Due to the COVID-19 pandemic that has closed schools throughout Indiana, Ball State University’s public broadcasting station is joining with other PBS affiliates across the state to offer at-home learning experiences for students in grades K-12.
In partnership with the Indiana Department of Education (DOE), WIPB-TV and the seven other Indiana Public Broadcasting Stations (IPBS) are publishing programming schedules and corresponding curriculum resource materials focusing on math, science, social studies, literacy, and other subjects.
The curriculum resources from PBS LearningMedia are a free online service of thousands of educational tools. These resources align with Indiana curriculum standards.
Through WIPB-TV, Ball State is well-positioned to deliver a meaningful experience on television and online, said Dan Lutz, the University’s associate vice president of information technology who oversees the PBS affiliate.
“Education has been a top priority for WIPB since a group of Muncie moms created a grassroots movement to start the station so their children could learn and grow with ‘Sesame Street,’” Lutz said. “Now nearly 50 years later, that commitment to provide trusted, quality education continues with this at-home learning project.
“This project fits with our University’s values, which include social responsibility. At Ball State, we’re about more than educating students. We also serve our neighbors. We are proud to partner with the Indiana Department of Education and provide much needed assistance for parents, grandparents, caregivers, and teachers who have suddenly become at-home educators.”
Lutz noted that the project must be accessible on a cell phone for families with limited resources, and available to viewers who don’t have cable television access. The project provides statewide usage via PBS affiliates and was easy and quick for stations to implement.
Also, television program schedules have been augmented with information about grade-level appropriateness, subject area focus, and learning objectives.
Broadcast schedules and links to free activity lessons, discussion questions, grab-and-go activities and more are available at www.wipb.org/at-home.
The digital offerings are:
- WIPB At-Home Learning on 49.1 (pre-K through grade 12) – This is WIPB-TV’s normal schedule, linked with free educational resources from PBS LearningMedia.
- WIPB At-Home Learning on 49.2 (grades 6-12) - A new, 5-hour block of programming from the WORLD Channel with online resources from PBS LearningMedia (began March 30).
“Our goal was to package easy-to-use materials that combined the best of PBS educational TV programming and learning resources,” said Mark Newman, executive director of IPBS. “We knew it would need to be accessible for a broad range of learners across Indiana, from the youngest child to the graduating senior. We also knew it needed to include easy-to-use parent guidance and coaching for teachers.”
The PBS LearningMedia resources were developed with the input of educators and are contextualized for educational use.
“Providing our students with access to high-quality and evidence-based materials is critical during this extended time of out-of-school learning,” said Indiana Superintendent of Public Instruction Dr. Jennifer McCormick. “I am grateful for IPBS and their local television affiliates for partnering with us to create engaging educational experiences for Indiana’s children.”
With offerings such as the WORLD Channel, and programs such as “NOVA” and “Into the Outdoors,” IPBS member stations are committed to ensuring that their educational programming and resources are widely accessible to students in Indiana.
Find more information and access PBS LearningMedia online. To view current schedules for grade level and subject programming, as well as correlating materials, please visit the Indiana Department of Education's Remote Learning website.