Tag Archives: lesson plans

Special Days in December, 2017

December is packed with  holidays, observances, food themes, awareness days , historic figures and authors birthdays, science and historic based anniversaries,  and more!  Whether you’re looking for something special to study, celebrate, or add to the menu, this list of special days for December, 2017 gives you plenty to choose from.

Resources for teaching through December, including a PDF of December’s Special Days, can be found at the end of this list.

December Themes, Observances, and Awareness Days:

  • Art and Architecture
  • Basketball (1st played Dec. 1891)
  • Bingo
  • Drunk & Drugged Driving Prevention
  • Learn a Foreign Language
  • Operation Santa Paws
  • Read a New Book
  • Safe Toys and Gifts
  • Spiritual Literacy
  • Tie
  • Universal Human Rights
  • World AIDS
  • Write A Business Plan
  • Write a Friend

December’s Food Themes

  • Egg Nog
  • Exotic Fruit
  • Food Safety
  • Fruit Cake
  • Pear
  • Quince
  • Root Vegetables
  • Tomato
  • Winter Squash

December, 2017 Daily Specials
(the * means that the special day does not necessarily fall on the same date every year)

Dec. 1

  • Aardvark Week begins
  • Christmas Tree Week begins
  • Civil Air Patrol Day
  • Cookie Cutter Week begins
  • Day With(out) Art Day
  • Deaf Heritage Week begins
  • Eat a Red Apple Day
  • First Passenger Balloon Flight 1783
  • Handwashing Awareness Week begins
  • Rosa Parks Day
  • Pie Day
  • Tolerance Week begins
  •  Draft Reinstated 1969
  • World Aids Awareness Day

Dec. 2

  • Abolition of Slavery Day
  • Ear Muff Day * (1st Sat.)
  • Fritters Day
  • Mutt Day
  • Saint Paul’s Cathedral opened 1697
  • Missionary Mary Slessor born 1848
  • Missionary CT Studd born 1860
  • Special Education Day

Dec. 3

  • Advent begins * (4 Sundays leading to Christmas)
  • Disabled Persons Day
  • First Human Heart Transplant 1967
  • Handwashing Awareness Week *
  • Illinois Statehood 1818
  • Make a Gift Day
  • Recipe Greetings for the Holidays Week begins * (1st Full Week)
  • Roof Over Your Head Day
  • Galileo invented the Telescope 1621

Dec. 4

  • Computer Science Education Week *
  • Cookie Day
  • Dice Day
  • Feast of St. Barbara
  • International Cheetah Day
  • Monopoly Game Debut 1935
  • Older Driver Safety Awareness Week begins *
  • Phonograph invented 1877
  • Santa’s List Day
  • Wear Brown Shoes Day
  • World Wildlife Conservation Day

Dec. 5

  • Bathtub Party Day
  • Bubble Gum Day
  • Walt Disney born 1901
  • Gold discovered at Sutter’s Mill 1848
  • International Ninja Day
  • Prohibition Ends (21st Amendment) 1933
  • Thailand National Day
  • President Martin Van Buren born 1782
  • Volunteer Day (UN)

Dec. 6

  • Everglades National Park established 1947
  • Finland Independence Day 1917
  • Give a Secret Gift Day
  • Microwave patented 1945
  • Miners Day
  • Mitten Tree Day
  • Pawnbrokers Day
  • Put On Your Own Shoes Day
  • St. Nicholas Day
  • 13th Amendment ratified 1865

Dec. 7

  • Civil Aviation Day
  • Cotton Candy Day
  • Delaware Statehood 1787
  • Letter Writing Day
  • Sculptor/Artist Marie Grosholtz Tussand born 1761
  • Pearl Harbor Remembrance Day 1941

Dec. 8

  • Brownie Day
  • First Greeting Card printed 1843
  • Pretend to be a Time Traveler Day
  • Take it in the Ear Day
  • US declared War on Japan 1941
  • USSR Dissolved 1991
  • Inventor/Scientist Eli Whitney born 1765
  • Winter Flowers Day

Dec. 9

  • A Charlie Brown Christmas Debut 1965
  • Christmas Card Day
  • International Anti-Corruption day
  • Pastry Day
  • Petrified Forest National Park established 1962
  • Roller Skates Patented 1884
  • Tanzania Independence Day 1961
  • Weary Willie Day (circus clown)
  • Wreaths Across America Day * (2nd Sat.)

Dec. 10

  • Day of Animal Rights
  • Dewey Decimal System Day
  • Poet Emily Dickinson born 1830
  • Human Rights Day
  • Mississippi Statehood 1817
  • Nobel Prize Day
  • World Choral Day *(2nd Sun.)
  • Worldwide Candle Lighting Day * (2nd Sun.)

