Wonder Contributors

Thanks to Avery from Monroe, Ohio, for nominating today’s Wonder!

They’re yellow. They’re tasty. You can pretend they’re ray guns or telephones. Monkeys love them. What are we talking about? Bananas, of course!

But you don’t have to be a monkey to love bananas. Children and adults alike crave these sweet yellow fruits. Whether you like to peel a banana and eat it fresh or you prefer a banana split with ice cream and other toppings, these tempting treats will tickle your taste buds.

Monkeys probably don’t know much about nutrition, but they know they love bananas. Why? It’s probably because bananas tend to grow in the hot, tropical areas where monkeys usually live. They’re a convenient source of food that happens to taste great and provide a lot of nutrients in a small package.

If you are an active kid, a banana can give you a quick dose of natural energy to keep your body going. Bananas are one of the few foods that contain all six of the major vitamin groups. In fact, bananas are a great source of Vitamin C, fiber, and an important nutrient called potassium.

Many people believe that bananas grow on trees. In reality, though, bananas grow on giant plants that can reach up to 30 feet tall. When they’re picked, bananas are green. They continue to ripen after being picked, and they’re usually mostly yellow by the time they get to your local grocery store.

The word “banana” comes from the Arab word “banan,” which means finger. This makes sense, since a single banana is called a finger! A whole bunch of bananas together is called a hand.

Bananas are one of the most popular fruits in the world. The average American eats over 25 pounds of bananas every year.

Bananas are good for more than just food, though. Did you know that banana peels contain one of the best lubricants in the world? It’s true! You can use the inside of a banana peel to polish patent leather shoes.

98 Join the Discussion

1 Star2 Stars3 Stars4 Stars5 Stars  (42 votes, avg. 4.40 out of 5)
    • HOORAY, we’re thrilled that our Wonder Friends in Ms. Bayko’s Class are healthy and happy! Today’s Wonder was lots of fun– we hope you are having a SUPER day (and perhaps you’ll monkey around during recess)! Thanks for sharing your awesome, seasonal predictions for the next Wonder of the Day®! :)

  1. Thoughts: I noticed the man in the video was hired to scare away the monkeys. (Kerry) I thought it was really weird that the man was walking around like a monkey with all of those peole around. (Joaquin) I think that the man’s back will hurt A LOT at the end of each day. (Mrs. Hess)

    Connections: This reminds of the time when my dad and I were at the zoo because the person was training cicadas to stick around him. (Michelle) This reminds me of when my cousin said that banana peels can get rid of pimples because a banana peel can be used to clean patent leather shoes. (Jake)

    Predictions: What is a tornado? (Leslie) What are storm chasers? (Luis) What is alliteration? (Jaaron) How do tornados form? (Brandon) What is a breeze? (Shalize)

    • Good morning, Wonder Friends in Mrs. Hess’ Class! We really enjoy Kerry, Joaquin and Mrs. Hess’ thoughts about today’s Wonder video. We have been monkeying around here at Wonderopolis and we switched out today’s video with a new one– it will make you smile! :)

      Michelle and Jake have awesome (and very different) connections to our banana Wonder, too! We think it’s cool that bananas and monkeys remind us of different things, like what we see at the zoo and how we take care of ourselves and our belongings! :)

      Leslie, Luis, Jaaron, Brandon, and Shalize: thanks for sharing your WONDERful predictions for tomorrow’s Wonder of the Day®! Check out some of our Wonders from the past:

      Wonder #204– Where is Tornado Alley? http://wonderopolis.org/wonder/where-is-tornado-alley/
      Wonder #779– Why Do Some People Chase Storms? http://wonderopolis.org/wonder/why-do-some-people-chase-storms/ :)

  2. Thoughts, Connections, Questions: None of us really understood what this video had to do with the Wonder. We thought it was weird and awkward. Cassie- Why do monkeys get in so much trouble? Aaliyah- How are monkeys so smart? Bryan- Do monkeys even think at all about what they’re doing? Hayden- Was the man in the video chasing the monkeys away? Erica- Were the monkeys scared of the man? Did they run away or just stay there? Sierra- One time with my nephew he had tried banana baby food. He made a face like it was sour!

