Here is the Calendar History Timeline and Activities for 1800 and 1900 of December.
Dec. 12, 1800 Congress voted to establish Washington, D.C.
as the nation's Permanent Capital.
Dec, 8, 1801 Ebenezer Cobb, who Lived in Three Centuries, died at age 107.
Dec. 24, 1801 The American painter and naturalist Charles Willson
Peale exhibited a Mounted Skeleton of a Mastodon.
Dec. 20, 1803 The Louisiana Territory was formally transferred from
France to the United States, which had purchased the territory for
about $20 per square mile.
Dec. 2, 1804 Napoleon Bonaparte crowned himself emperor of France.
Dec. 24, 1814 The War of 1812 ended.
"A second victory: By the end of the War of 1812--often called the second war for independence--Americans felt a renewed pride in their fledgling nation, and countries around the world began to view the United States more seriously. Have your students discuss what might have happened if the British had been victorious in the War of 1812. How do they think U.S. citizens would have been treated? What would the British have done with the leaders of the former United States? Finally, have your (children) write a story set in the present and based on the premise that England had won the War of 1812. What are some of the ways the kids' lives today would be different?"
Dec. 2, 1816 The Philadelphia Savings Fund Society, the First Mutual
Savings Bank in the United States, opened for business.
Dec. 11, 1816 Indiana became the 19th state.
Dec. 10, 1817 Mississippi became the 20th state.
Dec. 3, 1818 Illinois became the 21st state.
Dec. 24, 1818 Joseph Mohr, a pastor in Oberndorf, Germany,
wrote the words for "Silent Night." Franz Gruber,
the schoolmaster and organist, composed the music.
Dec. 25, 1818 "Silent Night" was performed for the first time,
in the village church in Oberndorf, Austria.
Dec. 14, 1819 Alabama became the 22nd state.
Dec. 20, 1820 Missouri levied a $1 per year Tax on
Bachelors between the ages of 20 and 50.
Dec. 27, 1820 John Quincy Adams opined that the
District of Columbia needed more monuments.
Dec. 23, 1823 "A Visit From St. Nicholas," by Clement Clarke
Moore, was first published.
Dec. 25, 1831 Louisiana and Arkansas became The First States
to Observe Christmas as a Legal Holiday.
Dec. 27, 1831 The HMS Beagle set sail from Davenport, England,
on a voyage to South America and certain Pacific Islands.
On board was the naturalist Charles Darwin, whose
observations from the 5-year trip formed the Basis of
the Theory of Evolution. (Remember, Grandma caught
some news stating that in finding a certain skull they
discovered Man did not come from the Ape.)
Dec. 28, 1832 John C. Calhoun became the First Vice President
to Resign from Office.
Dec. 3, 1833 Oberlin College in Ohio became the First Coed College.
Dec. 4, 1839 The Whig Party held its first national convention in
Harrisburg, Pa., and nominated William Henry Harrison.
Dec. 8, 1840 Dr. David Livingstone set sail for Africa.
Dec. 7, 1842 The New York Philharmonic Society, the oldest symphony
orchestra in the United States, was formed.
Dec. 9, 1842 The First Christmas Cards were created in England.
Dec. 4, 1843 Manila Paper was patented.
Dec. 17, 1843 A Christmas Carol, by Charles Dickens, was first published.
Dec.11, 1844 Dr. Horace Wells became the First Dentist
to use an Anesthetic for a tooth extraction.
Dec. 26, 1845 Marthasville, Ga., changed its name to Atlanta.
Dec. 29, 1845 Texas became the 28th state.
Dec. 28, 1846 Iowa became the 29th state.
Dec. 6, 1847 Abraham Lincoln Took His Seat In Congress as a
representative from Illinois.
"A memorial in words: The author Carl Sandburg was a great admirer of Abraham Lincoln. He wrote more than 4,000 pages on our 16th president. Have your (children) estimate how many words that represents. Then have them count the words on a couple pages from Sandburg's Lincoln biographies and revise their estimates."
Dec. 22, 1847 Congressman Abraham Lincoln of Illinois made his
first speech in the House of Representatives.
Dec. 5, 1848 President James K. Polk announced The Discovery of
Gold in California.
Dec. 28, 1848 Gaslights were first used in the White House.
Dec. 12, 1851 Dr. Joel Robert Poinsett, an American diplomat
for whom The Poinsettia was named, died.
