The United States of America known as the United States or America, is a country composed of 50 states, a federal district, five major self-governing territories, various possessions. At 3.8 million square miles, the United States is the world's third or fourth largest country by total area and is smaller than the entire continent of Europe's 3.9 million square miles. With a population of over 327 million people, the U. S. is the third most populous country. The capital is Washington, D. C. and the largest city by population is New York City. Forty-eight states and the capital's federal district are contiguous in North America between Canada and Mexico; the State of Alaska is in the northwest corner of North America, bordered by Canada to the east and across the Bering Strait from Russia to the west. The State of Hawaii is an archipelago in the mid-Pacific Ocean; the U. S. territories are scattered about the Pacific Ocean and the Caribbean Sea, stretching across nine official time zones. The diverse geography and wildlife of the United States make it one of the world's 17 megadiverse countries.
Paleo-Indians migrated from Siberia to the North American mainland at least 12,000 years ago. European colonization began in the 16th century; the United States emerged from the thirteen British colonies established along the East Coast. Numerous disputes between Great Britain and the colonies following the French and Indian War led to the American Revolution, which began in 1775, the subsequent Declaration of Independence in 1776; the war ended in 1783 with the United States becoming the first country to gain independence from a European power. The current constitution was adopted in 1788, with the first ten amendments, collectively named the Bill of Rights, being ratified in 1791 to guarantee many fundamental civil liberties; the United States embarked on a vigorous expansion across North America throughout the 19th century, acquiring new territories, displacing Native American tribes, admitting new states until it spanned the continent by 1848. During the second half of the 19th century, the Civil War led to the abolition of slavery.
By the end of the century, the United States had extended into the Pacific Ocean, its economy, driven in large part by the Industrial Revolution, began to soar. The Spanish–American War and World War I confirmed the country's status as a global military power; the United States emerged from World War II as a global superpower, the first country to develop nuclear weapons, the only country to use them in warfare, a permanent member of the United Nations Security Council. Sweeping civil rights legislation, notably the Civil Rights Act of 1964, the Voting Rights Act of 1965 and the Fair Housing Act of 1968, outlawed discrimination based on race or color. During the Cold War, the United States and the Soviet Union competed in the Space Race, culminating with the 1969 U. S. Moon landing; the end of the Cold War and the collapse of the Soviet Union in 1991 left the United States as the world's sole superpower. The United States is the world's oldest surviving federation, it is a representative democracy.
The United States is a founding member of the United Nations, World Bank, International Monetary Fund, Organization of American States, other international organizations. The United States is a developed country, with the world's largest economy by nominal GDP and second-largest economy by PPP, accounting for a quarter of global GDP; the U. S. economy is post-industrial, characterized by the dominance of services and knowledge-based activities, although the manufacturing sector remains the second-largest in the world. The United States is the world's largest importer and the second largest exporter of goods, by value. Although its population is only 4.3% of the world total, the U. S. holds 31% of the total wealth in the world, the largest share of global wealth concentrated in a single country. Despite wide income and wealth disparities, the United States continues to rank high in measures of socioeconomic performance, including average wage, human development, per capita GDP, worker productivity.
The United States is the foremost military power in the world, making up a third of global military spending, is a leading political and scientific force internationally. In 1507, the German cartographer Martin Waldseemüller produced a world map on which he named the lands of the Western Hemisphere America in honor of the Italian explorer and cartographer Amerigo Vespucci; the first documentary evidence of the phrase "United States of America" is from a letter dated January 2, 1776, written by Stephen Moylan, Esq. to George Washington's aide-de-camp and Muster-Master General of the Continental Army, Lt. Col. Joseph Reed. Moylan expressed his wish to go "with full and ample powers from the United States of America to Spain" to seek assistance in the revolutionary war effort; the first known publication of the phrase "United States of America" was in an anonymous essay in The Virginia Gazette newspaper in Williamsburg, Virginia, on April 6, 1776. The second draft of the Articles of Confederation, prepared by John Dickinson and completed by June 17, 1776, at the latest, declared "The name of this Confederation shall be the'United States of America'".