    Predictions: Destiny- How destructive can tornadoes be? Christian- Why are tornadoes so dangerous? Alexia- Why are they called tornadoes? Aaliyah- What causes tornadoes? Stevie- Can tornadoes destroy homes? Cassie- What causes storms? Hayden- How do they predict tornadoes? Bryan- Can you survive a hurricane? Gabrielle- How do hurricanes form? Michael- How do you prepare for severe weather?

    • Good morning to Mrs. VanDusen’s Class! We are so glad you shared your very awesome comments with us– we have been going bananas over here at Wonderopolis… we even switched today’s Wonder video after checking out your comment! We hope you’ll take a look at the newest one! :)

      Cassie, Aaliyah, Bryan, Hayden, Erica, and Sierra: thanks for all your thoughts and connections! Monkeys are very cool animals, and they are very intelligent, too! Monkeys are the closest animals to human beings! :)

      Destiny, Christian, Alexia, Aaliyah, Stevie, Cassie, Hayden, Bryan, Gabrielle, and Michael: you have been doing a SUPER job of using your imaginations to guess tomorrow’s Wonder of the Day®! Tornadoes, storms, hurricanes, OH MY! We’ve got some Wonders from the past to share in the meantime:
      Wonder #204– Where is Tornado Alley? http://wonderopolis.org/wonder/where-is-tornado-alley/
      Wonder #779– Why Do Some People Chase Storms? http://wonderopolis.org/wonder/why-do-some-people-chase-storms/
      Wonder #862– What is a Gully Washer? http://wonderopolis.org/wonder/what-is-a-gully-washer/ :)

  3. I never knew you could polish shoes with a banana peel! Great way to show kids that any question can work for short, research investigations. What does the Website box mean on the left of this comment box?

    • It’s so very cool that you learned something new with us today, Susan E! HOORAY for WONDERing and bananas! :)

      It sounds like your Wonder students are in for an investigative treat! If you have a blog, website, or link to your school that you’d like to share, you can add it in the Website box! It will hyperlink your name to your link! :)

    • We hope you’ll visit us again tomorrow to find out, Sophia! What was your favorite part of today’s monkeying around Wonder? :)

  4. We were suprised to learn that bananas don’t grow on trees, but on tall plants. We never knew that plants could grow 30 ft tall. It was interesting that so many bananas are eaten every year. Our whole class loves eating bananas!!!

    We think that the next wonder will be about…… hurricanes, tornadoes, or a cyclone……..

    • Hey there, Wonder Friends in Mrs. Keeling’s Grade 3 Class! Thanks for sharing your comments with us today! We think it would be cool to grow some banana trees here at Wonderopolis, but we don’t think the climate is the best for growing that delicious fruit! It sounds like we’ve got a lot of Wonder Friends who are fans of bananas! How awesome!

      We look forward to finding out what tomorrow’s Wonder will be… thanks for your SUPER guesses this Wonder Wednesday! :)

  5. This is our first time on Wonderopolis, and here are our thoughts:
    Monkeys love fruit! We think it’s just how monkeys are made, that they love bananas. Bananas have good vitamins and they taste good to monkeys. We made a connection to this wonder because we are studying the Amazon Rain Forest in South America.

    • Welcome to Wonderopolis, Mrs. Dobson’s Class! HOORAY for new Wonder Friends! It’s a WONDERful Wednesday here and we’re so glad you stopped by to visit!

      It sounds like you’ve learned a lot about monkeys and their favorite fruit… and it’s very cool that this Wonder pairs well with your South American lessons in class! We love when connections are made here at Wonderopolis! We hope to see you soon! :)

  6. Interesting Information: Carter – Monkeys eat a healthy banana without even knowing it is healthy. Mrs. Vincent – I didn’t know a single banana was a called a “finger” and a bunch of bananas were called a “hand.” Kylie – I didn’t know banana peels were a natural cleaner. I wonder if they can really get rid of pimples.

