Solar Eclipse Resources for Families & Educators

The solar eclipse on August 21st is fast approaching.  You can watch it live on KLRU Q starting at 1:30 pm.
Follow the links to explore ways to engage kids as they learn about the solar eclipse. And by all means, do NOT let them look directly at the eclipse when it occurs without special protection!

In addition to the above resources, NOVA will be airing a special episode called Eclipse Over America on Monday, August 21 at 8:00 pm on 18-1 KLRU. It will air 2 days later on Wednesday, August 23rd at 7:00 pm on 18-1 KLRU.

For younger students, you may want to show the kids the 13 minute Ready Jet Go! Total Eclipse of the Sunspot episode that teaches kids about the solar eclipse and how to create a pinhole box viewer to be able to see the eclipse without hurting their eyes. Airtimes

  • Tuesday, August 15th at 1:00 pm on 18-1 KLRU
  • Tuesday, August 15th at 5:30 pm on 18-4 PBS KIDS
  • Friday, August 18th at 7:00 pm on 18-4 PBS KIDS
  • Saturday, August 19th at 7:00 pm on 18-4 PBS KIDS
  • Sunday, August 20th at 7:00 pm on 18-4 PBS KIDS
  • Thursday, August 31st at 5:30 pm on 18-4 PBS KIDS
  • Monday, September 25th at 1:00 pm on 18-1 KLRU

Here is the Pinhole Eclipse Projector activity sheet from Ready Jet Go:

We hope you’ll be able to guide your students in their discoveries about the solar eclipse!

Happy National Summer Learning Day!

National Summer Learning Day highlights the importance of keeping kids learning during the summer so that they can return to school in the fall ready to succeed in the year!

This year, our partner Boys & Girls Clubs of the Austin Area teamed up with KLRU to offer an exciting day of learning with PBS KIDS resources.

Kids were shown an episode of a PBS KIDS show called Design Squad in which two groups of teens compete against each other to build the best zip line thrill ride using the materials and tools provided.  The Walnut Creek club members were so excited to find out that they themselves had to complete a similar hands-on challenge. They were given rope, ping pong balls, marbles, rubber bands, construction paper, pipe cleaners, and masking tape.  They were instructed to work in small groups to plan the design of a carrier for the ping pong ball that would carry it safely from one end of a zip line to the other.
As soon as they were given the go ahead, you could hear the kids excitedly sharing their ideas and vision with each other, asking each other questions, problem solving together, and drawing out a plan.  Working together has its challenges and this was no exception, you could hear groups having to deal with conflicting ideas and compromising to reach a unified solution. Once they had solidified their plan, they began building collaboratively and testing out the design. You could hear groans when it didn’t work and the teams had to modify their designs and try again. You could hear another team cheering at the other side of the room when they had a breakthrough and it actually worked. You could feel the energy, see tons of smiles and hear the laughter coming from all sides of the room. It was pretty obvious that the kids were having fun while learning.

After completing the challenge, the kids gathered for a read-out-loud of the book, Rosie Revere Engineer by Andrea Beaty.  The book encourages kids to persevere. On their way out, the kids were given a PBS summer activity booklet and a frisbee with the Klru.org/stem link printed on it. As they were exiting, I asked a little girl what she had learned. She said, “not to give up and if I keep trying, I’ll learn new things along the way and I will get better.”

Rather than keeping the fun limited to one day, BGCAA STEM director, Erica Egan, turned it up a notch by making it a week of fun. On Monday, 15 elementary-aged kids from the Bastrop Boys & Girls Clubs participated. On Wednesday, fifteen 1st and 2nd graders from Walnut Creek site joined in the fun. Tomorrow, Friday, the EAST site club members will get their turn to play while learning.  #KeepKidsLearning.

 

KLRU Educational Services receives grant funds from Summer STEM Investment Hub

Central Texas Summer STEM Investment Hub

For the fourth consecutive year, KLRU Educational Services will work alongside 12 other partners to provide quality STEM (Science, Technology, Engineering and Math) summer experiences for low-income youth in Central Texas. The Central Texas Summer STEM Investment Hub, a collaborative of 13 funding partners, has dedicated not only funding, but professional development and research expertise to tackle two important challenges: a summer “slide” in skills for low-income youth relative to their higher-income peers, and the desire to grow a local workforce for future Central Texas STEM-related jobs.

KLRU has three chief roles in this Summer STEM work:

  • to determine how KLRU’s digital assets, including equipment and digital media resources, can complement the work of each partner for on-site use
  • to provide resources to youth and their families to extend the learning achieved into the remainder of the summer through our vast collection of online and app-based resources
  • to hold discussions with youth and their families about summer screen use. We know that screen use goes way up during the summer months. We wish to help families strive for a healthy balance of “smart” and “silly” screen time, along with other activities for all members of the family.

