Mystery Class Mystery Class
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Introducing Mystery Class # 1
Saipan, Northern Mariana Islands 15.20 N, 145.75 E

We are a class of 22 third graders at Saipan Community School, located on the island of Saipan in the Northern Mariana Islands. We are at approximately 15.20 N. latitude and 145.75 E. longitude.

Our school is a private Christian school with 220 students in grades K-8. Our student body is a mixture of boys and girls from Saipan, other Pacific islands, Asia, Australia, The U.S, Canada, and several other countries. We are on the west side of the island with our playground skirting a beautiful lagoon on the Philippine Sea.

Chamorro, Carolinian, and English are the official languages of our country, but many other languages are spoken here due to the diverse population.

A wide variety of food can be found in homes and restaurants on Saipan. Local favorites include Kelaguen Mannok, made with chicken, coconut, onions, and peppers, Eskabache, with fish and vegetables. Other dishes include Chamorro Bisteck, Roast Pig, and Red Rice. Restaurant food may be Chamorro, American, Chinese, Japanese, Korean, Indian, or Mexican.

There are 14 islands in the Marianas. The three main islands are Saipan, Tinian, and Rota. Saipan, the largest island is 13 miles long and 6 miles wide at its widest point. The highest point on Saipan is Mt. Tagpochau, which is part of a ridge running through the middle of the island. The Marianas Trench, with the world's deepest known ocean depth is to our east.

Our climate is tropical with a rainy season and a dry season. The temperatures average from 75-85F all year. Typhoons often accompany the rainy season.

Many kinds of flowers bloom during the year with the Plumeria being the official flower. A mwar-mwar (a circle of flowers), is often worn for festivals and other special occasions. This custom was introduced to the island by the Carolinians. Each village has an annual festival and the Flame Tree Festival is observed at American Memorial Park each year, and is for the entire island. At the festivals, local food is served and singers and dancers perform.

Tourism and garment manufacturing are the main industries. Thousands of tourists visit the Marianas every year. Tourists visit historical landmarks, go scuba diving, snorkel, parasail, or play golf.

There are still relics on Saipan from the battles fought here during WWII. There are Japanese bunkers in many areas of the island and three American tanks are still in the lagoon in the Philippine Sea.

The Northern Mariana Islands is a U.S. Commonwealth and the residents are U.S. citizens. The U.S. dollar is the monetary unit and the mail is handled by the U.S. Postal Service.

Technology and connections to other countries have improved greatly in the last five years. Many people here now own computers and are connected to the internet.

We are proud of our beautiful country and hope you will want to learn more about us. For more information about the Marianas, you can visit these websites:

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