    • Good afternoon, Wonder Friends in Mrs. Vincent’s Class! Carter, Mrs. Vincent and Kylie did a SUPER job of sharing what they learned today! HOORAY for hands of bananas! We are going to have to research the connection between bananas and clear skin! :)

      We look forward to WONDERing with you soon, thank you for stopping by today! :)

    • We have lots of banana lovers here at Wonderopolis, Jusin, and it sounds like you’re a fan of bananas, too! Thanks for visiting us today! We Wonder if you have a favorite recipe that includes bananas? :)

    • We’re glad you’re chuckling with us today, Eli! We Wonder what your favorite part of today’s Wonder is? Do you have a favorite banana recipe to share? :)

  7. _____________________________________________________________________
    HA HA HA!!! :D Was That Clay???
    My cousin said that she was allergic to bananas– what?!

    I Wonder What’s Next?
    Join Us In Wonderopolis Tomorrow For A Windy Weather Wonder!!!
    Hmm Maybe It’s Tornados Or Hurricane Sandy!!! :D :D
    See Ya Next Time!!! :D ….Now For A Long Day Of School…. :D :D

    • We love your enthusiasm about today’s Wonder, Pink! It’s great that monkeys are one of your favorite animals– we always like to observe them at the zoo! We Wonder if you are a fan of bananas? :)

  8. Predictions: I think bananas are tasty and easy for monkeys to reach.(Tabitha) The bananas help the monkeys to move better and help their muscles not get tired.(Randall)

    Thoughts: It’s really funny that one banana is called a finger and a whole bunch is called a hand!(Cadence) I didn’t know that you could polish your patent leather shoes with the inside of a banana peel!(Keedyn)

    We think the wonder for tomorrow might be about tornadoes, hurricanes, or wind chills.

    • Good afternoon, Mrs. Bailey’s Class! Thanks for sharing your awesome predictions, Tabitha and Randall! We love that you used your imaginations when you answered today’s Wonder! :)

      We think Cadence and Keedyn are going to try polishing our shoes with a banana peel… we bet you can buy a few hands worth of bananas and your whole class can try! :)

      Thanks for sharing your awesome guesses for tomorrow, too! We look forward to seeing you again, Wonder Friends! :)

    • We think it’s great that you’re going bananas over bananas, Wonder Friend Meg! We have lots of friends here at Wonderopolis who are big fans of bananas, too! They are sweet, great for traveling, and delicious! Thanks for sharing your comment today! :)

    • Great question, Wonder Friend Allison! We know that some monkeys will eat the entire banana– peel and all– while others prefer to eat only the inside of the banana, like we do. Thanks for sharing your comment with us today! :)

  9. We have some more banana related wonderings:
    1) Would banana oil be good for your skin?
    2) Are bananas monkeys’ favorite food?
    3) What else can you do with banana peels?
    4) Do other animals besides monkeys like bananas?
    5) Do all monkeys like bananas?
    6) Would a monkey eat banana cream pie?

    Some wonder suggestions:
    How is claymation animation done?
    Who was Vladimir Horowitz?
    Why is the sky blue?

    Predictions for tomorrow:
    How is fog made?
    where does wind come from?
    How does a hurricane work?

    • How right you are, Wonder Friend Lita! We LOVE monkeys and bananas, but you don’t need to be at the zoo to enjoy the sweet, tasty fruit! We think it’s cool that monkeys eat bananas from the bottom… or perhaps that’s the top to them?! :)

  10. That was cool. I did not know that I should do that one day. I LOVE BANANAS. I think they are really good for you. Now knowing that people should eat more bananas than any other food. What will happen if you eat the outside of a banana?

