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Makerspaces Provide Supplement to Traditional Learning in Midway ISD

When you hear the phrase "makerspace," you can probably take a guess at what it all means. It’s space where you make things, but it’s not quite your parents’ workshop class. Yeah, there are tools and a workbench, but there’s also a lot of high-tech gear - and it’s all recently come to Midway Independent School district.
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There's an oil painting on one wall in the cluttered room that serves as central headquarters of Burch Farms, a large vegetable grower in Faison, N.C. The painting shows an African-American couple, the woman in a long, plain dress, the man in a homespun shirt. They're digging sweet potatoes with their bare hands and an old-fashioned hoe.

After a long stalemate, a bipartisan team of congressional negotiators has agreed to overhaul the Elementary and Secondary Education Act. The law, currently known as No Child Left Behind, sends roughly $14 billion a year to schools that serve mostly low-income students.

Here's what we know about the rough agreement. First, annual testing — a major feature of NCLB — would remain for grades three through eight and at least once in high school. Schools would still have to test 95 percent of their students and report the results by race, income and special need.

If egg freezing once sounded like science fiction, those days are over. Women now hear about it from their friends, their doctors and informational events like Wine and Freeze.

Shady Grove Fertility Center in the Washington, D.C., area hosts Wine and Freeze nights for prospective patients every few months. Fifteen or so women in their 30s gathered at one recently over wine, brownies and sticky buns. A doctor explained the procedure, the costs and the odds of frozen eggs resulting in a baby — which decline as a woman ages.

World leaders are scheduled to meet in Paris soon, trying to draft an agreement on how to combat climate change. Among the heads of state, you'll also see California Gov. Jerry Brown, who is spearheading his own international climate movement.

Brown has been on an international diplomatic tour the last few months — all about climate change.

"The world faces an existential threat," he told Canadian leaders in July.

Then, he went to the Vatican. "Whatsoever a man soweth, that shall he also reap," he said.

Copyright 2015 NPR. To see more, visit



Copyright 2015 NPR. To see more, visit



Changes in the environment can affect what is available for us to eat. My colleague Steve Inskeep spoke with Allison Aubrey about a little-noticed factor in our food supply that affects what will be available for Thanksgiving dinner.

During important events in China in recent years — from international summit meetings to sporting events and military parades — the government has resorted to ordering smoggy skies to turn blue. Apparently, the skies dare not disobey.

This involves ordering cars off of the capital's streets, and shutting down factories across much of north China.

But China's leaders seem to realize that clearing skies by diktat is not a solution. As part of its pledge to cap carbon emissions by the year 2030, China is now building what could become the world's largest carbon market.

Remember that health class you had in middle school? Where you found out all that stuff about your body? We wondered why there wasn't a class like that for middle age. Could someone tell us what happens to us as we move through the decades?

Morning Edition asked listeners to send their questions about women's bodies and aging as part of our ongoing series Changing Lives of Women. We heard from hundreds of you asking about everything from sleeplessness to STDs to sex in old age.

If you are turkey-averse, turkeyphobic or just bored with the bird, fear not. We've got some other main dish ideas for you.

"What I think is cool is to put a center roast on the table that comes from the woods itself: something wild, something home-hunted, like venison," Amy Thielen, Minnesotan and author of The New Midwestern Table, tells All Things Considered's Ari Shapiro. Deer, says Thielen, is "one of those secret underground proteins in the American meat-eating story."



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