Won't You Be My Neighbor?

I am a huge fan of Fred Rogers! In my list of "people who have made the world a better place," he's right up there with Ghandi and Martin Luther King. So when I looked at the Days of the Year calendar for blog ideas, I was thrilled to find that March 20 is "Won't You Be My Neighbor?" day (in honor of his birthday!) 

The Mister Rogers' Neighborhood section of PBS Kids has lots of great resources. You can watch full episodes of the show, or shorter clips. The episode guide is handy for finding shows on different topics. You can listen to his songs, and print words or sheet music. Several songs have video clips as well. (Fun fact: Mr. Rogers' first college degree was in music composition!) There are also interactive games and a few coloring pages to print or color online. The parents and teachers section includes activity ideas, articles and tips for understand child development, and weekly themes that are quite useful for homeschooling families.

I particularly like the "Neighbors of All Ages" section. It includes a scrapbook of Mr. Rogers' life and a "Dear Mr. Rogers" page. The video clips in this section are very meaningful. There are some behind the scenes clips of his early work and a few historic events, such as his testimony at the 1969 senate hearings on funding public broadcasting. (There's also a brief video tribute to his life that had me in tears!)

Another great resource for parents is his non-profit, The Fred Rogers Company. Here you will find lots of inspiration for parenting and homeschooling. There are pages about this wonderful man and his life's work. The parent resources section has articles and video clips on a wide variety of parenting conerns, from bedtime and making friends to dealing with death and tragic events in the news. The professional resources section includes even more videos with accompanying articles and commentary from a child psychologist. The children's media area of the site has links to the original show and the company's newer projects: Daniel Tiger's Neighborhood, Peg + Cat, and Odd Squad. All the shows have accompanying resources that are useful to anyone who cares for (and about) children. 

So spend some time exploring these great sites and remembering an exceptional man!

Hope it's a beautiful day in your neighborhood!

Happy Homeschooling!