Sunday, April 20, 2014

50 States: Utah


In 1848, the United States was given land through the Treaty of Guadalupe Hidalgo after winning the Mexican War. The area that is now Utah was included in this treaty. The history of Utah between 1848 and 1896 when they achieved statehood is unlike any other state in the Union. The Mormons, who were now residing in this area, wanted to create a state named "Deseret," but Congress refused to allow such a large area of land become a state. As the Mormons fought for statehood, it was revealed that they practiced polygamy which was frowned upon by the rest of the country. Congress refused to grant statehood because of this discovery. Over the next nearly 50 years, Utahns would fight for statehood. They had to make concessions in their state constitution, like banning polygamy, before it was granted. Finally, on January 4, 1896, Utah (UT) became our 45th state.

Utah is nearly 85,000 square miles; that makes it the 13th biggest state. The name "Utah" comes from the Native American tribe—"Ute." Salt Lake City is the capital and also the biggest city in the state. The nickname is the Beehive State; it represents hard work and industry. It stands to reason the state insect is the honeybee. Utah's motto is "Industry."

People who lives in Utah are referred to as Utahans or Utahns. A few of the famous people born here include:

J. Willard Marriott...entrepreneur
Butch Cassidy...outlaw
Marie Osmond...singer, actress
Donny Osmond...singer, actor
Philo T. Farnsworth...inventor
Wallace Henry

Other famous people have been born in Utah, though perhaps not quite as noteworthy, including some actors, athletes, and scientists.

Research Question: What did Marriott create? What did Farnsworth invent? What did Thurman write?

Some other famous beings that once resided in Utah include Allosaurus, Apatosaurus, Coelophysis, Diplodocus, Iguanodon, Ornithomimus, Parasaurolophus, Stegosaurus, Utahraptor. These are just a few of the many dinosaur fossils that have been found in Utah.

The Utah state flag was adopted in 1913. A bald eagle sits atop a beehive, with the motto "Industry" in between. There are two flags and two dates: 1847 is the year the Mormons found religious freedom in Utah, and 1896 is the year Utah became a state.

Other state symbols are:

Bird...California Sea gull
Animal...Rocky Mountain Elk
Fish...Bonneville Cutthroat Trout
Flower...Sego Lily
Tree...Blue Spruce

You may be wondering what there is to do in Utah. I was amazed by what I found. There are a ton of interesting and beautiful places. Besides aquariums, museums, and numerous ski resorts, here are some other things to see while in Utah:

Zion National Park in Springdale
Bryce Canyon National Park
Canyonlands National Park in Moab
Capitol Reef National Park in Torrey
Arches National Park in Moab
Lake Powell
Hogle Zoo in Salt Lake City
Thanksgiving Point Museum in Lehi
Lagoon Amusement Park in Farmington
This is the Place Heritage Park in Salt Lake City
Cedar Breaks National Monument in Cedar City
Snow Canyon State Park
Natural Bridges National Monument in Lake Powell

The Sundance Film Festival takes place each year in Park City.

*The Great Salt Lake is 75 miles long and 35 miles wide. Great Salt Lake is, by definition, salty. Do you know why? (This is a good research topic.)

Check out this fun Utah learning site for kids.

The following items are available on If you purchase through my site, I will receive a commission since I am an affiliate.

22687DF: Utah State History Lapbook Journal - PDF Download [Download] Utah State History Lapbook Journal - PDF Download [Download]
By Cyndi Kinney & Judy Trout / Knowledge Box Central

Get to know Utah with Knowledge Box Central's Utah State History Lapbook Journal!

This Lapbook Journal PDF download is designed for students in grades 6-12 and includes both a study guide, as well as lapbook and journal pages in a single PDF file. The included state-specific study guide provides background material, historical notes, and other factual information; students will explore state symbols, songs, landmarks, famous people, geographical regions, timelines of historical events, and more. Parents should note that this study guide is identical to the study guide in the sold-separately lapbooks (which are designed for children in Grades K-8) so that parents can cover the information once with students of all ages.

Six lapbook booklets, journal pages, and blank report pages are provided in one PDF file. The journal section provides room for students to document what he or she has learned during the study; students can choose to create several booklets in the lapbook section to help improve retention of the information. Students will complete booklets and journal pages with information on the state's populations and borders, state symbols, elected officials, natural wonders, state monuments, and more.

