Cable TV in the Classroom

Turner Learning Sponsors Storyboard Design Contest

TNT Learning, a joint partnership between Turner NetworkTelevision (TNT) and Turner Learning, Inc., is offering schoolsnationwide the opportunity to enter a technology-based, storyboarddesign contest centered around the new TNT sci-fi adventure series,Crusade. Beginning in January and running through May 1999, thisdesign contest will be available over the Internet and by CD-ROM toall interested schools. Ten winning schools will be awarded $1,500mini-grants, to be used at each school's discretion to further theirdesign training or contribute to their computer needs.

An individual student or a group of students will be challenged tosimulate the role of designer and create a five-panel storyboarddepicting a Crusade scene and related story. All storyboards will bedesigned with Crusade graphics, art and characters, samples of whichwill be supplied on the Internet site and on a special CD-ROM foreducators. Participation is open to all middle and high schoolstudents. Contest rules, regulations, directions, clip art and morewill be available in December. Turner Learning, Atlanta, GA, (800)344-6219,

Online Reader Service #801

Weather Channel Wants You to Look at the Sky

The Weather Channel's "Look Up! Challenge Sky Contest" invitesstudents and teachers to express their feelings about the sky, itsbeauty and importance in our lives through p'etry, art orphotography. Co-sponsored by the Polaroid Education Program, thecontest is designed for students in grades K-6 and for teachers.Students can submit an entry in any of three categories: art,photography or p'etry. Teachers may enter by submitting a photographof a sky-awareness bulletin board and an essay (500 words or less)explaining the bulletin board's creation and use.

Entries will be judged on creativity, originality and theeffectiveness of the sky message. There are two entry levels: gradesK-3 and 4-6. The first place teacher winner will receive a televisionmonitor and VCR, curriculum resources and a Polaroid PhotoMax scannerfor classroom use. First-place student winners will receive Polaroidcameras and film. Other prizes will be awarded to 500 runner-up andhonorable mention winners. The Weather Channel, Atlanta, GA, (800)471-5544,

Online Reader Service #802

Campaign Promotes Historic Preservation

Save Our History is The History Channel's national initiative topreserve America's historic treasures. The Star Spangled BannerProject is the first campaign in this multi-million dollar effort,dedicated to history education and history preservation. The HistoryChannel will be working in association with the SmithsonianInstitution on the project, producing a special documentary andeducational materials to raise awareness and understanding of thisimportant national endeavor.

The Star Spangled Banner is the original flag that flew over FortMcHenry during the War of 1812, inspiring Francis Scott Key to writethe p'em that became our national anthem. Now on display at theSmithsonian's National Museum of American History, this historictreasure needs to be preserved. The preservation effort will beginthis fall and will be covered on The History Channel. A complimentaryteacher's manual provides classroom activities, developed for K-8curricula. For every level there are activities in math, science,music, language arts and, of course, history. For a free copy of TheStar Spangled Banner Project manual, fax a request to (212) 210-1429or e-mail [email protected].The History Channel, New York, NY, (212) 661-4500,

Online Reader Service #804

CNBC Hosts Another Stock Tournament

The CNBC Student Stock Tournament, an Internet-based gamepromoting financial literacy among grade school and high schoolinvestment clubs throughout the U.S. and Canada, is back for Year IIwith a newly designed Web site and more sophisticated financialtools. The Tournament will award a grand prize of 200 shares ofGeneral Electric common stock to the winning team's school. It isopen to fourth to twelfth-grade students affiliated with a public orprivate school in the U.S. or Canada.

Each semester during the 1998-99 academic year, the winning teamwill be that with the greatest percent gain on its portfolio. Valuedat press time at more than $16,000, the award may be used by theschool for educational purposes as designated by the members of thewinning team. Members of the winning team will also be invited toappear in a special CNBC Business News segment. Weekly winners,members of those teams with the greatest percent gain on theirportfolios for any given week, will each receive a Student StockTournament T-shirt or similar prize. CNBC, Fort Lee, NJ, (201)585-2622,

Online Reader Service #805

Nickelodeon Expands Outreach Program

Nickelodeon's The Bright Orange Teacher Contest is an opportunityfor teachers around the country to illustrate how educationalprogramming on television can be incorporated into daily lesson plansto serve as a valuable and enjoyable learning experience forkids.

