By Susie B. Grimm
In this uncertain time we want to provide teachers and parents with a variety of resources for at-home learning. We pulled together a few ideas to help parents use our educational activities at home, while teachers can use them for assignments in their online learning environments. The tips below will help educators and parents connect our on-air educational programming with our online At-Home Learning lesson plans, activities and related content for PreK-12th grade students.
At Home Recommendations for Parents
Before watching, as a family discuss a state, city, or specific place that is important to your family’s history. Then watch the entire episode or break it down into the chunked clips — whatever will work best for your children.
- After watching each clip or the whole episode, write the name of the place that is important to your family on a piece of paper, sticky note, or online document.
- Write 3 questions you can research about that place. The questions should be searchable online. You should write questions for facts like, “How many people live there?”, “What is the most popular destination or restaurant?”, or find information about meaningful dates, etc.
- Do your online research to find the answers to your questions.
- Think about the significance of the place to your family. Write three more questions that can be answered by interviewing family members about that place. You can ask for opinions and memories, like, “What was your favorite thing to eat there? Or ”What do you remember being your favorite thing to do there?”
- Call, email, or talk to your relatives and ask them about the place.
- Create a presentation about what you learned. You could make a poster, a memory book, a picture or series of pictures about their learning, or use free online sources like Google Slides or Adobe Spark.
- Share your work with your family! You can even post it on Social Media or share it with the place you researched!
In order to keep information and activities in small, easily manageable activities, you should use the clips, instead of the entire episode.
- Assign students to watch Clip 1: The Assignment
- Depending on your students’ ages and abilities, you may want to have students select a city that is important to them, like their hometown, a city they have lived in, a city they want to visit, etc. OR you may want them to use the city where your school is located.
- Have students create 3-5 fact-based questions they can answer about the city. You can use free resources like Padlet or Flipgrid for students to share the questions they developed.
- Have students research to find their answers. Instead of having them Google the answers, advise them to use the internet or PBS LearningMedia to search for the answers. Depending on your students’ resources and abilities, you may need to locate the resources for them and tell them to use the links you have provided to help them narrow down their searching parameters.
- Have them write their answers. They can go back into Flipgrid or Padlet or whichever online program you used to share their answers.
- Have students watch one or all of the clips; you can assign.
- Encourage students to submit their research to an online program like Fliprgrid or Padlet, to create a Google Slides presentation (as a class or individual), use Adobe Spark or another program, or submit a written copy to you. For an offline presentation, students can create a picture or series of pictures about their learning, design a paper slideshow or make a paper version of a Facebook page or website for the place they researched.
This article was originally published on PBS SoCal’s At-Home Learning initiative.