Dec. 11

  • Apollo 17 Moon Landing 1972
  • Ding-a-Ling Day
  • Germany declared war on US 1941
  • Indiana Statehood 1816
  • International Mountain Day
  • Northern Lights Recorded for First Time 1719
  • Noodle Ring Day
  • Republic of Upper Volta Independence 1958
  • UNICEF founded 1947

Dec. 12

  • Ding-a-Ling Day
  • Ginger Bread House Day
  • Golf Tee Patented 1899
  • Hanukkah (Chanukah) begins *
  • Hot Cocoa Day
  • Hovercraft Patented 1955
  • Founding Father John Jay born 1745
  • Kenya Independence Day 1963
  • Pennsylvania Statehood 1787
  • Poinsettia Day

Dec. 13

  • Day of the Horse
  • Francis Drake Begins Voyage Around the World  1577
  • Ice Cream Day
  • Santa Lucia Day
  • Violin Day

Dec. 14

  • Alabama Statehood 1819
  • Bouillabaisse Day
  • Scientist Tycho Brahe born 1546
  • Children’s Day
  • Christmas Bird Count Week begins
  • Deck the Halls Day
  • Halcyon Days begin * (7 days before Solstice)
  • Monkey Day
  • Nostradamus born 1503
  • Raggedy Ann Doll Debut 1914
  • Roast Chestnuts Day
  • South Pole First Reached 1911

Dec. 15

  • Bill of Rights Day 1791
  • Cat Herders Day
  • Architect Alexandre Gustave Eiffel born 1832
  • Lemon Cupcake Day
  • Nero born 37 AD
  • Underdog Day * (3rd Fri.)

Dec. 16

  • Author Jane Austen born 1775
  • Composer Ludwig Von Beethoven born 1770
  • Boston Tea Party 1773
  • Missionary Amy Carmichael born 1867
  • Chocolate-Covered Anything Day
  • Los Posadas
  • Vending Machine patented 1884
  • Zionism Day

Dec. 17

  • Aztec Calendar Stone excavated 1790
  • A Christmas Carol first published 1843
  • Gluten-free Baking Week begins * (week before Christmas week)
  • Missionary Isobel Kuhn born 1901
  • Maple Syrup Day
  • Patriot Deborah Sampson born 1760
  • Saturnalia begins
  • Wright Brother’s 1st successful flight 1903

Dec. 18

  • Bake Cookies Day
  • Coral Reef National Park Established
  • Migrants Day
  • New Jersey Statehood 1787
  • The Nutcracker  Premier 1892
  • Roast a Suckling Pig Day

Dec. 19

  • Build a Snowman Day
  • Look For An Evergreen Day
  • Oatmeal Muffin Day
  • Explorer Sir William Parry born 1790
  • Poor Richards Almanac first published 1732
  • Suspenders patented 1871 (Mark Twain)

Dec. 20

  • Games Day
  • Go Caroling Day
  • Louisiana Purchase Day 1803
  • South Carolina seceded from the Union  1860 (1st state to secede)

Dec. 21

  • Apollo 8 Blast Off 1968
  • Disney’s Snow White and the Seven Dwarfs premiered 1937
  • Flashlight Day
  • Forefathers Day
  • Homeless Persons’ Remembrance Day
  • Humbug Day
  • Litha
  • Look on the Bright Side Day
  • Nepal Independence Day 1923
  • Pilgrims Arrival at Plymouth 1620
  • Re-Gifting Day * (3rd Thurs.)
  • Winter Solstice / First Day of Winter *
  • Yule *

Dec. 22

  • Date Nut Bread Day
  • Dinofish discovered 1938
  • First Electric Christmas Lights 1882
  • Haiku Poetry Day
  • Lincoln Tunnel completed 1937
  • Thermometer Invented 1714

Dec. 23

  • Federal Reserve System established 1913
  • Festivus
  • Pfeffernusse Day
  • Roots Day (genealogy not turnips)
  • Metric Conversion Act passed 1975
  • Mormon prophet Joseph Smith born 1805
  • A Visit From St. Nicholas First Released 1823

Dec. 24

  • Chocolate Day
  • Christmas Eve
  • Egg Nog Day
  • Great Fire of San Francisco 1849
  • Libya Independence Day 1951
  • Phonograph Patented 1877
  • Founding Father Benjamin Rush born 1704

Dec. 25

  • Red Cross founder Clara Barton born 1821
  • Christmas
  • Scientist Isaac Newton born 1643
  • Pumpkin Pie Day
  • Washington crossed the Delaware River 1776

