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(Many Paths)
An Online Newsletter Celebrating Native America
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Favorite Sites
collected by Paul and Vicki
Monkeys, classified in the order Primates, are small, smart, lively mammals that live in the tropical regions of Central and South America, Africa and Asia. Because of their fanciful antics, they are always a crowd favorite, whether in the wild or in a zoo. Most of the 200 species live in forests and trees, although some do inhabit savannahs (tropical grasslands).
How Stuff Works: Difference Between Monkeys and Apes
Is there a difference between monkeys and apes? Yes, and this one page article explains how monkeys and apes are related, and how they differ. It's a good introduction to the scientific classification of orders, suborders, and species. "The 235 modern primate species are divided up into two suborders - the prosimians and the anthropoids." There are some interesting links at the bottom of the page, and a printable version with less advertising.
Live Science: All About Monkeys
"One of most recognizable animals in the world, a monkey is a long-tailed, medium-sized member of the order of Primates. The primate order also includes macaques, baboons, guenons, capuchins, marmosets, and tamarins. " Science publisher Imaginova brings together twenty-three feature articles about monkeys. Visit to learn why monkeys groom the boss, or how grey-cheeked mangabeys in Uganda use their knowledge of the weather to choose the best days for fruit foraging.
National Geographic: Video: Leisurely Life of Spider Monkeys
National Geographic hosts a terrific collection of seventeen short videos about monkeys and lemurs. This one shows how troops of spider monkeys employ a lookout to keep an eye out for approaching danger while the others play and eat in the branches above. The rest of the monkey videos are listed below the video player, but some will auto-play in a loop if you continue to watch past the commercial at the end of this video.

National Zoo: Black Howler Monkeys
Reubin and Jolla, a pair of black howler monkeys from the Tulsa Zoo and Lowry Park Zoological Garden in Florida, arrived at the National Zoo in 2003. With their distinct howls and playful ways, they have been a hit with visitors ever since. Click around this virtual exhibit from the zoo's Small Mammal House to learn more about howler monkeys and other primates. "Howler monkeys have a curious reaction to heavy rain. As a rainstorm approaches or begins, they often start an excited chorus of howls."

Random Facts: Monkeys
Sometimes random facts (or trivia) are just more fun to read than, let's say, an encyclopedia article. You might even say these forty random monkey facts are more fun than a barrel of monkeys. But since I've never had one, I couldn't say for certain. "Fact 16: Monkeys peel their bananas and do not eat the skins." "Fact 21: Old World monkeys have 32 teeth. New World monkeys have 36."

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Years ago, while standing in my driveway at night, a frog hopped onto my foot. I probably screamed (wouldn't you?) but when I saw what it was, I bent down to pick him up. We kept the frog for awhile, feeding him live crickets and naming him Hoppy, before releasing him into a wetlands preserve near our house. These sites are for you, Hoppy. Wherever you may be.
All About Frogs
"Frogs are members of the zoological class called Amphibia. Amphibians are cold-blooded (or poikilothermic) vertebrate animals. They differ from reptiles in that they lack scales and generally return to water to breed." From facts to fun, All About Frogs covers all the froggie bases. For school reports, you'll find "true, weird and wacky facts" as well as a brief explanation of the environment threats faced by frogs. For pet owners, there is a guide to buying your first frog, and an FAQ covering common questions
American Museum of Natural History: Frogs: A Chorus of Colors
This AMNH site is my frog pick of the day, with frog sounds, a Dart Poison Frog Vivarium (visit to learn why the dart poison frogs on display at the museum in New York are actually harmless), a peek into the work of the museum's professional herpetologists, and fun frog facts. "Frogs were the first land animals with vocal cords. Male frogs have vocal sacs - pouches of skin that fill with air. These balloons resonate sounds like a megaphone, and some frog sounds can be heard from a mile away."
Exploratorium: Frogs
The Exploratorium's online frog exhibit brings us well-written articles, illustrated with photos and video clips. The lead feature, The Amazing Adaptable Frog, is a must see, as is the click-and-hear (ribbit, ribbit) Frog Tracker exhibit. For something a little different, venture beyond biology with Tales and Tours, where you can become acquainted with Frog City, Louisiana or learn about Frog Myths Across Cultures.
Kiddyhouse: All About Frogs for Kids and Teachers
Oodles of frog facts organized as questions and answers make All About Frogs an excellent destination. Beyond the Q's and A's you'll find frog crafts, songs and poems, original froggie clipart (free for non-commercial use), and links to lesson plans for K-8 teachers. Although the bulk of this site is for elementary students, middle and high-school students will find links to sites with more in-depth coverage under More Frog Facts and Information.