"The poinsettia's story: After serving as ambassador to Mexico, Dr. Joel Poinsett returned to his South Carolina home with a colorful plant called "Flame Leaf" or "Flower of the Holy Land." The plant was renamed "poinsettia" in his honor. Challenge your (children) to research the people for whom these plants were named: zinnia (Johann Gottfried Zinn), begonia (Michel Begon), dahlia (Anders Dahl), fuchsia (Leonhard Fuchs), and Lewisia (Meriwether Lewis).
Many other words in our language honor people. Have your (children) investigate the etymology of the following: silhouette, sandwich, saxophone, braille, Douglas fir, maverick, zeppelin, volt, and guppy."
Dec. 29, 1851 The First YMCA in the United States opened in Boston.
Dec. 30 1853 The Gadsen Purchase was signed, giving the
United States 29,640 square miles of Mexican territory.
Dec. 20. 1860 South Caroline became the First State to Secede from the Union.
Dec. 31, 1862 The Monitor, the Union's ironclad warship, sank.
Dec. 8, 1863 President Abraham Lincoln announced his
Plan for the Reconstruction of the South.
Dec. 18, 1865 The Thirteenth Amendment, which abolished slaver, was ratified.
Dec. 26, 1865 James Mason patented The Coffee Percolator.
Dec. 5, 1868 The First School to Teach Bicycle Riding opened in New York City.
Dec. 24, 1968 The Apollo 8 Astronauts Broadcast a
Christmas Message while orbiting the moon.
Dec. 28, 1869 Chewing Gum was patented by
William Semple of Mount Vernon, Ohio.
"Gum study: Make chewing gum the focus of a ...investigation. Purchase four of five different types of gum. Then decide on some questions to study. For example: What is the color of the gum before chewing? What is the color of the gum after chewing? Is it still sticky after 100 chews? What is the cost per stick? Calculate the number of "enjoyable" chews per stick and determine the cost per chew."
Dec. 19, 1871 Corrugated Paper was Patented.
Dec. 7, 1877 Thomas Edison demonstrated the first phonograph.
Dec. 30, 1877 Rutherford B. Hayes became the first president to
celebrate his silver wedding anniversary in the White House.
Dec. 1, 1878 A Telephone was first installed in the White House.
"First-family phone: When the White House first got a phone, few phones were in use anywhere. Telephones were sold in pairs, so each phone could connect with only one other. People couldn't call long distance.
Sometimes they couldn't even call across town. Have your (children) think of reasons the president might need a phone. Whom might he have to call? How could the phone help him in emergencies? Then ask your kids to describe the procedure for making an emergency call."
Dec. 31, 1879 Thomas Edison demonstrated his
Incandescent Lamp to a New Year's Eve crowd.
Dec. 20, 1880 Electric Lights First Lit Up Broadway in New York City.
Dec. 6, 1884 The Washington Monument was completed when a
3,300-pound capstone was placed atop it.
Dec. 9, 1884 Ball-Bearing Roller Skates were patented by Levant Richardson.
"Fad fun: One hundred years ago, roller skating was a national fad. Have your (children) list some current fads. Do they think these fads will last? As a special assignment, ask (the children) to quiz their (family) about fads they remember."
Dec. 15, 1886 The number of shares traded on the New York Stock
Exchange in a single day exceeded 1 million for the first time.
Dec. 25, 1887 The character Sherlock Holmes first appeared in
Beaton's Christmas Annual.
Dec 3, 1888 The Longest Lease on Record--10 million years--was signed in
Columb Barracks, Ireland. It was for a pot of land.
"In the year 10,001,888: Have your (children) write science-fiction stories set on Dec. 3, 10,001,888--the day the Columb Barracks lease expires. Is anyone around to renew the lease? If so, who--or what? What does the land look like? How is it used? How has the rest of the world changed?"
Dec. 23, 1893 The Opera Hansel and Gretel, by Engelbert Humperdinck, premiered.
Dec. 28, 1895 The Lumiere brothers showed the
First Commercial Movie, in the Grand Cafe in Paris.
"Motion-picture pioneers: The French brothers Louis and Auguste Lumiere invented the Cinematographer, a machine that served as both motion-picture camera and projector. So for the first time, films could be viewed by audiences, rather than simply by individuals looking through peepholes, as with Edison's Kinetoscope. The Lumieres made scores of films, generally short records of daily life such as a train arriving at a station or a street scene. Let (the children) try their hands at Lumiere-style filmmaking. First, have them decide on a visually interesting subject to film for about 3 minutes. Next, have them think about where they'll position the camera. After each (child) has submitted its plans, (have them make their video. Hold a ... screening and discuss the young filmmakers' results."
