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Week of May 18-22 Learning Materials

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We know it isn't easy keeping an at-home routine of educational lessons and activities and we are here to help!

Each weekday from 8am-6pm on WMHT WORLD, watch a robust suite of PBS programs with your family - right at home. After viewing programs, ranging from NOVA to American Masters, you can utilize the supplemental PBS LearningMedia materials below. Learn about how a smartphone works, explore an educational collection on nutrition, and more.

Click here for the May 18-22 Home Classroom Schedule [PDF]

Have a question? Let us know at

WMHT Reflection Questions for Parents, Families, Educators and Students [PDF]


River Avengers
The River Avengers ask students to help them think of ways to keep their local river clean and healthy. But first, they find a flip-flop—and lots of trash—in their playground.

Navigate a Watershed
Students learn how the physical, chemical, and biological systems within watersheds work together to create a continuum of resilient interconnected ecosystems with this interactive website. They can dive underwater to see what animals live in headwaters, mid reach streams and rivers.

Watersheds in Kentucky
There are several regional and local watersheds in Kentucky. This interactive, adapted from Kentucky’s Natural Heritage: An Illustrated Guide to Biodiversity, provides a video clip that explains what watersheds are, and where they can be found. Students are introduced to the different waterways located in a watershed area: headwater stream, watershed divide, and river mouth. Students are also encouraged to find their homes on a map to see if they live close to a river or its tributaries.


Pink Dolphin of the Amazon
The pink river dolphin has developed unique adaptations that allow it to thrive in its surroundings. In this video segment, watch how scientists study these adaptations by examining their ferocious teeth, unfused vertebrae, and pink skin color. Also. learn how the pink river dolphins’ use of sonar has evolved to help them feed and communicate.

Earth from Space Full Length Broadcast
NOVA takes data from earth-observing satellites and transforms it into dazzling visual sequences, each one exposing the intricate and surprising web of forces that sustains life on earth. Viewers witness how dust blown from the Sahara fertilizes the Amazon; how a vast submarine "waterfall" off Antarctica helps drive ocean currents around the world; and how the Sun's heating up of the southern Atlantic gives birth to a colossally powerful hurricane. From the microscopic world of water molecules vaporizing over the ocean to the magnetic field that is bigger than Earth itself, the show reveals the astonishing beauty and complexity of our dynamic planet.


Rivers: Science Trek
Rivers have a life. They change the land through which they flow. They give us water to drink, energy we convert to electricity, and a place for plants and animals to live. But where do they start? How do they change? IdahoPTV's Science Trek takes you down Idaho's Snake River as it explains river formation, use, and terminology. What is an inner and outer bank, an oxbow, a meander and what makes rapids, are some of the questions that will be answered.


Animals Offer Hope to Cancer Patients
In this video and accompanying lesson from SciTech Now, students will consider how qualitative data is collected and practice analyzing data sets inspired by research on whether a media program from the San Diego Zoo Kids program has a positive impact on kids who watch it while receiving medical care.

How Cancer Cells Grow and Divide
Discover the role of oncogenes in uncontrolled cancerous growth and depicts the journey of cancer cells from where they originate, into the circulatory system, and then on to other parts of the body. This video is available in both English and Spanish audio, along with corresponding closed captions.


Hawks and Falcons
Learn about diurnal birds of prey -- a diverse group of birds across the globe which includes hawks, falcons, osprey, eagles, and kites. While these different families of birds have a variety of physical and behavioral traits, they are all specially adapted for daytime hunting. Today, most of these birds of prey are widely appreciated by the public, but they still face many dangers.

Nature: American Eagle: Challenges of Incubation
It’s not easy being an eagle. This video from Nature illustrates the early stages of the egg incubation process for an eagle couple along the Upper Mississippi River.

Growth and Development: Eagles
This lesson from Nature uses the eagle to model universal avian life stages. Students learn that living things experience diverse life cycles. For example, baby birds go through distinct stages as they grow up into adult birds. This lesson uses the eagle to model universal avian life stages: from egg, to chick, to fledgling juvenile, to adult.

Bald Eagles UNTAMED
Learn about bald eagles and listen as Wildlife Center of Virginia staff members discuss species conservation successes, as well as the threats that eagles still face today.

Cool Critters: Golden Eagles QUEST
Meet one of the largest birds of prey, the golden eagle, and learn facts about this cool critter, in this video from QUEST produced by KQED.


Chasing Tornadoes
This video segment adapted from NOVA follows some of the scientists who study these violent storms and highlights what they've learned about the storms and what they still want to know about the conditions that cause them.

This video is available in both English and Spanish audio, along with corresponding closed captions.

How Do Tornadoes Form?
This video segment adapted from NOVA describes the challenges of studying tornadoes and shows how computer simulations are helping researchers observe what they can't possibly see in a real storm.


This video segment from Nature describes cats as independent, mysterious and aloof. While they have been domesticated for more than four thousand years, they are still powerful predators and survivalists.

