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This Month‘s Featured Teaching and Learning Resources from NBC Learn

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Welcome Friends of NBC Learn!

This March, we’re celebrating a special Pi Day at NBC Universal. It’s the first time in a hundred years that 3/14/15 matches the first 5 digits of Pi. Another fun fact about March 14th that seems appropriate to us: it’s Albert Einstein’s birthday. Einstein said “It is the supreme art of the teacher to awaken joy in creative expression and knowledge,” and we’re sure you educators will agree.

Our March newsletter celebrates everything Pi and mathematics. We also put together a free original collection with select math videos and playlists from our archival collection plus math activities for your classroom.

Enjoy Pi this March with us!

The NBC Learn Team


 Featured Videos in March

New Collection: Pi is Universal

This year Pi Day falls on 3/14/15. Pi equals 3.141592653 and on 3/14/15 at 9:26:53 in the morning, when you’re probably just starting your school day, it will be the first time ever that all 10 digits of Pi match the date and time! In honor of this special Pi Day, NBC Learn presents a collection of videos that are correlated to math activities that you can use in your classroom. From smart elephants and the adventures of two Siberian huskies, to math concepts in golf, you will find something from the news that will help teach math concepts to your students.

Are Elephants Smarter Than a 5th Grader?

K-12 | Higher Ed

Arctic Adventures of Two Siberian Huskies

K-12 | Higher Ed

Science of Golf: Math of Golf Scoring

K-12 | Higher Ed

Women's History Month

March is Women’s History Month, and his year, we’re showcasing videos from our archive about women who are thriving in technology-oriented careers. This playlist includes fascinating stories about women like Marissa Meyer, the first female CEO of Yahoo; Elizabeth Blackburn, a microbiologist at the University of California, San Francisco who is a role model for women in science; and Leslie Bradshaw, who is leading an innovative tech start-up company in Miami.

K-12 | Higher Ed

Find More Math Assets in our Math and Statistics Collection

For even more math-related resources, check out our Math and Statistics collection, with hundreds of videos that can be tied to all levels of mathematics. Some highlights:

On Interstate 19 in Arizona, you’ll find kilometers and meters on the highway signs rather than miles and feet. Why? Watch Measured Battle Unfolds Along Arizona Highway Based on Metric System on K-12 and Higher Ed.

When President Barack Obama won the election in 2012, New York Times blogger and statistician Nate Silver accurately predicted the outcome of the election in all 50 states. Find out how he did it in this video on K-12 and Higher Ed.

The federal government finally released the 1940 census in 2012 to demonstrate how much our nation has changed in a relatively short period of time. Watch the piece on K-12 and Higher Ed.

Measured Battle Unfolds Along Arizona Highway Based on Metric System

K-12 | Higher Ed

Blogger Nate Silver Reveals How He Called 2012 Presidential Election

K-12 | Higher Ed

1940 Census: A Time Capsule of America

K-12 | Higher Ed

NBC Learn K-12 Subscriber Spotlight: Engaging students in ways textbooks cannot

Sonja Cicconi is a Physical Science and Biology teacher at John Dickinson High School in Wilmington, Delaware. Cicconi told us about four major ways in which NBC Learn can be a powerful instructional tool.

Engaging students through new perspectives: Cicconi believes that NBC Learn videos are a great way to engage students in ways that a textbook simply cannot. “The Science of NFL Football series and the other sports video collections are really great at showing an athlete’s perspective. The students love that real athletes are interviewed and are talking about science.”

“Students have teared up when I show Toddler Hears father’s Voice for the First Time.” Cicconi explains that her students emotionally connect to this video, and that it also shows an interesting perspective of “how science and technology are interconnected.”

Introducing New Concepts: “When I show Science Friction: Curling, my students have no idea what curling is. When I show Science of NFL Hockey: Mass, Volume & Density, they have no idea what a Zamboni is.” Cicconi believes that this bolsters student interest and allows her to introduce new science concepts in an interesting way.

