Early exposure to computational thinking is foundational to helping children thrive in a STEM-driven world. Through the PBS KIDS® animated series Work It Out Wombats!, viewers ask questions and work through challenges alongside Malik, Zadie, and Zeke – three siblings who use creative thinking skills and rely on their “Treeborhood” community to solve problems and accomplish tasks. While the characters don’t initially know how to meet their goals, executive producers Marcy Gunther and Marisa Wolsky make sure that every story shows “the Wombats using computational thinking – a powerful toolkit – to work it out.”
Just as Work It Out Wombats! does, Project Lead The Way (PLTW) taps into students’ exploratory nature, engages them in learning that feels like play, and encourages them to continue discovering. This alignment of getting students exposed to STEM early in life is why PLTW is proud to support Work It Out Wombats!, streaming free on PBS KIDS.
For students as young as pre-kindergarten, and across their elementary years, every lesson in the PLTW Launch curriculum:
- Leverages storytelling to teach creativity and context
- Improves students’ reading and communication skills
- Teaches children how to break big ideas into smaller parts
- Explores real-world uses of science, technology, engineering, and math
- Enhances students’ exposure to careers in STEM
- Promotes the value of diversity and collaboration
Episodes from Work It Out Wombats! like “Crab Quakes” and “Make It Snow” link creative, computational problem solving with real-life experiences. Helping children learn thinking skills that enable them to develop collaboration, problem solving, critical and creative thinking, and communication are important goals for both PLTW and Work It Out Wombats!
Work It Out Wombats!, TM/© 2023 WGBH Educational Foundation. All rights reserved. PBS KIDS and the PBS KIDS Logo are registered trademarks of Public Broadcasting Service. Used with permission
Connection Opportunity! Sparking Curiosity: A PLTW Launch Conference
Work It Out Wombats! executive producer Marisa Wolsky will share with elementary educators how to leverage games to promote learning across STEM topics, along with more about her work to engage young minds through children’s educational programming, during Sparking Curiosity: A PLTW Launch Conference.
This event is specifically designed for elementary educators and administrators, with sessions built to engage participants with hands-on learning and expand professional development. During the conference, attendees will get to network with other STEM educators and take part in our Exploratorium – a fun, playful afternoon set aside to explore the problem-based learning modules that hundreds of thousands of PLTW teachers and students use every day!
Strengthen your connection to early STEM education and learn more about Work It Out Wombats! during Sparking Curiosity: A PLTW Launch Conference, January 29 – 31, 2024.