Here’s an advance look at a some of the “This Day in Geographic History” (TDIGH) events coming up this week. For each date, we’ve matched it with a map or visual, background information, and a classroom activity so you can plan ahead.
Monday, October 3
TDIGH: East and West Germany Unite
The reunification of Germany, which came less than a year after fall of the Berlin Wall, signaled the decline of Soviet power.
Background: The Berlin Wall
Activity: Read through and discuss the NG Kids country profile for Germany.
Tuesday, October 4
The 1957 launch of Sputnik, the first artificial satellite to orbit Earth, quickly led to the beginning of the “Space Race” between the U.S. and the USSR.
Visual: Watch this video about the “Space Race”
Background: Orbit encyclopedia entry
Activity: Why did the launch of Sputnik led to the creation of NASA a year later? How did Cold War tensions benefit space exploration?
Wednesday, October 5
Created by the UN in 1994, this day honors the critical role teachers play in promoting equity and building sustainable societies.
Visual: Graph showing current status of primary education
Context: See how one teacher is helping fight poverty through education
Activity: Learn about Malala’s story and the power of education in the developing world.
Saturday, October 8
Historians and scientists still don’t know what caused the massive fire that devastated the city of Chicago, Illinois in 1871.
Background: More about the fire and the “Great Rebuilding”
Activity: Why did many people blame the fire on Mrs. O’Leary? How does the treatment she received connect to current events, especially terrorism?
Sunday, October 9
The Hoover Dam on the Colorado River supplies electricity to Los Angeles, while its reservoir provides freshwater throughout the American Southwest.
Visual: Photos and video of the Colorado River Delta
Background: Hydroelectric energy
Activity: What are the pros and cons of hydroelectric power?