KidZone: Frogs
Wow! With excellent content for elementary and middle-school students and dozens of printable worksheets for elementary grades, this KidZone section is surely a crowd pleaser. Frog Facts is organized into thirteen chapters, from "Frogs are Amphibians" to "Frog Species" such as Darwin's Frog and Goliath Frog. Frog Activities is my favorite click, because it houses more than a dozen printable worksheets such as the Life Cycle of Frogs and a Frog Picture Book.

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Battle of Gettysburg
Often described as the Civil War's turning point, the Battle of Gettysburg took place on July 1-3, 1863, in the town of Gettysburg, Pennsylvania. It was an extremely bloody battle, in the midst of an extremely bloody war. But in the end, the Union troops led by George G. Meade were victorious over the Confederate army led by Robert E. Lee.

Library of Congress: Gettysburg Address
In 1863, David Wills, a Pennsylvania judge, was given the task of "cleaning up the horrible aftermath of the [Civil War] battle" at Gettysburg. Wills acquired seventeen acres for a national cemetery and three weeks before its dedication, invited President Lincoln to "formally set apart these grounds to their sacred use by a few appropriate remarks." Lincoln's brief remarks at the cemetery on November 19, 1863 became one of the most memorable presidential speeches ever given. Can you recite it? "Four score and seven years ago . . ."

Gettysburg Foundation: The Battle of Gettysburg
The Gettysburg Foundation is a private, non-profit educational organization that works with the National Park Service. Much of their site pertains to visiting the Battlefield, but under the Learn menu tab, we'll find some educational goodies for students. "Gettysburg. This place was a small town in July 1863, situated at the crossroads of a network of byways. But that summer, that advantageous location became Gettysburg's curse, as all roads led to the largest battle ever fought on American soil."
National Park Service: Gettysburg
This kids section from the Gettysburg National Military Park answers lots of questions about the Battle and the War, in a kid-friendly voice. "Whew! You need a scorecard to keep track of everyone who was important at the Battle of Gettysburg! Check out who some of the big (and little) shots were." Be sure to click on the underlined section titles, as they lead to more content. And don't miss the printable twenty-question quiz The Gettysburg History Challenge.
PBS: The Civil War: Battle of Gettysburg
"The Battle of Gettysburg, the second day: By the morning of July 2, 1863, 150,000 Union and Confederate troops had converged on the little Pennsylvania town." From the companion website for Ken Burn's PBS film, The Civil War, we find three maps that summarize the three days of the Battle of Gettysburg. Each page has a short annotation, and a thumbnail map you'll need to click to enlarge. To view Day Two and Day Three, look in the left-hand vertical navigation menu.

US Army: The Battle of Gettysburg
"The summer of 1863 would mark the turning point in one of the bloodiest periods of American history. Tens of thousands had already perished in the great conflict known as the American Civil War. Hundreds of thousands more would die by the time it was all over." This beautifully produced Flash site is my Gettysburg pick of the day. If Flash is not your thing, there is a text-only version (look for the link in the footer.) After the intro, the Battle of Gettysburg is summarized, play by play, day by day. Additional topics are listed below the main playing screen. They include Profiles, Weaponry, Statistics, and Resources (links to more Civil War pages and a free Gettysburg poster download.)