Form an Opinion: Cats
Students develop an informed opinion about whether cats or dogs make better pets.


In Defense of Food Collection
The In Defense of Food curriculum for middle-school aged students. It is designed to help adolescents develop something valuable: practical tools for healthier eating. Even though scientists know a lot about food and health, the messages that reach adolescents about healthy eating have become increasingly complex and contradictory.

Nutrition: What Your Body Needs
In this blended lesson supporting literacy skills, students watch videos that explore why some foods are healthy and others unhealthy, they outline the process our body uses to break down foods into forms it can use, and they explain the role nutrition can play in managing diseases.

Healthy Eating
This lesson begins with an activity in which students consider two plates of food: one composed of healthy choices and one composed of less healthy choices. Students then learn about the importance of nutrition, watch a video about healthy eating habits, and discuss the role of fruits and vegetables in a healthy diet. Next, students investigate snacks and learn about the difference between "everyday" and "sometimes" foods. They watch a video about how to choose healthy snacks, and then participate in an activity that challenges them to make healthy choices while preparing a plate of food for a friend. Finally, students learn about where to find both "everyday" and "sometimes" foods.

Food Justice
Urban high school students discuss problems in food systems and what can be done about them in this adaptation of a video they created in collaboration with the Environmental Justice League of Rhode Island.

Un plato saludable
In this Spanish stop animation students will learn about healthy food choices, portions and how to make a balanced meal using the USDA My Plate model.


The Teotihuacan Fire Ceremony
In this sacred story about the Aztec solar year, the gods give sacrifices to ring in a new cosmic era. To mark this moment of transition, Teotihuacanos conducted a New Fire Ceremony at the base of the sun pyramid.

How does Teotihuacan Compare to Other Architectural Feats?

Infographic: Dig deeper into Teotihuacán


Early Rocket Ventures
The Redstone Rocket was NASA's early venture into long-range rocketry and would later be used to put the first U.S. man in space.

NOVA scienceNOW: Franklin Chang-Diaz
In this video segment adapted from NOVA scienceNOW, meet Franklin Chang-Díaz, an astronaut and scientist. Learn how he has been interested in rockets and space travel since he was a child in Costa Rica, and how he immigrated to the United States to pursue his dream of becoming an astronaut.

Speeding Up Space Travel
Learn about innovations in rocket technology that could change the way humans explore space in this video excerpt from NOVA scienceNOW: "Can We Make It to Mars?"

Blasting Off to Space!
Did you know the rocket that took us to the moon was designed in Alabama? Student Reporter Luke Partridge went to the US Space & Rocket Center to learn about rocket technology with head archivist Ed Stewart.

STEAM: Ideas that Shape Our World Collection
The STEAM collection (Science, Technology, Engineering, Art, Math) explores the world of ideas with leading innovators who spoke at the IdeaFestival in Louisville. Topics range from infectious disease and evolutionary biology to virtual reality, inventions, and alien minds.

Gross Science: See Microbes with this DIY Phone Microphone
Learn how to see microbes with your phone, in this episode of Gross Science from NOVA.

What is a Semiconductor?
Semiconductors are in everything from your cell phone to rockets. But what exactly are they, and what makes them so special?

Computers Science Trek
The computing power in today’s cell phones is much higher than all the processing power of all the computers on the Apollo 11 Lunar Lander that put two men on the moon. Computers can be found in almost everything. But how does this amazing technology work?

Science Spotlight: How Your Smartphone Knows Where You Are
Learn how GPS receivers use trilateration to track your location, even though atmospheric disturbances might occasionally cause accuracy problems.

How Does Your Smartphone Send Emojis?
The physics of smartphones is a complicated and amazing mixture of engineering, physics, electronics and computer science.

Your Digital Footprint: Data and Energy Use
Cell phones and laptops use energy to charge their batteries. But did you know that sending emails, texts, and Snapchats requires much more energy?

Toolkit: How To Come Up With Your Own Mobile App
This lesson guides students through a design brainstorm process, to invent an app idea related to public art. All you need is the activity worksheet, some pens, markers, and creativity!

How Is Tech Changing The Way We Read?
Before the internet, it made sense to read long texts in a linear fashion, but that’s now changing as people are adapting to skimming shorter texts on their computers or phones.


Get the Math is about algebra in the real world. See how professionals use math in music, fashion, video games, restaurants, basketball, and special effects. Then take on interactive challenges related to those careers. Watch this intro video before trying one of the challenges below.

Math Mess
A "Math Mess" is an everyday problem that requires an inquisitive mind, determination and a little number sense to solve. Math Messes can pop up when you least expect them — and in each short, animated Math Mess video, you’ll meet some mathematically-challenged characters who are right smack in the middle of one.


Explore numerous lesson plans and activities around various episodes of Latino Americans. Explore this timeline of important dates, become a part of the LATINO AMERICANS project, Mi Historia.