The grantees are:

Design Connect Create
UT Austin TACC
UT Austin Dell Medical School
UT Austin UTeach Outreach
AISD Eastside Memorial Vertical Team
AISD STAARburst
AISD Akins High School
KLRU Educational Services
Campfire USA
Girlstart
Hill Country Science Mill
Harmony Science Academy
Welcome Table

The Central Texas Summer STEM Investment Hub partners are:  KDK-Harman Foundation, KLE Foundation, Webber Family Foundation, Topfer Family Foundation, Andy Roddick Foundation, Austin Community Foundation, Intel Foundation, Michael & Susan Dell Foundation, and IBM.

KLRU Kids Writers – more stories every day!

We are receiving stories in the mail every day and are publishing them as fast as we can! Check every day for the next week to see our collections grow! Click here.

¡Estamos recibiendo nuevos cuentos en el correo cada día y los estamos publicando tan rápido como podamos! Chequea cada día esta semana para ver crecer la colección. Haz clic aquí.

 

KLRU hosts National PBS KIDS Ready to Learn Advisors Meeting

On February 2 and 3, 2017, KLRU hosted the Ready to Learn National Advisors Meeting.  The annual meeting is typically held in Washington D.C.; this was their first-ever relocation to a community implementing Ready to Learn-funded activities.  Over 50 advisors from higher education, media production, and public-serving agencies gathered to provide direction to the project, in order to discuss the content and curriculum being produced, its dissemination to communities in need, and to give input on how to best evaluate the project’s efficacy.

Ready to Learn Advisors in a panel discussion on the original Austin City Limits stage. The Corporation for Public Broadcasting and PBS Kids are leading the Ready to Learn: Community Collaboratives for Early Learning and Media project, funded by the Department of Education.  The five year grant ( 2015 – 2020) calls upon up to 40 PBS stations from all over the nation and their local community organizations to disseminate scientific inquiry and literacy content to low-income children ages 2 – 8 years old.

KLRU was one of the 11 pilot stations invited to test new resources in the field.  We partner with Thinkery, Communities In Schools of Central Texas, and Boys & Girls Clubs of the Austin area.

From Left to Right: Ben Kramer, VP of Education at KLRU; Erica Gallardo-Taft, Vice President of Program Services at Boys & Girls Clubs of the Austin Area; Eric Metcalf, Chief of Program Strategy at Communities In Schools of Central Texas; Robin Gose, Director of Education at Thinkery

Among other initiatives, we have held Odd Squad Summer Math Camps and Family Creative Learning (FCL) workshops at partner sites. At the FCL workshops, we guided parents to actively engage in their child’s learning using the free PBS KIDS Scratch Jr. app, which allows them to animate their favorite PBS characters.

In summer 2017, KLRU will pilot Odd Squad Summer Science Camp in which kids will solve problems to become Odd Squad agents.  Another project coming down the pipeline is a new collection of Ruff Ruffman science materials.

Thank you to Thinkery for hosting one day of the workshop and to the city of Austin for wowing the Ready to Learn Advisory group. We hope that they will return in 2018.

Ready to Learn: Community Collaboratives for Early Learning and Media is funded by the US Department of Education and administered by the Corporation for Public Broadcasting.

For immigrant children or children of immigrants / Para los niños inmigrantes o los hijos de inmigrantes

en español

Now is a difficult time to be a young child with immigrant parents in Central Texas. They may be hearing from adults, from the news, and in their schools about actions such as raids, deportations, and negative statements about immigrants. Even if they are not hearing such things directly, they may be feeling the stress of others in their homes.

KLRU Educational Services has the following advice and resources for families and educators:

1. Do NOT keep the TV or radio news on all the time when young people are present. Try to find ways to receive your news (via text message, social media, etc.) that can be silent and that will not keep your children nervous as they wait to hear what comes next. PBS KIDS offers safe, happy programs 24 hours a day through the PBS KIDS Video Viewer app and online at pbskids.org

2. Sesame Street’s Little Children, Big Challenges Community Guide (ages 3-5) This is a resource that can help you talk to children about the challenges you face and the people in your lives that can help.

Arthur

Arthur Resilient Site (Ages 5-10)

3. Arthur Resilience Site (ages 5-10) This website from Arthur has a variety of activities that can take you step by step through conversations and activities with your child. It includes discussion guides, activities, and videos to help your child manage thoughts and feelings.