Dec. 8, 1896 J. T. White invented the Lemon Squeezer.
"Lessons from lemons: Celebrate the invention of the lemon squeezer by writing the following phrase on the chalkboard: "When life gives you lemons, make lemonade." What personal stories do--and your (children)--have that illustrate how someone made the best of a bad situation?"
Dec. 26, 1898 Pierre and Marie Curie discovered Radium.
Dec. 12, 1899 George Grant received a patent for the Golf Tee.
Dec. 10, 1901 The First Nobel Prizes were awarded.
Dec. 12, 1901 Italian Inventor Guglielmo Marconi received the
First Transatlantic Radio Signal.
Dec. 27, 1901 Temperance agitator Carry Nation staged her first saloon raid.
Dec. 8, 1903 A Heavier-Than-Air Flying Machine, designed by engineer
Samuel Langley, crashed into the Potomac River.
"Success through failure: By experimenting with lift and drag, aeronautical engineer Samuel Langley built a successful heavier-than-air airplane model. Even though his full-size aircrafts failed to fly, Langley brought respect to the study of mechanical flight, previously an object of ridicule. Invite your (children) to fly paper airplanes in the (yard). Encourage them to hypothesize about why some models fly farther--or higher--than others."
Dec. 17, 1903 The Wright brothers made The First
Successful Airplane Flight, over Kitty Hawk, N.C.
"Flight fascination: Orville and Wilbur Wright's fascination with flight began with a planophore--a toy with a rubber band and a windup propeller. Twenty-five years later, Orville piloted the first engine-driven airplane. Use the Wright brothers' historic first flight as a starting point for a class time line about flight. Assign a (child) research team to each decade from 1903 to the present."
Dec. 27, 1904 The play Peter Pan was first performed.
Dec. 31, 1904 A New Year's Eve Tradition began as an illuminated
globe descended a pole atop the Times Tower in Times Square,
New York City.
Dec. 10, 1906 Theodore Roosevelt became the First U.S.
President to Receive the Nobel Peace Prize.
"Special honors: In honor of American Nobel Peace Prize recipients Theodore Roosevelt, Jane Addams, and Martin Luther King, Jr., have your (children) nominate (people who deserve recognition for their thoughtfulness. ... design a special citation for the winners."
Dec. 1, 1909 The First Christmas Club started in Carlisle, Pa.
Dec. 8, 1909 The American Bird Banding Association was formed.
"Strike up the band: Computers at the Bird Banding Laboratory in Laurel, Md., hold six decades of information on over 43 million banded birds. Banders catch birds in fine nets and keep them just long enough to record the band's identification number; the bird's species, age, and sex; the date of banding; and other interesting data. Even though only 3 percent of the bands are ever recovered, scientists can use the information to theorize about migration routes and schedules. Ask your (children) to name birds that migrate from their community in the fall. Which bird species remain throughout the winter?"
Dec. 21, 1909 The First Junior High School was established.
Dec. 14, 1910 Andrew Carnegie"s $10 million gift established
The Carnegie Endowment for International Peace.
"Promoting peace: Major goals of the Carnegie Endowment for International Peace were to encourage peaceful settlement of international disputes and to find practical ways of preventing war. What are some peaceful ways your (children) think it's so hard to get countries to settle disputes peacefully?"
Dec. 14, 1911 The Norwegian explorer Rould Amundsen became
the first person to reach the South Pool.
Dec. 1, 1913 The First Drive-in Automobile Service Station opened in
Dec. 10, 1913 Leonardo da Vinci's masterpiece, the Mona Lisa,
was recovered 2 years after it was stolen.
Dec. 23, 1913 The U.S. Federal Reserve System was established.
Dec. 21, 1913 The First Crossword Puzzle was published.
Dec. 2, 1916 Permanent all-over lighting of the Statue of Liberty began.
Dec. 1, 1918 The Kingdom of Serbs, Croats, and Slovenes, later called
Yugoslavia, was formed
Dec. 11, 1919 The First Monument to an Insect was dedicated in
Enterprise, Ala., It honored the ball weevil, a destructive insect
that forced farmers to diversify their crops.