This lapbook resource is in downloadable PDF format. All elements are in a single PDF.

736496: FalconGuide to Dinosaur National Monument, 2nd Utah-Colorado FalconGuide to Dinosaur National Monument, 2nd Utah-Colorado
By Globe Pequot

Dinosaur National Monument on the Utah-Colorado border offers an awesome collection of dinosaur fossils, strikingly beautiful canyons, mysterious prehistoric rock art, and geological formations. Use A FalconGuide to Dinosaur National Monument to explore the parks 330 square miles and discover the best scenic vistas and wilderness experiences in this remarkable and ancient landscape. Speaks of millions of years.

Look inside to find:

  • comprehensive information about Douglass Dinosaur Quarry
  • facts about the area's history, flora and fauna, and weather
  • detailed maps, trail descriptions, driving tours, and nature hikes
  • options for running the Green River and the Yampa River
  • lists of monument contacts, commercial raft companies, and shuttle services

  • 743865: Utah Curiosities Utah Curiosities
    By Globe Pequot

    725664: Hiking Utah, 3rd Hiking Utah, 3rd
    By Globe Pequot

    755573: The Boy Who Invented TV: The Story of Philo Farnsworth The Boy Who Invented TV: The Story of Philo Farnsworth
    By Kathleen Krull & Greg Couch (Illustrator) / Dragonfly Books

    Wednesday, April 16, 2014

    Curiosity Quest Review

    Curiosity Quest Review

    My kids and I enjoy watching movies and videos. I especially like educational videos. As long as they are interesting, my kids will sit and watch them with me. My initial interest in Curiosity Quest was related to the fact that the "Swimmers of the Sea" DVD combo pack had an episode about sea turtles, and there was a chance my son would be working with sea turtles this summer as a volunteer opportunity. We received two combo packs to review: DVD Combo Pack - Produce which discussed mushrooms, cranberries, and oranges and DVD Combo Pack -Swimmers of the Sea which discussed penguins, sea turtles, and penguins.

    Curiosity Quest Review Curiosity Quest Review

    Curiosity Quest Review
    Cranberry Marsh
    Each of the combo packs has three episodes that are each between 25 and 30 minutes long. The website says that these DVDs are geared towards children ages 7-14. They are definitely appropriate for younger children. There is nothing offensive in them whatsoever, and there are segments in each video where the host, Joel Greene, asks kids questions about the topic being discussed. For example, he asked kids "on the corner" what harvesting was. Some of their answers were funny; some were correct, and some were totally off the mark. There is also a "Fun Fact" segment that is only a few seconds long when some little known fact is shared by a child. In one episode, it was obvious the child was nervous. In another episode, that particular child was simply adorable. While these videos may be geared towards children 7-14, I'd say they should be appropriate for 7-adult. Joel Greene is obviously doing what he was made to do—ask questions and teach. In each episode, I don't think he leaves a question unasked. As I watched him being taught about mushrooms, oranges, cranberries, etc., by the expert in the video, I'd think of a question. No sooner did I think of one than he asked the question I was thinking of. Joel's enthusiasm and genuine excitement for what he was learning was contagious. I find myself wanting to watch all of the videos he has made.

    Curiosity Quest ReviewCuriosity Quest ReviewOne afternoon I had to run out for a bit. When I arrived home, there were pictures of sea turtles on our whiteboard, and my daughter began relating to me all of these facts that she had learned after watching the sea turtles' segment on the "Swimmers of the Sea" Combo Pack. They watched a segment without me! You can see from the pictures why these videos are able to captivate our attention. The video is crisp. (There were a couple of minor glitches while I watched them, but it may have been because I was watching some of the videos on my laptop. When I watched them using my DVD player and television, I didn't notice a problem.) Joel is always smiling and laughing, and he isn't afraid to get his hands dirty. He is like the kid-friendly version of Mike Rowe.

    There is so much information packed into these half-hour-long episodes. I learned practical things like putting your fruit into brown paper bags to speed up the ripening process by capturing the ethylene gas. This is the same way they ripen oranges, but on a larger scale and without the paper bag, before they ship them to the stores. I know my children learned quite a bit as well. These videos are so much more engaging than traditional science/educational videos. 

    Joel Greene does it right! I love these videos!