Participating teachers will have the opportunity to present howthey utilize Nick News, Nickelodeon's kids news magazine program, asa valuable element of their classroom curriculum that meets educationstandards.

Teachers from grades one through eight are eligible to enter.Entries will be accepted until November 13, 1998. The entered lessonplans will be judged by the Nickelodeon Educator Panel, Cable in theClassroom representatives and educators from around the country.Winners will be determined based on creativity, originality andeffectiveness of the lesson plan, and will be announced February 1,1999. Nickelodeon, New York, NY, (800) 595-1241,

Online Reader Service #806

Cable Association Helps Build Video Libraries

Through the Cable in the Classroom Comes Home initiative, newgroups of experienced volunteers will join busy parents and othercommunity volunteers to help schools build free, non-commercial,educational video libraries. Started at the beginning of the 1997-98school year, the program provides families and others interested inhelping local schools with information about the commercial-freeeducational programming that working parents and others can tape athome and donate to a school's video library.

This fall, the National Retired Teachers Association (NRTA), adivision of the American Association of Retired Persons (AARP),joined this effort. This key group of one million experiencedteachers will support today's hardworking educators by tapingcopyright-cleared programs that schools request for their libraries.Other organizations such as the Society for Human ResourcesManagement (SHRM) and International Personnel Management Association(IPMA) are also supporting this effort.

Cable in the Classroom also will sponsor an equipment sweepstakes,Cable in the Classroom Comes Home Hero Sweepstakes. It will offercontestants the opportunity to be a hero in their community bywinning video prizes for their schools. One hundred sets ofeducational video programs and 50 TV/VCR combination sets, donated byQVC Networks, will be awarded. A single grand prize winner willreceive the video programs, a TV/VCR combination set and 200 booksfor their school library. Cable in the Classroom, Alexandria, VA,(703) 845-1400,

Online Reader Service #807


The All New Captain Kangaroo Comes to Fox

Fox Family Channel introduces John McDonough as Captain Kangaroo to a new generation of children in this daily educational program. The Captain is joined in this updated version of the Treasure House by many of the original characters and some exciting new ones. Mr. Greenjeans (George Cahill) will share his love of gardening, music, animals and nature.

Another familiar character is Mr. Moose, who loves to pull a fast one on the Captain with a clever riddle, rhyme or knock-knock joke. Bunny Rabbit, with a voice so soft he cannot be heard, has a unique way of asserting his personality. Grandfather Clock is asleep most of the time, but when awakened he always shares with viewers a "Finish My Rhyme" that ends with him returning to his slumber.

As in the original series, each episode will feature "Storybook Corner," when popular books are read aloud by the Captain. The series' commitment to motivating its young audiences to share the love of reading earned Captain Kangaroo the prestigious honor of being named the first-ever National Ambassador of Reading is Fundamental (RIF). The All New Captain Kangaroo airs on Fox Family Channel, Monday through Friday at 11am (ET/PT). Fox Family Channel, Los Angeles, CA, (310) 235-9700,

Online Reader Service #811

Cable in the Classroom: Program Guide

Weekdays, 4:30 am ET, CNN Newsroom, CNN. A 30-minute block of commercial-free news and features programming developed by Turner Learning and CNN especially for school use.

Weekdays, 7am to 10am ET, Weekends 8am to 10am ET, Washington Journal, C-SPAN. Guests from different political perspectives analyze the day's newspaper stories and debate the issues. Students can join in by calling, faxing or e-mailing questions and comments.

Weekends, Saturday at 8am through Monday at 8am ET, Book TV, C-SPAN2. Features nonfiction authors discussing their recently published works. It will also offer tours of unique bookstores and libraries and provide focus on classic books that have had an impact on history, politics or culture.

11/6, 12/11, 1/15, 11am ET, Body Science, Discovery Channel. These episodes provide insight into how nature and the human body work together.

11/6, George Washington: Founding Father, A&E. He is known as a gentleman, farmer, Revolutionary War hero and first President of the United States. Learn more about the man known as the "father of his country."

11/6, 12/11, 1/15, 9am ET/PT, 8am CT, 10am MT, Understanding: Bacteria, Discovery Channel. Just 50 years since the invention of penicillin, bacteria have become immune to our antibiotics, making once-treatable infections like tuberculosis deadly threats again.

