PBS KIDS has great educational online games that kids love, but how can teachers effectively integrate them into their classroom curricula to enhance children’s early math and literacy development? Boston University School of Education has developed a series of “Teaching Tips” that show teachers step-by-step how to use educational media to enhance standards-based teaching and learning.
Each set of tips is aligned to the Common Core State Standards and the technology standards established by the International Society of Technology in Education. Each module contains 20-minute lesson plans for between three and five games, and suggests ways to use the games in both whole-class and small-group settings.
Lessons that use games from Dinosaur Train and the Cat in the Hat help children learn the names and attributes of different shapes and to identify them regardless of orientation or size. Specially-created SMART Notebook™ files help teachers build background about shapes and vocabulary before they play the games. Parent letters customized to each game provide parents and other guardians with ways to reinforce what their kids are learning in the classroom. Downloadable files for the Teaching Tips, companion Smart Board activities, and parent letters are below.