October 2013 Volume 1, Issue 2
October is National Information Literacy Awareness Month.
President Obama in highlighted the importance of ensuring all Americans have the skills necessary to effectively navigate the Information Age. The president issued a statement in 2009 proclaiming October as National Information Literacy Awareness Month and calling “upon the people of the United States to recognize the important role information plays in our daily lives, and appreciate the need for a greater understanding of its impact." In today’s digital world, people who are information literate know how to find, access, and critically evaluate information to improve their health, their environment, their education and workplace performance. Having that skill set empowers them to interpret and make informed decisions about their lives, in essence, taking more responsibility for their own individual welfare and that of the nation. The President’s statement also makes the key point that “though we may know how to find the information we need, we must also know how to evaluate it.
Life-transforming ideas have always come to me through books. Bell Hooks
Leif Erikson & Christopher Columbus
LIEF ERIKSON DAY & COLUMBUS DAY In the past, American history books and school taught that Christopher Columbus discovered America. What those books and teachings did not give credit to was the fact that Native Americans were already here first and truly discovered America. It also gave little mention to the fact that Nordic explorers had traveled down the eastern cost of Canada thousands of years earlier. Today, we celebrate Columbus Day for what it accurately is. Columbus did discover the existence of the New World for Europeans who until then, believed the world was flat and ended somewhere in the Atlantic. And, the focus is more upon discovery of the "New World", and less upon Columbus himself. Columbus Discovered America in 1492. He originally set sail on August 3, 1492, but had trouble with the ships, stopping at the Canary Islands for a month. The ships left the Canary Islands on September 3,1492. He traveled with three ships: The Nina, the Pinta and the Santa Maria While Columbus was an Italian, he could not find funding in Italy, so he turned to the King of Spain. King Ferdinand and Queen Isabella provided the funding. He did not land on the U.S. mainland. He landed on an island in the Caribbean. While many believe he landed on San Salvador, there is still debate on which island he originally landed.
Leif Erikson Day gives recognition to the first European to set foot on North American soil. Historians have been able to put this together based upon records at the time. However, Leif Erikson made no maps of his journey. His last name is sometimes spelled as Erikson, Ericson, Ericksson, or Ericksson. Around 1002 A.D., Leif Erikson sailed to North America from his home in Greenland. He went in search of a land seen (but not visited) by a Norse Sea Captain. During the voyage, he landed in a number of places. The landings were never documented in a map. It is believed he landed along the coast of New Foundland, and perhaps as far south as near Cape Cod. Erikson and his men spent the winter in North America. They built a large house for lodging, and a shed to shelter the boat over the long winter. Leif Erikson never returned to further explore North America. A number of explorers, including his brother, traveled to North America. Indians killed his brother. In 1964, a joint resolution of Congress declared October 9th as Leif Erikson Day.