Native America: Cities of the Sky
Native America: Cities of the Sky explores the creation of some of the ancient world’s largest and most impressive cities. An archaeologist explores some of the world’s largest pyramids in Central America, scientists 3D-scan a lost city of monumental mounds on the Mississippi River, and native elders reveal ancient powers of the sky in modern-day Missouri. Modern research suggests these ancient urban centers are more than just great feats of engineering and artistry. They are heavenly cities—aligned to and inspired by the movement of the sun, moon, and stars.

Celestial Sphere
This animation is a simple model of the apparent motion of the stars in the night sky. Ancient people described the motions as if the stars were all attached to a vast globe, or a Celestial Sphere, centered about the Earth.


Where in China is…?
Play this mapping game to test your knowledge of China. Can you find the Terracotta Army or the Great Wall of China? Players start this game with 5000 miles and lose 500 miles for every wrong answer. The challenge is to get to Shanghai before running out of miles.

Know Your Dynasties
Each dynasty has left its mark on China. Even today, the Chinese refer to historical events not by their date but by the dynasty in which they took place. That's why you need to know your dynasties! Play the quiz and match the cards to the dynasty. See how many you can get right before the time runs out.

Urbanization During the Ming Dynasty: Word Search Puzzle Activity
Review the activity on urbanization in ancient China, and then try to find the related words in this word search puzzle.


In September of 1918, soldiers at an army base near Boston suddenly began to die. The cause of death was identified as influenza, but it was unlike any strain ever seen.  It was the worst epidemic in American history, killing over 600,000 — until it disappeared as mysteriously as it had begun. Teacher’s Guide and related content including articles, clips and more.

Materials and Content from the Center for Disease Control (CDC) on the 1918 influenza pandemic.

The Spread of Disease
Science journalist Sonia Shah explains the history of microbes that cause widespread disease outbreaks. Using cholera as an example, she explains how a microbial disease can become pandemic.

News Quiz
This episode features stories about the spread of coronavirus around the world, King Tut artifacts, Kobe Bryant, dog safety, wounded veterans and dolphins, leafy seadragons, a new fossil find, Charlotte Bronte's tiny books, the Puppy Bowl, and more. News Quiz is KET's weekly 15-minute current events program for students.

NOVA science NOW Genetically Engineering the Avian Flu
Examine the threat of a virus being spread from birds to humans, and then from humans to humans, in this video from NOVA scienceNOW.

Viruses Science Trek
This video segment from IdahoPTV's Science Trek explains how something so small as a virus can make you so sick. You'll see the process of a virus replicating in a cell.

NOVA Vaccines- Calling the Shots
Learn how vaccines help the immune system protect people against diseases in this video from NOVA: "Vaccines—Calling the Shots.”

Virus Wars
Learn how cells protect against viruses using RNA interference in this video from NOVA’s RNA Lab. All cellular life is in an ancient and unending war with viruses.

Coronavirus Student Guide: Virus Explainer and News Updates
Watch the Brainpop video (Courtesy of BrainPOP) on the coronavirus and use the discussion questions to talk about the outbreak with your students. Then check the latest news on the virus via the PBS NewsHour.


Alcott: ‘Not The Little Woman You Thought She Was’
For many readers, Alcott is synonymous with her most famous character, Jo March, the spirited sister in Alcott's classic Little Women. The beloved writer's real life is the subject of a film written and produced by Reisen, Louisa May Alcott: The Woman Behind 'Little Women' — based on her book by the same name.

Little Woman- The devilish, dutiful daughter Louisa May Alcott
The greatest American literary sensation of the post-Civil War decade had its origins in a conversation between Thomas Niles, an editor at the publishing house of Roberts Brothers, and Bronson Alcott, the father of a thirty-five-year-old writer whom his wife had named for a favorite sister, Louisa May.

Little Women Teaching Guide
This teaching guide helps instructors use a specific primary source set, , in the classroom. It offers discussion questions, classroom activities, and primary source analysis tools.

Alcott, her life, letters and journals

An Iconic Character: Little Women
Experience one of the most dramatic scenes in Little Women, the beloved American classic by Louisa May Alcott, in this video excerpt from Little Women | MASTERPIECE.

Becoming a Writer : Little Women
Explore the conflict between Jo March and her father over writing for money, in this video excerpt from Little Women | MASTERPIECE.

Defying Convention: Little Women
Explore how Jo's dreams of being a writer—and her refusal to marry Theodore Laurence (Laurie)—defied the conventional roles of women in 19th-century America, in this video excerpt from Little Women | MASTERPIECE.

Lousia May Alcott: Transcendentalism
Explore the impact of transcendentalism on the life of Louisa May Alcott and American society in this video from the American Masters film Louisa May Alcott: The Woman Behind 'Little Women.

Louisa May Alcott: The Civil War
Best known for her novel Little Women, learn about the impact of the abolitionist movement on Louisa May Alcott’s life and writing and her experience working as a nurse during the Civil War in this video from the American Masters film Louisa May Alcott: The Woman Behind ‘Little Women.’