Environment, News

NBA Star Donates $1-Million To Oklahoma Relief Efforts

Image: Keith Allison
Kevin Durant is an NBA star. He plays for the Oklahoma City Thunder. Image: Keith Allison

To help his home city “bounce back” after a terrible storm, NBA player Kevin Durant has donated $1-million.

The number of people harmed by a recent tornado in the U.S. state of Oklahoma was greatly reduced, thanks to a special early-warning system.

On Monday, a major tornado hit Moore, a suburb of Oklahoma City. A tornado is a violent storm that usually looks like a whirling funnel.

Residents were warned there was a big storm coming, and possibly a tornado, days before it arrived. When it actually hit, sirens blared, giving people a 16-minute head start to find shelter.

Those sixteen minutes likely saved many lives, according to a news report by The Associated Press.

The country’s National Weather Service issued a warning that a tornado was coming. Then, outdoor sirens started going off. When people heard the noise, they knew to go somewhere safe from the storm, such as a basement.

Thirty-six sirens were installed in Moore because it is in an area of the U.S. that sometimes has tornadoes. Other parts of North America are not as likely to have tornadoes.

Researchers are working on creating longer-term warnings, that will give people even more warning time.

Image: Ks0stm
This photograph shows the tornado as it travelled south of Oklahoma City. Image: Ks0stm

In Canada, Environment Canada issues weather warnings to alert people to big storms.

One of the people affected by the tornado is basketball player Kevin Durant, who plays for the Oklahoma City Thunder. He said it was “tough to see” what the tornado did to his town. He has donated $1-million to help the city rebuild.

He told The Associated Press that the city will come together and “we’re going to bounce back.”

By Jonathan Tilly

Writing/Discussion Prompt
Today’s story explains that a tornado is a violent storm that usually looks like a whirling funnel. The science of what causes tornados is quite fascinating and, with the help of an adult, search the web and youtube for explanations that are right for you.

However, to see what the swirling wind looks like, do the following experiment. Materials you’ll need are: 2 empty 2-litre plastic pop bottles, water, duct tape, sequins (optional).

1. Pour approximately 1 litre of water into one of the pop bottles.
2. If using sequins, add them to the water now.
3. Place the empty pop bottle on top of the pop bottle containing the water, so that both spouts are lined up.
4. Use the duct tape to create a seal between both spouts. (The water will need to travel from one bottle to the other, so a well-made seal is a good idea.)

Now that your tornado in a bottle is made, flip the plastic bottles so that the water is falling into the empty bottle. Turn the top water bottle in a circular motion while keeping the bottom water bottle in place. This will produce a “whirling funnel” of water. If you do not see the water moving in this way, try turning the top water bottle more quickly.

Reading Prompt: Comprehension Strategies
A comprehension strategy is a tool that helps you understand what it is that you are reading. One excellent tool for making sure you are comprehending a text is asking yourself questions.

Did you ask yourself questions as you read? If so, what were they? If not, what strategy did you use to ensure that you understood the article correctly?

Primary & Junior
Identify a variety of reading comprehension strategies and use them appropriately before, during, and after reading to understand texts (OME, Reading: 1.3).

Identify a variety of reading comprehension strategies and use them appropriately before, during, and after reading to understand increasingly complex texts (OME, Reading: 1.3).

Grammar Feature: Adjectival Compounds / Dashes ( – )
Dashes ( – ) are punctuation marks that can be used to change or modify the meaning of the words they connect. When a dash is used in this way, the first word modifies the meaning of the second word. For this reason, these constructions are called adjectival compounds, i.e. the number modifies the amount of the second word, the noun. Today’s story contains two adjectival compounds, 16-minute and 1-million.

Write 5 of your own adjectival compounds. Make sure that the number changes the value of the noun it precedes.