11/8 through April 1999, 8pm ET, The Cold War, CNN. With more than 500 eyewitness interviews and one million feet of film footage, this 24 part landmark television documentary tells the story of the protracted conflict that consumed the second half of the 20th century. The series began in September and will run every Sunday through April 1999.

11/9, 11/12, 4am, Forecasting: Then & Now, The Weather Channel. A look at how meteorologists predict the weather.

11/9, 12/14, 1/18, 9am ET/PT, 8am CT, 10am MT, The Revolutionary War: Rebels and Redcoats & Victory or Death, Discovery Channel. Examine the decade of conflict that sparked rebellion.

11/10, 11/17, Midori & Friends, Ovation. This original production profiles world-renowned violinist Midori and the foundation she has developed to bring her music and that of others to children of all walks of life.

11/11, 11/12, 12/2, 12/8, 12/10, 12/22, 12/23, Bravo Profiles, Bravo. This season's episodes include: Life and Music of Irving Berlin, The Cole Porter Story, Charles Aznavour, Ernest Hemingway, John Steinbeck, Baroque Odyssey and American Dance.

11/11, 1/20, 2/24, 4/24, 8pm ET, Scientific American Frontiers School Program, PBS. Hosted by actor Alan Alda, this science series will include episodes covering topics such as animal intelligence, the possibility of a manned mission to Mars and more.

11/11, J. Robert Oppenheimer: Father of the Atomic Bomb, A&E. He was called the father of the atomic bomb. Examine the life and personal feelings of the man who headed the Manhattan Project's secret bomb laboratory.

11/13, Colin Powell: A Soldier's Story, A&E. His is the story of a poor boy born of immigrant parents, who rose through the ranks of the army to make major military, political and diplomatic contributions to the United States.

11/13, 12/18, 1/22, 11am ET, Early America, Discovery Channel. From the Revolutionary War to the settling of the West, explore the vastness of the frontier and the adventure of American history.

11/16, 11/19, 4am ET, Climate: A World of Weather, The Weather Channel. Examine climatology and the role it plays.

11/16, 12/21, 1/25, 9am ET/PT, 8am CT, 10am MT, Normandy: The Great Crusade, Discovery Channel. Watch dramatic footage of the actual landing on Omaha Beach and hear personal accounts of soldiers on both sides that reveal the psychological costs of war.

11/17, 12/22, 1/26, 9am ET/PT, 8am CT, 10am MT, Our Time in Hell: The Korean War, Discovery Channel. It was the first full-scale exercise of Truman's policy of containment, yet it became the forgotten war. This program gives the veterans of Korea their due, offering their perspective on the war.

11/19, 12/24, 1/28, 9am ET/PT, 8am CT, 10am MT, Eisenhower and the Cold War, Discovery Channel. The Cold War affected U.S. foreign policy for 40 years and the first decade was especially perilous. Fortunately, the former general proved to be as deft at diplomacy as he was on the battlefield.

11/19, 12/29, Inside the Actors Studio, Bravo. Spend some time with actors and performers such as Mike Nichols and Ellen Burstyn.

11/19, 12/24, 1/28, 9:30am ET/PT, 8:30am CT, 10:30am MT, The Reagan Years: Star Wars, Discovery Channel. He once called the Soviet Union an evil empire, then ultimately declared that Soviet leader Mikhail Gorbachev was a friend of capitalism. How much did Reagan's controversial Strategic Defense Initiative have to do with our longtime f'e's transformation?

11/19, 1/20, The Star Spangled Banner, History Channel. A portrayal of the War of 1812 and the firing on Fort McHenry gives insight into Francis Scott Key and the history of a special flag.

11/20, 1/29, 11am ET, People Around the World, Discovery Channel. Pack your bags for a tour of some of Africa, Asia and South America's most fascinating cultures. Students will learn not only the differences between themselves and others, but also some similarities that tie us all together.

11/20, 12/25, 1/29, 9am ET/PT, 8am CT, 10am MT, Yugoslavia: Death of a Nation, Discovery Channel. Learn how this once-unified country disintegrated into a combat zone of warring factions, and meet the man responsible: Serbian Communist Party leader Slobodan Milosevic.

