Resources for Teachers and Students
For the week of Feb. 7, 2016
Lantern Festival (Yuan-hsiao): China. This celebrates the end of the New Year season. In Taiwan people make elaborate lanterns to hang in the temples and hold contests to choose the most beautiful one. They also write riddles on the lanterns and compete to s *solve them. In the Peopleis Republic of China the lanterns are hung in public parks.
Martin Buber (1878-1965): Jewish Austrian. Theologian. Buber developed a theology of Jewish existentialism that emphasized a strong relationship between God and the individual. His most famous work is I and Thou.
Dawes General Allotment Act (1887): United States. This law dissolved American Indian tribes as legal entities and divided formerly tribal lands among individual property owners.
Paul Laurence Dunbar (1872-1906): African American. Dunbar became nationally known for his poems and tales, many of them depicting the life of Blacks on southern plantations. He also wrote essays protesting the conditions of Black Americans.
Tadeusz (Thaddeus) Kosciuszko (1746-1817): Polish. Soldier and statesman. As a colonel in the Continental Army during the American Revolution, Kosciuszko planned the fortifications that helped defeat the British at the battle of Saratoga. For his service to the cause of American independence, Congress awarded him American citizenship. After returning to Poland in 1784 and becoming a major general in the Polish army in 1789, Kosciuszko emerged as a military and political leader, pressing for democratic reforms in Polish government and society and leading Polish forces against Russian armies sent to suppress the Polish movement for independence in1791 and again in 1794. After his final defeat in 1794, he spent the rest of his life in exile.
Richard Allen (1760-1831): African American. Minister. In 1787 Allen founded the African Methodist Episcopal Church to give African Americans the opportunity to worship in a setting free of racial discrimination. His Bethal Church in Philadelphia became a focal point of organized protest by African Americans against slavery and racial discrimination in the North.
Frederick Douglass (1817-1895): African American. Writer, lecturer, editor, and civil rights activist. Born a slave, Frederick Augustus Bailey escaped at the age of 21, changed his name, and became a renowned campaigner for the abolition of slavery. After publishing his autobiography in 1845, Douglas made a lecture tour of England, where friends raised money to buy his freedom. Upon his return he founded a newspaper, the North Star. During the Civil War Douglass held a variety of federal offices, including *that of Minister to Haiti.
Masao Satow (1908-1977): Japanese American. Civic leader. Born in California to Japanese American parents Satow joined the Japanese American Citizens League, an emerging national organization for persons of Japanese ancestry born in the United States, in 1932. He became its national secretary in 1947, when the organization had only two chapters, both on the West Coast, and 3,100 members. At the end of his twenty-five years of leadership, the organization had 94 chapters across the nation and 27,000 members.
Valentines Day: United States. The origins of this day are confused. There appear to have been two or three early Christian martyrs named Valentine. One was probably executed on February 14. One man named Valentine secretly married young sweethearts in opposition to the Roman Emperor Claudiusi ban on marriage (a policy designed to prevent young men of military age from forming family ties). Another legend mentions flowers grown by Valentine and given to children. When Valentine was imprisoned the children remembered him by throwing nosegays and notes into his prison window. These were the original Valentine greetings.
Lessons & Classroom Activities
Resources by grade level
Online Reference Guides