Spring Cleaning Tips from PBS KIDS

Well, it’s that time of the year again–spring cleaning time. Teaching kids how to help with household chores gives children a sense responsibility and teaches practical life skills. Using these helpful resources from PBS KIDS also provides your children with an opportunity to work on academic learning as well.

Parents and caregivers can read this article titled, “Encouraging Your Child to Become a ‘Helper’.”

If you are unsure where to start, check out this printable checklist with chore ideas broken up by age range, and try this activity that shows kids the power of teamwork to tackle chores

From learning letters through your lunch menu to finding math in everyday places around the kitchen, cooking and cleaning with kids can teach skills in literacy, spatial reasoning, and more.

Use some tunes to motivate your children and to make clean up time a game. Be sure Daniel Tiger’s Clean Up, Pick Up song–featured in the above video–is on your cleaning playlist.

Since 1994, PBS KIDS has worked alongside teachers, parents, and caregivers to empower children for success in school and life.

Resources from PBS Kids to Honor Black History Month

Black History Month gives us an opportunity to celebrate the achievements of African Americans and recognizing their contributions to U.S. history. PBS offers the following resources for parents and educators to make your celebrations meaningful, including includes a new animated short of Inaugural poet Amanda Gorman’s poem, “Talking Gets Us There,” an original she wrote for the PBS KIDS Talk About: Race and Racism special.

Resources can be found on PBS LearningMedia and PBS KIDS for Parents. They include:

Black Voices and History Resources:

  • A collection that helps parents celebrate and honor Black history with conversation prompts, crafts and reading recommendations for little ones and adults alike
  • A video where Oprah Winfrey interviews Stacey Abrams and shares her thoughts on voting for her values
  • A lesson on astronaut Mae Jemison, the first Black woman to go into space.
  • A video of writer Alice Walker sharing her stories from her childhood

Anti-Racism Resources:

PBS also offers streaming and broadcast options for families to tune-in and celebrate Black History Month.

Streaming & TV*

*Check your local listings

·       PBS KIDS Talk About: Race and Racism

o   Special is available to stream on the PBS KIDS Video app and YouTube

o   PBS KIDS 24/7 Channel: Feb. 16, 2021

o   PBS KIDS Family Night event: Feb. 19 – 21, 2021

·       The Power of We: A Sesame Street Special

o   Special is available to stream on PBS KIDS Video app

o   PBS KIDS: Feb. 9 and Feb. 11, 2021

o   PBS KIDS 24/7 Channel: Feb. 10 and Feb. 16, 2021

o   PBS KIDS Family Night event: Feb. 19 – 21, 2021

·       Xavier Riddle and the Secret Museum

o   Episodes that celebrate Black leaders available to stream on the PBS KIDS Video app and YouTube

o   “Celebrating Black Leaders” episodes will air throughout the month, including a PBS KIDS Family Night event the weekend of Feb. 5 – 7, 2021

o   Featured episodes include: I am Harriet Tubman, I am Jesse Owens, I am Ella Fitzgerald, I am Rosa Parks, I am Thurgood Marshall, I am Maya Angelou, I am Frederick Douglass, I am Zora Neale Hurston and I am Wilma Rudolph

PBS KIDS Resources for Discussing the News with Young Children

The tumultuous events events at our nation’s Capitol, the ongoing global pandemic, and discussions of impeachment while preparing for Inauguration Day, leave us facing a chaotic news cycle that is not only tough for parents to digest, but also difficult for kids to ignore. 

We can’t prevent kids from seeing scary things in the news – even if parents don’t feel ready to have conversations about them. Curious kids have questions as they inevitably overhear bits and pieces of what is going on in the world around them. PBS KIDS has created the following resources to help parents steer these tough discussions:

  • A step-by-step guide on helping kids navigate scary news stories: Listen, clarify, look for the helpers, and reassure your child. Parents might not have all the answers, but this step-by-step guide will make tackling difficult subjects something parents can handle. 
  • A lesson on resilience with Arthur: What can you say to kids when upsetting events occur? Can empathy build social skills? This list of resources, activities and videos from Arthur will not only help kids build resilience, but will help parents cope as well!
  • Tips to expand your child’s circle of concern: While children are hard-wired for empathy, it is important to help them to be empathetic to people outside of their immediate circle. This effort is critical to your child’s development, and this list of tips is a useful place to start when tackling tough news stories.  

PBS KIDS Announces Its PBS KIDS Writers Contest

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The PBS KIDS Writers Contest is designed to promote the advancement of children’s literacy skills through hands-on, active learning. The contest is open to children in grades K-3 and encourages creative thinking and storytelling, while building literacy skills through the creation and illustration of original stories.

To enter, kids can submit stories to their local stations, and local winners will then be entered into the national contest. National winners will be announced during the summer of 2015, and the winning stories will be featured on pbskids.org/writerscontest.

This year, the judges include acclaimed writers, producers and children’s media creators, including Marc Brown, author and illustrator of the ARTHUR book series, and the Kratt Brothers, Martin and Chris, from the PBS KIDS show WILD KRATTS. The national winners will receive prize packages including ARTHUR books and a personal technology device courtesy of PBS.

To enter the contest and for more information on entry rules and contest resources, visit pbskids.org/writerscontest or your local PBS station website.