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Rivers are an important part of our ecosystem as a source of water, food, transportation, defense, energy, and last, but certainly not least, recreation. Learn more at this week's selection of sites.
Fact Monster: Principal Rivers of the World
The Fact Monster almanac lists the fifty-five biggest rivers in the world, with links to additional articles about most of them. The Nile (the longest river in the world) tops the list with a length of 4,180 miles, and the Tigris is the shortest river on the list, with a length of 1,180 miles. A separate Rivers of the United States page annotates rivers 350 miles or longer, but is listed alphabetically, not by length.
Missouri Botanical Garden: Rivers and Streams
"From outer-space, the earth looks like it is covered with veins and arteries, similar to our bodies. The earth's arteries, however, are really a vast web of rivers and streams that channel water across the planet, from mountains to oceans." This excellent lesson for middle and high-school students covers watersheds, surface runoff, water pollution, how streams become rivers, river zones, river creatures (such as the Arrau River turtle) and hydroelectric power (dams).
University of Illinois Extension: The All-Star River Explorers
"Rivers are an essential part of our world. Since the beginning of time, people have traveled on them and built cities along them. Rivers have provided food as well as a source of commerce and entertainment for centuries." This multimedia exploration for third through fifth grade students, introduces river basics, describes their importance, and includes a section on river explorers such as Henry Hudson, and Lewis and Clark. There is a Teacher's Guide that outlines classroom activities, and a River Resource page with additional site recommendations.
USGS: Water Science for Schools: Rivers and Streams
This informative site for high-school students is part of the U.S. Geological Survey's Water Science for Schools project. It includes a water science glossary, hyperlinks to related pages, and a chart showing the comparative lengths of the world's major rivers. "A river is nothing more than surface water finding its way over land from a higher altitude to a lower altitude, all due to gravity. When rain falls on the land, it either seeps into the ground or becomes runoff, which flows downhill into rivers and lakes, on its journey towards the seas."

Wild & Scenic Rivers: Rivers and Kids
Otter B. Goode explains the history of the Wilderness Act, the Clean Water Act, and most specifically the National Wild & Scenic Rivers System, which was created by Congress in 1958 to protect 165 rivers and their tributaries. These protected American rivers total about 11,409 miles. "Not every state has a wild & scenic river ? 39 states and Puerto Rico have rivers in the National Wild & Scenic Rivers System. Does your state have a wild & scenic river? Do you live near it?" Find out by following Otter B. Goode through this kids site.

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Ben Franklin's Kite Experiment
In June of 1752, Ben Franklin sought to prove that lightning was electrical by flying a kite in stormy weather. When Franklin touched the iron key attached to the kite's string, he saw sparks fly between his knuckle and the metal key. But some historians doubt that this famous experiment really happened. Learn more at today's batch of sites.
Code Check: Ben Franklin and the Kite Experiment
Code Check, a publisher of books about building and electrical codes, is not the usual educational site for middle-school students, but they feature Ben Franklin in many of their books because he "made major contributions to each of the four main disciplines of building inspection: Building, Plumbing, Mechanical, and Electrical." This page explains Franklin's famous experiment, along with an overview of the Leyden Jar used in the experiment. "The first device capable of storing an electric charge was the Leyden jar. Invented by a German, Ewald G. von Kleist, on November 4, 1745, he made the discovery by accident.."
Julian T. Rubin: Ben Franklin
Because there was no eyewitness account written about Franklin's kite experiment, some historians argue that the experiment didn't occur at all, and others argue that it happened differently than described. "It doesn't really matter if Benjamin Franklin indeed performed the kite experiment in reality. What really matters is the question if this experiment (or maybe only a theoretical proposal) is founded on sound scientific principles and as a matter of fact it is a possible experiment that enables the conclusion that lightning is an electric phenomenon."
Museum of Hoaxes: The Electric Kite Hoax
Historian Tom Tucker has his own ideas about Franklin's electrifying kite adventure, and published a book about it ("Bolt of Fate: Benjamin Franking and his Electric Kite Hoax") in 2003. Tucker argues that the experiment was originally proposed as a joke to get back at the British Royal Society because they had given a cold shoulder to his earlier electrical research. "It was his way of saying, Go fly a kite in a storm! But when his suggestion reached France, where people took it seriously, Franklin decided to play along and claimed he really had conducted the experiment."
PBS: Ben Franklin: How Shocking
"From a simple glass rod to an invention that still today saves lives, explore some of Franklin's electrifying discoveries and test your knowledge of electricity." This fab multimedia activity from PBS demonstrates three of Franklin's experiments, including recreating his kite experiment. Choose material for the key, various parts of the kite string, and then pick your weather conditions, and watch what happens.

