Stuck at home? Tired of cats on Youtube? Even wishing school was open (parents especially)? There are things to do that are educational AND FUN. is an extraordinary website. The Maine Historical Society and communities, museums and societies across Maine collaborate to put images and ideas online. Understand Maine’s Bicentenary; go millennia further back and begin to study the Wabanaki; explore local history; view photographs of everything Maine; look at stuff (yes, that’s what museum professionals call historic objects); read stories of and by old and new Mainers.

Google Osher Map Library. They’ve been offering exciting exhibits for years, and here they are, beautifully digitized. Ancient maps, railroading maps, pictorial maps, school maps (including great ones made by students, etc., etc. Look for and learn about home; about places you’ve been; places you’d like to go, or to have gone to in the past.

Off line or on, there’s The New York Times for Kids. It appears on the last Sunday of each month, sandwiched into the massive Sunday Times. There’s something for everyone. It says: “This section should not be read by grown-ups” but what the hell. I learned a lot from February’s issue. And had fun.

The editor is excited about how people get their jobs: articles on a courtroom sketch artist (who portrayed Trump’s impeachment trial); an infectious disease researcher (topical); an economist (making big decisions for the World Bank); the poet laureate of the United States; a baker (who started out as an applied mathematician). There were more and less rarefied possibilities. A double page spread asked “What should you be when you grow up?” and offered 70 plus possibilities, sorted into categories: “Help people and get your hands dirty”; “”Learn how the world works and create new things”; Move your body and travel”; etc.

There are options before you grow up. Amsterdam’s Junior Bike Mayor, age 11, got the job by suggesting lighted bike paths, solar powered. He’s a public advocate for bicycling in a country where cycling is very important.

There’s other world news: Harry and Meghan, sensibly discussed; the Australian bushfires clearly explained. Not to mention Baby Yoda, Coronavirus, leap years, and Kabuki theatre (with anime and manga). And crossword puzzles, easy, medium, and hard.

There was even a chance for us Mainers to feel superior; most of a page on how to make and use maple syrup. We know! What will be in this month’s issue?

David R Jones and his current history students are busily exchanging emails. He has no connection with The New York Times.

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