Memorial Day is today. Celebrated on the last Monday of May, the day honors all those who died in war. The day is marked with parades and picnics. The day also signifies the unofficial first day of summer. Children can learn about the history of Memorial Day at: Memorial Day.
Argentina celebrates Revolution Day. It became free of Spanish rule in 1810. Spaniards explored the area around 1515. Argentina is about 30 percent the size of the United States. Known for its vast Pampas, the country is famous for its large cattle herds. About 42.6 million people live in Argentina, and Buenos Aires is the capital.
Jordan celebrates Independence Day. This Middle Eastern country became free of a League of Nations mandate by British occupation in 1946 and adopted a monarchy. According to the CIA World Factbook, Jordan is a bit smaller than Indiana. Mostly a desert country, Jordan needs water and oil. It exports clothing. About 6.4 million people live in Jordan. Amman is the capital.
National Tap Dance Day is held on the birthday of Bill “Bojangles” Robinson. Robinson was born in Richmond, Virginia, in 1878. He started his dancing career in vaudeville. He opened on Broadway in 1927. Robinson appeared in several movies with Shirley Temple, including The Littlest Rebel and The Little Colonel. He died in New York, New York, on November 25, 1949.
Constitutional Convention opened in Philadelphia, Pennsylvania, in 1787. While the delegates came with ideas of revising the Articles of Confederation, they realized they had to create a new type of government. The Constitutional Convention concluded on September 17, 1787. Idea: Children could read Jean Fritz’s Shh! We’re Writing the Constitution. They could learn more at: Constitutional Convention.
Skylab 2 was launched in 1973. This first manned mission to Skylab circled the earth for 28 days while astronauts Pete Conrad, Joseph Kerwin, and Paul Weitz made repairs to Skylab and conducted 392 hours of experiments. At that time, the crew held the record for longest time in space. They successfully returned to earth on July 22, 1973.
Barbara Bottner (born New York, New York, 1943) writes books for children. Her books include Bootsie Barker Bites and Raymond and Nelda. Children can visit her website at: Barbara Bottner.
Miles Davis (born Alton, Illinois, 1926; died Santa Monica, California, September 28, 1991) was a jazz trumpeter. He experimented with different kinds of music.
Ralph Waldo Emerson (born Boston, Massachusetts, 1803; died Boston, Massachusetts, April 27, 1882) was a writer and philosopher. Older children can read some of his work at: Project Gutenberg.
Ann McGovern (born New York, New York, 1930; died New York, New York, May 8, 2015) was a children’s author. She wrote 55 books, including Too Much Noise and If You Lived in Colonial Times. Children can visit a website devoted to her at: Ann McGovern.
Igor Sikorsky (born Kiev, Russia, 1889; died Easton, Connecticut, October 26, 1972) was an engineer. He created the first functioning helicopter in 1939.
Joyce Carol Thomas (born Ponca City, Oklahoma, 1938; died Stanford, California, August 13, 2016) wrote more than 30 books. She received a 1984 Coretta Scott King Honor Award for Bright Shadow and another in 1994 for Brown Honey in Broom Wheat Tea. She also earned a 2000 Charlotte Zolotow Highly Commended Award for You Are My Perfect Baby.