Dec. 26

  • Boxing Day (Canada & UK)
  • Candy Cane Day
  • Coffee Percolator invented 1865
  • Kwanzaa begins
  • Saint Stephen’s Day
  • Thank You Note Day
  • Whiner’s Day

Dec. 27

  • Fruit Cake Day
  • Make Cut Out Snowflakes Day
  • Scientist Johannes Kepler born 1571
  • Scientist Louis Pasteur born 1822
  • Radio City Music Hall opened 1932
  • Visit the Zoo Day

Dec. 28

  • Card Playing Day
  • Chewing Gum Patented 1869
  • Childermass/Holy Innocents Day
  • Chocolate Day
  • Iowa Statehood 1846
  • Pledge of Allegiance recognized by Congress 1945
  • Westminster Abbey Consecrated 1065
  • President Woodrow Wilson born 1856

Dec. 29

  • President Andrew Johnson born 1808
  • Pepper Pot Day
  • Battle of Wounded Knee 1890
  • Texas Statehood 1845
  • Tick Tock Day

Dec. 30

  • Bacon Day
  • Bicarbonate of Soda Day
  • Author Rudyard Kipling born 1865
  • Author Mercer Mayer born 1943
  • Take a Walk Day

Dec. 31

  • Hogmanay
  • Leap Second Time Adjustment Day
  • Make Up Your Mind Day
  • Artist Henri Matisse born 1869
  • New Years Eve
  • No Interruptions Day
  • Universal Hour of Peace Day
  • Unlucky Day
  • Watch Night

Free Printable  –  Special Days in December

Here’ is the collection of my favorite “go to” resources for special days studies  https://stilllearningsomethingnew.com/2016/07/31/learning-resources-for-special-days/

How I use Special Days lists in our homeschool blog series :

Special Days and the Evolution of Morning Calendar Time

Special Days and Biographies

Special Days and Geography

Special Days and Science

A resource list for Special Days in December is in the works!

I make my monthly special days calendars by using several sources including old calendars, holiday books, newspapers, and the web. If you know of a special day that I do not have listed, please comment and let me know what it is so I can add it in. Below are the links to my favorite online calendars.








Happy December!

betty jo




September is loaded with holidays, observances, food themes, awareness days , historic figures and authors birthdays, science and historic based anniversaries,  and more! So, if you are looking for a reason to celebrate, a classroom theme,  a special topic to study, this day in history trivia, club meeting ideas, or a food to add to the menu, this list of Special Days in September, 2017 has lots to choose from!

Resources for teaching through September, including a PDF of September’s Special Days, can be found at the end of this list.

September Themes

  • ADHD Awareness
  • Alopecia Areatas Awareness
  • Animal Remembrance
  • Atrial Fibrillation Month
  • Baby Safety
  • Back to School
  • Backpack Safety America
  • Be Kind to Editors and Writers
  • Blackpool Illuminations
  • Campus Safety
  • Chicken
  • Child Awareness
  • Childhood Cancer Awareness Month
  • Childhood Obesity Awareness
  • Children’s Eye Health and Safety
  • Children’s Good Manners
  • Church Clipping
  • Classical Music
  • College Savings
  • Conkers
  • Coupon
  • Courtesy
  • Disaster Preparedness
  • DNA, Genomics, and Stem Cell Education
  • Fall Hat
  • Guide Dogs
  • Gynecology Cancer Awareness
  • Happy Cat
  • Hat Month
  • Head Lice Prevention
  • Healthy Aging
  • Hispanic Heritage
  • Home Furnishings
  • Hunger Action
  • Leukemia and Lymphoma Awareness
  • Library Card Sign-Up
  • Literacy
  • Little League
  • Million Minute Family Challenge (Sept. – Dec.)
  • Mold Awareness
  • One-On-One
  • People Skills
  • Piano
  • Preparedness
  • Prosper Where You Are Planted
  • Prostate Cancer Awareness
  • Read a New Book
  • Responsible Dog Ownership
  • Save a Koala
  • Save a Tiger
  • Sea Cadet
  • School Success
  • Self Improvement
  • Self-Awareness Month
  • Sewing
  • Shameless Promotion
  • Skin Care Awareness
  • Square Dancing
  • Strategic Thinking
  • Subliminal Communications
  • Update Your Resume
  • Women of Achievement
  • Women’s Friendship
  • World Animal Remembrance Month

September Food Themes

  • All American Breakfast
  • Apple
  • Better Breakfast
  • Blueberry Popsicle
  • Chicken
  • Childhood Obesity Awareness
  • Cholesterol Education
  • Food Safety Education
  • Fruit and Veggies — More Matters
  • Honey
  • Ice Cream Shake
  • Mushroom
  • Organic Harvest
  • Papaya
  • Potato
  • Rice
  • Wild Rice
  • Whole Grains

