WKAR Completes Playtime Pad Deliveries to Lansing Kindergartners

Dec 21, 2017

More than 1,000 Lansing School District kindergartners now have a PBS KIDS Playtime Pad! The final deliveries were made on Wednesday, December 20 under sunny skies and with hundreds of smiling, excited kindergartners seated on colored carpet squares.

The deliveries are part of the Playtime Pad Research Project which explores the effectiveness of tablet-based learning in early childhood math literacy, while providing access to the latest digital learning tools for students, teachers and parents.

“It has been an awesome experience delivering the playtime pads to each school,” said LaDonna Mask, principal at Kendon Elementary  and Lansing liaison between teachers and WKAR. “To see the excitement on the student's faces as they saw the boxes and the enthusiasm from the teachers is wonderful.  I look forward to seeing what the learning brings.  This is a great opportunity for our schools and students. Thanks MSU and WKAR.”

If you do the calculations, that is 17 elementary schools, 47 classrooms, and 1,006 kindergartners; all who now have a new and engaging way to learn math in their classroom.

Susi Elkins, WKAR General Manager with Kendon elementary students.
Credit Amanda Pinckney / WKAR-MSU

“We are excited to deliver the final group of playtime pads, and honored to be working with the Lansing School District on this outreach program and tablet-based learning study,” said Susi Elkins, general manager at WKAR Public Media. “This project brings quality PBS educational games and programming from the PBS KIDS Playtime Pad to Lansing kindergartners through new technology that children love, and allows us to strengthen the community connection between MSU, WKAR and the Lansing schools."

WKAR Public Media is partnering on this unique project with MSU's College of Communication Arts and SciencesPBS KIDS, MSU's College of Education, and the Lansing School District.

“This project is about partnerships,” said Prabu David, dean of the College of Communication Arts and Sciences. “MSU, WKAR, Lansing schools and PBS KIDS have come together to empower our students, families and teachers by introducing a new technology in the classroom. I’m excited about the possibilities these tablets offer for instruction and research.”

WKAR, MSU and the Lansing School District launched the Playtime Pad Research Project at Kendon Elementary School!
Credit Amanda Pinckney / WKAR-MSU

The tablet students received, PBS KIDS Playtime Pad, is designed to bring interactive educational children's programs and learning tools to young students using PBS KIDS learning initiatives. The study will allow researchers to identify how student learn and if tablet-based learning increases overall test scores. The tablets used in the study are customized to include a special Math Games Study app designed by PBS KIDS software developers in consultation with early childhood education researchers at MSU.

Funding for the project is provided by the National Science Foundation, the College of Communication Arts and Sciences, WKAR Public Media, Office of the Vice President for Research and Graduate Studies at MSU and the Lansing Rotary Foundation.