Dec. 1, 1922 Captain Cyril Turner of the Royal Air Force became the
First Pilot to Skywrite in the United States.
Dec. 16, 1922 Florence Allen of Ohio became the
First Woman Justice of a State Supreme Court.
Dec. 30, 1922 The Soviet Union was formed.
Dec. 31, 1923 The Chimes of Big Ben were first broadcast on the radio.
Dec. 6, 1924 The U.S Border Patrol was founded.
Dec. 12, 1925 The First Motel, Motel Inn, opened in San Luis Obispo, Calif.
Dec. 9, 1926 The First National Christmas Tree Service took place in
Kings Canyon National Park in California.
"Sizable circumference: President Calvin Coolidge designated a 2,000-year-old giant sequoia called the General Grant the first national Christmas tree. This 267 foot colossus has a circumference at its base of 107.5 feet. Have (you and your children) measure 107.5 feet of string and form it into a circle."
Dec. 13, 1927 Yehudi Menuhin, a 10-year-old Violinist, made
his debut at a concert in Carnegie Hall. After his performance,
he asked for a dish of Ice cream.
"Special moments; Observe Yehudi Menuhin's achievement by asking your (children) how they would celebrate a special feat or event. Would they ask for ice cream, as Yehudi did?"
Dec. 14, 1929 Amelia Earhart formed an organization for Licensed Female Pilots.
Dec. 25, 1930 The First Public Bobsled Run opened in Lake Placid,, N.Y.
Dec. 10, 1931 Jane Addams became the First American
Woman to win the Nobel Peace Prize.
Dec. 27, 1932 Radio City Music Hall, the world's largest
indoor theater, opened in New York City.
Dec. 17, 1933 The Chicago Bears won Football's First
World Championship, defeating the New York Giants, 23-21.
Each player on the winning team received $210.
Dec. 31, 1935 The Parker brothers received a patent for their game Monopoly.
Dec. 18, 1936 Su Lin became The First Giant Panda to Arrive in the United States.
"Welcome, Su Lin: Have your students list special habitat considerations they think zookeepers had to keep in mind for Su Lin, the giant panda."
Dec. 21, 1937 Walt Disney's Snow White and the Seven Dwarfs,
the First Full-Length Animated Film, premiered in Los Angeles.
Dec. 22, 1937 The Lincoln Tunnel, which connects New York and
New Jersey under the Hudson River, opened.
Dec. 15, 1938 Ground was broken for the Jefferson Memorial.
Dec. 22, 1939 A goelacanth, a fish Thought to be Extinct for
65 Million Years, was caught off the coast of South Africa.
Dec. 30, 1940 Los Angeles dedicated its First Freeway.
Dec. 6, 1941 President Franklin Roosevelt made a Personal Appeal for
Peace to Japan's Emperor Hirohito. Japan attacked Pearl Harbor the next day.
Dec. 7, 1941 Pearl Harbor was Attacked by the Japanese.
"A date which will live in infamy": Just 3 hours before the Japanese attacked Pearl Harbor, the U.S. army's chief of staff received an intercepted message that an attack would occur somewhere in the Pacific. He notified Manila, the Panama Canal Zone, and San Francisko, but atmospheric conditions prevented him from getting the message to Hawaii. Ask your (children) to illustrate how today's messages are sent and received."
Dec, 8, 1941 The United States Declared War on Japan.
Dec. 11, 1941 Germany and Italy Declared War on the United States.
Dec. 2, 1942 The Italian physicist Enrico Fermi and his associates produced
the First Sustained Nuclear Chain Reaction.
Dec. 28, 1942 Robert Sullivan became the First Pilot to Make
100 Flights Across the Atlantic.
Dec. 7, 1945 Percy Le Baron Spencer patented the Microwave Oven.
Dec. 4, 1945 Congress approved U.S. participation in the United Nations.
Dec. 28, 1945 Congress officially recognized the "Pledge of Allegiance.
"A closer look at the pledge: Ask your (children) to write the "Pledge of Allegiance," underlining the five words they believe are the most important. Have the kids define the words and explain why they chose them. Then ask (them) to pictographs of the pledge using symbols and as few letters or words as possible. Display the results ... ."
Dec. 11, 1946 The United Nation General Assembly established
UNICEF, the United Nations International Children's Emergency Fund.
Dec. 11, 1946 Industrialist John D. Rockefeller, Jr., donated land
for the United Nations' World Headquarters.
