Education Highlights

WILL - Education Highlights - June 04, 2013

How much screen time is too much?

Should you be limiting the amount of time your kids spend on the laptop or iPad? Hear June 4's Focus discussion with Atlantic senior editor and parent Hanna Rosin, and David Bickham from Boston's Center on Media and Child Health.

Girl reading and boy using laptop computer

WILL - Education Highlights - May 24, 2013

Summer Reading Activities

Summer is the perfect time for kids to experience the world around them through reading! All summer long, PBS Parents and PBS KIDS are here to provide your family with fun, educational activities that explore reading, writing and language.

WILL - Education Highlights - May 20, 2013

Raising a Powerful Girl

How do you raise a powerful girl and what does that mean? The PBS Parents website has some advice.

Powerful girls grow up feeling secure in themselves. They learn to take action, making positive choices about their own lives and doing positive things for others. They think critically about the world around them. They express their feelings and acknowledge the feelings and thoughts of others in caring ways. Powerful girls feel good about themselves and grow up with a "can-do" attitude. Of course, strong girls may (like all of us) have times of insecurity and self-doubt, but these feelings aren't paralyzing because the girls have learned to work through their problems. Powerful girls will grow up to lead full, valuable lives.

Get advice from PBS Parents experts to help you raise powerful daughters.

WILL - Education Highlights - April 10, 2013

Thanks for Coming to See Buddy!

Thanks to everyone who came out to see Buddy the Dinosaur and try out educational games and activities!

Buddy greets fans at the Parkland Planetarium

Buddy, from the PBSKids program Dinosaur Train, appeared April 3 at the Book Mentor Project family night at the Parkland College Planetarium, and April 6 at the Young Children's Expo at Lincoln Square Mall and Dino-Mite Devices at the Champaign Public Library, left.Kids try out mobile games

WILL - Education Highlights - April 10, 2013

Make Much Ado about Shakespeare in Your Class

Uncover new lesson plans, videos, and games devoted to "The Bard" and his iconic plays that explore a range of topics.

William Shakespeare in old print

Shakespeare Uncovered from PBS LearningMedia explores the complete plays of William Shakespeare—one of the greatest writers to have ever lived. From his comedies to histories to tragedies, the series looks at the stories that have shaped our cultural history: seeking out each play’s inspiration, finding the moments and places that set every scene, as well as examining the words that gave life to Shakespeare’s world both in the past and present.

This thematic collection -- which adheres to national learning standards -- contains video segments from the series, informational texts, discussion questions, and suggestions for extension activities to enhance your students’ reading, viewing, and appreciation of Shakespeare’s works.

O this learning, what a thing it is!

Access the resources from PBS LearningMedia.

Bring Hamlet, Henry V, Macbeth and The Tempest to life! You will also find content from the PBS series, Shakespeare Uncovered in which actors like Ethan Hawke, Jude Law, and David Tennant reveal new insights into some of Shakespeare's most famous characters.

WILL - Education Highlights - March 20, 2013

Tap into Your Inner Scientist

Want to predict solar storms and design renewable energy systems? How about tracking cloud movements and learning cybersecurity strategies? Check out NOVA Labs and take part in real-world investigations with using real scientific data.

WILL - Education Highlights - January 24, 2013

PBS LearningMedia engages students

Students in Gibson City use a white board to play a learning game.

PBS LearningMedia is a dynamic platform offering the best of public media content and produced specifically for PreK-16 teachers. With free access to over 22,000 high-quality resources tied to national standards, teachers can download, save and share exactly what they need for an inspired classroom experience.

WILL - Education Highlights - January 14, 2013

Illinois Public Media helps Stratton students produce newscasts

WILL's Henry Radcliffe talks to students operating video cameras.

Illinois Public Media is teaching students at Stratton Leadership and Microsociety Magnet School how to produce video newscasts for their Strattonville microsociety.

The case of the missing corn snake headlined the first school newscast in December. Student newscasters Lihi and Terry reported that the snake was assumed to be loose in the school after its cage door was accidentally left open. Although the snake was harmless, “it would still be helpful—to the snake—if it were found,” Lihi said.

The newscasts are part of the “media venture” project of the school microsociety, named Strattonville by students. WILL received a grant from Unit 4 Schools to provide training for both students and teachers.

A team of 10 students produced the news show, which premiered during a school assembly in December, after other students reported stories, wrote scripts, and filmed and edited video. It also featured weather and a video story about the media venture project. Each time a new newscast is done, students upload it to the Web, where teachers in each classroom can access it and play it for students. It’s also available for parents and others to see at

Illinois Public Media’s Henry Radcliffe and College of Media intern Alison Marcotte are teaching the students TV studio production; Kimberlie Kranich shows them how to interview, report and research; and Molly Delaney teaches them media literacy skills. Stratton teachers Erin Uppinghouse and Monty Rose are working with the students.

Students spent two months learning their jobs, and becoming familiar with the equipment. At first, they didn’t know that “stand by to cue the talent” meant “get ready to cue them,” not “go ahead and cue them.” Learning to read the teleprompter without moving their heads left to right was another challenge. And camera operators were still working during the first taping to remember to hold the cameras still.

As they crowded around a monitor to watch the playback after completing the taping, students had big smiles on their faces as they saw themselves and heard their voices. “You’ve really come a long way,” Henry told them. “You should be proud.”

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