All posts by Education WFSU

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

Peg + Cat coming to Whole Foods

Whatpeg+cat 02 would it be like to wake up and find yourself in the middle of a math word problem?” That’s just what life is like for Peg and her friend Cat, the heroes of a math based adventure series on PBS KIDS for children 3-5 years old. Mark your Calendars because on November 9th you and children will have an opportunity to meet these two math heroes at Wholefoods Market on Thomasville Rd! On Sunday November 9th, you can bring your kids out to Wholefoods Market for an afternoon of Peg + Cat activities. Parents and children will be immersed in math based adventure, just like one from the television show. There’ll be a real pizza creating station, where children will have to use their basic math skills to add up their toppings. Kids will be able to create their own Peg + Cat stick puppets to take home with them. Coloring stations and episodes of Peg + Cat will be in store as well. Conclude your visit with a meet & greet plus photo opportunity with Peg & Cat! We’ll be posting information on Peg + Cat throughout the week on our Facebook & Twitter. For additional information on Peg + Cat you can go to http://pbskids.org/peg/.

‘Tis the Season For Shakespeare

You are going to hear a lot more than this about Shakespeare this year with WFSU! We recently received a very special grant that MacBeth Shakespeareenables us to partner with the Southern Shakespeare Festival and a few other special places and people to create some new and exciting content around Shakespeare and his works! But for now…

‘Tis the season for witches, ghosts and magic! In Shakespeare’s time, many people believed in the existence of supernatural elements and witchcraft. The dominant fear of kings and queens in the 16th and 17th centuries was that the devil or antichrist, through the agency of the Pope, would topple the English monarchy.

In this PBS LearningMedia collection focusing on Macbeth, Hamlet and The Tempest, your students will examine supernatural beliefs during the 16th and 17th centuries, and identify how supernatural elements drive the plot of many of Shakespeare’s plays.

These segments from the PBS series Shakespeare Uncovered focus in particular on the witches from Macbeth, the relationship between the spirit and human worlds in Elizabethan England and how it’s reflected in Shakespeare’s work, how Prospero uses magic in The Tempest, a discussion on the study and practice of magic in the 17th century, and much more. WATCH: http://to.pbs.org/1ws3XxP

The First Beat Making Lab

Beat making labGet behind the beat and find out what happens at the Beat Making Lab! Take a look inside the origins of this PBS Digital series filmed at UNC Chapel Hill, where students learn to make techno, dance and rap music using technology as their instrument. Beat Making Lab

In this video, Associate Professor Mark Katz and Adjunct Professor Stephen Levitin (also known by his DJ handle, Apple Juice Kid) explore a new method of teaching music, targeting tech-savvy students without formal training in the arts and teaching the backbones of music production.

The popular Beat Making Lab not only exposes young minds to the creative process but to the entrepreneurial aspects of making beats as well. Watch as the instructors become as equally as inspired as the students! VIDEO: http://to.pbs.org/1q4wSpt

WFSU – A Special Kind of Magic

I have always been a PBS kid. I watched Barney and Zoom. I laughed till I cried watching the crazy chickens on Between the Lions, and the dueling knights in the Gawain’s Word segment. I watched the Elmo’s World portion of Sesame Street until I was in my early teens because I couldn’t resist the adorable sweetness of Elmo, Mr. Noodle and Dorothy the Goldfish. Sesame Street even had me convinced that I wanted to live in a moss-covered cave with the snuffleupagus family. Most importantly, my childhood hero wasn’t a sports star or a comic book superhero, it was Fred Rogers. I was enthralled with the gentleness and kindness of this amazing person on the screen, and as I grew too old to watch Mister Rogers’ Neighborhood (and continued to watch anyway) I realized just how special Fred Rogers was. And, I realized that I wanted to be part of the public broadcasting family, and help create the magic that I felt during my childhood for future generations of children.

You can imagine how thrilled I was when in college I had the opportunity to work at WFSU in the Education and Outreach department, and be a connection between PBS and the local community. I have been here for two years now, planning family events and helping with educational programs, and I absolutely love my job. Who wouldn’t enjoy a job where you occasionally get to transform into Daniel Tiger or Clifford?

But, there is a deeper reason why I love public broadcasting and why I am so dedicated to its mission. PBS (and NPR) exist to fill a need in communities across the United States—whether that need is literacy programming, or shows that help children make healthier choices. Time and time again I turn to PBS and NPR for information and entertainment. It makes me happy that there is still something so stellar and beautiful in our society…created through endless collaborations between people, and held to the highest standard of quality. Public broadcasting is everyone’s opportunity to open their eyes to what is going on around them, and to connect to the rest of the world. Public broadcasting is media “for the people, by the people,” and paid for by the people as well.

