TDOE Announces New PBS Content: Winter Foundations Bootcamp

Tuesday, November 17, 2020 | 02:43pm

Academic Instructional Videos Focus on K-2 Literacy and Math

Foundational Skills

Nashville, TN—Today, the Tennessee Department of Education announced a new series of academic instructional videos will begin to air on PBS statewide, focusing on K-2 literacy and math foundational skills. The Winter Foundations Bootcamp will begin November 30 and run through the end of January.

Families will be able to watch these instructional video lessons created specifically for Tennessee students on all six state PBS stations– WNPT Nashville, East Tennessee PBS, WCTE Upper Cumberland, WKNO Memphis, West TN PBS, and Chattanooga WTCI from 9 a.m. –11 a.m. CST. While the majority of lessons will focus on providing instruction for literacy and math for K-2 grades, programming will also include Pre-K lessons and science lessons for grades 3-5.

The schedule for the Winter Foundations Boot Camp can be found on the department’s website.

“The first few years of learning set the foundation for student’s education, which is why we are so grateful to our PBS stations for again stepping up to help us provide this ‘Winter Foundations Bootcamp’ with instructional videos created specifically for Tennessee’s K-2 students,” said Commissioner Penny Schwinn. “We know some of our learners have experienced large gaps in learning due the COVID-19 pandemic, so we are really thrilled these lessons foundational literacy and math skills will be available to families and students through public television.”

“In this season of gratitude, Tennessee Public Television is extremely thankful to be partnering with the Tennessee Department of Education on new lessons of teacher created content and distributed throughout the state in a designated at home learning block for our children and families, via public television,” said Becky Magura, President and CEO of WCTE. “This is especially important to those who may lack access to the internet. This continued initiative is a blessing to all and we are so very grateful to the teachers and school systems who are making it possible! All of the Tennessee PBS stations are here to connect to each community with quality, educational, non-commercial content for children and families 24/7!"

“Teaching children phonological awareness is the foundation to future reading success,” said Jan Gillum, Pre-K Coach for Murfreesboro City Schools. “To begin building this strong foundation, children need exposure and experience with discriminating sounds through rhyming, alliteration, manipulating syllables and recognizing initial, medial, and final sounds in words. My hope is that these videos give children and families the opportunity to practice these skills by learning rhymes, games, and family activities in engaging and playful ways.”

"The PBS mathematics videos provide students in grades K-2 the opportunity to develop foundational skills in mathematics in a fun and engaging environment,” said Virginia Mayfield, Senior Director of Mathematics, Science, and Fine Arts for the department. “Through literature, counting, number talks and more, students practice important skills while being engaged in the learning of mathematics. I am excited that the videos will be playing on PBS as they provide the opportunity for students across the state of Tennessee to have access to learning experiences that will help develop for each child a strong, solid foundational understanding of mathematics."

"I am excited to be a part of TDOE's video lessons! As a former kindergarten and first grade teacher, I know and value the importance of foundational reading skills for our youngest readers,” said Ashley Kelley, Northwest CORE ELA Consultant for the department. “These videos will give students many opportunities to practice those essential skills in exciting and interactive ways."

In response to COVID-19 school closures, the TDOE-PBS partnership launched April 6th. From June through August, the partnership continued with the Summer Learning Series and featured PBS LearningMedia programming that was specifically chosen for a continued focus on early literacy and math, aligned to Tennessee standards.

For access to additional resources related to reopening schools, visit the Tennessee Department of Education’s Reopening webpage: