First Day of Spring occurs today. It marks the vernal equinox in the Northern Hemisphere. The length of the day equals the length of the night. In the Southern Hemisphere, today marks the first day of fall. Children could also read The Spring Equinox: Celebrating the Greening of the Earth, by Ellen Jackson.
Tunisia celebrates Independence Day. France gave up control of Tunisia in 1956. Slightly smaller than the state of Wisconsin, Tunisia is located on the northern coast of Africa. Approximately 10.7 million people live in Tunisia. In the north, this country has a temperate climate with rainy winter. In the south, most of the country is in a desert. Tunis is the capital. One source of income for the country is petroleum.
Uncle Tom’s Cabin, written by Harriet Beecher Stowe, was published in 1852. Over 300,000 copies of the book were sold in the first year of publication. Some experts believe the book was a catalyst for the Civil War. Children can read Uncle Tom’s Cabin at: http://www.gutenberg.org/.
Ellen Conford (born New York, New York, 1942) has written at least 35 books for children and young adults. Her books include the Annabelle series and the Jennie Archer series.
Mitsumasa Anno (born Tsuwano, Japan, 1926) is a picture book author and illustrator. He wrote among other works Anno’s Journey, published in 1977. He received the 1984 Hans Christian Andersen Award for his body of work.
Henrik Ibsen (born Skien, Norway, 1828; died Oslo, Norway, May 23, 1906) was a playwright. One of his most famous plays is Peer Gynt. Children can read some of his works at: http://www.gutenberg.org/
Lois Lowry (born Honolulu, Hawaii, 1937) is a children’s author. She wrote among other works Number the Stars, which earned her the 1990 Newbery Medal, and The Giver, which received the 1994 Newbery Medal. She is also the author of the Anastasia series and the Gooney Bird series.
Bill Martin, Jr. (born Hiawatha, Kansas, 1916; died Commerce, Texas, August 11, 2004) wrote over 300 books for children. His books include Knots on a Counting Rope and Chicka Chicka Boom Boom. Children can go to: http://www.storylineonline.net/ to see and hear Bonnie Bartlett and William Daniels read Knots on a Counting Rope.
Fred Rogers (born Latrobe, Pennsylvania, 1928; died Pittsburgh, Pennsylvania, February 27, 2003) was the producer and host of “Mr. Rogers’ Neighborhood.” The television show, produced in Pittsburgh, Pennsylvania, debuted February 19, 1968, and it closed on August 29, 2008. Children can learn more at: Fred Rogers.
Louis Sachar (born East Meadow, New York, 1954) is a children’s author. His book Holes won the 1999 Newbery Medal. He also wrote the Wayside School series. Children could visit his website at: http://www.louissachar.com/.