September 2017 Daily Specials  (the * behind the special day means that the day falls on a different date from year to year)

Sept. 1

  • Calendar Adjustment Day
  • Cherry Popover Day
  • Chicken Boy’s Day
  • Eid al-Adha *
  • Emma M. Nutt Day
  • Enthusiasm Week begins
  • Lazy Mom’s Day * (1st Fri.)
  • No Rhyme Nor Reason Day
  • Nutrition Week begins
  • Self-University Week begins

Sept. 2

  • Bison-ten Yell Day
  • Blueberry Popsicle Day
  • Great Fire of London – 1666
  • Hummingbird Day * (1st Sat.)
  • US Treasury Dept. established 1789
  • Writing Day * (1st Sat.)
  •  VJ Day 1945
  • Vietnam Independence 1945

Sept. 3

  • Afternoon Tea Day
  • American Flag 1st Flown in Battle 1777
  • Buffalo Chicken Wings Days * (Sat. and Sun. before Labor Day)
  • Father’s Day (Australia and New Zealand) * (1st Sun.)
  • National Wilderness system established 1964
  • Penicillin Discovered 1928 (some sources say Sept. 15 and others Sept. 30)
  • Qatar Independence 1971
  • San Marino Independence 301 AD
  • Skyscraper Day
  • Treaty of Paris signed  1783
  • National Welsh Rarebit Day
  • Waffle Week begins * (1st full week)
  • WWII – Great Britain, France, New Zealand, and Australia declare war on Germany Sept. 3-15,1939

Sept. 4

  • Labor Day * (1st Mon.)
  • Inventor Lewis Howard Latimer born 1848
  • Macadamia Nut Day
  • Newspaper Carrier Day
  • Substitute Teacher Appreciation Week begins
  • Missionary Marcus Whitman born 1802
  • Wildlife Day

Sept. 5

  • Another Look Unlimited Day * (Tues. after Labor Day)
  • Bacon Day
  • Be Late For Something Day
  • Cheese Pizza Day
  • International Day of Charity
  • Cowboy/Outlaw Jesse James born 1847
  • Suicide Prevention Week begins
  • Voyager 1 launched 1977

Sept. 6

  • Jane Addams born 1860
  • Coffee Ice Cream Day
  • Fight Procrastination Day
  • Horn Dance Day
  • Iguana Awareness Day
  • Magellan Completed 1st Circumnavigation of the World 1527
  • 1620 – Pilgrims Set Sail to the New World
  • Read a Book Day
  • Swaziland Independence 1968

Sept. 7

  • Acorn Squash Day
  • Brazil Independence 1822
  • Queen Elizabeth 1 born 1533
  • Grace Darling Day
  • Feel the Love Day
  • Google founded 1996
  • Artist, Grandma Moses born 1860
  • Neither Rain Nor Snow Day
  • Raggedy Ann patented 1915
  • Salami Day
  • Superhuman Day
  • Threatened Species Day

Sept. 8

  • Date Nut Bread
  • Iguana Awareness Day
  • Inca Ice Maiden Day
  • International Literacy Day
  • 1519 – Magellan Set Sail for the 1st Around the World Voyage
  • Pardon Day
  • Physical Therapy Day
  • Popcorn Festival begins
  • Stand Up to Cancer Day  * (2nd Fri.)
  • 1st Star Trek TV broadcast 1966
  • Virgin Mary born  20 BC

Sept. 9

  • California Statehood 1850
  • Chrysanthemum Day
  • Clean Out Your Garage Day * (Sat. after Labor Day)
  • Drive Your Studebaker Day * (2nd Sat.)
  • Farmer’s Consumer Awareness Day * (2nd Sat.)
  • Fetal Alcohol Spectrum Disorders Day
  • Teddy Bear Day
  • Trail of Tears Commemoration Day * (weekend after Labor Day)
  • Wienerschnitzel Day
  • Wonderful Weirdos Day

Sept. 10

  • Grandparents Day * (Sun. after Labor Day)
  • Hug Your Hound Day * (2nd Sun.)
  • Pet Memorial Day * (2nd Sun.)
  • Sewing Machine Patented 1846
  • Suicide Prevention Day
  • Swap Ideas Day
  • TV Dinner Day
  • Vegetarian Awareness Week begins * (2nd full week)

