O, Canada! Yes, in many ways it is!
Canada Day was July 1st! Canada Day celebrates the day that several British colonies in North America joined to become the Dominion of Canada. In celebration here are some facts about Canada from the children’s encyclopedia!
- Canada is the second largest country in the world in terms of area.
- While Canada is larger than the United States in terms of area, it has only one-ninth the population of the US.
- Canada has two official languages, English and French.
- Canada’s national symbols are the maple leaf, and the beaver.
- Canada’s government is a constitutional monarchy. The head of state is Queen Elizabeth II. The Queen wields very little power in Canada’s government. The head of the government is the Prime Minister of Canada. The current Prime Minister is Stephen Harper.
- Canada has ten provinces and 3 territories.
- Catholicism is the largest single religion in Canada.
- Ice Hockey is by far the most popular sport in Canada. Many of hockey’s greatest stars, including Bobby Orr, Gordie Howe and Wayne Gretzky were born and raised in Canada.
- Canadians eat more beef than any other meat.
- Canada produces most of the world’s maple syrup.
- Canada’s best known theatrical event is the Stratford Shakespeare festival.
- Canada has the longest coastline of any country.
- Canada’s northern location gives it a generally cold climate.
- Service industries account for the majority of Canada’s gross domestic product.
- Farmland covers 7 percent of Canada’s land.
- Canada has vast energy resources.
- Two-thirds of Canada’s imports come from the United States of America.
- Canada’s rail system has 29,000 miles of track.
- Air Canada is Canada’s largest airline.
For more information about Canada try an educational website for kids.
It is very likely that you have heard of Leonardo da Vinci. You probably know that Da Vinci was a renowned artist from the Renaissance era. You have probably seen pictures of his great paintings, like the Mona Lisa. Maybe you have even seen these paintings in person, or studied them in school. Here are some things from the encyclopedia online you may not know about Leonardo da Vinci.
Fascinating Facts about Leonardo da Vinci:
- While Leonardo was trained to be a painter, his achievements spread into a variety of fields including: anatomy, astronomy, botany, geology, geometry, optics, and the design of machines.
- Leonardo spent time as a military engineer. During this phase of his career, he designed artillery and fortresses.
- For a time, Leonardo lived in the Vatican palace in rooms granted to him by Pope Leo X.
- In addition to being an influential painter, Leonardo changed the art of drawing. Leonardo drew more, and in much greater detail than any artist before him.
- Leonardo was interested in mechanics, and drew designs for great machines including a helicopter. He did not build most of these machines, but the designs were ahead of their time.
- Leonardo was interested in anatomy. He dissected human and animal corpses to try to gain an understanding of how the human body worked. His drawing “Vitruvian man” was based upon these studies.
- Leonardo had planned on writing several books about his studies, but never completed them. His notes, which would have formed the basis of these books, were not widely available to the public until nearly 400 years after his death.
- Leonardo was interested in optics, and it showed in his paintings. His works used a more realistic portrayal of light than any other artist before him.
Find out more about the prolific Leonardo da Vinci and other great figures in history with encyclopedia books by World Book.
As the world continues to globalize and become more connected, its interesting to look back on how it all began. Let’s take a look back in history and remember some of the largest empires in history. All information is taken from the World Book encyclopedia for children.
Over the course of several centuries, the British established a colonial empire so vast that it was said “The Sun never set on the British Empire”. The British Empire at one time included the islands of Britain and Ireland, Canada, vast sections of Africa, India, Australia and New Zealand, and various islands and island chains around the world. The Empire declined in the 20th century as various independence movements swept through the British Colonies.
The Mongol Empire was the largest contiguous land empire in history. At it’s greatest extent, it stretched from the Pacific Ocean to eastern Europe. The Empire’s great size led to it’s rapid decline as it was very difficult for the Mongols to manage such a vast empire.
At it’s greatest extent, the Russian Empire stretched from the Bering Sea in the east to parts of Eastern and Northern Europe in the West. The Modern nation of Russia is still the largest country on the planet in terms of land area.
The Spanish Empire was a colonial empire that included colonies all around the world, from South and Central America, to the Philippines, to parts of Europe.
Learn more about history of the world with an encyclopedia for kids by World Book.
As Summer begins, the Fourth of July is right around the corner. In the United States, July 4th is Independence Day, a celebration of the anniversary of the day when the Declaration of Independence was adopted in 1776, declaring the US a country in it’s own right, independent from the British Empire. The Fourth of July is celebrated in the US with parades, cookouts, and displays of fireworks.
The United States, like many countries, used to be part of a large colonial Empire. The United States is not the only country that declared it’s Independence from another country. Did you know that many other countries celebrate Independence Days of their own?
According to the encyclopedia, the Philippines celebrates Independence Day on June 12th, commemorating the day they declared their independence from Spain.
When the British territory of India declared it’s Independence in 1947, five new nations were formed. The modern nations of India and Pakistan became nations in 1947. In 1948, Burma and Sri Lanka became independent nations. Decades later, Bangladesh, formerly part of Pakistan, declared it’s Independence.
France celebrates Bastille Day. This holiday commemorates the day the French people stormed the old fortress known as “the Bastille” that was being used as a prison during the French Revolution.
In Mexico, Diez y Seis de Septiembre commemorates the day that Mexico began it’s war of Independence from Spain.
These are just a few of the many national Independence holidays that are celebrated around the world. Find out more in the online encyclopedia by World Book!
The crack of the bat. The smell of hot dogs and Crackerjack. It’s Summer, and that means it’s baseball season. Here are some reasons why Baseball has played a large role in American identity over the years…
- In Major League baseball, there are two leagues, the American League and the National League. The American League was founded in 1900, and the National League was founded in 1876.
- In the American League, the starting pitcher does not bat. Instead, there is an extra position called “the Designated Hitter” who hits instead of the pitcher. The designated hitter does not play in the field. In the National League, the pitcher does bat.
- A typical baseball weighs between 5 and 5 and ¼ ounces.
- Baseball fields are divided into 3 sections- the infield, the outfield, and foul territory.
- A knuckle ball is a pitch that break left, right, or downward. It is a very unpredictable pitch.
- Major league baseball games utilize four umpires.
- The first World Series, the championship of Major League Baseball, was held in 1903 and has been held in every subsequent year since except 1904 and 1994.
- Baseball is the national sport of Japan. Baseball was introduced to Japan by an American teacher in 1873.
- Alexander Cartwright is considered the father of organized baseball. In 1845, he founded the first club in the United States dedicated solely to playing baseball.
- Baseball spread throughout the US during the Civil War as Union soldiers taught the game to other people around the country.
- In 1919, the Cincinnati Reds defeated the Chicago White Sox in the World Series. The following year, eight players from the White Sox were accused of throwing the game. This became known as the Black Sox Scandal.
- Many people refer to the 1920’s as the Babe Ruth Era. Babe Ruth was a dominant player of the era who played for the New York Yankees.
- Many major league baseball players fought in World War II, including Boston Red Sox great Ted Williams.
- In 1994, Major League baseball’s cancelled half of their season due to a labor dispute between the players and the owners of the teams.
- In 2006, the first ever World Baseball Classic was held. Japan defeated Cuba to win the Championship.
Find out more information about America’s favorite pastime and other important facts with an online encyclopedia for kids by World Book.
All information was taken from the World Book Advanced encyclopedia set online.