    Curiosity Quest Review
    Picking Oranges

    Curiosity Quest Review
    Salmon Ladder
    Each of the DVD Combo Packs sells for $24.95. Some of the other DVDs  available (prices vary) are Bread Making, Dog Sledding, Jelly Belly, Tom's Toothpaste, LegoLand, Home Building, Tiger Rescue, and so on. Curiosity Quest also has memberships through which videos can be delivered to your door with homeschool-appropriate curriculum to go along with them. It is obvious that a lot of time and effort have gone into these videos, and I am thankful that I had the opportunity to review them with my children.

    Find Curiosity Quest on these social media outlets:

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    Monday, April 14, 2014

    50 States: Texas


    You've heard the saying, "Everything's bigger in Texas," right? This began as a slogan to encourage people to visit our nation's second largest state. (Which is the first largest?) What do they say is bigger in Texas than anywhere else? Well, they say pride is bigger there, along with hair, BBQs, guns, steaks, religion, advertising, statues, rodeos, hats, trucks, and boots.

    Texas (TX) is our 28th state. It became a state on December 29, 1845. The capital is Austin, and the largest city is Houston. The nearly 26.5 million people who call Texas home are referred to as Texans. Some famous people born in Texas include: 

    George Strait...singer, songwriter
    Tommy Lee
    Willie Nelson...singer
    Janis Joplin...singer
    Dwight D. Eisenhower...President
    Mary Kay Ash...founder of Mary Kay
    Drew player
    Lisa Welchel...actress
    Hilary Duff...actress/singer
    Kelly Clarkson...singer
    Barry producer
    Michael Dell...founder of Dell Computers
    Kenny Rogers...singer
    Dan anchor
    Chester Nimitz...military leader
    Scott Joplin...pianist
    Lyndon B. Johnson...President
    Buddy Holly...singer

    There are many more I did not list. It seems Texas is big with singer, songwriters, and actors, too!

    Texas' nickname is "The Lone Star State." On its flag, there is one star. It is said that the red represents bravery, blue loyalty, and white purity. This flag was adopted in 1845 when Texas became a state, but the star was used as early as the 1830s when Texas fought against Mexico.

    Watch a Texas Independence Day video. In 4-1/2 minutes, the speaker gives a history and an explanation of what makes Texas great. (Consider watching it in full screen to avoid potentially offensive ads in the margin.)

    The state symbols of Texas are:

    Large mammal...Texas longhorn

    Small mammal...Armadillo
    Flying mammal...Free-tailed bat
    Insect...Monarch butterfly
    Plant...Prickly Pear Cactus
    Vegetable...Sweet Onion

    What is there to do in Texas? You can visit the Alamo. Be sure to read the history of the Alamo, either on the Official Alamo website or some other history site or book. Visit the Sixth Floor Museum, all about John F. Kennedy, in Dallas. There is a Six Flags and a Sea World. Dallas also has an aquarium and an art museum. The Bullock Texas State History Museum in Austin tells the story of Texas. Houston has a zoo and a museum of natural science. The Space Center in Houston is the visitor center for the Lyndon B. Johnson Space Center. The Texas State Aquarium is located in Corpus Christi. The San Jacinto Battleground State Historic Site in La Porte memorializes the decisive battle in the fight for Texas' Independence from Mexico. You can also tour Battleship Texas State Historic Site in La Porte. There are numerous forts and other battleships that can be toured throughout Texas. Cadillac Ranch in Potter County is a large art sculpture. Situated in Austin is the LBJ Library and Museum. If you're in Houston, don't forget to visit the Astrodome, which was the first sports stadium with a dome.

    Texas Parks and Wildlife has a website where kids can learn about the different regions of Texas and can even download activity books that teach about insects, birds, Indians, etc. These look to be wonderful resources. Be aware that they do speak of millions of years, however.

    Did you know?

    -Dr. Pepper was invented in Waco.
    -Texas has the most farmland of any state.
    -There are nearly 16 million heads of cattle in Texas. 
    -There is a ranch in Texas that is bigger than the state of Rhode Island.
    -Texas produces more wool than any other state.
    -After the War with Mexico, Texas was an independent nation until it became a state.
    -The Waco Bridge was the first suspension bridge in the U.S.
    -Over 8000 people died when a hurricane hit Galveston in 1900.
    -Stealing cattle is still a hanging offense.
    -Texas comes from an Indian word, Tejas, meaning "friends."
    -Texas is the state with the most tornadoes per year.
    -Texas is the only state that entered the Union by way of a treaty.
    -The Texas Rangers are the oldest law enforcement agency in America. Chuck Norris is an honorary Texas Ranger.

