Lockdown Learning: What educational resources are on TV, iPlayer and online?on March 2, 2021 at 9:19 am

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As schools remain closed to most pupils, the BBC is offering a wealth of educational material.

Lockdown learning image

The BBC is launching new programmes to help school children keep up with their studies during lockdown.

While primary and secondary schools remain closed to most pupils across the UK, the BBC is broadcasting lessons and educational programmes on CBBC, BBC Two and iPlayer, as well as offering extra content online.

Curriculum-based TV programmes are running alongside the BBC Bitesize collection of educational resources, which provide online learning at home for pupils from Years 1 to 9 (P2 to S3 in Scotland), including those studying for GCSE and National exams.

Four year old home schooling, 23 March

image copyrightGetty Images

On TV, there are three hours of primary school programming on CBBC every weekday, and two hours for secondary pupils on BBC Two.

During the first lockdown in spring 2020, content was available on iPlayer, Red Button services and online, but not on regular television channels. The move to TV came amid concerns many families were struggling to provide the technology and internet connections for their children to take part in online learning.

The BBC is offering both lessons and educational programmes.

BBC Bitesize online material includes video lessons, worksheets, quizzes and games to support the curriculum, presented by year-group and by topic.

For primary school pupils, CBBC is broadcasting BBC Bitesize Daily as well as popular programmes such as Our School, Horrible Histories, Art Ninja and Operation Ouch.

The Bitesize Daily programmes feature a different subject each week day, including maths, English, science and French. There are separate programmes for five-to-seven year-olds, seven-to-nine year-olds and those aged nine to 11.

The Celebrity Supply Teacher programme features guests including Strictly’s Bruno Tonioli on Italian, Jockey Khadijah Mellah on horse riding, and chef Hugh Fearnley-Whittingstall on sustainability,

In a new CBBC show, Ricky Wilson’s Art Jam, the Kaiser Chief frontman and former art teacher Ricky Wilson will talk to celebrity friends about their art passions, including former Girls Aloud star Nadine Coyle, Radio 1 DJ Nick Grimshaw and Joe Sugg. All episodes are now available on the BBC iPlayer.

Ricky Wilson on the Art Jam set

There will be a series of programmes for World Book Day on Thursday 4 March, including authors Jacqueline Wilson and Dan Freedman talking about the inspiration behind their novels for CBBC.

CBBC’s Ben Shires and Bitesize Daily’s Mr Smith will also present a live lesson that day which will look themes in stories, and will include a live Q&A session with comedian and author of the Little Badman series, Humza Arshad.

BBC Two is catering for secondary students, with new content to support the curriculum, including BBC Bitesize Secondary programmes plus drama adaptations, science, history and factual titles.

Boys working at table with TV in background

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Online – learning resources for children of all ages can be found on the BBC Bitesize website.

TV – programming for primary school pupils is on CBBC between 09:00 and 12.00 every weekday. Programmes for secondary school pupils is on BBC Two, between 13:00 and 15:00.

Red Button – the Bitesize Daily lessons will also be shown on the Red Button service on TV.

iPlayer – all episodes will be available on catch-up, via iPlayer.

For primary and secondary pupils in Scotland, there is also dedicated programming online and on BBC Scotland from 10:00, every weekday for about two hours. This includes BBC Bitesize Scotland programmes.

For children studying in Welsh, there is bilingual support on the BBC Bitesize website, with activities to support home learning. Go to the “change language” button and select the Welsh language to access it. There are also Welsh language Bitesize programmes on iPlayer.

Pupils in Northern Ireland can go to the “Learning from home” section of the BBC Northern Ireland website to find more information to help their studies. There are also BBC Bitesize Northern Ireland programmes on iPlayer for primary pupils and secondary pupils.

Customers using BT Mobile, EE, and Plusnet Mobile can use BBC Bitesize content without eating into their data allowance.

More mobile companies are also expected to make such content free to use.

The BBC Bitesize Facebook and Twitter accounts are focusing on parents and teachers, including articles on supporting children’s learning from home.

And the Bitesize Instagram and TikTok platforms are there for teenage students – offering both useful explainers and some material designed to make you smile.

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