As an early childhood educator, I was so excited for the PBS Sprout and Electric Company presentation! I watch these shows all the time with my nieces who are 5 and 3 years of age and constantly wonder, who picks the content for these shows? What attracts my nieces to these television shows? How can I incorporate these shows into my early childhood classroom curriculum?
The PBS Sprout presenters discussed how their channel follows the life of a preschooler in thirty-minute blocks. Their whole idea is having young children in their programming actively participating. They partner with Hit Entertainment, Sesame Workshop and PBS kids. Their curriculum revolves around the themes of “imagination, sharing, inclusion, and interaction.” There is no “lip-flap”. Their shows are easily adaptable and multi-lingual. I went on their website later and looked around. After meeting Chicka at the conference, I was so excited to see him on the website! The Sunny Side Up and The Good Night Show have to be my favorite shows. Having two nieces, I could see how much they would enjoy the consistency of watching these shows every morning and night. As discussed at the conference, PBS Sprout has daily and weekly themes. Monday’s theme was music and next week’s overall theme is Earth in honor of Earth Day. At the conference we were shown all the birthday cards sent into to the show. While on the website I noticed a section where kids can send things into PBS Sprout. Because this week’s theme is music, they made drums and guitars on The Sunny Side Up. Viewers are welcome to send in any artwork or pictures related to this week’s theme. Check out on their site what kids sent in!
Electric Company was a blast from the past! I remember the Electric Company from when I was little and was so happy to hear it is back. The Electric Company targets kids who have graduated out of Sesame Street and need another type of programming. It also aims at helping kids who are struggling readers. As a teacher getting her masters in literacy, I was so thrilled to hear this! This is something interactive, engaging and creative that could help so many students who struggle with reading on a daily basis. The Electric Company’s addresses “decoding, vocabulary, comprehension of connected text and motivation.” The quick clips of recent episodes shown were amazing! The way they embedded different literacy standards into their programming in a fun and imaginative way got my attention. I also went to the Electric Company’s website. Their graphics and games are very appealing for older children. All of their games support the literacy concepts discussed at the conference. The Word Transformer game helps students learn about the silent e. They had many other games and new ones one that were coming to the website soon.
During Alan Teasley’s presentation on “Why Film Matters” I began to think how I could bring media literacy into my kindergarten classroom. I know my students love watching television and movies but how could I incorporate that into my early childhood class? When Alan gave us the statistics that children ages 2-7 have their T.V. on 35% of the time and 32% have it in their bedroom, I was shocked. Media surrounds my students at all times. Would their parents want it at school also? Are T.V. and movies just a home activity?
During Pam Goble’s presentation I began to think this was a possibility. While viewing clips from the movie “Kit Kitredge” and looking at the graphic organizers designed for students in younger grades, I had an idea. Could I maybe show a clip from the Electric Company about a new vocabulary word and have the students discuss what the word means, words similar to it and how it was used it in the show? For even younger kids, I could show a clip from The Sunny Side Up and print out an activity worksheet for the theme of the day. We could then discuss words associated with the activity sheet and theme and then read books that go along with the theme as well. These are just some thoughts i have. Any ideas or thoughts about this would be much appreciated. I think all early childhood classrooms deserve a media component!
Check out these great sites!
The Electric Company
Early Childhood Teachers: More Planet Movies