    The following items are available through If you purchase through my blog, I will receive a commission.

    846546: Texas Texas
    By Dana Maechen Rau & Catherine Gardner(Editor) / Gareth Stevens Publishing

    Each volume in the Portrait of the States series is a colorful, comprehensive portrait that features state facts and symbols and describes the history, people, land, economy, and government of that state. Young students will be engaged by the "Fun Facts" sprinkled throughout and the chapter on "Fun Things to See and Do." 32 pages, paperback

    41266EB: Stephen F. Austin: The Son Becomes the Father of Texas - eBook Stephen F. Austin: The Son Becomes the Father of Texas - eBook
    By Mary Dodson Wade / Bright Sky Press

    227264: Our Texas Our Texas
    By Jackie Mims Hopkins / Charlesbridge Publishing

    Move through the giant state of Texas city by city! Starting off in Brownsville (where citrus is grown) and moving through Gonzales, Houston, Piney Woods, El Paso, San Antonio, Austin, and plenty of other towns, the bright illustrations complement the short poems that tell readers something unique about each place. The back of the book goes through the locations again, this time with new star-pointed facts. 48 pages, paperback. Ages 9-12.

    712732: More than Petticoats: Remarkable Texas Women More than Petticoats: Remarkable Texas Women
    By Globe Pequot

    More than Petticoats: Remarkable Texas Women explores the history of the Lone Star State through the stories of ten remarkable women whose courage and contributions made a profound impact on Texas. These pioneering women exhibited strength and triumph through their work as doctors, entrepreneurs, journalists, civil rights advocates, and more. All ten women, born before 1900, faced incredible challenges. Read about their exceptional lives in this collection of brief and absorbing biographies. 128 pages, black-and-white photos.

    212339: Line In The Sand Line In The Sand
    By Randy Roberts, James S. Olson / Simon & Schuster

    Randy Roberts and James S. Olson retell the story of the Alamo from both the Mexican and the American perspectives, delving into the historical accuracy of such myths as Bowie's famous line in the sand and Crockett's celebrated fight to the death. Separating fact from fiction, they trace how and why those fictions grew, from the rapid spread of the rallying cry "Remember the Alamo!" to the "patriotic" depictions of battle in American films to the potency of the Alamo as a symbol in Texas politics and American culture today.

    8467108: What Was the Alamo? What Was the Alamo?
    By Meg Belviso, Pam Pollack & David Groff(Illustrator) / Grosset & Dunlap

    "Remember the Alamo!" is still a rallying cry more than 175 years after the siege in Texas. Find out why! Two hundred Americans held off more than two thousand soldiers of the Mexican Army for twelve days before defeat. Only two Texans survived. The siege was a crucial turning point in the Texas Revolution and led to the creation of the Republic of Texas. With 80 black-and-white illustrations throughout and a 16-page black-and-white photo insert, young readers will relive the battle of the Alamo!

    852475: The Alamo: A Radio Dramatization The Alamo: A Radio Dramatization
    By Jerry Robbins & The Colonial Radio Players / Colonial Radio Theatre on Brilliance Audio

    General Antonio Lopez de Santa Anna arrives in San Antonio with 6,000 troops and begins to besiege the Alamo for 13 days. Flying a red flag and playing the El Deguello (cut the throat), Santa Anna signals that no quarter will be given to the defenders.

    You will be there with David Crockett, Jim Bowie, William Travis, and 16-year-old David Cummings as they fight to the bitter end in this spectacular epic production of one of the world's most famous battles.

    Unabridged audio CD; approximately 1 hour 14 minutes; 1 CD; performed by Jerry Robbins and The Colonial Radio Players.

    189875: Flat Stanley"s Worldwide Adventures #10: Showdown at the Alamo Flat Stanley's Worldwide Adventures #10: Showdown at the Alamo
    By Jeff Brown & Macky Pamintuan(Illustrator) / Harpercollins Publishing

    117445: In the Shadow of the Alamo In the Shadow of the Alamo
    By Sherry Garland / Houghton Mifflin Harcourt

    Fifteen-year-old Lorenzo never intended to be a soldier. But when the soldados raid his tiny Mexican village, he finds himself forced to join General Santa Anna's Alamo-bound army. Ideal for unit studies, this bittersweet adventure skillfully weaves the complexities of wartime with cultural details, Spanish vocabulary, and historical background. Glossary included. Ages 11 to 14. 282 pages, hardcover from Harcourt Brace.

