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Building the Pyramids of Ancient Egypt

posted on July 28, 2014 at 2:18 PM

Building the Pyramids of Ancient Egypt

For nearly everyone, traveling to Egypt and seeing the Great Pyramid – one of the Seven Wonders of the Ancient World – is a ‘bucket list’ must-do-and-see. This summer, PBS LearningMedia has your front row ticket!

Egypt was one of the first civilizations; a society with a large population that used writing, lived in cities, had a system of religious beliefs and was ruled by a government. In 2700 BCE, the Egyptians built their first pyramid. That was almost 5,000 years ago! What this huge stone structure tells us about who the Egyptians were is endlessly fascinating.

This interactive lesson from PBS station WGBH teaches students about the thinking of historians and their perspective on why the pyramids were built. Many believe they were created as doorways to the afterlife for the pharaohs. Then, delve further into ancient Egyptian society and how those at the top organized the rest of the population in order to build these amazing structures.

Posted on July 28, 2014 at 2:18 PM Comments

Sea Creatures

posted on July 24, 2014 at 11:16 AM

Sea Creatures

The sea covers seventy percent of the earth’s surface. The deep sea below the ocean’s surface, specifically, is the largest and least explored place on earth.

The fish and other sea animals of the deep sea employ many strategies to surprise their prey including ambush and camouflage by blending into the sea environment. The deeper you go in the ocean, the more unusual and unique the fish appear to be. At the start of this must-watch video from “Nature,” one diver actually encounters some of the most bright and colorful deep sea fish, like rabbitfish and clown triggerfish.

Later, students in grades 1-4 learn about the ghostly squid, the simulating jelly fish, the viper fish, the gulper fish and many others. The cameras even find Nemo swimming amongst the coral!  

Posted on July 24, 2014 at 11:16 AM Comments

Exploring Cuba's Thriving Coral Reefs

posted on July 21, 2014 at 9:14 AM

Exploring Cuba's Thriving Coral Reefs

Even though at first appearance corals may look like plants or rocks, they are in fact animals, related to sea anemones and jellyfish. Coral reefs the world over are threatened by pollution, rising ocean temperatures and overfishing. In Cuba however, reefs are flourishing.

Coral reefs are extremely sensitive to environmental changes and depend on clean, clear saltwater for survival. Pollution and agricultural runoff can have a huge impact on the health of a coral reef. In this sense, Cuba’s Communist government may have inadvertently helped protect the Cuban reefs for many years by preventing the flow of fresh water to the sea, as well as limiting the availability and use of fertilizer and pesticides. However, as Cuba begins to open its doors to the rest of the world, increased commercialism and tourism is once again increasing levels of pollution, sedimentation and development in coastal areas, which creates a negative effect on the corals.

In this video from Nature follow along with your class as a marine biologist explores the variety of corals, fish and other wildlife in Cuba’s tropical waters, and consider why Cuba’s reefs are so healthy in comparison to those in the rest of the world. 

Posted on July 21, 2014 at 9:14 AM Comments

Iowa Public Television's Ready for School Learning Centers

posted on July 21, 2014 at 12:00 AM

Iowa Public Television's Ready for School Learning Centers

You can turn anytime into learning time for a child, even those few minutes when you are on the go or waiting for an appointment.  That’s the idea behind IPTV’s Ready for School Learning Centers, which are often located in the waiting area of a health facility.

Learning Centers consist of a book cart or shelf of age-appropriate children's materials such as books, activity books, toys, puzzles and more. They can include a television which allows children and parents the opportunity to experience high quality children's programming aired by Iowa Public Television. IPTV Ready for School Learning Centers provide resources which encourage families to spend time together reading books, watching quality children's programs, and learning about additional ways to have fun together while waiting for their appointment.

Ready for School Learning Centers are part of IPTV's Ready for School Initiative. This initiative uses a comprehensive approach to community engagement in 25 new communities in Iowa per year to surround children, parents, care providers, and educators with literacy-based content, online games, instructional materials, and educational activities to help children increase their school readiness and success. Through this initiative, Iowa Public Television will partner with communities to add an additional 50 learning centers each year.

This work builds from a proven track record of success in the pilot testing of these methods and resources in several Iowa communities that Iowa Public Television has led since 2008 and is now scaling statewide through Ready for School.



IPTV Learning Center Locations:

  • Belmond , Allen Home Center
  • Belmond, Iowa Specialty Hospital
  • Burlington, Des Moines County DHS
  • Burlington, YMCA
  • Carroll, St. Anthony Family Care Physicians
  • Cedar Rapids, Cedar Rapids Pediatrics
  • Cedar Rapids, Linn Community...

Read More »

Posted on July 21, 2014 at 12:00 AM Comments


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