4. Apps – The FREE Sesame Street Breathe, Think, Do (Android / Apple ) helps children to calm themselves when they are stressed or agitated. And the new, FREE Daniel Tiger for Parents app can help you find songs and activities for a variety of difficult situations. It is also bilingual (Spanish & English) (Android / Apple)

Ahora es un periodo especialmente difícil para los jóvenes que tienen padres que son inmigrantes. Pueden escuchar cosas de adultos, de las noticias, y en sus escuelas sobre acciones como detenciones, deportaciones, y declaraciones negativas sobre los inmigrantes. Aunque no estén escuchando directamente tales cosas negativas, pueden sentir el estrés de los otros alrededor de ellos.

Los Servicios Educativos de KLRU tienen los siguientes consejos y recursos para familias y educadores:

1. NO PRENDAN la tele ni la radio todo el tiempo cuando niños están presentes. Traten de buscar otros medios (silenciosos) de recibir sus noticias (textos, medios sociales, etc.) PBS KIDS ya ofrece gratis programas disponsibles las 24 horas en su app PBS KIDS Video Viewer y en pbskids.org.

Guía de Niños Chiquitos, Desafios Grandes

2. De Plaza Sesamo, la Guía de Niños Chiquitos, Desafios Grandes (edades 3-5) Este recurso les puede ayudar a hablar con sus niños sobre sus sentimientos y preocupaciones.

3. Daniel Tiger for Parents – este app gratis les puede ayudar a buscar canciones y activades para momentos difíciles. Es bilingüe. (Android / Apple)

Daniel Tigers Neighborhood

 

 

Literacy Links provides PBS resources to Oak Springs Elementary students

The Austin Chapter of The Links, Incorporated Literacy Links Program was a huge hit with the 1st – 3rd graders at Oak Springs Elementary School of Austin ISD. On December 19th, members of the organization shared Electric Company magazines and resources from klrukids.org with 120 students in 7 classrooms. The materials were IMG_27811STEAM-focused and intended to equip students with resources for continued educational development over the Winter Break.  Students who brought their completed magazines when they returned to school in January received special recognition for the accomplishment. 

The Austin (TX) Chapter of The Links, Incorporated is committed to enriching, sustaining and ensuring the culture and economic survival of African Americans and other persons of African ancestry.  They serve the Travis, Williamson, Hays, Blanco, Caldwell, and Bastrop counties. The Literacy Links Program’s goal is to emphasize closing the elementary achievement gap by promoting effective literacy practices.

KLRU and Community Partners: Families Creative Learning workshops

KLRU has partnered with the Thinkery, Boys & Girls Club, and Communities in Schools to bring Families Creative Learning workshops to low-income families with young children. Parents bond with their children as they both learn to code.  Using the Scratch Jr. PBS app, the families animate their favorite PBS characters. The parents have the wonderful opportunity to be active participants in their children’s learning. As supportive collaborators, parents encourage their children to problem solve and experiment while being persistent in their creative process.

Walk into a session and you’ll see friendly families sharing a meal. Afterwards, it’s time to reflect on what has been learned. Then parents work together with their children to create a project that tells a meaningful story.  It’s neat to see how imaginative the children can be as they express themselves using technology. The final projects are shared amongst the group and include animated greeting cards, stories about their family, and other wildly creative animations.

31518205452_e16346e90b_o (1)Karen and MomRob, Miguel, and Mom (2)

What’s great is that families receive a tablet at the end of 4 weekly sessions. These tablets are a gateway to more learning using the many free PBS kids apps available. Families also receive books that they can enjoy at home as a vital component of at-home learning.

Educational experiences such as this empower parents to continue engaging in their children’s education. It inspires children to continue to explore and discover new ways of self-expression in today’s digital world.

Families Creative Learning is part of the Community Collaborative for Early Learning and Media, funded by the US Department of Education and administered by the Corporation for Public Broadcasting.

 CPB logoDOEPBSKIDS_logo

 

Summer Learning Day with KLRU Kids!

28314200065_ccf1e7b6ab_zKLRU Educational Services visited three partner sites yesterday to deliver summer learning fun to kids. All received an armful of fun summer learning materials, including PBS Kids activity books, picture/chapter books, puzzle cubes pointing to free KLRU/PBS Kids apps and websites, and Pete the Cat headbands!

Summer Learning Day is a national event led by the National Summer Learning Association designed to highlight the importance of keeping kids learning, safe and healthy every summer.

#keepkidslearning #klrukids

Resources for the dog days

If you have been hearing this as of late (or maybe since school let out), realize that letting kids remain bored for a while can actually lead to them developing their own creative solutions. If you have given that a try and a) your home is damaged as a result; or b) they really need help finding something new to do, check out this link:

http://www.pbs.org/parents/summer/