    122685: Texas Stories: I Like to Tell My Friends Texas Stories: I Like to Tell My Friends
    By T. Lindsay Baker / Abilene Christian University Press

    48176EB: On to the Alamo: Colonel Crockett"s Exploits and Adventures in Texas - eBook On to the Alamo: Colonel Crockett's Exploits and Adventures in Texas - eBook
    By John Seelye / Penguin Classics

    David "Davy" Crockett (1786-1836) was born in Tennessee, fought alongside Andrew Jackson in the War of 1812, and later served three terms in the House of Representatives before heading to Texas, where he died defending the Alamo. Col. Crockett's Exploits and Adventures in Texas, first published after Crockett's death and disingenuously attributed to him, was written by Richard Penn Smith as a narrative that promoted a sanitized account of the Alamo as a heroic effort by Americans to stem the Mexican "invasion" of Texas. The story, which was a huge success in its day, created a myth of the battle that pervaded the collective American memory for more than 150 years and reinforced the image of Davy Crockett as the "King of the Frontier."

    8535374: A Treasury of Texas Tales: Unusual, Interesting, and Little-Known Stories of Texas A Treasury of Texas Tales: Unusual, Interesting, and Little-Known Stories of Texas
    By Webb B. Garrison / Thomas Nelson

    736753: Disasters and Heroic Rescues of Texas Disasters and Heroic Rescues of Texas
    By Globe Pequot

    401209: Texas History Bingo Texas History Bingo
    By Gallopade International

    There's nothing like a little on-the-spot recall to help you remember a fact! State history bingo will keep you on your mental toes. A stack of cards features spaces for squares, such as Native peoples, immigrants, state flag, books, statehood dates, state representatives, and more. Punch-out paper bingo tokens are included, as well as a "call-out" sheet, reward cards, and instructions. This state history bingo covers Texas history.

    68101: Texas Shape Stickers Texas Shape Stickers
    By Top Notch Teacher Products

    Pack of 80 stickers in the shape of Texas, red and blue with white star; each sticker is approximately 1" x 1". Show your support for Texas! Excellent classroom tool for geography and more.

    69329: Texas Bookmarks Texas Bookmarks
    By Top Notch Teacher Products

    Encourage reading with these attractive bookmarks. Colorful bookmarks appeal to kids and adults. Give as rewards or gifts! Double-sided design; 6.5" x 2"; 36 per pack.

    Thursday, April 10, 2014

    Victus Study Skills System Review

    Victus Study Skills Review

    When Victus Study Skills System was offered as a product to review, I was excited about being able to use a system to ensure that my son, who will be taking the SAT in May and dual enrolling in the local community college in the fall, had effective study skills. We received the student workbook and the teacher edition. I am glad we were able to review this product as we both learned quite a bit about good study habits, note taking, and test taking. Much of the information was new to my son, so this review couldn’t have been better timed.
    Victus Study Skills Review

    The teacher edition opens by explaining that the Victus Study Skills System is a way of life. The course aim is then described in both the teacher edition and the student workbook. This aim has four components. In brief, they are:

    • Zeal with knowledge bears fruit.
    • Results come from the process.
    • Any system must have a purpose. 
    • An effective study system has the greatest likelihood of aiding in success.
    The ten lessons are broken down into three foundational cornerstones: Where am I now? Where do I want to be? and How do I get there? Each of the lessons is extremely interactive. In order for my son to get an idea of where he is now, he took a study habits checklist to see what he does "never," "sometimes," and "often." He found out what his learning strength is. It occurred to me after going through the Victus Study Skills System that he never knew he is an auditory learner. It all made sense to him then that he reads certain things out loud and tries to work out his math problems by speaking them. Not only did he learn his strength, he also learned what sorts of things he should do to capitalize on that strength. For example, auditory learners should read aloud whenever they are able to and create some sort of mnemonic like a poem or a song to help them remember information.

