Kingdom of Cambodia celebrates Independence Day. This Asian country broke from French rule in 1953. Cambodia is slightly smaller than the state of Oklahoma. Over 14 million people live in this relatively flat land covered with forests. Exports include rubber, silk, clothing, and shoes. The capital is Phnom Penh. Angkor Wat is one of Cambodia’s major archaeological sites. The Cambodian flag features a drawing of Angkor Wat. Children can see photos of Angkor Wat at the UNESCO site: Angkor Wat. Older children can learn more about Cambodia at: Cambodia.
Theodore Roosevelt traveled through the Panama Canal in 1906. Roosevelt felt that the Panama Canal had to be accomplished for both military and economic reasons. This trip also marked the first time an American President traveled to another country while in office. Children can research timelines and photos at: Panama Canal.
Kristallnacht transpired in Germany in 1938. Mobs of Germans demolished thousands of homes and businesses owned by Jews. Books and Torahs were burned. More than 30,000 Jews were arrested, and almost one hundred people died. Kristallnacht, “Crystal Night,” was given its name from the sound of window glass breaking. Older children could read Kristallnacht: The Nazi Terror That Began the Holocaust (The Holocaust through Primary Sources) by James M. Deem.
Berlin Wall was opened in 1989. The almost 28-mile long wall was built in 1961 to separate East Berlin from West Berlin. People celebrated when they could freely walk from one part of the city to another. They were able to visit family and friends that they had not seen for years.
Benjamin Banneker (born near Baltimore, Maryland, 1731; died Baltimore, Maryland, October 9, 1806) was an African American known for his accomplishments in astronomy, surveying and mathematics. During the years 1791 until 1796, Banneker recorded information regarding weather, astronomy, and the tides. He compiled this information into an almanac. Other prominent Americans, including Benjamin Rush, added their own essays. The works were published, and Thomas Jefferson received a copy of the first almanac. Children can learn more at: Benjamin Banneker.
Pat Cummings (born Chicago, Illinois, 1950) is a writer and an illustrator. One of her books is Angel Baby. Her illustrations in Just Us Women, by Jeannette Caines, earned her a 1983 Coretta Scott King Illustrator Honor Award. Her illustrations in My Mama Needs Me, by Mildred Pitts Walter, earned Cummings the 1984 Coretta Scott King Illustrator Medal. Her book C.L.O.U.D.S. received a 1987 Coretta Scott King Illustrator Honor Award. Children could visit her website at: Pat Cummings.
Lois Ehlert (born Beaver Dam, Wisconsin, 1934; died Milwaukee, Wisconsin, May 25, 2021) wrote and/or illustrated at least 38 children’s books. Her Color Zoo was a Caldecott Honor Book in 1989. She also illustrated the classic Chicka Chicka Boom Boom. Children could watch a video filled with excerpts of her books at: Lois Ehlert.
Florence Sabin (born Central City, Colorado, 1871; died Denver, Colorado, October 3, 1953) was a pioneer for women in medicine. She was the first woman to earn a full professorship at a medical college, and she was the first woman to be elected to the National Academy of Sciences. She was prominent in the study of tuberculosis. She also advocated for better health rights. Older children could read a biography about her at: Florence Sabin.
Kay Thompson (born St. Louis, Missouri, 1908; died New York, New York, July 2, 1998) was an actor and an author. She wrote the Eloise series.