All posts by Education WFSU

From Ridge to Reef: Adapting to a Changing Climate

Coral Attol

In healthy island ecosystems, living things and the natural resources surrounding them are in balance. This balance creates resilience. A resilient island has a greater ability to bounce back when forces outside its control, including climate change, disturb it. However, if an island’s ecosystems have been weakened because of harmful human activities, the balance is lost, which has a negative effect on living things and makes it much more difficult for them to recover.

In this interactive activity, students explore Pacific high island and atoll ecosystems, learn about the threats to island resources and residents, and discover how communities are preserving their future. They also learn about the services these ecosystems provide and how they become compromised by change. EXPLORE: From Ridge to Reef


Study: Kids can learn as much from ‘Sesame Street’ as from preschool

Courtesy of Sesame Workshop/ITVS

Courtesy of Sesame Workshop/ITVS

So worth the read…

Study: Kids can learn as much from ‘Sesame Street’ as from preschool
By Jim Tankersley June 7, 2015  The Washington Post
NEW YORK — Most Americans born since the mid­1960s have a favorite “Sesame Street” skit. Jennifer Kotler
Clarke watched hers on a black­and­white television set in her family’s Bronx apartment. There were two aliens: One
of them had long arms that didn’t move, while the other had short, moving arms. The aliens wished to eat apples
from a tree, and they succeeded, after a couple of minutes, by working together. “Let’s call this cooperation,” one of
them says. “No,” the other replies, “let’s call it Shirley.”
Clarke grew up to be the show’s vice president for research and evaluation, and she has long believed that the
program’s laughs and lessons stick with children. Now, landmark academic research appears to back her up.
The most authoritative study ever done on the impact of “Sesame Street,” to be released Monday, finds that the
famous show on public TV has delivered lasting educational benefits to millions of American children — benefits as
powerful as the ones children get from going to preschool.
The paper from the University of Maryland’s Melissa Kearney and Wellesley College’s Phillip Levine finds that the
show has left children more likely to stay at the appropriate grade level for their age, an effect that is particularly
pronounced among boys, African Americans and children who grow up in disadvantaged areas.
After “Sesame Street” was introduced, children living in places where its broadcast could be more readily received
saw a 14 percent drop in their likelihood of being behind in school. Levine and Kearney note in their paper that a
wide body of previous research has found that Head Start, the pre­kindergarten program for low ­income Americans,
delivers a similar benefit. For more please visit:


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Wild Tallahassee

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Join us on Saturday, April 11, 10-2 p.m at the Tallahassee Museum for Wild Tallahassee, an event featuring giveaways, activities & live animal encounters.

WFSU and the Tallahassee Museum encourage kids and families to get outdoors to learn and explore nature! This special event is made possible by a grant from PBS KIDS Explore the Outdoors Week featuring Dinosaur Train and Wild Kratts. To find additional fun, activities, and ideas tune in to Explore the Outdoors Week April 20-24 featuring new episodes of Dinosaur Train and Wild Kratts and visit us online at &


The Cookie Thief to Premiere This Monday

Don’t miss out on the latest special from Sesame Street, premiering this Monday, February 16th at 10:00AM on WFSU! The Cookie Thief is Cookie Monster’s first special and co-stars Rachel Dratch, of Saturday Night Live Fame.  “The Cookie Thief” is a fun, action-packed special in which Cookie Monster explores self-regulation concepts – such as impulse control, following directions and managing emotions.

Parents and Teachers: there are free Activity Sheets and printables that go along with the special. Find them HERE!


Tallahassee Democrat

Celebrating Black History Month in Tallahassee

Black History Month has begun! There are lots of great resources and events  to celebrate Black History Month with your family in Tallahassee.

The Museum of Florida History will be celebrating Black History banner flhistorymuseumMonth through a special exhibit, “Civil Rights in the Sunshine State,” and by hosting programs through out the month.

Don’t miss FAMU’s annual Black History Convocation, taking place this year on February 11th, featuring FAMU Alumnus Senator Dwight Bullard.

The Black Student Union at FSU will be hosting over 20 events this month. Follow them on twitter (@FSU_BSU) to stay up-to-date.

NewspaperVisit Florida Memory’s online classroom for resources to use in your live classroom or for discussion at home. The online classroom includes photographs and documents from the Civil Rights Movement and the Civil War in Florida. They also have a special collection of resources gathered specifically for Black History Month, which “attest to the struggles and triumphs of persons of African descent in Florida history” and date all the way back to the 16th Century.

We will be spotlighting black history resources from PBS all month 1069414_487052628055754_857507274_non our Facebook page. Be sure to look out for content from PBS Learning Media and PBS Black Culture Connection.

Fountain Abbey

PBS KIDS PREMIERES Special downton Abbey-Inspired Episode of Arthur

Join Arthur and his friends for a drama-filled adventure airing January 26 on WFSU and available on DVD January 27

Fountain Abbey

Ever wonder what secrets and stories your family history holds?  This is the question posed to everyone’s favorite aardvark and his friends in “Fountain Abbey,” an all-new, Downton Abbey-inspired episode of ARTHUR, premiering January 26 on WFSU at 4:00PM. “Fountain Abbey” will also be available on DVD January 27 through PBS Distribution.