The final version of the Articles sent to the states for ratification in late 1777 contains the sentence "The Stile of this Confederacy shall be'The United States of America'". In June 1776, Thomas Jefferson wrote the phrase "UNITED STATES OF AMERICA" in all capitalized letters in the headline of his "original Rough draught" of the Declaration of Independence; this draft of the document did not surface unti
Connecticut is the southernmost state in the New England region of the United States. As of the 2010 Census, it has the highest per-capita income, Human Development Index, median household income in the United States, it is bordered by Rhode Island to the east, Massachusetts to the north, New York to the west, Long Island Sound to the south. Its capital is Hartford and its most populous city is Bridgeport, it is part of New England, although portions of it are grouped with New York and New Jersey as the Tri-state area. The state is named for the Connecticut River which bisects the state; the word "Connecticut" is derived from various anglicized spellings of an Algonquian word for "long tidal river". Connecticut's first European settlers were Dutchmen who established a small, short-lived settlement called Fort Hoop in Hartford at the confluence of the Park and Connecticut Rivers. Half of Connecticut was part of the Dutch colony New Netherland, which included much of the land between the Connecticut and Delaware Rivers, although the first major settlements were established in the 1630s by the English.
Thomas Hooker led a band of followers from the Massachusetts Bay Colony and founded the Connecticut Colony. The Connecticut and New Haven colonies established documents of Fundamental Orders, considered the first constitutions in America. In 1662, the three colonies were merged under a royal charter; this was one of the Thirteen Colonies. Connecticut is the third smallest state by area, the 29th most populous, the fourth most densely populated of the 50 states, it is known as the "Constitution State", the "Nutmeg State", the "Provisions State", the "Land of Steady Habits". It was influential in the development of the federal government of the United States; the Connecticut River, Thames River, ports along Long Island Sound have given Connecticut a strong maritime tradition which continues today. The state has a long history of hosting the financial services industry, including insurance companies in Hartford and hedge funds in Fairfield County. Landmarks and cities of Connecticut Connecticut is bordered on the south by Long Island Sound, on the west by New York, on the north by Massachusetts, on the east by Rhode Island.
The state capital and fourth largest city is Hartford, other major cities and towns include Bridgeport, New Haven, Waterbury, Danbury, New Britain and Bristol. Connecticut is larger than the country of Montenegro. There are 169 incorporated towns in Connecticut; the highest peak in Connecticut is Bear Mountain in Salisbury in the northwest corner of the state. The highest point is just east of where Connecticut and New York meet, on the southern slope of Mount Frissell, whose peak lies nearby in Massachusetts. At the opposite extreme, many of the coastal towns have areas that are less than 20 feet above sea level. Connecticut has a long maritime history and a reputation based on that history—yet the state has no direct oceanfront; the coast of Connecticut sits on Long Island Sound, an estuary. The state's access to the open Atlantic Ocean is both to the east; this situation provides many safe harbors from ocean storms, many transatlantic ships seek anchor inside Long Island Sound when tropical cyclones pass off the upper East Coast.
The Connecticut River cuts through the center of the state. The most populous metropolitan region centered within the state lies in the Connecticut River Valley. Despite Connecticut's small size, it features wide regional variations in its landscape. Connecticut's rural areas and small towns in the northeast and northwest corners of the state contrast with its industrial cities such as Stamford and New Haven, located along the coastal highways from the New York border to New London northward up the Connecticut River to Hartford. Many towns in northeastern and northwestern Connecticut center around a green, such as the Litchfield Green, Lebanon Green, Wethersfield Green. Near the green stand historical visual symbols of New England towns, such as a white church, a colonial meeting house, a colonial tavern or inn, several colonial houses, so on, establishing a scenic historical appearance maintained for both historic preservation and tourism. Many of the areas in southern and coastal Connecticut have been built up and rebuilt over the years, look less visually like traditional New England.