    The second section—Where do I want to be?—shares the stories of some famous people and the struggles they went through to achieve their goals. I appreciated this. It is always good for young people to gain some perspective so that they are not discouraged when things are difficult. Difficulties can be overcome if they persevere. An important part of this second section is learning how to set goals and actually setting some for the fall, spring, and summer. Charts are provided and are broken down into goal, objective, and action plan headings and are further broken down into financial, intellectual, community service, spiritual/emotional, physical fitness/health, and more. My son felt this was probably the most difficult part of the system. Setting goals that are measurable, realistic, etc., are sometimes hard to do, especially if you haven't spent much time thinking about them. As his life changes, goal setting may become easier. We'll have to readdress this part of the system.

    The third cornerstone—How do I get there?—is the most instructional unit. The bulk of the study skills are taught here. Fill-in-the-blank worksheets are provided so the student can fill things in as the teacher reads the items from the teacher edition. This way they are hearing the words, seeing the words, and actually writing the words. The workbook is full of creative images, used to break up what could otherwise be a dull study. All of the answers are provided in the teacher edition for the worksheets, except for the final test. The fact that the final test answers weren't available was probably the most frustrating thing about the whole study skills system. It meant that I had to search for the answers myself. This was not the best thing for my already busy day.

    Some of the topics in this third unit are time management, organization, and preparing an adequate study environment. Another lesson, "PQRST," explains the process of studying. It all seems so simple. When did we forget these basic elements of proper study habits? I went through this program with my high schooler, but it dawned on me today that I should use it with my sixth grader for her history. There is a lot of information to remember for the tests, and although she does well on most of them, I'd love for her to remember what she has learned beyond the test. The "Be an Active Listener" and "Note Taking Hints" lessons provide many great tips like being brief when taking notes by using abbreviations, not crossing t's or dotting i's, and going home and rewriting class notes. Since we homeschool, some of this information seemed irrelevant for life at this moment, but I know as my son begins dual enrollment in the fall he will need to remember what he has learned through this program. The final lesson in this unit talks about test preparation and strategies for taking the test. Despite the fact that we completed the Victus Study Skills System, my son forgot to apply what he learned when taking his end-of-the-year examination. He didn't read through the problems to do the easy ones first. He didn't look for cues and ended up leaving many math problems unfinished.

    In order to get the most benefit from this program, you have to apply the skills taught in this program to this program. The skills must be reviewed again and again until they are second nature. I am hoping to have enough practice with my son with other tests and new chapters in his regular school work before he takes his first SAT in May. It would be wonderful if he could enter that exam with the skills necessary to do well on it.

    The appendices contain useful information about organization, time management, and mnemonic devices. PQRST flashcards are available to help students remember the action that should be taken for each step, along with a grade log.

    This course can be taught to students of all ages, but it is most appropriate for those in 5th through 12th grade. Younger students will require more more instruction. The teacher edition is $40.00, and the student workbook is $20. Additional products are available, including a student DIY workbook for those times when a teacher isn't available, a PowerPoint presentation, a training video, and a booklet for adults to implement this system in their own lives.

    and Twitter @VictusStudy.

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    Sunday, April 6, 2014

    50 States: Tennessee


    Tennessee (TN) is our nation's 16th state. It was granted statehood on June 1, 1796. The name originated from a Cherokee word, Tanasie, meaning "the meeting place." The capital is Nashville, and the largest city is Memphis. Tennessee is roughly 42,146 square miles, making it the 36th biggest state. As of 2013, there are nearly 6.5 million residents who are called Tennesseans. 

    Some famous people born here include: 
    Allman Brothers...singers, musicians
    Hattie Ophelia Caraway...first woman elected to Senate
    Roseanne Cash...songwriter, singer
    Kenny singer
    Davy Crockett...folk hero
    Mark programmer
    David Farragut...military leader
    Nathan Bedford Forrest...general
    Jack Hanna...zoologist
    Michael player
    Dolly Parton...singer
    Alvin C. York...folk hero

    The economy of Tennessee is driven by coal mining, uranium production, automobile manufacturing, electric production, farming, tourism. The nickname is the "volunteer state." It received this nickname during War of 1812 because of the many volunteer soldiers from Tennessee who fought in the Battle of New Orleans. The motto is "Agriculture and Commerce."

    The flag of Tennessee was adopted on April 17, 1905. It was designed by a member of the Tennessee Infantry, LeRoy Reeves. The three white stars represent the three distinct geographical areas of the state: the Great Smoky Mountains, the highlands, and the lowlands. The blue stripe was added so that the flag would stand out when it was flying.

