Apr 272021
 

Flag of Togo

Togo celebrates Independence Day. It became free from France in 1960. This long, thin country (slightly smaller than West Virginia) is located on the southern coast of West Africa. The climate is tropical in the south and semiarid in the north. Togo exports cotton, cocoa, and coffee. About 7.1 million people reside in Togo. Lome, located on the coast, is the capital.

Flag of Sierra Leone

Sierra Leone celebrates Independence Day. In 1961 it broke away from the British government. Located on the western coast of Africa, this small country (about the size of South Carolina) has many diamond deposits. Its climate has a tropical, rainy season from May to December and a dry season from December to April. About 5.6 million people live there. Freetown is the capital.

Flag of South Africa

South Africa celebrates Freedom Day when in 1994 general elections were held for the first time. Apartheid began to be a thing of the past. According to the CIA World Factbook, South Africa is about twice the size of Texas. The country has a mostly semiarid climate except along the tropical coast. About 48.6 million people live in the country. Agricultural products include corn, wheat, and sugarcane. The country exports diamonds, gold, and platinum. Pretoria is the capital.

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May 102021
 
Nelson Mandela

Nelson Mandela

Nelson Mandela was inaugurated as president of South Africa in 1994. The anti-apartheid icon served until 1999 and died in 2013. Children can learn more at: Nelson Mandela.

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Oct 042021
 
Lesotho

Flag of Lesotho

Lesotho celebrates Independence Day. It became free from British rule in 1966. The country, about the size of Maryland, is entirely surrounded by South Africa. Almost two million people live in Lesotho, and Maseru is the capital. Tourism is a major industry. Older children can learn more at: Lesotho.

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Dec 012021
 
Antarctic Research Facility

Antarctic Research Facility

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 learn about the Antarctic Treaty at: Antarctic Treaty. They can view great pictures of Antarctic animals at: Antarctic Animals.

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Jan 252022
 

Largest diamond, the Cullinan, ever found was discovered in the Premier Diamond Mining Company in Cullinan, South Africa in 1905. The stone, named after Sir Thomas Cullinan (owner of the mine), was 3,106 carats. The rough diamond was cut into seven very large gems and 96 smaller gems. Many of the larger gems are in the crown jewels of the United Kingdom. Idea: Have children illustrate how diamonds are made and how they are cut by visiting: Diamonds.

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Mar 212022
 
Namibia

Flag of Namibia

Namibia celebrates Independence Day. It declared itself free from South Africa in 1990. The Kalahari Desert is one of the geographic features of this fairly large (about half the size of Alaska) country. Windhoek is the capital. About 2.2 million people live in Namibia, and many of them depend on mining for jobs. The country is the world’s fourth largest producer of uranium, and diamonds and zinc also contribute to the economy. Children can learn more at: Namibia.

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