This Week's Facts:
November 15th is
Tuesday, November 15th is the Indiana GIS Day and conference for all levels of GIS users. Geographic Information Systems provide us a way of viewing and changing layers of geographic information. For the agenda and a brochure, see the Indiana Office of Technology’s Geographic Information Office website. For more information about the conference, you can contact Jim Sparks (firstname.lastname@example.org) or Amanda O'Daniel (email@example.com).
Basic information about GIS is available at the USGS Geographic Information Systems website.
Friday Facts Editorial Team:
Just because Halloween celebrates all things scary doesn’t mean you want any safety scares of your own this year. Use these tips from USA.gov to make sure you and your family have a fun and safe holiday.
You can find more tips for having a safe and fun Halloween on USA.gov’s Halloween page.
Don’t forget – in one week it will be time to “fall back” into Standard Time. As mandated by the Energy Policy Act of 2005, Daylight Saving Time (DST) currently starts on the second Sunday in March and ends on the first Sunday in November. The idea of Daylight Saving Time has been floating around since Benjamin Franklin first proposed it in his essay An Economical Project. However, it wasn’t until 1918 that the United States officially adopted it as a policy. Due to its lack of popularity, it was discontinued in 1919. During World War II, more states started using it again, and it wasn’t until 1966 that the Uniform Time Act was passed, which mandated that DST start and stop on specific dates. States were (and are) still able to opt out of DST, but it had to begin and end on the same day everywhere. The basic principle is to transfer an hour of early morning daylight – theoretically when fewer people are up – to the evening, so more people can enjoy it. The reasons for its early unpopularity are pretty obvious – at the time, we were still a largely agrarian society. Most people were already awake to enjoy the daylight and few stores were open later anyway. Regardless, whether you want your light in the morning or at night, DST will come to an end at 2:00 AM on Sunday, November 6. Don’t forget to set your clock!
It’s time for another video challenge! This time it’s all about healthy eating habits. The USDA wants to know how you add fruits and vegetables to your daily diet without breaking the bank. Do you garden? Buy in bulk with friends and split it amongst yourselves? Order extra veggies on the side at a restaurant? Put your ideas in a video and send it in! The MyPlate Fruits & Veggies Video Contest has three categories: Tips for kids, Tips when eating at home, and Tips when eating away from home. The contest goes until the 15th of November, with winners announced on December 14. Those who don’t want to make a video can still participate – public voting also lasts until November 15, so be sure to check out the Video Gallery to see what has been submitted. As an extra incentive, there’s a cash prize: first place winners in each category will receive $1500, second place winners $1000, and “Popular Choice” $500. For details, see the Official Rules here.
Patrons who are parents can sometimes use a boost in the form of information. There are many government information resources available to bolster parents’ knowledge about child development. At the federal level, try the CDC and MedlinePlus. The Centers for Disease Control Facts About Child Development website provides videos, positive parenting tips, and information about health monitoring and screening recommended for healthy children. The Medline Plus webpage on Child Development is a lengthy directory to resources for children from three years old to 11 years old. The Indiana Department of Education features an Information for Parents website which includes helpful education standards, news, and Professor Garfield, a fun, interactive, animated educational tool from Ball State University to help students with reading.
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