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.
Tuesday, January 30
The 1968 surprise attacks carried out by communist-affiliated troops against South Vietnamese and American forces shifted public opinion of the Vietnam War.
Background: Timeline of the Vietnam War
Thursday, February 1
Alexander Selkirk, the probable inspiration for novelist Daniel Defoe’s shipwrecked character Robinson Crusoe, was rescued after four years alone on a South Pacific island.
Activity: Have students watch this short video on a voluntary “castaway”. How do students think they would survive alone on an island for months at a time? What would they eat? How would they keep themselves busy?
Friday, February 2
Since 1997 this day has helped raise awareness about the ecological importance of wetlands.
Background: What is a wetland?
Activity: Biodiversity in a Wetland Ecosystem
Saturday, February 3
The Massachusetts Bay Colony printed the first paper money, called a “bill of credit,” in 1690 in what would become the U.S.
Background: The History of American Currency
Activity: Read about the dollar’s influence around the world and review financial vocab. For a vocab game, divide the class into two teams, put the words on the board, call a student from each team to the board, say the definition of a term without saying which term, and students must tap the correct term on the board as quickly as possible- whichever student taps the correct term first, his or her team gets a point!
Sunday, February 4
As with the rest of the books in Cooper’s “Leatherstocking Tales,”, Last of the Mohicans follows the adventures of Nathanial “Natty” Bumppo, nicknamed “Hawkeye” by his Native American friends. In the novel, Hawkeye and his Mohican and British allies pursue a villainous band of Hurons who kidnapped three people and massacred an entire Army division.