Antarctic Treaty was signed by twelve nations in 1959. The original twelve countries are: Argentina, Australia, Belgium, Chile, France, Japan, New Zealand, Norway, Russia (as Soviet Union), South Africa, United Kingdom, and United States. Today 50 countries recognize the treaty. The continent will be kept as a scientific preserve, and no nation can colonize it. Children can view great pictures of Antarctic animals at: Antarctic Animals
Niger celebrates Republic Day. It became a republic in 1958 before it became free of French control in 1960. This landlocked country, located in Africa, is a bit less than twice the size of Texas. Niger is mostly covered with deserts and mountains. Almost seventeen million people live in Niger, and Niamey is the capital.
Louisiana Purchase was finalized in 1803. The United States bought more than a million square miles of land from France for about twenty dollars a square mile. Children could find out why France sold the land to the United States. What is that land worth now? Children could find more information at: Louisiana Purchase
Winter Olympics were held for the first time in 1924 in Chamonix, France. Approximately 258 athletes from sixteen nations competed in nine events. The United States sent 24 athletes and came home with four medals. Norway and Finland by far brought home the most medals. The events concluded on February 4, 1924. Children could hold their own winter events – sledding, snowball throwing at targets, biggest snowman competition.
French and Indian War officially ended in 1763. The French and the British signed the Treaty of Paris. The war meant that the British greatly expanded their territory in North America. However, the war was a tremendous financial burden to Great Britain. That financial burden was passed on to the American colonists in the form of various taxes. The French and Indian War eventually led to the Revolutionary War. Did you know George Washington was an officer on the British side? Children could read Struggle for a Continent: The French and Indian Wars 1689-1763 by Betsy Maestro and Giulio Maestro.
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.
Eiffel Tower was completed in 1889. It was constructed for the 1889 Paris Exhibition. Alexandre Gustave Eiffel designed the structure. Children can learn some interesting facts about the Eiffel Tower at: Eiffel Tower.
Senegal celebrates Independence Day. France gave up custody of the country in 1960. According to the CIA World Factbook, Senegal is a bit smaller than the state of South Dakota. Located in western Africa, it borders the Atlantic Ocean. Plains cover most of the country, but some jungle grows in the southwestern portions. About thirteen million people live in the country. Dakar is the capital.
North American Treaty was signed in 1949. Twelve nations formed the original North American Treaty Organization: Belgium, Canada, Denmark, France, Great Britain, Iceland, Italy, Luxembourg, the Netherlands, Norway, Portugal, and the United States. Greece and Turkey became members in 1951, and West Germany joined in 1954. Spain became the last member in 1982. The main purpose of NATO is protection; an attack against one member is an attack against all members. Idea: Children could locate these countries on a world map and decide whether all countries benefit equally from this treaty.
Metric system was born when France adopted the system in 1795. Gabriel Mounton, a French vicar, proposed the system in 1670. The Convention of the Metre in 1875 standardized most measurements. Today the United States is one of only a few countries that do not use the metric system. Children can learn more at: Metric System.