11/23, 12/28, 9am ET/PT, 8am CT, 10am MT, Heavens Above, Discovery Channel. Explore the origins of modern astronomy in places like Stonehenge and Egypt, and the ways early cultures interpreted celestial events.

11/23, 11/24, The Spanish-American War, History Channel. Relive the war that lasted only four months, but which contained some of the most important military changes and decisions that marked America's rise to superpower status. 2 parts.

11/23, 11/26, 4am ET, Sun, Seasons and the Sky, The Weather Channel. The basics of weather are presented in this program.

11/24, 12/1, Access All Areas: New Ways to Make Sound, Ovation. This episode of Access All Areas examines the fascinating new ways of making sounds and music.

11/24, 12/29, 9am ET/PT, 8am CT, 10am MT, A Star is Born, Discovery Channel. In this visually stunning introduction to the solar system, learn the origin of our sun, as well as its destiny.

11/25, 11/26, 11/27, Armada, History Channel. This three-part series explores the rise and fall of one of the greatest naval forces in history, the Spanish Armada.

11/25, Mark Twain, A&E. Though he gave the world rich, warm-hearted laughter with Tom and Huck, Twain's books were also laced with biting cynicism for his fellow man. Examine the life of the man who was, deep down, just Sam Clemens.

11/26, 12/31, 9am ET/PT, 8am CT, 10am MT, Hubble: Secrets from Space, Discovery Channel. See pictures never thought possible before the Hubble telescope: details of supernovas, nascent planetary systems around other stars, and the "Hubble Deep Field," the deepest picture of the universe ever taken.

11/27, 1/1, 9am ET/PT, 8am CT, 10am MT, Black Holes: The Ultimate Abyss, Discovery Channel. Go with scientists such as Stephen Hawking in search of the mysterious, invisible black hole, once thought to be the stuff of science fiction.

11/30, 1/4, 9am ET/PT, 8am CT, 10am MT, Sneferu: King of the Pyramids, Discovery Channel. Sneferu was the king who made Egypt an international power, and his sons built the pyramids at Giza. Learn why mummification and pyramid building became important burial rituals and how Sneferu solved the engineering problems of earlier pyramid efforts.

11/30, 12/3, 4am/ET, Water: Oceans to Air, The Weather Channel. The water cycle is explained, from humidity to precipitation.

12/1, 1/5, 9am ET/PT, 8am CT, 10am MT, Hatshepsut: The Queen Who Would Be King, Discovery Channel. Learn how Hatshepsut overturned a thousand years of Egyptian tradition to become the first woman pharaoh. Study the amazing accomplishments of her reign, particularly the building campaigns, and see how ancient and modern prejudices conspired to withhold her credit.

12/2, 1/6, 9am ET/PT, 8am CT, 10am MT, The Mystery of Tutankhamen, Discovery Channel. He had to contend with the legacy of his father, Akhenaten, and he restored Egypt's old religious order. His untimely death leads some to ask: Was there a murderer lurking in the court of Tutankhamen?

12/2, Pope John Paul II: Statesman of Faith, A&E. The life of one of the most loved, and hated, men of our time. It would be difficult to overstate John Paul's contribution to politics and to peacemaking in the later twentieth century.

12/4, America's Most Endangered 1998, History Channel. For the third consecutive year, The History Channel is proud to document the eleven most endangered historical sites. Watch as this year's top eleven are announced and profiled for the first time.

12/4, 1/8, 11am ET, Ancient Times, Discovery Channel. Explore how early advanced civilizations like the Egyptians and Greeks developed, flourished and, in some cases, vanished with scarcely a trace.

12/4, 12/25, Jesus: His Life, A&E. The greatest story ever told, from Jesus' birth through his little-known middle years, concluding with a full recounting of his crucifixion.

12/7, 12/10, 4am ET, Air in Motion, The Weather Channel. Examine the systems that create our weather.

12/7, 1/11, 9am ET/PT, 8am CT, 10am MT, The Elements, Discovery Channel. P'et Roger McGough traces the evolution of chemistry from the Greeks to present day. Explore how early scientists turned alchemy into chemistry, ultimately building this new discipline around the periodic table.

