Preparing Children for Success

One of our missions is to prepare young children
to arrive at school Ready to Learn and to assist their parents, caregivers and teachers with ideas on how
to be Ready to Teach.

Through research at the Carnegie Institute of Teaching
we know that our award-winning programs like Arthur, Between The Lions, Clifford and Sesame Street are excellent tools for accomplishing these goals, but we educate far beyond the television set.

About Ready To Learn

Since 1992, when Congress enacted the Ready To Learn Act, PBS has focused on providing programming and services uniquely designed for young children. A study by Dr. Ernest Boyer, former U.S. Commissioner of Education and president of the Carnegie Foundation for the Advancement of Teaching, found that one in every three kindergarteners lacked the skills necessary to succeed in school. PBS stations across the country were called upon to “prepare children to be ready to learn when they enter school.”

Over the years PBS stations have developed a television service unique to their own communities, and, as a result, the PBS brand has unparalleled credibility with parents and educators. It is recognized as an outpost of decency and intelligence in a world of media often unsuitable for children. PBS GUAM believes that television, when limited and used appropriately, can make a positive impact on children’s behavior, thinking, language and love of reading.

Watch It

Select a favorite, age appropriate program and watch it with your child. Ask your child questions about the characters,
the action etc. Co-viewing can lead to lasting educational benefits. Example: Say you and your child watch an episode of Clifford called Special T-Bone. Believing in yourself is the theme of the story. Talk about this idea with your child. Help your child tell you what makes him or her unique and why that’s important.

Read It

Visit the library and select a book(s) that relates to the theme of the program. Read it together, discuss it, and ask questions. Or you can tell your child your own story. Example: There are many books on feelings and self-esteem such as: “All About You” by Catherine and Laurence Anholt, “I Like Myself!” by Karen Beaumont or “The Way I Feel” by Jana Cain. Ask your librarian to help you make selections.

Example: Say you and your child watch an episode of Clifford called Special T-Bone. Believing in yourself is the theme of the story. Talk about this idea with your child. Help your child tell you what makes him or her unique and why that’s important.

Do It

Encourage your child to draw, write, sing, dance, to do anything creative that relates to the book or the program.Examples: 1) Draw, color and/or select photos for a book or poster About Me; 2) Cut out dog bones and give them out when someone does something special; 3) Play a game by naming all the people who are special in your life; 4) Send a You Are Special card to a friend or family member.

If you can’t think of a fun activity, check out PBS’ Clifford website and view episode description of Special T-Bone. You will find a list of activities based on the theme of each program.

For additional ideas…

Check out the great sites shown below, like PBS Parents and PBS Teachers. There’s lots of resources available to help you make learning fun and interesting—for both you and the child you care about.