Here are just a few things that may interest you, your students, and your own children.
1) If you want to stimulate the creativity of children K-3rd grade, then encourage them to enter their own original stories and illustrations in the PBS Kids Go! Writers contest. Entries can be submitted from now to April 6th. Local winners selected by LPB will be entered in the national contest where they have a chance of winning prizes, including tablets, e-readers and MP3 players. Local winners will be featured on LPB’s website. National winners will be announced during the summer of 2013 and featured on the national PBS website. Rules and creative writing resources can be accessed at http://pbskids.org/writerscontest/
2) Looking for a fun way to teach students how to research and document information? Research Rescue Squad is the next electronic field trip from Colonial Williamsburg. Someone is stealing books, removing footnotes, and confusing students with false information. Luckily, the Research Rescue Squad will save the day! Join the Squad as they try to defeat the evil mastermind, Dubious Sources, by helping students do solid research. The field trip can be access free through LPB or watch over the air on LPB 2. Preregister at lpb.org/education and access information will be emailed to you. The trip is Thursday January 17th from 9 a.m. to 10 a.m.
3) You may also be interested in an electronic field trip from Colonial Williamsburg on The Slave Trade that explores the U.S. law of 1807 that abolished the transatlantic slave trade. Meet the people involved in or influenced by this pivotal legislation: slaves, plantation owners, slave-ship captains and crew, government officials, navy officers, and antislavery activists. The trip is on Thursday, February 14th from 9 to 10 a.m. Preregister at lpb.org/education and access information will be emailed to you. The trip also airs on LPB 2.
4) If you missed the first episode of The Abolitionists on American Experience you can catch it online at http://video.pbs.org/video/2323777396
. The next episodes are today and January 22nd from 8 – 9 p.m. Teacher guides and lesson plans are available at http://www.pbs.org/wgbh/americanexperience/features/teachers-resources/abolitionists-guide/
5) If you know of a student in the 7-12 grade who deserves recognition for having excelled in the classroom, served their community or shown great courage in overcoming adversity in their own lives, then nominate them for LPB’s Young Heroes Award. Students must be enrolled in a Louisiana school or homeschooled and cannot be older than 19 years of age. Nomination forms can be downloaded from the LPB website (http://www.lpb.org/heroes
6) The killings in Newtown, Connecticut have started a national conversation about the issues of gun control and treatment of the mentally ill. The conversation continues in Louisiana where voters recently passed a state constitutional amendment making its citizens’ right to bear arms, the strongest in the nation. How would national gun control proposals affect the 45% of Louisianans who own guns? Budget cuts have hit mental health care services and facilities statewide. Will reduced funding of mental health services put a vulnerable population at further risk of harming themselves or others? Louisiana Public Square explores the answers to these questions and more on “Newtown: A Louisiana Perspective” airing Wednesday, January 23rd at 7 p.m. on LPB HD. Panelists include Col. Michael Edmonson, LA State Police Superintendent and co-director of the Governor's School Safety Study Group; Sen. Neil Riser sponsor of SB303 gun rights bill which became the “Strict Scrutiny” state constitutional amendment; Dr. Betty Muller, Child Psychiatrist and Lafourche Parish School System consultant, Tulane School of Medicine; and Lewis Unglesby, a Baton Rouge trial attorney and outspoken support of restrictions on ownership.
7) February 22-23, 2013, is the 16thAnnual Louisiana Environmental Education Symposium – “Our Environment…Our Future” which will be held at the Baton Rouge Marriott in Baton Rouge, Louisiana. The theme for this upcoming conference will be “Build a Sustainable Future”. Early Bird Registration closes on January 22, 2013. Lodging assistance is available. Further information is available at http://www.wlf.louisiana.gov/eec
8) How would you like to spend the weekend with a black bear? A weekend of fun and learning about black bears will be held at Poverty Point State Park in Epps, Louisiana on March 1-3rd. The Louisiana Department of Wildlife and Fisheries is offering this workshop for middle and high school teachers and informal educators to learn about bears of the world and current research on Louisiana bears, see how to conduct classroom lesson activities, and do field work related to black bear habitat identification using GPS units. Further information is available at http://www.wlf.louisiana.gov/newsletter-issue/special-enews-announcement-new-educator-workshop-louisiana-black-bears
9) Preschoolers can dive into a Submarine Adventure with Dinosaur Train during a new one-hour special on Monday, February 18th. The special, which includes four new stories about sea creatures that lived long ago, will air on LPB at 8 a.m. Meet an enormous marine reptile that is a rather like a cross between a dolphin and a whale and a huge fast swimming lizard with flippers. Baby Archelon turtles hatch and grow up to be giant-sized sea turtles.
10) The presidential inauguration is next week. You may want your students to prepare by watching Frontline: Inside Obama’s Presidency which premieres on Tuesday, January 15th at 9 p.m. Frontline takes a probing look at the first four years of his presidency. With inside accounts from his battles with his Republican opponents over health care and the economy to his dramatic expansion of targeted killings of enemies, Frontline examines the president’s key decisions and the experiences that will inform his second term. If you miss it, watch it online at http://video.pbs.org
. Then from 10 a.m. until 1 p.m. on Monday, January 21st watch the swearing-in, speech and inauguration procession on the PBS NewsHour Inauguration 2013: A Special Report. Presidential historians Michael Beschloss and Richard Norton Smith will join the regular PBS NewsHour staff.
11) On Friday, January 18th, Great Performances Live at the Met: L’Elisir d’ Amore premieres at 9 p.m. The fickle Adina (Anna Netrebko) and her besotted Nemorino (Matthew Polenzani,) star in Bartlett Sher’s new production of one of the great comic gems in opera. Mariusz Kwiecien is the blustery sergeant Belcore and Ambrogio Maestri is Dulcamara, the loveable quack and dispenser of the elixir. Maurizio Benini conducts.
12) On Friday, January 25th, Shakespeare Uncovered (six-part series) premieres with back-to-back episodes from 9 until 11 p.m. You can also record it for use in your classroom. Six episodes combine history, biography, iconic performances, new analysis and the personal passion of its celebrated hosts — Ethan Hawke, Jeremy Irons, Derek Jacobi, Trevor Nunn, Joely Richardson and David Tennant — to tell the story behind the stories of Shakespeare’s greatest plays. Each episode combines interviews with actors, directors and scholars, along with visits to key locations, clips from some of the most celebrated film and television adaptations, and illustrative excerpts from the plays specially staged for the series at Shakespeare's Globe in London.
I hope you have a chance to enjoy some of these resources.