12/8, 1/12, 9am ET/PT, 8am CT, 10am MT, Invention: Leonardo's Legacy, Discovery Channel. Is Leonardo's legacy art or invention? This show makes a strong case for the inventor, architect, scientist and engineer and shows you the modern technology that Leonardo dreamed of centuries ago.

12/8, 12/15, The Museum on the Mountain, Ovation. This program documents the six-year, $500 million construction of the Miho Museum in Japan's Shiga Prefecture.

12/10, 1/14, 9am ET/PT, 8am CT, 10am MT, Darwin's Origin of Species, Discovery Channel. This program explains Darwin's theory of natural selection, profiles the man who gave us an "explanation for why we exist," and examines the philosophical implications of Darwinism to modern life.

12/14, 12/17, 4am ET, Look Up!, The Weather Channel. Sky awareness and the clouds above are emphasized in this program.

12/16, 12/17, 12/18, Ellis Island, History Channel. From 1892-1924, more than 12 million people endured often humiliating bureaucracy to come to America. Immigrants from every corner of the globe, as well as former officials and employees, tell the complete story of Ellis Island. 3 parts.

12/21, 12/22, 12/23, The Edison Effect, History Channel. A three-part series that explores some of the creations of one of history's greatest inventors, Thomas Alva Edison. Episodes include: The Phonograph, The Electric Light, and The Motion Picture.

12/21, 12/24, 4am ET, Snow Ice, Wind and Cold, The Weather Channel. Everything you ever wanted to know about winter storms.

12/22, 12/29, Maxim Vengerov: Virtuoso With Intent, Ovation. This program looks at 23-year-old, Russian-born violinist Maxim Vengerov.

12/22, 12/23, 12/24, Prohibition, A&E. Synonymous with gangsters, speakeasies and the Great Depression, Prohibition whisks you back to the Roaring Twenties, the most colorful era in modern American history. 3 parts.

12/24, Modern Marvels: Captured Light, History Channel. The ancient ancestor of the camera was developed in 11th century Arabia. Trace the development of this important invention over the last millennium.

12/25, Modern Marvels: The Telephone. A Quest for Instant Communication, History Channel. The story of the technological race that would bring the world closer together is one of competition, love, success and disappointment.

12/28, Thurgood Marshall: Justice for All, A&E. A lonely black lawyer traveling through the South in the 40's and 50's with a mission to end discrimination, he finally won his battle on the floor of the Supreme Court, becoming the first African-American Justice.

12/29, 12/31, Tornad'es, The Weather Channel. Watch this to get all the facts about twisters.

12/29, Dr. Martin Luther King, Jr.: A Historical Perspective, A&E. Largely credited with orchestrating the early events of the modern Civil Rights struggle, Martin Luther King's tumultuous life and tragic death left a stunning social legacy.

12/30, Rosa Parks: Mother of a Movement, A&E. Examine the life of Rosa Parks, from her rural upbringing in a proud Alabama family to the fateful bus ride in December 1955 that transformed her into an icon of the civil rights movement.

12/31, Malcolm X: A Search for Identity, A&E. Explore the life and politics of the man who is perhaps the most powerful, charismatic figure in African-American history, Malcolm X.

1/1, 11am ET, The Path to Mars, Discovery Channel. Learn about plans to send astronauts to Mars as well as possible missions to other planets.

1/4, 1/5, 1/6, 1/7, 1/8, When the Century Was Young, History Channel. A detailed, 5-part look at the events and movements of the first part of the 20th Century.

1/15, 1/12, Just Dancing Around?- Trisha Brown, Ovation. Choreographers including Trisha Brown expound on the evolution of their creative endeavors.

1/5, 1/6, 1/7, 1/8, Mummies: Tales From the Egyptian Crypts, A&E. This four-part series deals with several of the mysteries and wonders of ancient Egypt. Episodes discuss the Great Pyramids of Giza, The Sphinx, hieroglyphs and the famous tomb of King Tutankhamun.

1/11, 1/12, Napoleon and Wellington, A&E. Leading the French was Napoleon Bonaparte, the greatest military commander since Alexander the Great. Leading the British was the Duke of Wellington, who some consider "the greatest man England ever produced." But what really happened at Waterloo? 2 parts.

1/12, 1/13, 1/14, Assassinations that Changed the World, History Channel. A three part look at the impact that assassinations have had throughout history.

