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New York Facts: Lesson for Kids

Instructor: Jennifer Lowery

Jennifer has taught elementary levels K-3 and has master's degrees in elementary education and curriculum/instruction and educational leadership.

New York is a state full of history, national symbols and culture. Find out about where this state is located, important history of New York and what makes it a unique state in our great country!

New York: More Than A City

Have you ever seen a movie set in New York City? This major city, which is considered an icon of America, is just one part of the state of New York, which is located in the Northeastern United States. (In fact, while New York City is the state's largest city, it isn't the capital--Albany is the capital city.)

New York State (people often add the word 'state' to avoid confusion with the famous city) borders Canada as well as the states of New Jersey, Pennsylvania, Vermont, Connecticut and Massachusetts. New York also has a border touching the Atlantic Ocean, which means it has a beautiful coast.

New York, highlighted in red, is located in Northeastern United States.
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There is a wide variety of geography in this state, including valleys, mountains and wild forest areas. Many people often don't realize that there's so much nature in New York because they're more familiar with the urban, or city, aspect of New York.

Along with the varied geography, New York has varied seasons. In the summer, it's very hot and humid. As autumn arrives, it gets cooler and drier, and then winter brings with it very cold temperatures and plenty of snow.

A Brief History of New York

In the 1520s, Italian explorer Giovanni da Verrazzano traveled the waters of the Atlantic Ocean along what is now New York. He was the first European to find the New York Bay, though the land wouldn't be claimed until 1609 when the Dutch arrived.

However, the history of New York spans much farther back to about 10,000 B.C. when it was home to Native Americans. It's easy to see the strong Native American culture in New York--many of the locations have Native American names, like the city of Poughkeepsie (pronounce puh-KIP-see), Niagara Falls and Seneca Lake.

New York played a big role in the history of the United States, and many of the American Revolution battles were fought in this state. And later, it became a point of entry to the United States for immigrants (people coming to live in a new country) from around the world. New York City's famous Ellis Island became a center for immigration into the country, and those coming to the city pass the iconic Statue of Liberty on the way to America.

Lady Liberty greets visitors and immigrants to the land of the free.
Famous symbol of New York City

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