Reinforcing Concepts: “NBC Learn is a great way to reinforce whatever you’re trying to teach. I like that it’s a little snippet, around 2-3 minutes. For example, when I teach cell division, I will show my students a video. It supports my instruction, and my students see why cell division is important and how it’s being used outside of the classroom.”

Context and Relevancy for Students: As a 23-year veteran teacher, Cicconi understands that illustrating relevancy to students’ lives is incredibly important for successful learning outcomes. “My favorite thing about NBC Learn videos is that I can explain the real-world application of science concepts. I can show them people in careers in science at universities who are doing the important research. I tell my students not to just look at what the video is about, but at who is in the video and what their role is. That could be you!”  

NBC Learn Higher Ed Subscriber Spotlight: "NBC Learn videos are ideal for ESL teaching"

Meet Matt Kaeiser, a veteran English as a Second Language (ESL) professor at the University of Miami. He uses NBC Learn on the Blackboard learning management system in two specific ways:

As an oral news log for ESL students: Kaeiser tells his students that they can select any video they want, as long as they watch it three separate times. He says that the first time, students should listen casually and see how much information they can grasp. The second time, students will take notes on main ideas and key vocabulary. The third time, students pull up the transcript and highlight the parts they struggled with and then do a one minute summary video recording.

Kaeiser explains that this three-pronged approach of introducing, enforcing and enhancing students English language skills exercise “develops critical thinking and communication skills and creates smart listeners.”

For roundtable discussions: Kaeiser’s students get in a group with their classmates based on their similar interests and watch a video together. “For example, the business engineering students will pick a video about hydrogen cell cars for engineers. Then they must present a summary to the rest of the class and develop a series of discussion questions.” This helps students develop critical thinking and communication skills in English while creating smart listeners at the same time.

“NBC Learn videos are ideal for these exercises and ESL teaching in general because the clips are short, a transcript is readily available, and there is such a diverse variety of content for students to learn from.”

How To Support Parent Involvement; Education Nation Wants To Hear From You!

Research shows a parent’s involvement in their child’s education leads to better academic performance, fewer behavior problems and higher graduation rates. But what exactly does parent involvement look like? How can schools partner with parents? Join Education Nation and Parent Toolkit and family engagement expert Dr. Joyce Epstein for March’s #ToolkitTalk Twitter chat. Join the conversation March 17th at 7pmET.

Also coming up this month from our friends at the Parent Toolkit; a new survey of American parents – how they feel about their child’s education, the Common Core, and what they think their children will need to be successful. The poll findings will be released March 16th at ParentToolkit.com.  

NBC Learn Toolkit Launch

NBC Learn is excited to announce the launch of a brand new Toolkit! We’ve greatly expanded the number of help documents, training material and video tutorials available to you. It is now easy to find answers to any of your questions about NBC Learn. The revamped toolkit includes:

For administrators, a new Building Awareness section that has resources you can use to help promote NBC Learn inside your school and district. You’ll find flyers, posters, digital logos, and tons of great ideas on how districts across the country have touted NBC Learn on their campuses.

For teachers, a greatly expanded section on Training & Best Practices, including instructional videos and help documents. Watch a video tutorial on our Cue Card, watch a pre-recorded webinar, or sign up for your own!

And for everyone: A dedicated section for Getting Setup, with easy-to-follow instructions on how to register for NBC Learn, use us in learning management systems, and download our Offline Player.

To access our new features click the “TOOLKIT” button on K-12 or Higher Ed.

How are you using NBC Learn as a teaching and learning resource? E-mail us at newsletter@nbclearn.com with examples of NBC Learn videos that especially engaged your students or summaries of your lessons.  We may feature you in a future K-12 or Higher Ed Subscriber Spotlight!

Want to read more Subscriber Spotlights? On the Home page of NBC Learn K-12 or NBC Learn Higher Ed, look under the heading NBC Learn in the Classroom.

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