Teaching Winter Holidays with PBS LearningMedia

Wintertime is full of reasons to celebrate. Students will enjoy learning about the fascinating and sometimes surprising origins of familiar holidays and learning about new holidays, too! The winter holiday video collection from PBS LearningMedia is lesson-ready for Grade 2 – 6 classrooms.
December & January Holidays

Hanukkah
Christmas
Kwanzaa
New Years Day
Chinese New Year

Educator Resources

1-minute videos to stream or download
Support materials: vocabulary sheet, activity, discussion questions, and teacher key
Standards-aligned, Grades 2 – 6

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St. Patrick’s Day Classroom Video

You don’t have to be Irish to celebrate St. Patrick’s Day, but it is a way to celebrate Irish culture and heritage. Around the world, festivals and parades are held to honor Ireland and the history of St. Patrick. Use this video from PBS LearningMedia to provide an overview of the holiday and open classroom discussion!

All About the Holidays | Presidents Day

Presidents Day | All About the Holidays
Presidents Day is an opportunity for the country to acknowledge the leaders of its government. See how it evolved from a birthday party for George Washington to an observance for all of the Presidents. For lesson plans, additional resources, and more teacher support, download our free iBook from the iTunes store: All About the Holidays.

Chinese New Year Teaching Tools From PBS LearningMedia

Chinese New Year | All About the Holidays
Learn more about the history and traditions behind Chinese New Year, a celebration of good fortune at the end of winter celebrated by Chinese people around the world. How do you celebrate the new year? For lesson plans, additional resources, and more teacher support, download our free iBook from the iTunes store All About the Holidays.  

Kwanzaa Teaching Tools From PBS LearningMedia

Kwanzaa | All About the Holidays
Kwanzaa is a time to celebrate African American heritage. Learn the ways people observe this festivity and trace back its roots to ancient African customs.

For lesson plans, additional resources, and more teacher support, download our free iBook from the iTunes store: All About the Holidays.  

Hanukkah Teaching Tools From PBS LearningMedia

Hanukkah | All About the Holidays
Hanukkah is a Jewish celebration, but anyone can find meaning in the holiday. Check out the origins of the tradition, and and how it is observed today. For lesson plans, additional resources, and more teacher support, download our free iBook from the iTunes store: All About the Holidays.  

Christmas Day Teaching Tools From PBS LearningMedia

Christmas | All About the Holidays
Christmas Day isn’t just a holiday for Christians. Learn about the various traditions that people hold to celebrate it. Then have yourself a merry little Christmas! For lesson plans, additional resources, and more teacher support, download our free iBook from the iTunes store: All About the Holidays.  

Memorial Day Video & Free iBook from PBS LearningMedia

Help celebrate and explain the origin of Memorial Day with your kids through this quick video from PBSLearningMedia’s ‘All About the Holidays’ series.  And teachers — be sure to download the free ‘All About the Holidays’ iBook from iTunes. This book brings together lesson plans with an abundance of brief, in-class activities around 61 holidays and special events celebrated in the United States and around the globe. The lesson plans in this book are built around PBS LearningMedia’s video series ‘All About the Holidays.’ https://youtu.be/VKDEruS_-3o?list=PLG6dQWzaO45n7NVJ7HjQAkwqITj6HEWAh

All About the Holidays | Groundhog Day

Are we in for 6 more weeks of winter? We will find out on February 2! Teach early learners about Groundhog Day with PBS LearningMedia’s collection of K-3 resources related to Punxsutawney Phil and the science behind our changing seasons. Featuring videos, puzzles, and storyboards! Augment your classroom lessons with this festive collection of resources.

Crafts for Kids | New Year's Eve Wreath

We couldn’t think of a better way to encourage time together than through crafting!  And, it’s always a good feeling to repurpose items.  Use some leftover holiday tinsel to craft this festive DIY New Year’s Eve Wreath! Recycle a paper or plastic plate and wrap tinsel around it, add glittered numbers and celebrate the new year with a fun craft! This segment from Crafts for Kids demonstrates just how easy this DIY is:

So ring in 2016 as a family and with your very own handcrafted decor! Crafts for Kids is a weekly series that encourages parents and kids to spend time together making fun and simple projects with items you probably already have in your home!

From PBS Digital Studios: A 2015 Holiday Playlist

Happy holidays to all from our friends at PBS Digital Studios! Thanks to them, you can sit back and enjoy a playlist of holiday-centric videos from your favorite PBSDS shows, like PBS Idea Channel and Bon Appétempt. What do Santa and wrestling have in common? Want to (at least try to) make peppermint marshmallows? Curious about the sex lives of Christmas trees?