In the drama-filled “Fountain Abbey,” Muffy finds herself absolutely devastated when she learns her great-great grandmother, Mary Alice, wasn’t royalty at all.  She was a common maid – oh, the indignity!  However, through reading Mary Alice’s diary, Muffy is transported back in time to the famous English estate where her ancestor worked. There she discovers the surprising story behind her humble roots.

The “Fountain Abbey” story is paired with “Arthur Calls It,” a story in which Arthur must deal with peer pressure from his classmates, causing him to doubt his decision to call his best buddy Buster “out” during a baseball game. Is that a foul play, or should Arthur stick to what he believes is right?

The week of ARTHUR continues with funny storylines about everyday life and tongue-in-cheek homages to The Wizard of Oz and The Tell-Tale Heart. In each episode, the characters learn valuable lessons about honesty, empathy, and determination.

Produced by WGBH, the Emmy Award-winning PBS KIDS series ARTHUR explores childhood challenges with heart and humor, while teaching problem-solving and pro-social skills. On the ARTHUR website, kids, parents, caregivers, and teachers can access a variety of fun and educational games, lesson plans, and activities. Families can also keep up with Arthur and his friends on the new ARTHUR Family Health Website — a resource that helps caregivers and children build and maintain healthy living habits.


Mark Your Calendars!

Curious George & the Man in the Yellow Hat will be visiting Tallahassee next week!

On Sunday, January 11, Curious George will be at Whole Foods. Be sure to stop by from 1:00 – 2:30 to take your picture with George, enjoy fun activities and build your own banana split! This event is free, but space is limited, so be sure to register ahead of time HERE!

Curious George will also be visiting the Report Card Rally on January 15. WFSU will be joining 40 other businesses in congratulating Leon County student on a job well done! The event will be from 5:30 to 8:30 at the Kraft Nissan on Mahan Drive.

PBS_OSS_Facebook_CoverPhoto02New ODD SQUAD!

On January 19th, PBS KIDS will premiere the newest Odd Squad Special: Odd Squad Saves the World! Be sure to mark your calendars – you don’t want to miss this special episode!

Happy Holidays

Holiday Craft Ideas

Happy Holidays from WFSU!

Last week, we hosted our monthly workshop for early childhood educators, with a holiday theme! At each workshop, we cover 10 – 12 different activities to do with kids ages 2-6. Here are some of the favorite activities from the evening to do at home or in the classroom!

Dreidel Printable

Have you ever played the dreidel game? Make your own with a straw and this easy Gmail print out and read the rules of the game here. The prize is gelt, which are chocolate coins,  but they can easily be substituted for raisins or chocolate chips!

Fun Wreath Sponge Paint Activity

This wreath sponge painting wasWreath Photo the favorite activity of the night. Head over to Crafty Morning for directions! We substituted the hand held dish brush for sponges we had on hand and used q-tips to make the berries.  You could even make a mini wreath on cardstock and create holiday cards to give to relatives!

New Year’s Eve Noise Maker

Water BottleOne of my favorite things about New Year’s Eve growing up was that it was the one day where I was encouraged to make lots of noise! We would get out all of our pots and pans and bang them with spoons to ring in the New Year. All you need for these noise makers from Adventures in Wunderland is an empty water bottle, dry beans, and paint and ribbon to decorate the outside!

Holiday Videos

PBS has tons of fun holiday video options for your kids!

All About the Holidays is PBS Learning Media’s mini-online video series that covers major holidays in 2 minutes or less! Watch them together as a family and then talk about what the holidays mean to you. We’ll be sharing some of these videos this week on our Facebook page!

Check out our Winter Programming schedule HERE to see when your favorite PBS KIDS winter episodes are showing!

Want more fun winter crafts to do with your kids? WFSU Education is now on Pinterest!

Clifford and Emily Elizabeth

Clifford is Coming to Whole Foods!

This Sunday, December 7, Clifford the Big Red Dog will be visiting Whole Foods from 1 to 2! Clifford is SO excited to meet  all of his local Tallahassee friends. There will be fun goodies available to those who attend, including coloring sheets, PBS KIDS app download codes, a fun Clifford craft, and Clifford stickers!

Parents – Clifford the Big Red Dog isn’t on the PBS KIDS schedule right now, but both seasons are available on Netflix. Clifford has 10 BIG ideas that he shares in his books and show – each one represents a social or emotional challenge children face. You can check them out in more detail HERE, as well as download fun and educational Clifford-related activities!

Clifford also has a page on PBS KIDS just for kids – click HERE to play with Clifford and his friends in cyberspace! Be sure to check out the game Clifford’s Burried Treasure!

We can’t wait to see you on Sunday! Be sure to share this post on Facebook to let your fellow moms and dads know about this fun meet-and-greet!

It’s Geography Awareness Week!

It’s Geography Awareness Week, mes chers élèves! Take your class on a virtual trip to France with this set of PBS LearningMedia digital resources – essays, lesson plans, images, videos – examining French history, society, culture and the lives of young people in France today.

This featured Global Learning & Diplomacy Collection explores France’s geography and landscape, government, significant events in French history, culture (arts and architecture, cuisine and fashion) and the history of U.S.-France relations. Your students will also get a deeper look at the French school system and experiences common to French children and teenagers through first-hand accounts from French students. WATCH: Timeline of French History