Literature, Literacy and Current Events

Gooney Birds are 'crossing the pond'
Gooney Birds are 'crossing the pond'

May 23, 2019 - The US contingent of DAKS Over Normandy, a fleet of WWII C-47 airplanes affectionately called Gooney Birds, have been 'crossing the pond' this week. The pond is a big one - the Atlantic Ocean. Final destination is Duxford Airfield in England, home base for up to 30 C-47s that will gather there to participate in events being held to honor the 75th anniversary of D-Day (June 6, 1944).

Word of the Day
contingencies: noun;unexpected events for which people prepare; Find it in blue in today's top story!

Writing Practice

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Featured Text Set (with Audio)

WWII 'Gooney Birds' depart for NormandyWWII 'Gooney Birds' depart for Normandy
May 20, 2019 - Ten C-47 WWII "Gooney Bird" airplanes, flown during World War II, are on their way to Normandy.

Extra! Extra! Feature Article

  1. Why is Rosa Parks called the 'Mother of the Civil Rights Movement?
  2. What prepared Rosa for the action she took on Montgomery City Bus #2857 on Dec. 1, 1955?
  3. Why was the life Rosa led such a courageous one?

Douglas Brinkley, author of Rosa Parks: A Life, speaks at the Student News Net Symposium on Sept. 14, 2018..

Weekly VOCAB

Week of May 21

caliber: noun; quality, excellence;
Backyard birders, start your checklists!

crevices: noun; small openings, breaks in larger structures, such as rocks and trees;
Species Spotlight: Red-bellied woodpecker

headwinds: noun; winds that blow directly at an airplane, a ship or in this context, migrating birds;
Migrating birds - and birders - facing headwinds

tactics: noun; strategies, actions;
National Park profile: Whiskeytown

tournament: noun; a series of competitive games to determine a champion;
Weekend of hoops and hoopla begins

Today In History

May 23

1911: The New York City Public Library was dedicated.

1865: Library of Congress: the Army of the Potomac celebrated the end of the Civil War by parading down Pennsylvania Avenue in Washington, D.C. Only weeks before, mourners watched Abraham Lincoln's funeral cortege travel the same thoroughfare. With many buildings still dressed in black crepe, this joyous procession could not help but remind spectators of that unhappy occasion. Laid out by Pierre L'Enfant, Pennsylvania Avenue was one of the earliest streets constructed in the federal city. Both George Washington and Thomas Jefferson considered the avenue an important feature of the new capital. After inspecting L'Enfant's plan, President Washington referred to the thoroughfare as a "Grand Avenue." Jefferson concurred, and while the "grand avenue" was little more than a wide dirt road, he planted it with rows of fast growing Lombardy poplars.

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Extra! Extra! Writing Practice Practice your writing skills by summarizing the information contained in the story at the left. What is the main point of the story? What are the key findings? Why is the story an important one? What are its implications? When finished, you can either print or email your document.
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