I see a need for children’s language programming in the United States, and this is why I am leaving WFSU to pursue an MA in Psycholinguistics at the University of York. I will be studying how people learn a second language, in order to create the best possible programs to teach children. There are so many reasons why I think that we need these programs—for one, most American children are behind their peers in other parts of the world, who learn to speak at least two languages. But, I think most importantly, knowing another language makes one more open-minded and more accepting of different cultures. I hope that by teaching our children a second language, we might both guarantee our children’s futures in an increasingly globalized job market, and ensure a more peaceful future for our world.

“The connections we make in the course of a life—maybe that’s what heaven is.”

- Fred Rogers

I can’t imagine a world without PBS—I can’t imagine my world without PBS. I want to say thank you from the bottom of my heart to my WFSU family—to Tasha, Kim, Natalie, Ashley and Trisha (my amazing coworkers and truly intelligent, strong, creative, kind and wonderful people in every way), and to all the staff at WFSU who I have had the pleasure of working with and getting to know. I will miss all of you so much! And, a huge thank you to the teachers, parents, children, and other members of the community I have worked with during my time at WFSU—I so enjoyed watching you experience the magic of PBS!

To quote Barney the Dinosaur….With a great big hug and a kiss from me to you!

Sarah

The Design Process: From Idea to Solution

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What does innovation look like, and how can one generate innovative ideas and strategies – right in the classroom? This collection, produced by NOVA Education, helps educators and learners explore the process by which innovators seek to make the world a better place through the invention of practical solutions to some of the world’s most pressing problems.

The collection, called “The Design Process: From Idea to Solution,” is made up of four videos, each with an accompanying lesson plan. Young learners can watch college students from around the country engage actively with the design thinking process, and then draw inspiration from them. Teachers can use the lesson plans to guide their students through the design process, helping students to develop unique, innovative ideas and strategies of their very own.

Nothing is more gratifying for students than to have an impact on their world and see their ideas in action! EXPLORE THE COLLECTION: http://to.pbs.org/1r7dzhs

Camping with Hundley

Roasting marshmallows is a camping treat!

Roasting marshmallows is a camping treat!

Curious George is an all-time classic! Watch this “Camping with Hundley” video featuring the beloved, inquisitive monkey with your young learners and help them explore the various tools available to help people complete work. The accompanying lesson plan will ultimately spark your class’ thinking on future careers!

In the video, George needs to use his camping skills after a storm knocks out the electricity that powers the Doorman’s van. He uses a mallet to build a shelter, a lighter to start a fire and sticks to cook hot dogs. After children explore what tools are, who uses them, and how the design of a tool matches its function, they play a game in which they match tools used by different professions. Children then imagine a job they’d like to do someday and a tool they might use.

Perhaps one day, one of your students will grow up to be a writer or illustrator and use the same tools that the creators of Curious George did! LAUNCH THE LESSON PLAN: http://to.pbs.org/1rsyxDg

You can bring Curious George along with you as well! Visit one of our great libraries and borrow a copy of:georgecover

Reading, relaxing and camping are a fantastic way to start the school year right!

Exploring Cuba’s Thriving Coral Reefs

coral reef

Even though at first appearance corals may look like plants or rocks, they are in fact animals, related to sea anemones and jellyfish. Coral reefs the world over are threatened by pollution, rising ocean temperatures and overfishing. In Cuba, however, reefs are flourishing.

Coral reefs are extremely sensitive to environmental changes and depend on clean, clear saltwater for survival. Pollution and agricultural runoff can have a huge impact on the health of a coral reef. In this sense, Cuba’s Communist government may have inadvertently helped protect the Cuban reefs for many years by preventing the flow of fresh water to the sea, as well as limiting the availability and use of fertilizer and pesticides. However, as Cuba begins to open its doors to the rest of the world, increased commercialism and tourism is once again increasing levels of pollution, sedimentation and development in coastal areas, which creates a negative effect on the corals.

In this video from “Nature” follow along with your class as a marine biologist explores the variety of corals, fish and other wildlife in Cuba’s tropical waters, and consider why Cuba’s reefs are so healthy in comparison to those in the rest of the world. WATCH: http://to.pbs.org/1nDACNa