Portugal celebrates Portugal Day. The country’s national and beloved poet, Luis Vas de Camoes, died on this day in 1580. According to the CIAWorld Factbook, Portugal is about the size of Indiana. Surrounded by ocean on two sides and Spain on the other two sides, Portugal has a maritime climate. Almost eleven million citizens live there, and the majority live in cities. The country exports agricultural products, wine, and food products. Lisbon is the capital. Children could learn more at: http://kids.nationalgeographic.com/kids/places/find/portugal/.
Forest fire lookout stations, erected in Greenville, Maine, in 1905, were the first of their kind. The towers rose in popularity during the 1930’s to the 1950’s. During World War II, fire towers along the Pacific Ocean were used to spot enemy craft. Today the number of lookout stations has declined because of other technology.
Ballpoint pen was patented in 1943 by Laszlo Biro in Argentina. The ballpoint pen has a small ball bearing in the point so that the thick ink can flow smoothly. Children could learn how ballpoint pens work at: http://home.howstuffworks.com/pen2.htm
Gustave Courbet (born Ornans, France, 1819; died La Tour-de-Peliz, Switzerland, 1877) was a Realist painter. Many of his works can be seen at: http://www.the-athenaeum.org/art/list.php?m=a&s=du&aid=347.
Charlotte Herman (born Chicago, Illinois, 1937) writes books for children. Her works include the Max Malone series and My Chocolate Year.
Maurice Sendak (born Brooklyn, New York, 1928; died Danbury, Connecticut, May 8, 2012) was a children’s author and illustrator. He received SEVEN Caldecott Honors Awards: in 1954 for A Very Special House, in 1959 for What Do You Say, Dear?, in 1960 for The Moon Jumpers, in 1962 for Little Bear’s Visit, in 1963 for Mr. Rabbit and the Lovely Present, in 1971 for In the Night Kitchen, and in 1982 for Outside Over There. He earned the 1964 Caldecott Medal for the classic Where the Wild Things Are. The Laura Ingalls Wilder Medal was presented to him in 1983. He was also awarded the 1970 Hans Christian Andersen Medal for his body of work, and he received the Astrid Lindgren Memorial Award in 2003.