Tufts: Wright Center: Franklin's Kite Experiment
From Wright Center for Science Teaching, this seven page PDF for high-school and college students, is just one piece of a larger project titled "Ben Franklin As My Lab Partner ? Experiments in Electrostatics." Learn more about Franklin's experiments by following along with Joseph Priestley's 1775 account of it, along with related excerpts from other eighteenth-century scientists. Author Dr. Robert A. Morse concludes that given the number of times the experiment has been safely reproduced, there is no reason to doubt the accounts given by Franklin and Priestley.

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Tiananmen Square Massacre
After the death of pro-democracy Chinese official Hu Yaobang on April 15, 1989, mourners gathered at Tiananmen Square in Beijing by the thousands. Weeks passed and the crowd grew larger, filled with students and intellectuals demanding democratic reforms. On June 4, the People's Liberation Army tanks cleared the Square, and hundreds of causalities and injuries ensued.
BBC On This Day: 1989 Massacre in Tiananmen Square
This one page BBC news article about the Tiananmen Square events of June 4, 1989 includes a video news report and links to a China country profile. In addition to the news report, there is a sidebar analyzing the event. "The demonstrations in Tiananmen Square have been described as the greatest challenge to the communist state in China since the 1949 revolution."
The Epoch Times: Twentieth Anniversary of the Tiananmen Square Massacre
For the 2009 twentieth anniversary of the Tiananmen Square Massacre, independent news site The Epoch Times created a special edition with dozens of articles analyzing the event. Of particular note is "China Briefs: Remembering Tiananmen" with news stories from around the world, and several photo galleries. The first of these galleries includes several disturbing pictures, but does include a warning at the top of the page.,com_ettopic/topicid,50/
New York Times: Tiananmen Square
"In the early hours of June 4, as the world watched in horror, the tanks of the People's Liberation Army rolled toward Tiananmen Square and troops fired on the crowds, killing hundreds and wounding thousands." This New York Times section is a collection of reporting from both 2009 (the twentieth anniversary) and 1989. Notable clicks include the lead article by Nicholas D. Kristof, which provides an excellent background on the death of Hu Yaobang, a precursor to the protests that lead up to the Tiananmen Square tragedy, and the blog entry "Behind the Scenes: Tank Man of Tiananmen."
PBS Frontline: The Gate of Heavenly Peace
In addition to background about the PBS film The Gate of Heavenly Peace, this companion site contains articles analyzing the events leading up to the demonstrations, video and audio clips, posters, and photographs. Even though one of the images is broken, my favorite click is the Interactive Tour of Tiananmen Square. Click on any image to learn more about Tiananmen Square.

PBS Frontline: The Tank Man
"After all others had been silenced, his lonely act of defiance against the Chinese regime amazed the world. What became of him? And 20 years later, has China succeeded in erasing this event from its history?" The Tankman referenced in the title of this site was an unknown man, captured in several photographs, standing in the middle of the street in front of a line of tanks arriving at Tiananmen Square on that fateful day in 1989. This PBS Frontline site is my Tiananmen Square pick of the week. Not only can you watch the entire 90 minute PBS special online, but the site also includes a timeline of events, world reaction, and the transcript of a panel discussion on China's struggle to control information and censor the Internet.

