Here’s an advance look at a 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.
Monday, September 5
A Ruppell’s griffon vulture and an African white-backed vulture fight over a wildebeest carcass in Serengeti National Park, Tanzania. Photograph by Charlie Hamilton James, National Geographic
TDIGH: International Vulture Awareness Day
This day was created in 2009 to recognize vultures’ vital role in ecosystems and raise awareness about the threats they face from poisoning and poaching.
Visual: Check out photos, graphics and video from the NGM article about vultures
Background: Learn about scavengers
Activity: What are the differences between New World and Old World vultures?
Wednesday, September 7
TDIGH: London Blitz
In 1940 Nazi Germany began a bombing campaign of London. Though ultimately a failure, this blitzkrieg or “lightning war” tactic killed over 40,000 civilians and significantly damaged the city.
Map: See how the bombings damaged London
Background: Interactive timeline of WWII in Europe
Activity: Watch a video of the Battle of Britain and the London Blitz.
Thursday, September 8
A child does schoolwork at Mount Kailash Boarding School in Nepal. Though Nepal’s adult literacy rate remains under 60%, its youth literacy rate has increased to around 82%. Photograph by Aaron Huey, National Geographic
TDIGH: International Literacy Day
The United Nations proclaimed this day in 1965 to acknowledge the power of literacy, or possessing basic reading, writing, and math skills, and mobilize people to continue increasing literacy rates.
Map: Youth literacy rates around the world
Background: More info about developing countries
Activity: Learn about another kind of literacy: geo-literacy.
Saturday, September 10
The Law of the Sea gives a nation autonomy over marine resources within its exclusive economic zone (EEZ). This coral reef in Kimbe Bay is included in the EEZ of Papua New Guinea. Photograph by David Doubilet, National Geographic
TDIGH: UN Approves Law of the Sea
This 1964 treaty established a nation’s rights and responsibilities concerning commerce and conservation in its waters.
Map: See the ocean areas the U.S. has jurisdiction over (page 2)
Background: Read about how the Law of the Sea affects ocean conservation.
Activity: Ocean and Sea Borders
Sunday, September 11
The 2001 terrorist attack, orchestrated by members of al-Qaeda, was the deadliest in U.S. history.
Visual: Photo gallery of items left behind at the World Trade Center
Context: Survivors’ Stories
Activity: Read about the Pentagon Memorial and discuss what each part of its architecture symbolizes.