Sept. 11

  • Assisted Living Week begins
  • Boss/Employee Exchange Day * (2nd Mon.)
  • Day of Service and Remembrance
  • Emergency Number Day
  • Horn Dance * (Mon. after the 4th)
  • Hot Cross Bun Day
  • I Want to Start My Own Business Day
  • Last Night of the Proms
  • Libraries Remember Day
  • Line Dance Week begins * (2nd Mon.)
  • Make Your Bed Day
  • No News Is Good News Day
  • Odd Day
  • 9-11-2001 Remembrance Day / Patriot Day

Sept. 12

  • Ants on a Log Day *  (2nd Tues.)
  • Poets Elizabeth Barrett and Robert Browning married 1846
  • Chocolate Milkshake Day
  • Cleopatra’s Needle erected 1878
  • Day of Encouragement
  • Lascaux Cave Painting Discovery 1940
  • UN Day for South – South Cooperation
  • Video Game Day

Sept. 13

  • Bald is Beautiful Day
  • Celiac Awareness Day
  • Chocolate Day
  • Author, Roald Dahl born 1916
  • Defy Superstition Day
  • Fortune Cookie Day
  • Milton Snavely Hershey (founder of Hershey’s Chocolate) born 1857
  • Kids Take Over the Kitchen Day
  • Peanut Day
  • Positive Thinking Day
  • Programmers’ Day (256th day of the year)
  • Snack a Pickle Time
  • Uncle Sam Day

Sept. 14

  • Creme Filled Donut Day
  • Eat a Hoagie Day
  • Handel’s ‘Messiah’ composed 1741
  • Holly Rood Day
  • Margaret Sanger born 1879
  • 1814 – Star Spangled Banner Composed by Francis Scott Key
  • World Maritime Day

Sept. 15

  • Battle of Britain Day 1940
  • Author Agatha Christie born 1890
  • Costa Rica Independence 1821
  • El Salvador Independence 1821
  • Guatemala Independence 1821
  • Honduras Independence 1821
  • Nicaragua Independence 1821
  • Felt Hat Day
  • Greenpeace founded 1971
  • International Day of Democracy
  • Dot Day
  • Farm Animals Awareness Week * (3rd week)
  • LGBT Awareness Day
  • Linguine Day
  • Make a Hat Day
  • Neonatal Nurses Day
  • Penicillin discovered 1928 (some sources say Sept. 3 and others say Sept. 30)
  • POW/MIA Recognition Day * (3rd Fri.)
  • Software Freedom Day
  • President William B. Taft born 1857
  • Tradesmen Day * (3rd Fri.)

Sept. 16

  • Anna Bradstreet Day
  • Big Whopper Liar Day * (3rd Sat.)
  • Cinnamon Raisin Bread Day
  • Coastal Cleanup Day * (3rd Sat.)
  • Collect Rocks Day
  • Illusionist David Copperfield born 1956
  • Eat an Apple Day * (3rd Sat.)
  • Gedaliah
  • Guacamole Day
  • Mayflower Day
  • Mexican Independence Day 1810
  • Play-Doh introduced 1955
  • Ozone Preservation Day
  • Papua New Guinea Independence 1975
  • Red Panda Day (3rd Sat.)
  • Responsible Dog Ownership Day (3rd Sat.)
  • Author, H.A. Rey born 1898
  • Stay Away from Seattle Day
  • Step Family Day
  • Wife Appreciation Day  * (3rd Sat.)
  • Working Parents Day
  • Wrinkled Raincoat Day

Sept. 17

  • Apple Dumpling Day
  • Citizenship Day
  • Clean Hands Week begins * (3rd full week)
  • Constitution Day
  • Constitution Week begins
  • Horseman’s Sunday * (3rd Sun.)
  • Pollution Prevention Week  * (3rd full week)
  • Time’s Up Day
  • Singer/Songwriter Hank Williams born 1923

Sept. 18

  • Attention Deficit Disorder Awareness Day
  • Central Intelligence Agency (CIA)  created 1947
  • Cheeseburger Day
  • Chile Independence 1975
  • 1851 – 1st Edition of the New York Times Published
  • Farm and Ranch Safety and Health Week begins * (3rd full week)
  • Global Be Responsible Day
  • Hug a Greeting Card Writer Day
  • Prostate Cancer Awareness Week begins
  • Respect Day
  • Roadrunner Cartoon debut 1949
  • Singles Week
  • US Air Force Founded 1947
  • Woman Road Warrior Day * (3rd Mon.)
  • World Gurning Championships
  • World Water Monitoring Day

Sept. 19

  • Balance Awareness Week begins
  • Butterscotch Pudding Day
  • George Cadbury (founder of Cadbury’s Cocoa and Chocolate Co.) born 1839
  • Mickey Mouse 1st appearance 1928
  • Talk Like A Pirate Day