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Father's Day Poems
Whether you are making a Father's Day card from scratch, or looking for something to add to a purchased card, these sites are chock full of Father's Day poems to help you find just the right words to express your love. Some include original poems, others feature works from famous dead poets. Most allow the use of their poems on handmade cards, but be sure to check the each site for more specific terms of usage.
Apples 4 the Teacher: Father's Day Poems and Rhymes
Apples 4 the Teacher hosts fifteen poems honoring dear old Dad, by poets such as Winifred Sackville Stoner, Henry W. Longfellow and William Wordsworth. Other Father's Day content includes coloring pages, printable cards, crafts, recipes, and gift ideas. For reading time, there is printable chapter book about Pinocchio and his dad Geppotto.
Poems for Free: Father's Day Poems
Free for personal or non-commercial use, poet Nicholas Gordon shares his poems online as well as for use in homemade Father's Day cards. Gordon is a prolific poet, and his collection is the largest of today's picks. "You are our knight in shining armor, / Pilgrim of our plea, / The Atlas for our wounded world, / Our rescuer at sea."
Poemsource: Father Poems
"I love you, Dad, and want you to know / I feel your love wherever I go. / Whenever I've problems, you're there to assist / The ways you have helped me would make quite a list." I was already a fan of poets Karl and Joanna Fuchs, so I was happy to see their names again when searching for Father's Day poems. The married duo write all the poems at Poem Source, and no commercial usage is allowed. Although in some cases they do allow a single poem to be published on a personal website, please read their usage guidelines carefully, because I can't cover them adequately in this limited space. Poems about Fathers
For high-school students and adults, takes a more scholarly approach to poems about fathers, with a look at half a dozen poems from well-known poets, and a suggested reading list that includes works by Dylan Thomas, Edgar Guest, Sylvia Plath, and others. Here's the start of one by E.E.Cummings. "my father moved through dooms of love / through sames of am through haves of give, / singing each morning out of each night / my father moved through depths of height". Quotes for Father's Day
"A father's words are like a thermostat that sets the temperature in the house," Paul Lewis. For a little variety in today's sites, Thinkexist brings us not poems, but quotes. The quotations are sorted by popularity, which means you can vote for your picks (or pans) by clicking on the up (or down) thumb. Pay special attention to the tiny icons next to each quote. They provide one-click access to sending each quote as an e-card, copying to your clipboard, or printing.'s_day/

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Battle of Little Bighorn
The Battle of the Little Bighorn (also known as Custer's Last Stand and the Battle of Greasy Grass Creek) took place on June 25-26 of 1876, during the Great Sioux War of 1876-77. General George Custer led 700 U.S. troops into defeat (with more than 250 casualties) at the hands of about 900 Native American warriors, led by Sitting Bull and Crazy Horse. Images of Custer and the Battle of Little Bighorn
Robert J. McNamara, the About guide to nineteenth century history, has gathered twelve images from the New York Public Library Digital Collections to create an annotated gallery. Some of the images are black-and-white photographs, others are book illustrations, and one is a copy of Walt Whitman's hand written poem "A Death-Sonnet for Custer." Whitman's poem expressed the shock many Americans felt when news of the battle reached them. The poem was published in the New York Tribune on July 10, 1876, and was later included in editions of "Leaves of Grass."
EyeWitness to History: Battle of the Little Bighorn, 1876
After an introduction setting the scene of the battle, George Herendon tells his eyewitness account, as reported in the New York Herald. "Herendon served as a scout for the Seventh Cavalry -- a civilian under contract with the army and attached to Major Reno's command. Herendon charged across the Little Bighorn River with Reno as the soldiers met an overwhelming force of Sioux streaming from their encampment."
Friends of the Little Bighorn Battlefield: The Battle
Friends of the Little Bighorn Battlefield is a non-profit association supporting the educational activities of the Little Bighorn Battlefield National Monument near Crow Agency, Montana. Best clicks include Road to Little Bighorn (a timeline of events from 1400 to 2003 when the Indian Memorial was dedicated) and Custer's Last Stand (a pictorial history.) The archeological digs of 1984-85, 1989 and 1994 uncovered dozens of spent cartridges, fired bullets, and human remains. Explore more in the Archeology section.
HistoryNet: Ten Myths of Little Bighorn
"An examination of ten of the major myths about the Battle of the Little Bighorn follows. The first two myths are widely held fallacies that do not require Indian testimony to discredit; the last eight myths are largely discredited by eyewitness accounts of those on the winning side." The first myth debunked is that all of Custer's men were killed. The second is that Custer did not listen to his scouts. Click on over to learn more.

