Well, this is it! It’s Friday, Day 5 of our PBS Super WHY! adventure, and it has been a fantastic, exciting ride.
So many of my pals have told me on the phone or in person how this program is working for them, but I have to say that your comments, friends, have to be via the super-duper computer for me to enter your name in the drawing for the Steve Songs CD/DVD. . . today’s your last day to share if you want to be in the running!
- Day 5 Activities: It’s not so much about the activities today as it’s about the Final-Assessment. In fact, we did the assessment before Maddy and Owen’s rest today, and they were really bummed when I said that this was the last part of our Super WHY! week.
Owen said, Oh, no, Mommy, now that this is over, what else are we ever going to do?
(Hmmmm, what will we do? How about we’ll go back to my tricky ways of sneaking in some learning each day, like our sorts, activities, crafts, adventures, and cooking all disguised as fun and games, Owen? How about you take a look at your mama’s lil ole blog?). I didn’t say it but I thought it. . . and instead I just said I’d search around and come up with something. I always do!
So we took the Final Assessment–the first part, the re-telling of the Three Little Pigs story went the same as it did on Monday; Maddy and Owen are both familiar with the story.
The Alpha Pig part of the Assessment, identifying the letters W-O-L-F on the alphabet sheet, went better today than it did on Monday for Owen (maybe because he’s now seen the word several times this week and also because the alphabet is in all uppercase letters?), but it was the same for Maddy who could easily pick out the letters.
Next they completed the Wonder Red Literacy component of the Assessment, and rather than have them read the words WALL, FALL, and BALL, which are the only three words on the sheet, I said, Okay, this is the second part, and I’d like for you to draw a circle around the word, WALL. (They both did.) I asked them to circle FALL, then BALL. They both had no problems. Hooray! Does this mean Day 2’s word work sunk in?!
I then followed the Princess Presto part of the Assessment, which asked children to spell “big” and “pig”. Maddy spelled her words first, while Owen was coloring, then Owen spelled them. Yeah!
Finally, we did the Super WHY! Literacy Skills part, which just asks you to show your child the words “small”, “red”, and “good”. I changed it a bit and asked them to circle the word “small”, draw a box around “red”, and draw a fancy line under “good”. They both did it!
And they both had no problems this time with identifying the opposite of “big” and “bad” (thanks to the episode!?). So overall, I’d say that both Maddy and Owen did better on the Final Assessment than than they did on the Pre-Assessment. We love improvement! Woo-hoo!!
Overall, here’s what I think of the whole deal:
- that PBS is trying to make it easy for parents, teachers, caregivers–anyone, to use a well-written and heavily researched show like Super WHY! to really help children learn;
- that this show is not two hours long–it’s only 30 minutes which is all my kiddos watch in the afternoon;
- that PBS has created a week-long curriculum for The Three Pigs episode and supplemental materials for over 20 other Super WHY! episodes! How awesome is that?;
- that most of the activities this past week involved scaffolded work–sometimes two worksheets, sometimes a worksheet then activity but the second builds on concepts from the first;
- that the work for the week progressed logically–from alphabetic principles (letter identification) to reading;
- that I loved the Pre- and Post- Assessments (. . .but I shared that on Day 1);
- that there was some way of recording/submitting Assessment scores to the PBS site (could the whole thing possibly be online?!);
- that there was more consistency with uppercase and lowercase letters (seems to go back and forth on worksheets);
- that each day’s work involved some sort of activity and was not as much worksheet-dependent (even though Maddy might disagree!);
- that some episodes’ follow-up or related activity might link right to the computer for a technological follow-up.
I am so excited that PBS asked the DC Metro Moms to be a part of this Super WHY! curriculum and to offer feedback on how it worked with our own kiddos. It’s been fun, and I’m not considering it an end but rather a beginning–the beginning of us incorporating lessons and learning with our Super WHY! viewing more regularly.
We also love the PBS Kids and PBS Kids Island websites, so we’ll continue that during computer time, but we’re always looking forward to trying new things. . . thanks, PBS!