Sept. 20

  • Artist Dale Chihuly born 1941
  • Punch Day
  • Rosh Hashanah begins at sunset *
  • School Backpack Awareness Day * (3rd Wed.)
  • Women’s Friendship Day

Sept. 21

  • Alzheimer’s Day
  • Banana Festival
  • Belize Independence 1981
  • Coastal Cleanup Day
  • International Day of Peace
  • Malta Independence 1964
  • Miniature Golf Day
  • Peace One Day
  • Pecan Cookie Day
  • Author H.G. Wells born 1866
  • World Gratitude Day

Sept. 22

  • American Business Women’s Day
  • Autumnal Equinox *
  • Band Aid Invented 1922
  • Bulgaria Independence 1908
  • Car Free Day
  • Centenarian’s Day
  • Dear Diary Day
  • Elephant Appreciation Day
  • Scientist Michael Faraday born 1791
  • 1st Day of Autumn
  • Hobbit Day
  • Ice Cream Cone Day
  • International Day of Radiant Peace
  • Love Note Day * (4th Fri.)
  • Mabon *
  • Mali Independence 1960
  • Native American Day * (4th Fri.)
  • Peace Corps established 1961
  • Stonehenge Day
  • White Chocolate Day
  • World Rhino Day

Sept. 23

  • Autumn Stroll Day
  • Checkers Day
  • Fish Amnesty Day * (4th Sat.)
  • Hunting and Fishing Day * (4th Sat.)
  • Harvest Festival (UK)
  • Missionary John Hyde born 1858
  • Innergize Day * (day after equinox)
  • Kids’ Day * (4th Sat.)
  • Author William Holmes McGuffey born 1800
  • Neighborhood Day * (4th Sat.)
  • Neptune discovered 1846
  • Pot Pie Day
  • Rabbit Day * (4th Sat.)
  • Saudi Arabia Independence 1932
  • Activist Victoria Woodhull born 1838

Sept. 24

  • Bluebird of Happiness Day
  • The Bullwinkle Show 1st aired 1961
  • Cherries Jubilee Day
  • George Cross instituted 1940
  • Gold Star Mother’s Day * (last Sun.)
  • Jim Henson born 1936
  • Keep Kids Creative Week * (last week)
  • Monopoly (board game) introduced
  • Punctuation Day
  • Schwenkfelder Thanksgiving
  • Teach Ag Day

Sept. 25

  • Ataxia Awareness Day
  • Bill of Rights ratified 1789
  • Comic Book Day
  • Dog Week begins
  • Family Dinner Day  * (4th Mon.)
  • Greenwich Meantime (GMT) began 1676
  • Homeschool Spirit Week begins * ( 4th Mon.)
  • Mars Observer launched 1992
  • Math Story Telling Day
  • One-Hit Wonder Day
  • Save the Koala Day
  • Poet, Author, Song writer Shel Silverstein born 1930
  • World School Milk Day

Sept. 26

  • Johnny Appleseed born 1774
  • Better Breakfast Day
  • Poet T. S. Eliot born 1888
  • European Day of Languages
  • Composer George Gershwin born 1898
  • The Muppet Show 1st aired 1976
  • Pancake Day
  • Shamu (the whale) Day

Sept. 27

  • US Revolutionary /Patriot Samuel Adams born 1722
  • Ancestor Appreciation Day
  • Chimney Safety Week begins
  • Chocolate Milk Day
  • Corned Beef Hash Day
  • Crush a Can Day
  • Evangelist / Philanthropist George Mueller born 1805
  • Rosetta Stone Deciphered 1822
  • See You at the Pole * (4th Wed.)
  • Stockton & Darlington Railway opened 1825
  • World Tourism Day

Sept. 28

  • Artist Caravaggio born 1573
  • Fish Tank Floorshow Night
  • Good Neighbor Day
  • International Right to Know Day
  • Public Lands Day
  • Strawberry Cream Pie Day
  • Saint Wenceslas Day
  • World Rabies Day

Sept. 29

  • Ask a Stupid Question Day * (last school day)
  • Ashura *
  • Author Stanley Berenstain born 1923
  • Coffee Day
  • Confucius born 551 BC
  • Physicist Enrico Fermi born 1901
  • Happy Goose Day
  • Heart Day
  • Hug a Vegetarian Day * (last Fri.)
  • Inventors Day
  • Michaelmas Day/ Feast of Saint Michael the Archangel
  • Save the Koala Day * (last Fri.)
  • Scotland Yard Formed 1829
  • VFW Day
  • William the Conqueror invaded England 1066
  • World Maritime Day *
  • Yom Kipper *