    • Hey D’Anya! Thanks for telling us about what you learned from our banana Wonder! We’re happy to hear that you’re a big fan of the sweet fruit– you go bananas for bananas! :)

      The outside of the banana, or the banana peel, is eaten in many countries. Usually, we don’t eat it, but there is lots of nutrients in the peel. However, we think you should try polishing some shiny shoes or silver with a banana peel– let us know how it works! :)

    • Thanks for WONDERing about bananas with us, Gabrianna! It is so much fun when we can all learn something new together! We always thought banana peels were just slippery– now we know they’re good for polishing, too! :)

    • HOORAY! Thanks for telling us how much you enjoy bananas, Wonder Friend ACT! We are glad you’re here today! :)

    • What a great question, Wonder Friend Adrien! We know they can hang from their tails, but why do they have them?! We hope you’ll do some WONDERing of your own to find out why! :)

    • SUPER question, Wonder Friend Adrien! Monkeys are great at swinging from tree to tree– they need long, lean muscles to get from tree to tree in a quick and safe way! We bet we’d have SUPER strong muscles if that’s how we got around, too! :)

    • Great question, Wonder Friend Mandolyn! Believe it or not, the plant that bananas grow on is called… a banana plant! There are different types, but they’re known as banana plants! They grow in tropical climates and they produce LOTS of delicious bananas! Thanks for monkeying around with us today! :)

    • Hey there, Samiel! We are glad you’re here… and we hope you can have a banana soon– they’re so delicious and good for you! We really enjoy making connections between our Wonders and what our Wonder Friends might enjoy, so that’s why you are craving a banana! :)

    • Hey Allison, great question! Some monkeys eat the peel, while others just eat the banana like we do! We Wonder if you have seen how a monkey eats a banana… it’s upside down (or perhaps it’s right-side up)! :)

  11. I love bananas
    I love bananas
    Because they’re so awesome and fun to eat!
    As you can see I love bananas.
    Here is a song my friend Charlie Little made up:
    I love bannas, I love bananas! Yes I doo, yes I doo!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!
    And So On……………

    • We like your banana enthusiasm, Wonder Friend Alana! Thanks for sharing your comment about how much you enjoy bananas– we love Charlie’s song, too! :)

  12. How did that video effect how to show why monkeys like bananas so much? Aidan from rockin room 16

    • Hey there, Aidan, thanks for sharing your comment! We are glad you’re thinking about the Wonder video and the Wonder of the Day®! We always like to find cool videos to share with our Wonder community, and we hope this Wonder video made you smile. We always see monkeys eating bananas, but we have been WONDERing why! :)

    • How cool that you learned something new with us, Mia! We think lots of Wonder Friends thought monkeys only enjoy bananas in cartoons, too! In reality, monkeys and humans love bananas, too! :)

  13. I love wonderopolis because it has a whole bunch of cool and fun stuff, also I just learned that a banana peel can polish a leather shoe also I learned that one banana is called a finger a whole bunch of bannas are called a hand.

    • We are so excited to read your comment, Jozi! Thanks for sharing your thoughts about Wonderopolis and all that you learned! HOORAY for you! :)

      We are sending you a virtual high five for all that you’ve shared today! :)

  14. WOW that was cool I had no clue that the inside of a banana could be used as a shoe polisher?! Obviously not me. I also thought is was interesting that only 1 banana is called a finger and a whole bunch of them were called a hand. In a way that kind of made sense. :)

    • WOOHOO, you learned some awesome new facts today, Sofia! Nice work! We are so excited that you shared your comment and enthusiasm with us this morning! WONDERing ROCKS! :)

    • Thanks very much, Pie Lover! We are so excited you are here today! We’re having a great time monkeying around as we Wonder– and it sounds like you are, too! :)

    • Hey Taylor, archaeologists and historians are still trying to answer that very question! We Wonder if you have done any WONDERing about the Lost City of Atlantis in class? Perhaps you can do some research of your own… we’d love to hear about it! :)

    • You’re right, Taylor, apples, bananas, strawberries, mango, grapes… so many delicious fruit options to choose from! Thanks for telling us how much you enjoyed our Wonder! :)

    • Thanks for sharing your WONDERful comment with us, Sawyer.DAVIDSON! It’s fun to learn something new about cool chimps and what they eat! We hope you have a banana-riffic day! :)

  15. Hi, I just read this amazing passage. I can go to sleep tonight thinking about this amazing WONDER. Wow. This was powerful

    • HOORAY, we’re so excited to hear all about your thoughts, Wonder Friend L! We are glad you learned something new with us– we can’t wait to Wonder with you again soon!