    The state symbols are as follows:

    Wild Animal...Raccoon
    Insects...Firefly and ladybug
    Agricultural insect...Honeybee
    Butterfly...Zebra swallowtail
    Amphibian...Tennessee Cave salamander
    Reptile...Eastern box turtle
    State sport fish...Largemouth bass
    Commercial fish...Channel catfish
    Wildflower...Passion flower
    Tree...Tulip Poplar

    What is there to do in Tennessee? Visit these sites:

    Dollywood in Pigeon Forge
    Country Music Hall of Fame and Museum in Nashville
    Graceland in Memphis
    The Hermitage (President Andrew Jackson's home) in Nashville
    Belle Meade Plantation
    National Civil Rights Museum in Memphis
    Pink Palace in Memphis
    Grand Ole Opry in Nashville
    The Parthenon replica in Nashville

    Lookout Mountain is a site in itself, but located within Lookout Mountain are Rock City and Ruby Falls.

    Dr. Martin Luther King, Jr., was assassinated at a hotel in Memphis on April 4, 1968.

    The expulsion of Cherokee from Tennessee and other southern states in 1838 resulted in the "Trail of Tears."

    The New Madrid Earthquake took place in the northwestern area in the winter of 1811-1812.

    Check out the site, Tennessee History for Kids. There are virtual tours and some books about Tennessee that you can order. It is also arranged according to grade level. Very interesting!

    The following items can be found at

    50340EB: James Robertson, Father of Tennessee and Founder of Nashville - eBook James Robertson, Father of Tennessee and Founder of Nashville - eBook
    By Bill Bays / WestBowPress

    769812: More Than Petticoats: Remarkable Tennessee Women, 2nd Edition More Than Petticoats: Remarkable Tennessee Women, 2nd Edition
    By Susan Sawyer / Globe Pequot

    493745: Onward Southern Soldiers: Religion and the Army of Tennessee in the Civil War Onward Southern Soldiers: Religion and the Army of Tennessee in the Civil War
    By Traci Nichols-Belt & Gordon T. Belt / History Press

    5552310: It Happened in Tennessee It Happened in Tennessee
    By James Ewing / Thomas Nelson

    952148: Faithful Volunteers: The History of Religion in Tennessee Faithful Volunteers: The History of Religion in Tennessee
    By Stephen Mansfield / Cumberland House Publishing

    Faithful Volunteers: The History of Religion in Tennessee celebrates the unique history and character of religion in Tennessee, from the earliest pioneer days to the present. The book covers the state's spiritual topography, from the earliest days of the Cherokees and Chickamaugas to the coming of the pioneer Presbyterians and Baptists, from the earliest Jewish communities to the great Pentecostal Backwater Revivals, and from the incursions of Eastern ethnic religions to the great Restoration movements. Since the book proceeds chronologically, religious events are put into their proper cultural context, and the state's cultural events are put into their proper religious and spiritual context. Thus, it is a general history of Tennessee written from a religious perspective. With more than 100 lithographs, engravings, line drawings, and photographs, the text also includes sidebars of key persons and movements, an index, and a bibliography for further study and reading.

    8534513: A Treasury of Tennessee Tales: Unusual, Interesting, and Little-Known Stories of Tennessee Rev Edition A Treasury of Tennessee Tales: Unusual, Interesting, and Little-Known Stories of Tennessee Rev Edition
    By James Ewing, James A. Crutchfield & James A. Crutchfield / Thomas Nelson

    497839: Tennessee Poster Map Tennessee Poster Map
    By Carole Marsh / Gallopade International

    This oversized map features key cities, landmarks, historic sites, rivers, regions, borders, and major geographic features plus an array of state "must-haves", including state symbols, as well as fascinating state trivia, a timeline of important state events, and more. Excellent as a classroom, library, or resource center's primary visual focus. Available for all 50 states! All ages. 34" x 22"

    499572: Tennessee Big Activity Book, Grades K-5 Tennessee Big Activity Book, Grades K-5
    By Carole Marsh / Gallopade International

    Whether you're visiting a new state or starting a state studies course, The Big Tennessee Reproducible Activity Book will fulfill your wishes for a fun and educational way to learn state facts! Featuring worksheets on Tennessee's history, geography, famous people, places, legends, and much more, you'll get a thorough introduction to what makes this state unique. Crosswords, dot-to-dots, mazes, coloring, word jumbles, writing, hidden pictures, and other fun activities will make your students want to learn more and more. Great for review and research! 96 reproducible pages, softcover. Answers are printed upside down at the bottom of the page. Activities range in difficulty; Grades K-5.

