Are you in desperate need of some good old-fashioned quality time with your kids? There’s nothing more bonding than sitting down at your kitchen table and letting those creative juices flow. A fun way to spend time with your kids is to sit down and make puppets with them. Peg+ Cat is a popular show on PBS KIDS that kids love. Peg + Cat inspires preschool children to see math as exciting, accessible and fun. The show teaches measurement, shapes, and patterns, and a wide range of fundamental pre-math skills. To spice things up a bit you can make Peg + Cat puppet sticks. Don’t know where to start? PBS Parents provides you with sources that walk you through the process step by step. Click here for more information.
“Eating healthier food” is on most people’s lists for starting the new year off right, and many want to spend less time eating out and more time cooking with their families. Crafting dishes that appeal to young and relatively critical eaters can be especially tough. If you don’t know where to turn, look no further than PBS Parents–providing you with top notch resources for the holidays, homeschooling, hat making, and everything in between–and now with Kitchen Explorers. Kitchen Explorers is the place to go for delicious and easy recipes the whole family will love!
Recipes are sorted into 6 categories (breakfast, lunch, dinner, desserts, birthdays, picky eaters and snacks) to make your quest for the perfect dish go smoothly. If Ham and Broccoli Noodle Casserole or Whole Wheat Carrot Cake Scones don’t make your mouth water, then there are plenty of other delicious options to choose from.
You can even let your kids play with their food, if it doubles as their math homework! Intrigued? Read more here.
There are so many fun ways to help your little ones beat the winter blues! Why not send them off on an imaginative journey to Adventure Camp with Dinosaur Train Nature Trackers, right from the comfort of your own living room? Make sure to tune in on January 20th, 2014 for the premiere of this exciting new special! The episodes will be shown both at 9 am and 2:30 pm on the 20th.
To help you get excited about the special premiere, enjoy this coloring sheet and maze activity sheet. Make sure to check WFSU’s programming schedule for more information about when Dinosaur Train is shown.
The last few weeks before winter break can be tedious, as both students and teachers count down the days till their well-deserved holiday. Make the wait fun with awesome holiday projects from Design Squad Nation.
If things aren’t festive enough in your classroom, start the party with a homemade confetti launcher! You can see a how-to video here and a detailed description of how to make the confetti cannon here.
For some festive and slightly devious holiday merriment, have your students hack a recordable greeting card and turn it into a mini sound system.
If aren’t feeling quite as ambitious, pop-up holiday cards are a fun and easy project the whole class will enjoy.
Happy Holidays from WFSU!
Get your class excited about engineering this fall with fun projects from Design Squad Nation! Children can make their own bristle bots from a toothbrush head and a pager motor, and even design mazes for the bots to run around. Then there is the classic egg drop, where students can test the durability of their egg-protecting structure. Find step-by-step instructions for the egg structure activity here, as well as a how-to video.
This fall PBS KIDS will premiere new episodes of Martha Speaks and Arthur starting November 11, 2013. They will also be debuting a new collection of free digital storybooks. Special guest voice actors, Alan Cumming (MASTERPIECE MYSTERY!; The Good Wife) and Kenan Thompson (Saturday Night Live), will help kick off the new episode premieres! Make sure to tune in and enjoy the fun!
The new episodes are:
11/11 #507 “Stanley Saves the Day/Milo Goes for Gold” *NEW*
11/12 #506 “Mouse Patrol/The Big Knockover” *NEW*
11/13 #504 “My Mother the Dog/Martha’s Must-Have” *NEW*
11/14 #508 “The Return of Ralph/Little Bo’s Sheep” *NEW*
11/15 #507 “Stanley Saves the Day/Milo Goes for Gold”
11/11 #1701 “Show Off/Dog’s Best Friend” *NEW*
11/12 #1702 “Adventures in Budylon/Ladonna Compson: Party Animal” *NEW*
11/13 #1703 “Molina’s Mulligan/Buster Bombs” *NEW*
11/14 #1704 “Opposites Distract/Just the Ticket” *NEW*
11/15 #1705 “All Thumbs/Kidonia” *NEW*
“Digital media is increasingly present in kids’ formal and informal educational settings, becoming as common as pencils and notebooks were to their parents. Yet in many American classrooms and homes, these high-tech tools are severely limited or forbidden. Teachers and parents wonder: What are students doing with these technologies?”