Sept. 30

  • Botswana Independence 1966
  • Fall Astronomy Day *
  • Family Health and Fitness Day * (last Sat.)
  •  Penicillin Discovered 1928 (some sources say Sept. 3 and others Sept. 15)
  • Hot Mulled Cider Day
  • International Translation Day
  • Mud Pack Day
  • Nelson’s Column Construction began 1840
  • Public Lands Day * (last Sat.)
  • Stapler patented 1841


My (growing) list of September Resources updated for 2017 https://stilllearningsomethingnew.com/2016/09/01/special-days-resources-for-september/

And here’s the list of my favorite resources for help with any month’s Special Days lesson planning  https://stilllearningsomethingnew.com/2016/07/31/learning-resources-for-special-days/

Free Printable Download  – Special Days in September

How I use Special Days lists in our homeschool blog series :

Special Days and the Evolution of Morning Calendar Time

Special Days and Biographies

Special Days and Geography

Special Days and Science


Special Days in September Activity Companion – E-Book with 120 Activities for classrooms, homeschools, after school programs, and clubs. https://www.etsy.com/listing/531554432/september-special-days-activity-calendar?ref=listing-shop-header-0



make my monthly special days lists by using several sources including old calendars,  holiday books, newspapers, and the web. If you know of a special day that I do not have listed, please comment and let me know what it is so I can add it in.   Below are the links to my favorite online themed calendars.








Happy September!

betty jo

The Great American Solar Eclipse

Monday, August 21 is the date of the Great American Solar Eclipse.  However, there is much to learn and observe before the event!  Below is the collection of online resources we’ll be using for eclipse lessons and to prepare for the viewing.

Everything You Need To Know About the Solar Eclipse – Explanations, Diagrams, DIY Safe Viewing Projects, and more!

Animated and Interactive Eclipse Maps  –  Find out when and where

Eclipses: Crash Course Video

Eclipse Live Stream

Eclipse History –  NASA’s collection of historical eclipses starting with about 5000 BC including Chinese, Babylonians, and Greeks to current times.

Ancient People and the Solar Eclipse  –  Video

Solar Eclipse Folklore, Myths, and Superstitions

Eclipse in the Bible

A Day With Two Dawns  –  Free Eclipse Ebook and Resources from Apologia

Eclipse Kit   –  Resources and STEM activities from NASA

Lapbooking and Notebooking Printables

Eclipse Quotes

Eclipse Vocabulary List with Games and Puzzles 

Free Eclipse Printables and Resources

Eclipse Art Projects

Math Lesson  –  Geometry of a Solar Eclipse

Our town is one of the prime totality viewing spots. We’ve decided to avoid the crowds that are expected at the various events and have our own back yard party.

For the party!

Ideas and Planning Tips

Music Playlist


Sun, Moon, and Stars Coloring Sheets (most of these are suitable for teens and adults)

betty jo




“I Have a Dream”


According to my special days calendar, August 28th marks the anniversary of Dr. Martin Luther King, Jr.s speech “I Have A Dream” at the 1963 March On Washington.

Below are some wonderful free resources I found to create a one day mini unit study.  These resources will cover the subjects of language arts, art, music, and history.

This link will take you to a biography with photos, coloring page, test, word puzzles, and more!  http://gardenofpraise.com/ibdking.htm

This link takes you to more printables as well as art, poetry, music resources!  http://www.activityvillage.co.uk/mlk-day

This link takes you to printable notebooking pages and lapbook materials  http://homeschoolhelperonline.com/?s=martin+luther+king+jr

For quotes click here!  http://www.brainyquote.com/quotes/authors/m/martin_luther_king_jr.html

“I have a dream that my four little children will one day live in a nation where they will not be judged by the color of their skin, but by the content of their character.” –  Dr. Martin Luther King, Jr.

I have that same dream for my five (not so) little children.

betty jo

Why And How

unit study

When others learn that we do not buy curriculum, but that I design ours myself, they often stare at me as if I’ve grown a third eye, and  ask me, “Why?” or “How?”.    My answer to both questions is, “By the grace of GOD”.  However, upon request, I can explain a bit more.

We pulled our oldest out of public school kindergarten 16 years ago.  At that time we just used some cheap workbooks for language arts and math along with plenty of books to read to finish up that school year.

Over the following summer, I poured over curriculum catalogs taking in all the information I could.  I could not decide on anything and truthfully, we couldn’t afford anything either.  As August approached we still did not have curriculum.

That same summer our son went to Space Adventures Vacation Bible School.  His head stayed in outer space even when the week long program was over.  Outer space was his favorite topic of conversation and play.

