Quatr.us Study Guides

Quatr.us Study Guides 2017-11-20T15:30:59+00:00

Projects and Pages for November:

Olmec clay image of a turkey

Olmec clay image of a turkey, about 700 BC (Thanks to Steffan Ziegler)

New Site is here! (please bear with us):

We’re getting a new look, and we’re so excited about it! Now you can easily search the whole site for the article you want. Plus, check out the tags available in the right side-bar at the end of each article for further reading. Just browsing? You’ll love the enormous Site Index that shows you every article we have. But with big transitions like this anything can happen – please be patient if there are problems.

This week in history:

George Washington proclaims a day of Thanksgiving (1789)

George Washington proclaims a day of Thanksgiving (1789)

THANKSGIVING: You’ll find the history of Thanksgiving here, starting with the Native American Green Corn ceremony and continuing through the Puritans to the permanent establishment of Thanksgiving as a federal holiday in the years after the Civil War. Most of our traditional Thanksgiving foods – corn, sweet potatoes, potatoes, squash, cranberries, pumpkin, maple syrup, and of course turkey – are Native American foods. Europeans brought the apple pie and cider with them from Europe. But did you know that oysters and clams were once a traditional Thanksgiving food too? Or that kids used to trick-or-treat at Thanksgiving?

POPULIST LEADERS: Worried about where Trump will take us? Here are some examples of strong men from other centuries, from Pisistratus to Tiberius Gracchus, Marius and Sulla, Julius Caesar, Augustus, Wang Mang, Wendi, T’ai Tsung, Henry IV, Lenin, Hitler, Mao, Castro, and Stalin. We think of some of them as good, and some as bad: more about what people want.

INCA: November 15, 1532 AD – The Spanish invader Pizarro, under the rule of the Holy Roman Emperor Charles V, meets the Inca emperor Atahualpa, setting the stage for the Spanish conquest of Peru, colonization, and slavery.

Queen Elizabeth I of England

Queen Elizabeth I of England

ELIZABETH: November 17, 1558 AD – Elizabeth becomes queen of England. Under Elizabeth, England took over trade routes around the world, shipping Africans to slavery in the Caribbean, controlling Caribbean sugar plantations, taking over Indian and Iranian trade. England got much richer, and the rest of the world got poorer.

GETTYSBURG ADDRESS: November 19, 1863 – In the middle of the Civil War, President Lincoln made a famous speech on the battlefield at Gettysburg, in Pennsylvania. He urged Americans to make sure democracy kept going – that “government of the people, by the people, for the people, shall not perish from the earth.”

What to do this week:

You’ll probably be thinking about cooking this week, so why not learn a little about copper and conductivity while you’re at it with this easy, fun project using a piece of copper, a wooden spoon, a strip of aluminum foil, a steel spoon, and a plastic spoon and some butter? Do your results explain why we use copper-bottomed cooking pans? Do you see why we use copper wire to carry electricity from house to house, and inside the walls of your house?

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History Deals of the Week:

Some books about Thanksgiving if you’re doing a unit about that. Most of our Thanksgiving foods are from Central America and South America, so you might also check out these books.


New discoveries this week:

LUWIAN INSCRIPTION? – There have been widely reported claims this week about a Late Bronze Age inscription that talks about the Sea People and the Trojan War. If that seems too good to be true, it probably is – most of the experts I’ve seen discussing this think the inscription is probably a fake.

WERE VIKINGS MUSLIMS? – Newly discovered clothing in Viking graves has Islamic inscriptions woven into the cloth in Arabic. The Vikings got rich trading through Russia and down to the Caspian Sea and Iran, so they were totally familiar with Islam. Could some of them have converted? Sure. But they also might just be wearing fancy imported clothing, not caring what it says.

BLACK DEATH IN AFRICA: Gérard Chouin argues that the Black Death hit sub-Saharan Africa in the 1300s AD just as hard as it hit North Africa and Europe. We’d be happier with the start of the Little Ice Age bringing drought to Africa, but there’s no reason both can’t be true.

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Seasonal food of the week:

Maya Corn King on a plate

Maya Corn King on a plate

CORN: Thanksgiving’s coming, so now is a good time to remember the traditional association of the Green Corn Ceremony with Thanksgiving. Plus, corn is gluten-free, great for gluten-challenged guests at your meal. Some great corn recipes to try out now and see if you’ll make them for Thanksgiving: Corn mush (also called polenta), or cornbread. Or make a cornmeal crust for an eggplant and tomato tart.

We also have some great recipes for fresh sweet corn: a spicy corn side dish that we always have for Thanksgiving at our house, or corn pancakes – breakfast for dinner!

Also check out our seasonal and budget recipes at Gevirts.com.

Or, view an extensive range of science and history based educational and learning toys by visiting www.mykidneedsthat.com now.

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