With much of the world ‘sheltering at home’ and a majority of schools closed for the remainder of the year, public broadcasters around the world have been stepping up to the plate to use the airwaves and online abilities to help educate the next generation of leaders and offer some relief to parents struggling with homeschooling children during the Covid-19 pandemic.
PBS rolled out their At-Home Learning schedule in March designed to provide programming for students from Pre-K through 12th grade on a daily basis. Yesterday, the BBC began their curriculum-based programming service, Bitesize Daily, to be aired over the next 14 weeks with viewers invited to watch and then log on for daily tutorials and lesson plans.
Coming to the aid of the more than 200 teachers that will be doing a majority of the heavy lifting, the BBC has secured the help of some fairly high profile ‘teachers’ to help out with the virtual homeschool for kids from age 5-15.
Leading the charge on the eve of his 94th birthday (8 May), is Sir David Attenborough who will teach an online course that will cover oceans, mapping the world and why animals look the way they do. In addition to Attenborough, Manchester City footballer Sergio Aguer will take on Spanish lessons with Professor Brian Cox tackling science topics like force and gravity and musicians Mabel and Liam Payne will combine music with reading. Doctor Who‘s Jodie Whittaker is scheduled to pop-in, too, but while she isn’t scheduled to teach a lesson, she’ll be on hand for moral support. Though her role sounds more like a teacher’s aid this is nothing short of awesome!
Students are invited to select their year and start homeschooling as each class will kick off at 9am BST via the BBC iPlayer. There’s also information available via the BBC Bitesize website with lesson plans posted daily. Unfortunately, the iPlayer isn’t available in the U.S. but let’s hold out hope that the BBC will share content via social media. Daily lessons for homeschooling in Maths and English will be available for every year group, as well as regular lessons in Science, History, Geography and more.
Like PBS with their At-Home Learning schedule in the U.S., the BBC is delivering the biggest education offering inc its history to ensure that kids across the UK have access to curriculum-supported learning for the summer term, working closely with trusted education providers, teachers and partners. All elements of Bitesize Daily have been developed with teaching professionals.