This Week in Geographic History, October 2 – 8

Here’s an advance look at 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.

Check out our Pinterest board for more related resources!


Monday, October 2

thurgood marshall
George E.C. Hayes, Thurgood Marshall, and James M. Nabrit, congratulate each other following the Supreme Court’s decision declaring segregation unconstitutional in 1954. Photograph by Associated Press, Courtesy of the Library Congress

TDIGH: Supreme Court Swears in First African-American Justice

Thurgood Marshall’s appointment to the U.S. Supreme Court in 1967 marked a key moment in the civil rights movement.

Visual: Photo of the current Supreme Court

Context: Civil Rights resources

Activity: Listen to this audio segment about Thurgood Marshall’s confirmation. What is the connection between the Civil Rights Act of 1964 and Marshall being confirmed?


Tuesday, October 3

TDIGH: USSR Launches Sputnik

The Soviet launch of an artificial satellite in 1957 intensified the Cold War tension between the USSR and the U.S.

Visual: “Space Race” objects

Background: What is an orbit?

Activity: “So, You Want to Build a Satellite?”


Thursday, October 5

NGS Picture Id:1545163
A man teaches English to high schoolers in Chongqing Province, China. UNESCO highlights China as the country needing the most teachers by 2020. Photograph by Anastasia Taylor-Lind, National Geographic

TDIGH: World Teachers Day

The UN created this day in 1994 to recognize the vital role teachers play in society.

Map: Teacher Shortages

Background: UNESCO World Teachers’ Day

Activity: Check out Teach Pluralism’s “SLPC’s 10 Ways to Fight Hate in the Classroom” and see how other educators are connecting their classrooms to the world.


Saturday, October 7

TDIGH: Astronomers See the Far Side of the Moon

Since the moon orbits the Earth in a fixed rotation, no one had ever seen the other side of the moon until a Soviet space probe transmitted images of it in 1959.

Map: Earth’s Moon

Background: More info about the Moon

Activity: Learn about the first humans to walk on the Moon. What else do you want to know about the Moon’s geography or composition? (NASA’s Moon resources.)


Sunday, October 8

A portrait of Che Guevara adorns a hot air balloon at the Crimea Balloon Festival in the Republic of Crimea, Ukraine. Portraits of the revolutionary are ubiquitous and often appear in random or contradictory contexts. Photograph by Gerd Ludwig, National Geographic


TDIGH: Che Guevara is Killed

After helping Fidel Castro gain power in Cuba and publishing a book on guerilla warfare, Marxist revolutionary Che Guevara was killed by the Bolivian army in 1967.

Map: Cuba

Background: Biography  

Activity: Watch this short video about the Soviet Union’s influence on the new Cuban state, something which Che Guevara opposed.


Leave a Reply