"A donation to the World: When the United Nations selected New York City as the location for its permanent headquarters, delegates met in hotel rooms and college halls for lack of a headquarters building. But Rockefeller's donation of a six-block tract along the east River solved this problem. The UN Headquarters, designed by architects from 11 countries, is one of New York's famous landmarks. Ask your (children) to name noteworthy structures in your community. What makes them memorable or special? Distribute a map of the United States and have the kids locate and label other human-built landmarks, such as the Gateway Arch, the Mormon Tabernacle, Epcot Center, Hoover Dam, the Sears Tower, Independence Hall, and Mount Rushmore."
Dec. 31, 1946 President Harry Truman officially proclaimed
the End of World War II.
Dec. 26, 1947 Almost 29 inches of Snow fell in New York City.
Dec. 23, 1948 The Transistor was invented by
John Bordeen and Walter Brattain.
Dec. 24, 1948 The First Totally Solar-Heated Home was
completed in Dover, Mass.
Dec. 12, 1953 Major Chuck Yeager flew a Bell X-1A j
et 2.5 Times the Speed of Sound.
Dec. 16, 1953 The Delaware Water Gap Bridge between
Pennsylvania and New Jersey opened.
Dec. 1, 1955 Rosa Parks was arrested in Montgomery, ALA., for
refusing to give up her bus seat to a white man. The incident helped
spark the civil rights movement.
"Civil-rights pioneer: In Montgomery, Ala., black bus passengers were required by law to give up their seats and move to the back of the bus if white passengers wanted a seat. When Rosa Parks refused to do this, she was arrested, jailed,and fined. The incident led to a prolonged boycott of city buses and ultimately to a Supreme Court decision declaring racial segregation on buses unconstitutional. Have your (children) write a journal entry about standing up for what is right. What might the consequences be if the stand is unpopular? Could friend ships be lost? In what ways could life be more difficult? Some students might be able to draw on personal experience."
Dec. 5, 1955 African-Americans in Montgomery, Ala., began a Boycott of
City Buses to protest racial segregation.
Dec. 18, 1956 Japan Joined the United Nations.
Dec. 22, 1956 Colo became the First Gorilla Born in Captivity.
"Grow, gorilla, grow: Tell your (children) that the gorilla and the chimpanzee are the closest living relatives of man. Have them compare the gorilla's weight--at the following stages--with a human's:
Age 2" 35 pounds
Adult female:200-250 pounds
Adult male in captivity:600-700 pounds"
Dec. 18, 1957 The First Commercial Nuclear Power Plant in the
United States began supplying electricity to Shippingport, Pa.
Dec. 19, 1959 Walter Williams, The Last Civil War Veteran,
died at the age of 117.
Dec. 9, 1960 The Sperry Rand Corporation introduced
Univac 1107, the First Computer to Operate in Nanoseconds.
Dec. 5, 1962 The United States and the Soviet Union agreed to the
Peaceful Use of Outer Space.
Dec. 30, 1963 The John F. Kennedy Half-Dollar was authorized by Congress.
Dec. 10, 1964 Martin Luther King, Jr., received the Nobel Peace Prize.
Dec. 9, 1965 A Charlie Brown Christmas became the first "Peanuts" TV show.
Dec. 3, 1967 Dr. Christiaan Barnard performed the first human heart transplant.
Dec. 14, 1967 DNA was created in a test tube.
Dec. 29, 1967 The term Black Hole--for a region in space left by a star
that undergoes complete gravitational collapse--was first used.
Dec. 7, 1968 A Library Book Overdue for 145 years was returned to the
University of Cincinnati Library. The $22,646 fine was waived.
Dec. 21, 1968 Apollo 8 blasted off. The mission would mark the
first time anyone had seen the Dark side of the Moon.
Dec. 24, 1968 The Apollo 8 Astronauts Broadcast a
Christmas Message while orbiting the moon.
Dec. 15, 1969 The Oldest Fossilized Flea on record was
discovered in Australia.
"Some hopper!: Fleas are arguably the best jumpers in the world: They can leap 12 inches, or 150 times their height would take them. Fleas live on the blood of host mammals. They use their antennae to sense heat, vibrations, air currents, and carbon dioxide--which signal the presence of a nearby host. Fleas themselves are also hosts--for mites which live between the plates of their exoskeletons. Ask your (children) to research and illustrate other host-parasite relationships."
