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  1. Classroom Resources | Grades   1 – 12  |  Calendar Activity  |  April 23
    In 1564, William Shakespeare was born on this day.
    Based on grade level, students learn about rhyming structure, experiment with the Shakespearean Insult Kit, or study scenes from Othello and watch an adaptation of that scene from the movie O.
  2. Classroom Resources | Grades   7 – 12  |  Calendar Activity  |  August 15
    In 1870, the U.S. Transcontinental Railroad was completed.
    Students access the National Park Service website and look at the webpage "The Last Spikes." Students explore different accounts of what happened as the railroad neared completion and discuss the nature of ceremonies.
  3. Classroom Resources | Grades   7 – 12  |  Calendar Activity  |  July 31
    J.K. Rowling and her Harry Potter celebrate birthdays today.
    Students are encouraged to think about why people challenge Harry Potter books, do a Web Quest that allows them to research the issue, and decide whether the books should be banned from the public library.
  4. Classroom Resources | Grades   7 – 12  |  Calendar Activity  |  January 3
    John Ronald Reuel Tolkien was born on this day.
    Students compare the film versions of The Lord of the Rings and Tolkien's novels. Students then imagine how a scene in a current novel that they are reading would be filmed.
  5. Classroom Resources | Grades   9 – 12  |  Calendar Activity  |  November 30
    Jonathan Swift was born on this day in 1667.
    Students explore satire and parody in television and film, advertising, and journalism and create a display that highlights their findings.
  6. Classroom Resources | Grades   5 – 12  |  Calendar Activity  |  June 14
    June 14 is Flag Day in the U.S.
    Students consider how America, Americans, and the flag are represented in different patriotic songs and hypothesize about the reasons for their differences.
  7. Classroom Resources | Grades   7 – 12  |  Calendar Activity  |  May 22
    Mister Rogers' Neighborhood premiered in 1967.
    After thinking about TV shows, books, and movies from their childhood, students write about what they remember and revisit how they feel about it at an older age.
  8. Classroom Resources | Grades   5 – 12  |  Calendar Activity  |  August 18
    Montgomery Ward published the first mail-order catalog in 1872.
    Students explore how and why catalogs have changed over the years and compare their findings about printed catalogs with online catalogs.
  9. Classroom Resources | Grades   3 – 12  |  Calendar Activity  |  March 1
    Music in Our Schools Month is in March.
    Students explore the effects of music on a story by reading a story, novel, or play, viewing the musical version, and comparing the two. Students can then select a text read in class and create a musical adaptation.
  10. Classroom Resources | Grades   7 – 12  |  Calendar Activity  |  May 3
    National Public Radio began broadcasting in 1971.
    Students make predictions about the content of some of NPR's programs, then listen to the programs and report on the contents and discuss with the class.

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