    12081: Moon Over Tennessee: A Boy"s Civil War Journal Moon Over Tennessee: A Boy's Civil War Journal
    By Craig Crist-Evans / Houghton Mifflin Harcourt

    In the spring of 1863, a thirteen-year-old boy leaves his home on a farm in northern Tennessee with his father, who has joined the Confederate army. The boy will ride with him to care for the horses and help with camp duties. A moving personal narrative in the form of a journal, this powerful poem tells the story of one boy's journey into war and the horrible climax at Gettysburg. Illustrated with striking black and white woodcuts, this is a vivid, lyrical, and intensely human document of the terrible personal cost of the Civil War.

    8787468: Scots-Irish in the Hills of Tennessee Scots-Irish in the Hills of Tennessee
    By Billy Kennedy / Ambassador-Emerald, Intl.

    This is the absorbing story about a race of people who created a civilization in a wilderness and helped lay the solid foundations for present-day America. The Scots-Irish Presbyterians who settled in the American frontier lands during the 18th century were a unique breed of people with an independent spirit which boldly challenged the arbitrary powers of monarchs and established church prelates. 224 pages, indexed, softcover.

    498991: Tennessee My First Book, Grades K-8 Tennessee My First Book, Grades K-8
    By Carole Marsh / Gallopade International

    Introduce young kids to the state they call home. Mazes, coloring pages, word searches, writing, matching, and other fun activities will help kids learn about what makes their state unique, as well as information like the state motto and flag. Grades K-8. 32 pages, softcover.

    8467047: Who Was Davy Crockett? Who Was Davy Crockett?
    By Gail Herman, Robert Squier(Illustrator) & Nancy Harrison(Illustrator) / Grosset & Dunlap

    Now kids can learn all about the real story versus the legend of the King of the Wild Frontier! Davy Crockett, the King of the Wild Frontier, is said to have killed 105 bears—his first when he was three years old. His smile alone killed another, and he skinned a bear by forcing him to run between two trees. Fact or fiction? In this biography, kids will learn who Davy Crockett really was—a man who did love to hunt, who served as a congressman for Tennessee, and who fought and died at the Alamo in Texas.

    8055EB: Around the Opry Table: A Feast of Recipes and Stories from the Grand Ole Opry - eBook Around the Opry Table: A Feast of Recipes and Stories from the Grand Ole Opry - eBook
    By Kay West / Center Street

    003169: MLK: A Celebration in Word and Image
    MLK: A Celebration in Word and Image
    By Martin Luther King Jr / Beacon Press

    This small but powerful book sets a quote from Dr. Martin Luther King Jr. against a photo that captures the spirit, energy, and determination with which he pushed for civil rights. A timeline is included in the back. 54 pages, hardcover with dust jacket. Approximately 6.33" x 8.25".
    240980: King for Kids, School and Family Edition Audiobook on CD
    King for Kids, School and Family Edition Audiobook on CD
    By Martin Luther King Jr. / Hachette Audio

    This audiobook features speeches and sermons from the late Dr. Martin Luther King, Jr., edited for children. This edition is designed for families and schools to introduce the great Civil Rights leader to children in a format they can understand and appreciate. 2 CDs.

    770860: Hiking Great Smoky Mountains National Park, 2nd Edition Hiking Great Smoky Mountains National Park, 2nd Edition
    By Kevin Adams / FalconGuides

    72822: The Fly Fisherman"s Guide to the Great Smoky Mountains National Park The Fly Fisherman's Guide to the Great Smoky Mountains National Park
    By H. Lea Lawrence / Cumberland House Publishing

    The native Americans who inhabited what is now the Great Smoky Mountains National Park called it "the land of the eagles and the gods." It was also a land of plenty, with streams teeming with brook trout and forests populated with elk, bison, black bear, deer, and turkey. Today this area remains a paradise for trout fisherman that is unparalleled in the eastern United States. The Fly Fisherman's Guide to the Great Smoky Mountains National Park is filled with a wealth of information about the park and what a fly fisherman needs to know in order to fish it successfully.