Peg + Cat + Holidays

“The Hanukkah Problem” – When Albert Einstein invites Peg and Cat over for Hanukkah, he shows them how to make a 2D piece of paper into a 3D dreidel. Later, they need to use this process to bring peace to Al’s home and save his Hanukkah. “The Christmas Problem” – When Santa Claus is in trouble, Peg and Cat have to solve their biggest problem ever: how to make and wrap presents for all the children of the world and then deliver them using 100 sleighs. “The Penguin Problem” – Peg and Cat coach a team of skiing penguins, who would have a shot at the Olympic gold medal if only they knew “over,” “under,” and “in between.”
 Watch on WSKG TV December 24th! And don’t forget to visit Peg + Cat online for more videos, games, and math galore!

Arthur's Perfect Christmas

Everyone’s favorite aardvark gives kids a new spin on seasonal traditions in this one-hour special, showing children many ways to celebrate “the holidays.” Plans are underway in Elwood City for the best holidays ever as Arthur, D.W., their family and friends make preparations for perfect gifts, perfect parties and perfect family traditions for Christmas, Hanukkah, Kwanzaa and even “Baxter Day” (Buster and his mom’s special celebration). https://youtu.be/NvISEusbdGA
Airs Christmas Day on WSKG TV!

The Cat In The Hat Knows A Lot About Christmas!

This adventure finds the Cat in the Hat, Nick and Sally on a journey around the world to help a lost reindeer find his way home to Freezeyourknees Snowland in time for Christmas. On the way, the Thinga-ma-jigger breaks down and they depend on a variety of animals – from African bush elephants to bottlenose dolphins to red crabs – and their remarkable abilities to help them make an amazing journey home. https://youtu.be/7s0_IUEkE_8?list=PL6QVLOF_kAG700SVVZuyqIP15QzlE-Id8
Watch on WSKG TV December 16th and 24th!

Curious George: A Very Monkey Christmas

Join George and The Man with the Yellow Hat as they count down the days until Christmas. There’s only one puzzle: neither of them can figure out what to give the other for a present. The Man is having trouble reading George’s wish list and George doesn’t have a clue about what to get for the Man who has everything. Will they be able to find the answers before Christmas morning? https://youtu.be/6z8TNT2BOGs
Airs on WSKG TV December 12th, 20th, 24th, and 25th!

2015 Holiday Schedule: Celebrate the holidays with WSKG!

Celebrate the 2015 holiday season with WSKG! Check out our list of holiday programs on WSKG Radio and WSKG TV this December.  
On WSKG RADIO
December 1 at 8:00 p.m.  – Advent Voices
December 8 at 7:00 p.m. – Hannukah In Story and Song
December 8 at 8:00 p.m. – Hannukah Lights
December 9 at 8:00 p.m. – Candles Burning Brightly
December 18 at 8:00 p.m. –  Riverwalk Jazz Christmas: Hot Christmas for a Cool Yule
December 21 at 9:00 p.m. – Handel’s Messiah from the Pittsburg Symphony Orchestra
December 22 at 9:00 p.m. – A Paul Winter Solstice (Paul Winter’s 35th Annual Winter Solstice Celebration)
December 23 at 8:00 p.m. – Light and Gold: The Choral Music Of Eric Whitacre
December 23 at 9:00 p.m. – Christmastime In New York: The Cathedral Choir of St. John the Divine
December 23 at 10:00 p.m. – A Rose in Winter: A Garden of Medieval and Renaissance Music for the Nativity
December 24 at 10:00 a.m. – A Festival Of Nine Lessons And Carols
December 24 at 1:00 p.m. – Welcome Christmas With Vocal Essence
December 24 at 7:00 p.m. – Hollywood Holiday
December 24 at 8:00 p.m. – Caroling With The Singers
December 24 at 9:00 p.m. – St Olaf’s Christmas Festival
December 24 at 11:00 p.m. – A Festival Of Nine Lessons And Carols
December 25 at 9:00 a.m. – A Rose in Winter: A Garden of Medieval and Renaissance Music for the Nativity
December 25 at 10:00 a.m. – A Chanticleer Christmas
December 25 at 11:00 a.m. – Christmas With The Mormon Tabernacle Choir
December 25 at 12:00 p.m. – Christmas With The Moorehouse And Spellman Glee Clubs
December 25 at 1:00 p.m. – Tinsel Tales
December 25 at 7:00 p.m. – Jazz Piano Christmas
December 25 at 8:00 p.m. – Riverwalk Jazz Christmas: What Are You Doing New Year’s Eve
December 25 at 9:00 p.m. – Jazz Profiles: Nat King Cole
December 29 at 1:00 p.m and 7:00 p.m. – A Season’s Griot. A Special Kwanza Presentation
January 1, 2016 at 11:00 a.m. – Live from Vienna

