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Talking About War: A Discussion for Kids?

February is a month chock full of opportunities to teach your kids about U.S. history. Black History Month on the heels of Martin Luther King Day is launching pad for discussions of slavery and civil rights. The Presidents’ Day holiday is an opportunity to learn about United States presidents both past and present. What about extending these lessons to move into a broader review of U.S. war history from the Civil War to the Vietnam War, and the U.S. involvement in the Middle East today?

We’re not experts on talking to children about war. And let’s face it, getting into the history of religion and slavery and politics and anything else that has ever started a war is a demanding task.

New Activities for Presidents' Day!

We've made three new activities available in honor of Presidents' Day. Take some time over the next week to work through them and enjoy!
The Washington Monument is a 555-foot-tall obelisk in Washington, D.C. It is made of marble, granite, and sandstone. The monument is one of the world’s tallest stone structure and the world’s tallest obelisk. An obelisk is a tall stone pillar with a square base and sides that taper to a point like a pyramid. Download here.

Welcome to STEM Friday!

This week here at Nomad Press we’re hosting STEM Friday. It’s a chance for us to feature children’s books from all over the web that incorporate science, technology, engineering and mathematics. Leave your links and information in the comments and I’ll update throughout the day.

Gelett Burgess award goes to Amazing Africa

We are proud to announce that Amazing Africa Projects You Can Build Yourself has been awarded the Gelett Burgess Children's Book Honor. This title was written by Carla Mooney for Nomad Press and was selected as the best family-friendly book inspiring imagination and creativity in the category of Society and Culture/Multicultural-Activity.The Gelett Burgess Children's Book Awards advisory council looks for books that entertain and teach with an energetic and creative approach. The Gelett Burgess Center for Creative Expression selects books that stimulate the child's imagination, as well as inspire them creatively. Advisory council members want to know a book will make an impact in a child's life by helping them grow: socially, emotionally, ethically, intellectually, and physically.

Communicating Kindness

This week is “Random Acts of Kindness (RAK)” Week. Don’t save that kindness for someone special on Valentine’s Day, do something kind for someone every day! What I like most about doing small acts of kindness is knowing that those small actions in turn produce more small actions, because the person to whom you act kindly is more apt to act kindly to others as well, and so on and so forth. The snowball effect of our actions is a simple lesson we can teach our children.

Explore Water!

 

Today is STEM Friday, so we're going to blog about a recent addition to our "Explore" series called Explore Water! 25 Great Projects, Activities, Experiments.

What kid doesn't love playing with water? Roll up their sleeves, get them wet, and engage in some great hands-on learning while you're at it. Water is essential to all forms of life. Explore Water! 25 Great Projects, Activities, Experiments, captures a child’s imagination with an intriguing look at the world of water. Combining hands-on activities with history and science, kids will have fun learning about the water cycle, water resources, drinking water and sanitation, water pollution and conservation, water use, water folklore and festivals, and the latest in water technology.

A Literacy Enhancer, Or Just Another Video “Game”?

The Corporation for Public Broadcasting and the National Endowment for the Humanities have funded, in part, a free online game called Mission US, created by a group of historians and educators to give children a realistic sense of what life might have been like during slavery, from the decisions people made to the vocabulary people used.

Right now, from your computer, you (or better yet, your children) can become a 14-year-old slave girl named Lucy King. This game requires you, as Lucy, to navigate your way to freedom after running away from a plantation in Kentucky. This article, posted yesterday in USA Today, explains that, “By becoming Lucy, kids learn about slavery conditions, the Underground Railroad and political opinions about slavery including abolitionists and other anti-slavery groups such as the Free Soilers and Colonization groups. They will also find out about the Fugitive Slave Laws and other laws of that time and why this conflict eventually escalated into a war.”

Virginia Hamilton and the American “Hopescape”

This year’s theme for Black History Month is Black Women in American Culture and History. When it comes to African-American women in US history we can easily name off some of the most prominent: for example, Harriet Tubman, the famous abolitionist during the American Civil War, or Rosa Parks, “the mother of the freedom movement,” and her act of civil disobedience on a bus one day in 1955 in Montgomery, Alabama. We’ve heard of the “Little Rock Nine,” and their female leader, Daisy Bates, who helped a group of black students become the first to attend the all-white Central High School in Little Rock, Arkansas. PBS will be airing a documentary about her on February 2nd.

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