Innovative COVID-19 response keeps pre-K-8 students learning at home
CONWAY, Ark. (Arkansas PBS) — Beginning Monday, March 30, Arkansas PBS will broadcast “Arkansas AMI” – streamlined, curriculum-based programming for the state’s pre-K through 8th grade students – in partnership with the Arkansas Department of Education’s Division of Elementary and Secondary Education (DESE) in response to mandatory school closures due to COVID-19.
“When the magnitude of the COVID-19 crisis started to materialize, the team at Arkansas PBS quickly realized we are uniquely positioned to offer positive solutions to the challenge of school closings,” Arkansas PBS Assistant Director of Education Sajni Kumpuris said.
“Since we had an existing partnership with the Division of Elementary and Secondary Education at the Arkansas Department of Education through our ArkansasIDEAS professional development portal, we reached out to offer help.
“Through quick and thoughtful planning, and an all-hands-on-deck approach, we are excited and ready to start our first week of AMI instruction to support continued learning throughout the state.”
“Arkansas AMI” will feature five Arkansas Teachers of the Year hosting segments of each AMI day. The daily schedule beginning weekdays at 8 a.m. will be divided into the following programming blocks:
- 8-9:30 a.m.: Grades Pre-K-2
- 9:30-11 a.m.: Grades 3-5
- 11 a.m.-1 p.m.: Grades 6-8
Additionally, individuals can find a replay of this broadcast online where all lessons will be archived.
Arkansas PBS will modify regularly scheduled programming for at least three weeks to offer specific pre-K-8 resources between the hours of 8 a.m. and 1 p.m.
Content, which will cover a wide variety of topics, will align with current state and federal standards so that programming is flexible enough to serve as both supplemental and fundamental, based on the needs of school districts.
“The Arkansas PBS and ADE collaboration to support districts and families is a win for everyone during these unprecedented times,” Assistant Commissioner of Learning Services for the Division of Elementary and Secondary Education Stacy Smith said. “The Arkansas AMI Learning Guides promote continuous learning in our state, while supporting our teachers, students and parents.”
Viewers statewide can tune in to the following channels, depending on their location, over the air using an indoor or outdoor antenna:
- Northwest Arkansas – KAFT, channel 13.
- North Central Arkansas – KEMV, channel 6.
- Northeast Arkansas – KTEJ, channel 19.
- Central Arkansas – KETS, channel 2.
- Southwest Arkansas – KETG, channel 9.
- Southeast Arkansas – KETZ, channel 12.
Arkansas PBS is also available through select cable and satellite providers. More information about how to watch can be found at myarkansaspbs.org/channelinformation.
“Arkansas AMI” instructional content and videos will be available online after 4 p.m. on the same day as broadcast at myarkansaspbs.org/arkansasami.
ADE will be sending digital AMI packets, including Spanish language materials and schedules, to each school district, and schools will determine how to distribute these materials to families. Lessons plans can be downloaded by individuals, parents, caretakers and others who want to use these resources at myarkansaspbs.org/arkansasami.
Additionally, PBS is partnering with WORLD Channel on a content block for children in grades 6-12, which will be made available from 11 a.m.-4 p.m. Monday-Friday on ARPBS-4 WORLD beginning Monday. Information on how to watch WORLD Channel is available at myarkansaspbs.org/channelinformation.
Anyone needing assistance with the broadcast or finding Arkansas PBS on TV should contact Arkansas PBS at 800-662-2386 or email@example.com, while anyone needing help with educational instruction should contact the Arkansas PBS education team at 501-682-0317 or AMIhelp@myarkansaspbs.org. Assistance is available Monday through Friday from 8 a.m. to 4:30 p.m.
Other resources offered by Arkansas PBS include:
- Arkansas PBS KIDS 24/7 channel (ARPBS-3), which supports early learning by broadcasting PBS KIDS programming 24 hours a day, seven days a week.
- Free national and local resources through Arkansas PBS LearningMedia.
- Teacher training and professional development through the ArkansasIDEAS professional development portal, which currently serves 60,000 users throughout the state.
- An Arkansas PBS LearningMedia resource page, available at ideas.myarkansaspbs.org, to aid teachers and parents in kids’ at-home learning. Users can search for the age range that most accurately applies to their students – ages 3-5, ages 6-11 and ages 12+ – to be connected with resources, educational videos, activities and games.
- Schoolhouse Daily email messages that offer tips and activities for those with kids home from school. Anyone may sign up at myarkansaspbs.org/engage.
Additional information about the modified broadcast schedule, available online resources and virtual professional development opportunities is available at myarkansaspbs.org.
Arkansas PBS is Arkansas’s only statewide public media network, which enhances lives by providing lifelong learning opportunities for people from all walks of life. Arkansas PBS delivers daily, essential, local, award-winning productions and classic, trusted PBS programs aimed at sharing Arkansas and the world with viewers through multiple digital platforms, including on-demand services and YouTube TV, and the distinct channels Arkansas PBS, Arkansas PBS Create, Arkansas PBS KIDS, Arkansas PBS WORLD and Arkansas PBS AIRS on SAP. Members with Arkansas PBS Passport have extended on-demand access to a rich library of public television programming. Arkansas PBS depends on the generosity of Arkansans and the State of Arkansas to continue offering quality programming. Additional information is available at myarkansaspbs.org. Arkansas PBS is broadcast on KETS (Little Rock), KEMV (Mountain View), KETG (Arkadelphia), KAFT (Fayetteville), KTEJ (Jonesboro) and KETZ (El Dorado).
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