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PBS LearningMedia Math Resources Support Counters and Crunchers!

February 8, 2016 - Posted in Education by Bette Jamison
Many Ways to make a Whole song performed by two guitarists

This fun mix of PBS LearningMedia math resources supports young counters as well as upper-level number crunchers. Elementary resources can be used to enhance “100th Day of School” projects throughout February.

Many Ways to Make a Whole

As children become aware of their own wants and needs and that of others, they develop an idea of fairness. You might test spatial awareness and concepts of equality by posing questions like, "If I divide this apple or orange like this, can I give the same amount to each person?"

Use this video featuring the song "Many Ways" written and performed by Mr. Steve from PBS Kids to teach your preschoolers about math concepts like part, whole, half, quarter, and fractions. The video and accompanying activity also introduces students to the terms “equal” and “not equal” to describe the way objects are divided. Encourage children to express their thinking about these concepts, which provide a foundation for them to comprehend fraction symbols later. EXPLORE:

The Odds of Finding Life and Love … It's Okay to be Smart

What can a nuclear physicist and a search for aliens teach us about finding love – and math? In every culture, virtually everyone on earth goes out looking for love. With seven billion other humans out there, how can love be so hard to find? Where is everybody? That’s exactly what Enrico Fermi asked, except he was talking about alien life. With billions of stars and planets in the galaxy, 13 billion years should be plenty of time for an interstellar civilization to make its existence known.

In this episode of “It’s Okay to Be Smart” from PBS Digital Studios, host Joe Hanson explores Fermi's paradox of why we haven't crossed paths with any extraterrestrials, and then uses Frank Drake's equation to estimate the number of civilizations that might exist in our galaxy. Finally, students meet a young lady named Ann and see if they can calculate how many special “someones” there might be out there for her. WATCH:

Supported by ETV, PBS LearningMedia offers teachers more than 100,000 videos, images, interactives, lesson plans and articles drawn from critically acclaimed PBS programs and from expert content contributors like The National Archives and NASA. Educators in South Carolina are invited to sign up at



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