Son of the South: George Custer
George Armstrong Custer, born December 5, 1839, graduated West Point in 1861 and "was an active and daring cavalry officer during the Civil War, distinguishing himself on many occasions." This Civil War site brings us a bio of Custer, along with an illustrated look at his Last Stand. "Never comprehending the overwhelming odds against him, believing that the Indians were 'on the run', and thinking that between himself and Reno he could 'double them up' in short order, Custer had sealed his fate."

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Bastille Day
Celebrated as a national French holiday, Bastille Day commemorates the storming of the Bastille fortress-prison on July 14, 1789 by an angry Parisian mob. It is frequently considered the start of the French Revolution, which eventually saw the overthrow of the monarchy, and the establishment of the French Republic.
Bastille Day
Dedicated entirely to explaining Bastille Day and the French Revolution, this site is divided into four sections: History, Biographies, Symbols, and Quizzes. History starts with the political and economic reasons for the Revolution, and continues through The Reign of Terror that occurred at the end of the Revolution. Of course, it includes the story of the Storming of Bastille on July 14, 1789. Biographies covers ten personalities whose lives are intertwined with the Revolution, including Louis XVI, Marie Antoinette and Maximilian de Robespiere.
Discover France: Place de la Bastille
"The French national holiday, celebrated annually on July 14, is officially called the Fête Nationale, and commemorates the Fête de la Fédération - but it is commonly known in English as Bastille Day." Although primarily a travel site, Discover France also covers culture, history and language. The seven-page section about the Bastille includes its early history as a fortress during the Hundred Years' War (it was built between 1370 and 1383) and the story of one famous but anonymous prisoner known as The Man in the Iron Mask. The Storming of the Bastille is covered in Parts 3 and 4.
Exploring the French Revolution: Paris and the Politics of Rebellion
Created in collaboration with George Mason University, City University of New York and the National Endowment for the Humanities, this site for high school and college students, archives more than 600 primary documents, and unites them with a timeline, a glossary and maps. Here the storming of the Bastille is analyzed more deeply than at other sites. For example, it asks the question "[G]iven the sharply rising bread prices in Paris at the time, were the crowds that gathered on the 14th engaging in a more traditional form of protest, a large-scale 'bread riot,' that took on political significance only as events unfolded?"
History Wiz: The Storming of the Bastille
"Taken from the French word 'bastide', meaning fortress, the Bastille was constructed to defend the eastern wall of Paris in 1382. But because it had previously been used to house political prisoners, it had long been a symbol of royal tyranny." This illustrated history lesson briefly introduces the history of the Bastille, and describes the angry Paris mob that stormed the walls on July 14, 1789.

How Stuff Works Videos: The French Revolution: The Storming of the Bastille
With video clips of modern-day Place de Bastille, where the Bastille fortress once stood, this two-minute movie briefly tells the story of the storming of the Bastille that "marked the beginning of the bloody phase of the Revolution." Additional French Revolution videos can be in the "History: Europe: Battles & Revolution" section, or by using the search function near the top of the page.

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Students And Teachers Against Racism announces their new website that offers insight into the Native American perspective to teachers and educators.
Changing Winds Advocacy Center
Through presentations, classroom sessions, curriculum, fund raising, charitable works, and multi-media efforts, we seek to raise public awareness of the stereotyping, discrimination, racism and other unique situations facing Native Americans.
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Canku Ota is a free Newsletter celebrating Native America, its traditions and accomplishments . We do not provide subscriber or visitor names to anyone. Some articles presented in Canku Ota may contain copyright material. We have received appropriate permissions for republishing any articles. Material appearing here is distributed without profit or monetary gain to those who have expressed an interest. This is in accordance with Title 17 U.S.C. Section 107.
Canku Ota is a copyright © 2000, 2001, 2002, 2003, 2004, 2005, 2006, 2007, 2008, 2009, 2010 of Vicki Lockard and Paul Barry.
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