1/15, Dalai Lama: The Soul of Tibet, A&E. Tenzin Gyatso, the Fourteenth Dalai Lama of Tibet, is a monk, politician, diplomat and Nobel Laureate. Explore the world of the spiritual and secular leader of a nation that only exists in exile.

1/15, Out of the Ashes, History Channel. Children of Holocaust survivors tell the almost unbelievable, harrowing and inspiring stories of their parents' survival from the ghettos through concentration camps to the new life beyond.

CNN Helps Students Experience the Cold War

After three years in production, with more than 500 eyewitness interviews and one million feet of film footage, CNN presents Cold War, a 24-hour landmark television documentary, and its studio companion Cold War Postscript. An important historical record made possible by the Freedom of Information Act and the recent opening of Soviet archives, Cold War will allow students to experience the past through primary source interviews and information from both sides of the Iron Curtain.

From Yalta to the Cuban Missile Crisis; Kennedy and Khrushchev; the space race to Vietnam and the fall of the Berlin Wall, Cold War will feature never-before-seen footage from the period, new historical evidence along with interviews of both dignitaries and everyday people who were eyewitnesses to Cold War events.

Immediately following each episode, Cold War Postscript will take a small slice of the event, trend or decision detailed in the documentary and report in detail what was understood back then and how it continues to affect the world today. Providing students with critical connections between past and present, Postscript will feature leading historians and experts providing multiple perspectives on the events of the Cold War and their continuing relevance.

CNN is offering the entire Cold War series and accompanying teaching materials, via a free CD-ROM or through the Internet, to schools worldwide, in collaboration with Turner Learning and CNN Productions. The complete Educator's Guide to the series includes background information, maps, timelines, lesson suggestions, key primary and secondary sources, Internet connections and assessments for each episode. Educators may tape episodes of Cold War or Cold War Postscript and keep them for one year from their airdate. The Cold War Series, narrated by actor Kenneth Branagh, will air Sundays at 8-9pm ET through April 4, 1999. Postscript will air from 9-9:30pm ET on the same dates. Turner Learning, Atlanta, GA, (800) 344-6219,

Online Reader Service #810 

Mass. Teacher Tunes Into The Weather Classroom

In Massachusetts, teacher Scott Strainge has tapped cable TV to get his students excited about learning. "Why do you think Napoleon was defeated when he invaded Russia?" he challenges the ninth through twelfth-graders in his world history class at Salem High. Before they reply, he shows them an episode from The Weather Classroom, a series of educational programs on The Weather Channel. When the program ends, hands shoot up around the room as kids call out their answers.

Strainge says cable TV programming helps his students learn. During the summer and after school, he tapes segments of cable programs that relate to his subjects. When school's in session, he plays the programs in class, weaving them into his lesson plans and activities. He says the segment on cold fronts that his students watched helped them understand Napoleon's failure.

"Many kids are visual learners," Strainge says. "If they can see something, it makes more sense to them. You can talk about fronts, but if they watch a clip from The Weather Channel, and they see how fast snow can move in and blind you, they understand why Napoleon was defeated in Russian winter." The Weather Channel, Atlanta, GA, (800) 471-5544,

Online Reader Service #812

A&E Presents Mark Twain Biography

Mark Twain was an American original, a gifted and irreverent storyteller whose portrayal of a young nation captured the imagination of the world. On the trails of the Wild West, on the streets of New York and along the shore of his beloved Mississippi River, he lived out the greatest adventures of 19th century America.

Biography tells Twain's life story, from his carefree boyhood in Hannibal, Missouri, to the devastating tragedies of his later life. The program includes rare photographs, expert interviews and excerpts from the stories that made him a legend. Mark Twain: His Amazing Adventures would be useful for classes on American History, American Culture and Literature.

The program, which will air on November 28, is appropriate for middle and high school audiences. Following are a few questions about the program designed to provoke discussion among students: (1) The Adventures of Huckleberry Finn is one of the most famous works of American literature. What is so controversial about this book? (2) Mark Twain lived most of his life during the 19th century. How did he come to be a symbol for the era? (3) As a young man, Twain worked as a pilot on a riverboat. How did these experiences contribute to his writing? A&E Network, New York, NY,

Online Reader Service #813

This article originally appeared in the 11/01/1998 issue of THE Journal.