We went to a used curriculum sale and I was talking to some experienced homeschool moms about our lack of school books when one of them asked my son, “What do you like to study?”  Of course he replied, “Outer space!”  He then shocked me with, “I’m going to start a space club!”  She then told him that astronomy was one of her favorite unit studies and a space club sounded like a marvelous idea.

I had to have these moms explain what a unit study was.  I had not seen anything like that in my catalogs.  She invited us to her house so she could show me how they did school.

Her coffee table was covered with library books and notebooks.  Apparently, her kids picked a subject they were interested in, and checked out everything the library had on it.  Then they read, bookmarked pages, and took notes.  They made trivia games and art projects that related to their topic.  Their spelling and vocabulary came from those library books too.  When they got tired of one study, they picked another. They were only spending money for paper and art supplies.  Those kids were smart.  Everyone seemed happy with their homeschooling. She even had a son who had graduated and was attending college.  Smart and happy and going to college is what I wanted for us, too.

These moms assured me that since I had at least graduated from high school,  I was capable to teach my  children what they needed to learn.  And that I could do it without spending hundreds of dollars. They told me I would want a large map,  dictionary, thesaurus,   grammar guide,   good pencil sharpener,  Bible and  Bible dictionary.  I mentioned that I did not have a Bible dictionary and could they recommend one.  One of these sweet moms went out to her car and got hers.  She gave it to me , not let me borrow but gave it as a gift!  She showed me how to use it for a space study.  “Look up a word such as “stars”, then look up the Scriptures for copy and  memory work.”

That August we founded the Space Adventure Club.  I even found a math workbook that had a rocket on the cover and cute space pictures on the worksheets.  We borrowed library books about the solar system and space travel.  We made a telescope, a solar system model and a mini planetarium.  We wrote and memorized Scriptures about stars. We learned of ancient ideas about the heavens.  We watched space themed movies. We researched space careers.    We sang space themed songs.  This unit study idea was working well.

The next study club was Nature Scouts, followed by a series of different clubs.  This is how we schooled for the first couple of years.  I had to add spelling as a separate class because my son was able to spell difficult words but was having trouble with the more common ones.  We picked up a used grades 3-12 spelling course and have stuck with that same one for all the years since.  We have also been given or bought some phonics readers as the other kids have started their road to reading.  We have added current events to our non-unit study list of classes.

There was one year when I made the mistake of comparing my homeschool to others. I thought what they were using would be best for us too.  That year we spent over $700 for three children  to learn with a “regular” curriculum.  We hated it!  The following year, we ditched the idea of regular curriculum and went back to our unit study approach.

It’s been years since we’ve called our unit studies clubs,  but our studies are still made like those were.  For the past six years I have designed our unit studies based on historical period timelines.  We have also added technology,  free web resources,  to how we homeschool.

So now you have my answers to “why” and “how” we homeschool like we do.

betty jo

HeartsforHomeButton250_zps0bf17d36-1_zps2609e0a3-1_zps7355f539Ultimate momnewfriendshipFridaybutton_zpsba323150                                                           http://www.faithfulmomof9.com/


Happy Birthday, William Shakespeare

ShakespeareWilliam Shakespeare was born April 23, 1564. And, in his honor, April 23 is “Talk Like Shakespeare Day”!  A couple of years ago, we learned about his life and works as part of our Renaissance Unit Studies. Below are online Shakespeare resources for today or any day.

Guide for How to Talk like Shakespeare  http://www.shakespeare400chicago.com/talklikeshakespeare.html

Shakespeare Translator  http://www.shmoop.com/shakespeare-translator/

Teacher and Student Resources   http://www.folger.edu/Content/Teach-and-Learn/Shakespeare-for-Kids/

Tour Stratford Upon Avon    https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=D57ji9MnM2U

Notebooking pages  http://www.homeschoolshare.com/shakespeare_notebook_pages.php

And, the kids will liked playing some of these online puzzles and games  http://www.folger.edu/education/sfk_kids/

For the younger boys, Wishbone Shakespaw   https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=9MsSMBrkHWI&list=PLA95D27DD44814AB9

Of course, there should be cake, because studying anyone on their birthday is better with cake!

betty jo

For more of our Middle Ages/Renaissance Unit Studies click   https://stilllearningsomethingnew.com/2013/03/08/keeping-the-code/

And here  https://stilllearningsomethingnew.com/2013/03/07/art-day-sistine-chapel-style/

And here  https://stilllearningsomethingnew.com/2013/03/07/art-day-sistine-chapel-style/

And here  https://stilllearningsomethingnew.com/2013/04/06/raphael/

And here  https://stilllearningsomethingnew.com/2013/03/12/gothic-revival-in-western-kentucky/