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Here are some things to start the year that you, your students, and your own family may enjoy.
1. During Colonial Williamsburg's next electronic field trip, The Amazing Trade Shop Math Race, tradespeople help two teams of students in a race against the clock to help the Continental Army! Quirky "Professor Eddie" is back again, highlighting how students use their math skills to make shirts, bread, cartridge boxes, and more.
The trip will be broadcasted at 9 am on January 16, 2014 on LPB2. The trip will be ready to stream on demand any time after noon on January 16th. Preregister at http://www.lpb.org/etrips, and you will receive access information by email the day before the field trip.
2. What do Louisiana educators, parents and students think about Common Core? Do the new guidelines encourage students to think and be more persuasive, or do they stifle educational innovation by removing local control? Louisiana Public Square explores the controversial academic standards on “Decoding Common Core” airing Wednesday, January 22 at 7 p.m. on LPB HD. Panelists are: Maya Bennett, a Teacher Leader on Common Core at Capitol Elementary; Lee Barrios, retired educator and public education activist; Ken Bradford, La. Department of Education; Rep. Brett Geymann, R-Lake Charles; Ken Miller, ExxonMobil Plant Manager, Baton Rouge. The program will include an interview with Louisiana Department of Education Superintendent John White. To comment on this month’s topic, visit our program website at http://www.lpb.org/publicsquare.
3. The 2014 PBS LearningMedia Digital Innovators Program will recognize 100 tech-savvy educators as PBS LearningMedia Digital Innovators. K–12 educators can apply for the PBS LearningMedia Digital Innovators program by submitting a 60- to 120-second video and completing two essay questions that describe their leadership in digital learning. A panel of judges will select the 2014 PBS LearningMedia Digital Innovators. One hundred local winners will be awarded year-long professional development opportunities that include virtual trainings, access to premium and exclusive resources, invitations to special events, membership into a robust professional learning community and networking opportunities with innovative educators and thought leaders. In addition, winners will receive ongoing support from their local PBS member stations. The top 15 applicants will also receive an all-expenses-paid trip to Washington, D.C., to participate in a digital summit hosted at PBS national headquarters. This two-day event will offer attendees access to renowned speakers and experts, strategies for delivering best practices in digital education that they can immediately apply to the classroom and networking opportunities with educators from across the country. Click HERE to enter!
4. Do you know a middle school or high school student who is trying to make a difference in the community? Maybe you know a student who excels in the classroom despite obstacles. You might know a student who has an amazing talent. You may even know a student who has saved a life. We have had Louisiana Young Heroes in each of these categories. The bottom line is that Young Heroes are inspiring to those around them. And LPB and the Rotary Club of Baton Rouge want to honor these students!
Nominations are now being taken for the 2014 Louisiana Young Heroes Awards. Students must be enrolled in a Louisiana school (public, private or parochial) or be homeschooled, and cannot be older than 19 years of age.
Nomination forms can be downloaded from the Young Heroes website (http://lpb.org/heroes) or submitted through the online form. Letters of recognition, newspaper articles, copies of awards, and other supporting materials should be sent to demonstrate why the student should be considered for the award. Remember – the panel of judges get to know the student solely through the material submitted with the application.
Students who have been nominated in past years may be re-nominated for this year’s awards. Previous winners are not eligible. The deadline for entries is February 7, 2014. Winners will be announced on the air and on the LPB website on Friday, February 28, 2014.
Louisiana Young Heroes Day will be Wednesday, April 16, 2014. The Young Heroes will be treated to a day full of activities including lunch on the grounds of the Governor’s Mansion. The day will culminate in a banquet that night at the Renaissance Hotel in Baton Rouge.
The awards are co-presented by the Rotary Club of Baton Rouge. Underwriters for the Louisiana Young Heroes Awards are Acadian Companies, Credit Bureau of Baton Rouge Foundation, and CenturyLink.
5. If you work with students 9-12 years of age, you may want to use the Design Squad's hands-on DIY projects to inspire them to explore engineering.
MAKE A ROBOT:
Teach your students to build their own mini robot out of a toothbrush head, a coin battery and a pager motor. Follow this link to a how-to video and step-by-step instructions.
Challenge your students to design and build an airbag system that can safely land an egg dropped onto the floor. Follow this link to a how-to video and this link to step-by-step instructions.
Students will love building this dance pad that helps them move to the rhythm and step to the beat! Follow this link to a how-to video and this link to step-by-step instructions.
Many videos http://pbskids.org/designsquad/parentseducators/resources/index.html?category=electricity and other activities and lesson plans http://pbskids.org/designsquad/parentseducators/lesson-plans/electricity_and_circuits.html are available.
6. Are you around the 100th day of school? You and your children (pre-school to 8 years old) and their parents can mark the day with 100 resources of Peg + Cat. Go to http://www.lpb.org/index.php/education/ and click on the link for Peg + Cat to access resources where you can download the teacher guide. The Peg + Cat series inspires children to view math as exciting, accessible, and fun. It teaches shapes and patterns and a wide range of fundamental pre-math skills, as established by the NAEYC and National Council of Teachers of Math. Be sure to explore the full website at http://pbskids.org/peg/.
7. On January 20th at 8 am and 1:30 pm on LPB HD the one-hour Dinosaur Train’s Nature Trackers Adventure Camp premieres. Throughout their adventures at camp, the dinosaur group finds courage as they race down rivers, have a snowball fight, climb a tall mountain, ride a zipline over the rainforest, and hike down a canyon to dig for fossils. Being adventurous and learning about nature has never been this much fun!
8. Check out LPB LearningMedia’s Weekly Content Themes and resources. Here are the upcoming weeks’ themes to help you plan ahead:
1/20-1/26: Lesson Plan Blast
1/27-2/2: Music Education
2/3-2/9: Celebrating Black History
2/10-2/16: Abraham Lincoln’s Birthday
2/17-2/23: National Engineers Week
2/24-3/2: Genealogy, Roots, Heritage
9. Looking for a resource for Black History Month? Take your students on a virtual trip into U.S. History http://www.mission-us.org/ with Mission 2: “Flight to Freedom,” a free multimedia game. Players take on the role of Lucy, a 14-year-old slave in Kentucky. As they navigate her escape and journey to Ohio, they discover that life in the “free” North is dangerous and difficult and the Fugitive Slave Act could bring disaster.
10. Virtual Field Trips for Pre-K are available through KidVision at http://kidvisionvpk.org/vft.cfm. Tap students’ imaginations through trips to an animal shelter, a children’s hospital, a fire station, airports, a library, Biscayne National Park, and more. Check out one of the most popular resources, Fire Station Field Trip, where Penny and the KidVision VPK Kids visit the fire station and learn about the parts of the fire truck, tour the station house, learn the importance of a fire drill and exit signs and demonstrate how to "Stop, Drop, and Roll." Action packed KidVision field trips include home pages, standards lesson plans, and standards assessments.
11. A special webinar will help you learn to teach Next Generation Science Standards Engineering Design Through Media for Grades 6-8. The free webinar on Thursday, January 16th at 5:30 p.m. provides an overview of the standards, engineering concepts, and tips for teaching with the resources from the Teaching NGSS Engineering Design with Media collection. The webinar is presented by Dr. Martha Cyr, Professor and Executive Director of the STEM Education Center at Worcester Polytechnic Institute, where she focuses on helping K-12 teachers and education leaders implement STEM Curriculum. Register here. Can't attend? Register here and receive a link to a recording of the webinar, which you can watch at your convenience.
I hope that you find some of these useful.
Ellen Wydra, Ph.D.
Director Educational Television and Technology
Louisiana Public Broadcasting