Do you have questions about your child’s use of digital media, or why it is important? PBS Parents has the answers! Have a look at this article, Digital Media: New Learners of the 21st Century, then take some time to explore the other fabulous resources including video interviews with media use experts, a list of schools and programs utilizing digital media, discussion guides, and more.
This is a wonderful resource to share with parents and fellow educators, so spread the word!
PBS KIDS and Whole Foods Market are partnering to make eating healthy fun for kids. Check out the fabulous activities and worksheets available at pbskids.org and visit your local Whole Foods Market (on Thomasville Road across from Jo-Ann Fabric and Craft store) to join in the fun!
Some of the extra-amazing printables available are Grocery Store Bingo, Pirate Treasure, and I Tried It.
It’s that time of year again, when thoughts turn to paper pumpkins, and buckets full of candy, and those cute plastic spider rings. This year, make Halloween extra special for your little goblins and ghouls with fun crafts and activities from PBS Parents!
First, Some Fun Crafts:
Help your children decorate the house, or get ready for a spooky Halloween party with these fun craft ideas including: haunted house, bat treat holders, and handprint spider.
And, Activities to go Batty Over:
Work on your child’s math or English skills with fun Halloween activities including: pumpkin math, not-so-scary boo book, and decayed pumpkin. They’ll have so much fun, they won’t realize they’re learning!
Now, Some Scary (or Not so Scary) Stories to Read to Your Little Ones:
Find the perfect book for some Halloween-themed story telling. A home-made sheet and pillow tent and flashlight are optional!
And, Some Games to Play:
Have your child play some fun online games to get them in the Halloween mood and help them brush up on their school skills at the same time! Games include: Cyberchase: Disguise Combos; Arthur: Crank it Up; and Caillou: Match the Leaves.
Next, Some Yummy Treats to Eat:
Whip up a batch of Sweet Ghost Crisps, Sticky Caramel Apples, or other Spooktacular Treats if you’re stomach sounds like it is inhabited by monsters.
And Finally, the Costume:
Making your child a Halloween costume just got easier with fantastic no-sew costume ideas based on your child’s favorite PBS characters including Daniel Tiger, Super Why and Dinosaur Train. Happy Haunting!
While one of Fred Rogers’ trademarks was the simple and straightforward way he spoke to children, he knew the importance of enriching children’s vocabularies with “big” words. An excellent example is the song he wrote for King Friday to sing:
“Propel, propel, propel your craft…
Gently down liquid solution.
Ecstatically, ecstatically, ecstatically, ecstatically,
Existence is but an illusion!”
There are so many fun and easy ways that you can share big words with the children you teach. Watch this video clip to see how thoughtfully Fred introduces a “big” word, and see below for some more suggestions from the Fred Rogers Company newsletter.
Think of words that are fun to say: If a child enjoys saying a word or thinks it sounds comical or silly, they are more likely to use it in the future. Some great sounding “big” words are “humungous” and “stupendous.”
Stretch children’s emotional vocabulary: We all know the importance of having children “use their words” to describe how they are feeling. Help your child put a name on more complex emotions such as anxious, nervous, disgusted, or disappointed.
Expose children to new words in books: Read books to your child that introduce new words but still have familiar vocabulary. Don’t stop to define the words the first few times you read the book. There is a good chance that your child will figure out the meaning from context.
Help children move from general to specific: Take advantage of opportunities to help your child learn to define items in a category that they would normally label with the same word, such as flowers, animals or insects. The next time you are outside and your child spots a “bug” take the time to talk about how that bug’s real name is a “beetle” or a “gnat.”