Grand Canyon

in Places
The Grand Canyon

The Grand Canyon is a place of extraordinary beauty. This giant gash in the plateau of northern Arizona drops down almost a mile. Standing on the plateau, you’ll see spectacular rock formations in a variety of colors—orange, purple, red, pink, and green. The colors change as the Sun moves through the sky during the day. There are many breathtaking views of these colorful rocks from trails into the canyon and from overlooks on the rim of the canyon.


At the bottom of the canyon, you’ll see a thin, blue ribbon of water. This ribbon is the Colorado River.

Great Lakes

in Places
Lighthouse, Lake Erie

The Great Lakes are so large, you could easily see them if you stood on the Moon! They’re the world’s largest group of freshwater lakes, and they’re found in North America.

Five lakes make up the Great Lakes. They are Lake Superior, Lake Michigan, Lake Huron, Lake Erie, and Lake Ontario.


The Great Lakes are located in the eastern half of North America along the United States-Canadian border. The lakes are a part of both countries and are shared by both. Only Lake Michigan lies entirely within the United States.


in Places
Snake River

Do you know what Idaho means? Nobody else does either. It seems to be a made-up word. Before Idaho became a state, somebody claimed Idaho was a Shoshone Indian word that meant “Gem of the Mountains.” Idaho’s nickname—the Gem State—stems from this claim.

Although no one now thinks Idaho is an Indian word, the state’s nickname has stuck. There is some truth to the nickname Gem State, however. A variety of gems comes from Idaho, including opals, garnets, and jasper. Idaho also produces gold and silver.


in Places
Hula Dencer

Hawaii was the last state to join the United States. It became the 50th state on August 21, 1959. Hawaii is the southernmost state in the country. It also is the only state made up entirely of islands.


Hawaii is nicknamed the Aloha State. Aloha is a greeting in the Hawaiian language. It can mean “hello” or “goodbye.” Most Hawaiians would probably say that aloha is an expression of welcome. Millions of tourists visit Hawaii to enjoy its mild climate and sparkling beaches.


in Places
Sears Tower

Illinois calls itself the Land of Lincoln. That’s because of its association with President Abraham Lincoln, one of America’s greatest leaders. Lincoln moved to Illinois in 1830, at the age of 21. In 1834, he was elected to the Illinois legislature (lawmaking body). He also was a lawyer in Springfield, the capital of Illinois.


Lincoln lived in Springfield, Illinois, from 1837 until he became president of the United States in 1861. If you visit Springfield, you can see the house Lincoln lived in. You can also visit his law office and the state capitol where he gained his reputation as a politician.