On WSKG TV
December 4 at 10:30 p.m. – Mannheim Steamroller 30/40 Live
December 17 at 8:00 p.m. – Expressions: Holiday Harmonies
December 18 at 10:30 p.m. – Lidia Celebrates America: Home for the Holidays
December 19 at 10:00 p.m. – Keeping Up Appearances Christmas Special
December 19 at 10:30 p.m. –  Vicious Holiday Special
December 20 at 1:30 p.m. – Chef’s Life Holiday Special
December 21 at 9:00 p.m. – Christmas with the Mormon Tabernacle Choir Featuring Santino Fontana
December 21 at 10:00 p.m. – Christmas at Belmont 2015
December 24 at 8:00 p.m. – Expressions Holiday Harmonies
December 25 at 9:00 p.m. – Call The Midwife Holiday Special
December 25 at 10:30 p.m. – Craft In America: Celebration
December 26 at 11:00 a.m. – Lidia Celebrates America: Home for the Holidays
December 26 at 10:00 p.m. – Keeping Up Appearances Christmas Special
December 27 at 6:00 p.m. & 9:00 p.m. – Downton Abbey, Season 5, Episode 9
December 31 at 8:00 p.m. – Live from Lincoln Center, New York Philharmonic New Year’s Eve: La Vie Parisienne
December 31 at 11:00 p.m. – Michael Feinstein New Year’s Eve at the Rainbow Room
January 1, 2016 at 7:30 p.m. – Great Performances from Vienna: The New Year’s Celebration

Judith's Happy Chanukah

Whyatt is excited to have been invited to Red’s Gramma’s house to celebrate Chanukah, but doesn’t know much about the holiday. To learn more, the Super Readers jump into the book Judith’s Happy Chanukah where they meet Judith, who loves Chanukah so much that she can’t wait to share it with her new friends. Educational Objectives: To learn about holiday traditions. Kids will play with the alphabet and identify the letters C, O, I, N, and S. They’ll learn the word LATKES, rhyme -OIL words, and use the power to read to change the story and make both Red’s and Judith’s Chanukah celebrations special. Watch on WSKG TV on December 9th!

Adventures in Learning | Charity

Talking to kids about charity can be tough, but research shows that talking about charity is more effective than role-modeling. PBS Parents presents Adventures in Learning with Jennifer Cooper! https://youtu.be/p29dKpHnPjQ

THE SET UP
Talking Points: Kids often operate from a center of self so talk to them about how their actions will affect others. For instance saying, “When we raise money for this charity, the money will go to kids who need medicine so they will get healthy” will have more of an impact than, “because it’s the right thing to do.” Both are true, but one helps frame it in a relatable way. Keeping the Conversations Rolling: Bob Stains, from The Family Dinner Project offers these conversation starters to help inspire fun, thoughtful conversations about giving.

Season 4 of 'Dinosaur Train' comes to WSKG on December 7

The all-new fourth season of Dinosaur Train kicks off on December 7 with the holiday adventure “Trains, Submarines, and Zeppelins” (in tribute to the classic holiday movie “Planes, Trains and Automobiles”). When Mr. Pteranodon and Larry go out to the Big Pond, they accidentally miss the last train home. Will they make it home to their families in time for the Winter Solstice Holiday? Here’s a clip from a past episode to get you in the Solstice spirit! https://youtu.be/i8ZScr4Dn1A
Watch on WSKG TV at 11:00am and 11:30pm, Monday through Friday!

Daniel Tiger's Neighborhood | Holiday Specials

Happy Holidays from Daniel Tiger’s Neighborhood! The holidays are just around the corner, so don’t forget that GRR-ific wintery episodes of Daniel Tiger’s Neighborhood are coming your way!  Watch on WSKG TV Monday, December 7th and Tuesday, December 8th! Special episodes include: “Daniel’s Winter Adventure”, ”Neighborhood Nutcracker”, “Snowflake Day”, “A Snowy Day” and “Tutu All the Time”.  Cozy up, drink some cocoa, and enjoy!

A Creature Christmas | Wild Kratts Movie

It’s Christmas time and the Wild Kratts team is taking a break from creature adventuring to celebrate. But when they receive an alert that their favorite creatures are suddenly disappearing around the globe, their holiday party quickly turns into a rescue mission. Our heroes must race against time to thwart their greedy archrivals’ most miserly scheme left! Will they be able to travel to the ends of the earth and return their baby animal friends to their homes in time for holidays? https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=ZXfF1Os7VOc