Dec. 17, 1969 A 21-Year Study of UFOs ended with no conclusions.
Dec. 7, 1970 American cartoonist Rube Goldberg died.
"Zany inventions: Rube Goldberg is known for his humorous cartoons, especially those depicting wacky and complicated inventions that turn even the simplest task into a mind-boggling production. For example, a Rube Goldberg mousetrap might work like this: 1. mouse comes out of hiding for sandwich left on counter; 2. mouse follows line of bread crumbs; 3. mouse walks into path of fan and is blown across counter; 4. mouse lands inside false teeth, which clamp shut; 5. closing teeth pull a string, which tilts water can to drown mouse. Invite your (children) to draw their own Rube Goldberg inventions."
Dec. 15, 1970 The USSR's Venera 7 became the
First Spacecraft to Land on Venus.
Dec. 11, 1972 Apollo 17 Landed on the Moon.
Dec. 19, 1972 Apollo 17, the sixth and Last Manned Moon
Landing Mission, ended with a splashdown in the Pacific Ocean.
"Moonstruck: The Moon has inspired writers and storytellers since ancient times. William Shakespeare compared the moon to "a silver bow new-bent in heaven." Ask your (children) how the moon and a silver bow are alike. Invite them to write a metaphor about the moon in their journals." (Grandma would also like you to do some research about that moon trip and some possible information hidden. I believe it is in Youtube which you may already have watched and are knowledgeable about.)
Dec. 31, 1972 Baseball Star Roberto Clemente was killed in an airplane
crash while aiding Nicaraguan earthquake victims.
Dec. 31, 1972 The pesticide DDT was Banned in the United States.
Dec. 3, 1973 Pioneer 10 made the First Flyby of Jupiter and transmitted
close-up pictures to Earth.
"Flyby: Pioneer 10 was traveling thousands of miles per hour as it sped past Jupiter. Even though the encounter was brief, scientists learned much from the data the spacecraft collected. Have your (children) participate in an information-seeking "flyby." Gather enough photos or posters of interesting subjects ... to "flyby" one picture. Have the kids ... list as many things as they can about what they saw. Then place all the photos or posters on ...display for viewing. Ask each (child) to read his description while the class looks for the picture it matches."
Dec. 6, 1973 Gerald Ford, a longtime congressman from Michigan, was
sworn in as vice president of the United States, replacing Spiro Agnew.
Dec. 22, 1973 The First Endangered Species Act was passed.
"Extinct is forever: Some species become extinct as a result of natural selection. But in other cases, man has disrupted natural cycles by destroying habitats, overkilling, and introducing exotic species. Scientists believe that by the year 2000, species may be going extinct at a rate of 100 per day. Can your (children) name some endangered plants or animals in their area? Invite them to make posters of these species."
Dec. 29, 1973 Skylab 4 took the First Photographs from Space of a Comet.
Dec. 16, 1974 The Safe Drinking Water Act became law.
Dec. 29, 1976 Lynn Cox became the First Person to Swim the Strait of Magellan.
Dec. 8, 1979 A cat named Sherry was reunited with her owners after
she spent 32 days and Traveled 225,000 Miles In the Hold of an Airliner.
Dec. 2, 1980 The Alaska Lands Act was signed by President Jimmy Carter.
"This land is your land: The Alaska Lands Act set aside more than 150 million acres--a total area larger than California and Minnesota combined--for parks, wildlife refuges, and conservation areas. Have (the children) use an atlas to locate some of the 26 Alaskan rivers added to the National Wild and scenic Rivers System by this law. They'll delight in such interesting names as Aniakchak, Salmon, Tlikakila, Selawick, Wind, Fortymile, and Unalakleet."
Dec. 2, 1982 Barney Clark received the First Permanent Artificial Heart.
Dec. 19, 1984 Wayne Gretzky scored his 1,000th point in his
632nd professional hockey game.
"The great Gretzky: Hockey star Wayne Gretzky was the youngest player, at 19, to receive the National Hockey League's Most Valuable Player award. What are some goals your students would like to achieve by the time they're 19? How will they do it?"
Dec. 23, 1986 The experimental aircraft Voyager completed
The First Nonstop, Unrefueled Flight Around the World.
