24-30 October 2015
United we stand
It was United Nations Day, commemorating the signing of the UN Charter 70 years ago. Member states are encouraged to mark it as a public holiday, but sadly this is yet to be implemented in the UK.
Dinner ladies who are bonkers for bolognese and passionate about pesto surely celebrated World Pasta Day – a chance to embrace all pasta types, from the classic spaghetti to the lesser-known girandole.
Save your bacon
Fans of the breaktime bacon baguette, beware: the World Health Organisation warned that cured and processed meats were a major cause of cancer, putting them in the same category as arsenic and tobacco.
The UK withdrew the last of its combat troops from Afghanistan one year ago at the end of Operation Herrick. The campaign lasted 12 years and resulted in the deaths of more than 450 British military personnel.
By the light of a silvery moon
Teachers experiencing the celestial joys of half-term would have been happy to hear that Nasa’s Cassini spacecraft made a historic fly-by through the icy plumes streaming from Saturn’s moon Enceladus.
The Turkish national holiday Cumhuriyet Bayramı marked the founding of the republic in 1923 after the fall of the Ottoman dynasty and the election of its first president, Mustafa Kemal (later Atatürk).
The emperor of all bombs
On this day in 1961, Tsar Bomba – the most powerful nuclear weapon ever detonated with a force of 50 megatons of TNT – was exploded by the Soviets over the Novaya Zemlya archipelago in northern Russia.
31 October – 6 November 2015
Wallabies v All Blacks
The rivalry between teachers from New Zealand and Australia will reach fever pitch as the two countries do battle in the final of the Rugby World Cup. The winner takes all – including bragging rights.
Be not afeard
A tragicomic anniversary for English and drama teachers, and Shakespeare lovers everywhere: Othello and The Tempest both premiered on this day at Whitehall Palace in 1604 and 1611 respectively.
The Mexican Day of the Dead comes to a…er…dead end today. During the two-day festival, which draws on Aztec and Catholic traditions, spirits are believed to visit their relatives on Earth.
Giant leap for dog-kind
Laika, a stray dog from Moscow, became the first animal to orbit the Earth 58 years ago aboard Sputnik 2. Before the launch, Soviet scientist Dr Vladimir Yazdovsky took her home to play with his children.
Yes we can
Seven years ago, Barack Obama became the first person of African-American descent to be elected as US president, pledging to invest in education and recruit “an army of new teachers”.
Gunpowder, treason and plot
As your eager pupils prepare to rush off to fireworks displays, tell them what it’s all about: remembering the attempt by Guy Fawkes and his co-conspirators to blow up the Houses of Parliament in 1605.
Keep an eye out for the new-look TES magazine, which launches today, bringing you all the essential intelligence you need to keep your finger on the pulse of education.