The northern boundary of the state with Massachusetts is marked by the Southwick Jog or Granby Notch, an 2.5 miles square detour into Connecticut. The origin of this anomaly is established in a long line of disputes and temporary agreements which were concluded in 1804, when southern Southwick's residents sought to leave Massachusetts, the town was split in half; the southwestern border of Connecticut where it abuts New York State is marked by a panhandle in Fairfield County, containing the towns of Greenwich, New Canaan and parts of Norwalk and Wilton. This irregularity in the boundary is the result of territorial disputes in the late 17th century, culminating
A summer camp or sleepaway camp is a supervised program for children or teenagers conducted during the summer months in some countries. Children and adolescents who attend summer camp are known as campers. Summer school is a required academic curriculum for a student to make up work not accomplished during the academic year, whereas summer camps can include academic work, but is not a requirement for graduation; the traditional view of a summer camp as a woody place with hiking and campfires is changing, with greater acceptance of newer types of summer camps that offer a wide variety of specialized activities. For example, there are camps for the performing arts, magic, computer programming, language learning, children with special needs, weight loss. In 2006, the American Camp Association reported; this is to counter a trend in decreasing enrollment in summer camps, which some argue to have been brought about by smaller family sizes and the growth in supplemental educational programs. There are religiously affiliated summer camps, such as those run by Christian groups and various denominations of Judaism.
The primary purpose of many camps is educational, athletic, or cultural development. A summer camp environment may allow children to learn new skills in a safe and nurturing environment. Summer camp experience can have lasting psychological impact on the development of a child. In most camps, the young adult or teenage supervisors are called counselors or "cabin leaders". In many camps, counselors are assigned to small groups of campers, called "bunks", "huts", "cabins", or "units", who participate in activities as a group, such as campfires, canoeing, nature lore and crafts. Counselors share living accommodations with their group. In the United States counselors for residential camps are drawn from older teens and college-aged adults because of the temporary and low-paying aspects of the work. International staff are hired alongside their American counterparts through agencies who vet the staff beforehand. Overall camp supervision is done by older camp directors, who lead a team that includes cooks, sports instructors, a nurse, maintenance personnel and counselors.
The director and the maintenance personnel have a longer-term affiliation with the summer camp. Professional camp staff organize preparation of facilities and supplies for the camp season and supervise the maintenance of the camp during the off-season. Camp directors conduct the hiring of seasonal counselors and support staff during job fairs held on campuses or on online job boards. At some camps, all campers eat all their meals in a cafeteria. At some camps known as day camps, the campers go home each night; some other camps allow overnight campers. In the USA, residential camps that have overnight facilities are sometimes called "sleepaway camps". Summer camp is the first time that children spend an extended period of time away from home; the practice of running residential holidays for children away from their own home seems to have originated in Appenzell in the Alps in 1876, when Pastor Bion set up holiday camps in which children made tree-houses, sang songs, did drama, made kites and had adventure games.
Post-war France used Pastor Bion’s model to take children who had grown up during the war years, away from cities, their scheme ‘colonies de vacances’ became state controlled, part of their state education system for all children. The American camps developed from a different cultural root. In the United States there are numerous models of camp with an educational focus that cater to students with differing ages and academic interest; some camps offer students the opportunity to explore a pre-college experience. Students entering grades 10 through 12 stay in the college dormitories and attend summer classes run by college faculty. At the successful completion of a summer program, course credits are awarded, which in turn are accepted by most tertiary institutions. Colleges in the United States and Canada offer these programs, as it serves as an introduction to students to entice them to attend the college as full-time students based upon a memorable summer experience; some camps, such as CTY and Duke TIP, are focused on education or on educational-related activities, such as debate, history, or journalism.
These camps are run by colleges or universities, are for children in junior or senior high school. Instruction in debate and speech is available for middle school students and incoming high school students all over the country. Educational summer camps are different from summer schools as the summer camps are not offered for school credit, have a significant focus on non-academic activities. Students for these programs are invited or recruited. Many of these camps, such as Canada/USA Mathcamp and SSP, focus on a specific subject, such as mathematics or astronomy; these camps tend to have selective application processes involving problem solving or an essay about the applicant's interest in the subject. These provide high school students with the opportunity to study an academic topics on a summer adventure travel program in the wilderness or a foreign country. Many include community service as a component of the course. Others offer college credit with the successful completion of the program.
Various camp programs offer preparation for the SAT Reasoning Test as part of a mixture of academic learning with summer fun. The SAT preparation is offered as a full morning immersion while the afternoons and evenings are geared towards homework and recreational activitie