"A well-traveled paper airplane: The lightweight experimental aircraft Voyager made aviation history by completing a nonstop, unrefueled journey around the world. The plane covered the 25,012-mile distance in 9 days. Pilots Jeana Yeager and Dick Rutan were a bit wobbly after their landing--after all, the cockpit, they'd traveled in was the size of the backseat of an automobile. Voyager is a giant paper airplane made of layers of honeycomb paper and graphite sealed with epoxy resin. Ask your (children) to draw their own designs for an airliner, military aircraft, or recreational plane of the future."
Dec. 3, 1987 King Kong welcomed the two millionth visitor of the year
to the Empire State Building:
Dec. 21, 1987 Penny-saver Warren Holdread Bought a New Car Using Pennies.
"A penny saved: When Warren Holdread purchased a new car, he brought his pennies with him--all 284,500 of them. (He also brought his checkbook so he could make up any difference.) For many years, Holdread had been tossing pennies into a 55-gallon drum in his garage. The dealer who sold Holdread the car said the penny collection was fun, but it cut into his profits. Wrapping pennies costs 3 1/4¢ per roll of 50. Have your (children) use their calculators to figure out how much of a possible $1,300 profit was lost because of the pennies."
Dec. 29, 1987 Soviet Cosmonaut Yuri Romanenko
completed A 326-Day Stay in Space.
"All alone; Soviet cosmonaut Yuri Romanenko spent close to 11 months aboard Mir, an orbiting space station. Counting his other two missions, he was in space longer than anyone--430 days. With an eye to future long space missions, scientists have been studying Romanenko closely They're concerned about the effect of weightlessness on the body and the psychological consequences of months of relative isolation. Ask your (children) what they would miss the most if they were in space for 11 months. What would they take with them to make their spacecraft feel more like home?" (We will be getting some information wherever we can to see how far they have come from this expedition.)
Dec. 7, 1988 An Earthquake registering 6.9 on the Richter
scale leveled the city of Spitak, Armenia.
Dec. 20, 1988 Teddy Andrews, age 7, was sworn in as
Youth Commissioner for the city of Berkeley, Calif.
"Lending a helping hand: After campaigning for an incumbent city councilman, 7-year-old Teddy Andrews was appointed to Berkeley's Youth Commission, a board that advises the city council on youth issues. Once in office, he developed a "wish list"--a plan to provide clothing, school supplies, and even scholarships to homeless and needy children. Ask your (children) what their wish list would include."
Dec. 22, 1988 In Barry County, Mich., Police Cars and Ambulances
started Carrying Teddy Bears to comfort Young passengers.
"Fluffy stress-reducer: Ask your (children) to bring (out) the stuffed animal or toy that makes them feel better when they're sad or sick or just need a friend. ... Then ask the children to think of ways they might be able to help kids who've been traumatized. Perhaps they can raise money to buy stuffed toys for youngsters brought to the emergency room of a nearby hospital. (used stores sell them cheap or garage sales, spray with a disinfectant or wash them.)
Dec. 15, 1989 London's Big Ben was silenced for 3 hours
because of faulty cogwheels.
"London landmark: Many people think Big Ben is the 22-foot-diameter clock on the clock tower of England's Houses of parliament. But it's actually the clock tower's 13.5-ton bell. Big Ben chimes every 15 minutes--and has with few exceptions, since its installation in 1859. Test your (childrens') knowledge of other famous landmarks--and have some fun--by holding a..."Password" tournament. For the passwords, use such famous landmarks as the Taj Mahal, the Sphinx, the Great Wall of China, and the Eiffel Tower. Have two-persons...(clue giver and clue receiver) ... . Remind the kids that clues must be one word only and must not contain any form of any word in the landmark. Locations, however, are acceptable clues."
Dec. 20, 1989 Renovations of the Sistine Chapel in Rome were completed.
Dec. 4, 1990 A Cockatiel Named Coco helped "bow the whistle" on a burglar.
"Critter crimebuster: A burglar broke into a home in Fort Walton, Fla., and stole electronic equipment, cash, and a cockatiel named Coco. The burglar left the squawking bird in a nearby shop. When a local police officer entered the shop, the bird started whistling a TV theme song, and the officer recalled a burglary report mentioning a bird with this special talent. Thanks to Coco, the burglar was arrested. Invite your fledgling authors to compose a script for a new TV show--"Top Critter Cops." How might animals help solve other crimes?"
Dec. 14, 1990 Magic Johnson, Chris Evert, and Jackie Joyner-Kersee
joined the President's Council on Physical Fitness and Sports.