PBS in the Classroom

Thinking Things Through with Alma’s Way

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We go through the thinking process all day, every day, as we sift through SO MANY big and small ideas. In the classroom, students go through the thinking process independently and with their peers often. The ideas they consider can lead to both wonderful discoveries and powerful learning experiences. In the PBS KIDS property, Alma’s Way, 6-year old Alma elevates the process of thinking through things while modeling self-awareness, responsibility, and decision making.

As Alma learns about families, friendships and communities, she discovers that sometimes challenges and conflicts arise. In those moments, Alma stops and “thinks through” the situation. Then, she knows what to do!  We invite you to integrate the educator resources in the Alma’s Way collection on PBS LearningMedia with your students to help them learn about the thinking process. Resources are available in both English and Spanish.

Stirring the Thought: Cooking Up Good Ideas! 

In the media clip, No Go Mofongo, Alma models the steps of thinking through a problem, “a no go mofongo,” to come up with a solution to improve its taste.  

Teaching Tip: Introduce the media clip with the Watch With a Purpose tool. Precut the watches and ask them to tape one to their wrist. Before co-viewing, introduce the clip and ask them to purposefully watch and think about the answer to the question, “What could Alma have done instead to help her mom fix the mofongo?” The watch is a tool to prompt and remind your students to think purposefully about what they are viewing. You can model the process of critical thinking and introduce a media literacy activity as you guide your students!  Your students can wear the watches home and talk with their families about the clip and what they learned.

Observation Station: Seeing, Believing, Thinking! 

Formulating Ideas and making observations are equally important parts of the thinking process. We all see different people, places and things every day and find ways to describe scenarios, situations, and the environment.

Using the Alma’s Way, My Neighborhood Notebook activities and lessons, students can make observations about their communities and draw different aspects that make their neighborhoods unique.

Teaching Tip: As you encourage your students to sharpen their artistic and literacy skills in the My Neighborhood Notebook activity and lesson, it is important to remember that your students have unique experiences- both positive and challenging- in their neighborhood and homes. Be prepared to have difficult conversations and tailor the lesson to meet your students' needs. This can look like changing the language in the lesson from "neighborhood" to "favorite place" or from "family recipe" to "favorite food", and intentionally framing how you present the prompts throughout the activity.

Learn N’ Play: Level Up Your Learning!

Integrating games into the classroom, like Bop or Pop and Party at Alma’s, is a great way for students to learn while also having fun! 

Students can join Alma and friends in balloon tossing and party planning. 

Teaching Tip: Digital games are a powerful way for students and educators to practice new skills- like utilizing tech tools and following directions. Your students can enjoy Bop or Pop and Party at Alma’s in both English and Spanish!

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