      Have you checked out another cool Wonder from our archives… it’s all about basketball! Are you a fan? Wonder #166– Who Invented Basketball? http://wonderopolis.org/wonder/who-invented-basketball/ :)

  16. I think this is one of the coolest wonders I read! Bananas are yummy and you can pick them when they’re ripe.

    • Hey there, Starstar2000! Thanks so much for telling us how much you enjoy this banana-riffic Wonder! We are glad you’re here today, and we hope you have a banana-rama kind of day! See you soon, Wonder Friend! :)

    • YUM, we love bananas, too, Paul! Actually, one of our Wonder Friends just enjoyed a banana with breakfast! :)

      We’re happy that you learned something new from our Wonder about monkeys and bananas– they go together so very well! We hope you’ll come back to visit us soon, Paul! Have a terrific Tuesday! :)

    • Isn’t it super cool to Wonder about, Hope? We are glad you shared your very own questions about this Wonder, too! Bananas are convenient for monkeys to eat in their natural habitats, and it’s pretty WONDERful that we can eat and enjoy them, too! :)

  17. Good morning Wonderopolis. I learned that banana trees can be 30 feet tall! Did you know that an average American eats over 25 pounds of bananas every year, and timmys banana was funny? The nominator of this wonder lives where I live too. Thanks for wondering with me . :)

    • WONDERful, Miicah and Andrew! We are so glad that you enjoyed the Wonder Video, and learned a cool fact about bananas! Way to go, Wonder Friends! :-)

    • Hi, Lauren V! We can’t take credit for making the video — that came from Cameron Thomas with The Cinema School. He did a great job, huh?! :)

    • Hi, Joe! The monkey was upset the bear was taking his bananas and tried to stop him. When they both fell from the tree, it looks like the monkey landed on the bottom and got hurt because he yells, “Ouch!” Hopefully, he has fully recovered and found new bananas! Thanks for WONDERing with us! :)

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Have you ever wondered…

  • Why do monkeys love bananas?
  • Are bananas good for you?
  • What can you do with a banana?

Wonder Gallery

899Vimeo Video

Try It Out

We hope you went bananas for today’s Wonder of the Day! Keep the banana rolling by finding a few friends or family members to help you check out one or more of the following activities:

  • Bananas can be a great part of a healthy diet. But only monkeys probably enjoy eating plain bananas all the time. Here are a few creative recipes you can try the next time you’re hungry for bananas:
  • Do you love bananas? Of course, they’re tasty to eat, but they can be so much more than that. Put your imagination to work to answer the following question: what can you do with a banana? A banana makes the perfect toy telephone. It could also be a ray gun. Of course, it’s also the perfect bait for a homemade monkey trap. But what else are bananas good for? Can you come up with some fun and creative ideas of your own? If you get stuck, just ask a monkey. They know all sorts of fun things to do with bananas! When you have a few good ideas, share them with your Wonder Friends on Facebook. The monkeys in Wonderopolis can’t wait to read your ideas!
  • Up for a challenge? Figure out just how healthy bananas are. Do some Internet research to find out the basic nutritional facts of bananas. How many calories do they have? What about carbohydrates and proteins? What vitamins and minerals do they contain? Compare bananas to the nutrients found in other fruits. Are they healthier than oranges? What about grapes? Limes? Choose a couple of fruits and create a chart that compares bananas to several other fruits, based upon multiple nutritional categories. Feel free to use a food label you find around the house for an idea of what nutritional information to compare.

Still Wondering

In Science NetLinks’ Monkey Pay-Per-View Science Update, you’ll hear about an experiment in which monkeys were given a carefully measured amount of juice when they looked at, or away from, various pictures.

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Wonder What’s Next?

Join us in Wonderopolis tomorrow for a windy weather Wonder!

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