazards/) If caught it a rip current, experts say don’t fight the current directly. It can be hard not to panic at the current takes you out to sea, but the best thing you can do is swim out of it. You can float to conserve energy as well. To swim out of a rip current, swim parallel to the shore. NEVER try to swim directly against the current. This will only tire you out.

Lesson 4: Do not panic when facing difficulties, the more we struggle, the faster we drown. By keeping calm, we can resolve our worries and anxious thoughts.





River and Streams

Rivers and streams can recover from moderate levels of biodegradable waste. Because the water is always flowing, waste is quickly diluted and broken down by bacteria. However, this natural recovery process does not work when a stream is overloaded with biodegradable pollutions or when drought, damming, or water diversion impact its flow.

Lesson 5: We can only take a certain amount of stress in our lives. If our thresholds are exceeded, we would need time to recover or may have to ask others for help. Ensure that you keep your body and mind healthy to have a happy life.


(Source: Miller, G. Tyler and Scott. Spoolman, Environmental Science (2019))



Rain

Rain is part of the water cycle.


Precipitation is always fresh water, even when originating from the ocean. This is because sea salt does not evaporate with water. However, in some cases, pollutants in the atmosphere can contaminate water droplets before they fall to the Earth. The precipitation that results is called acid rain. Acid rain does not harm humans directly, but it can make lakes and streams more acidic. This harms aquatic ecosystems because plants and animals often cannot adapt to the acidity.

Lesson 6: We reap what we sow and nature is merely a witness to our actions.

(Source: https://www.nationalgeographic.org/encyclopedia/precipitation/)






Trees

Trees provide shade for everyone in need. They help reduce the ambient temperature of the environment and improve both air and water quality by absorbing carbon dioxide, releasing oxygen, reducing ozone levels and soil erosion. Trees provide these essential processes without expecting anything in return.

Lesson 7: Our parents are just like the trees, they nourish us, support us, provide shelter to us, overcome difficulties so that we may have a pleasant life. We must learn to appreciate them before they are gone.


Trees also reduce greenhouse gases when they take in carbon dioxide from the atmosphere through the process known as carbon sequestration. The unwanted carbon dioxide is stored as wood which is useful in many ways. This process also helps combat climate change which is currently affecting the world.

Lesson 8: We can use the knowledge we gain through overcoming difficulties and turned it into something fruitful and beneficial to everyone.

(Source: https://www.nparks.gov.sg/treessg/learn/benefits-of-trees#:~:text=Trees%20improve%20our%20urban%20environment.&text=They%20are%20also%20known%20to,stormwater%20management%20in%20a%20city.)



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