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Vision Maker Media Partners with Public Television Stations to Develop Curriculum

Lincoln, Neb.: Vision Maker Media is working with Eight-Arizona PBS, Oklahoma’s Rogers State University
Public Television, NET Television, and Montana PBS to launch standards-based curriculum for four Public
Television documentaries.

Eight-Arizona PBS has created lesson plans and a teacher’s guide for Racing the Rez. The film shows how Navajo and Hopi cross-country runners put it all on the line both athletically and in the classroom for tribal pride, triumph over adversity, and state championship glory. Written by Navajo curriculum writers, Melissa Yazzie and Beatrice Begay, the lesson plans will be accompanied by a teacher’s guide and video clips. Keeping in spirit with the film, students can learn about distance running by trying it themselves and applying their math skills to evaluate their personal results.
To view the curriculum for Racing the Rez, visit www.pbslearningmedia.org and simply search for “Racing the Rez”
to be taken to the film’s digital learning page. First-time visitors will be asked to create a PBS login account to view
the content.

“Because of the national standards-based educational curriculum and PBS Learning Media, these films will now be seen by more students and educators than if only viewed on television,” commented Mark Becker, associate director for Eight-Arizona PBS’s Educational Outreach.

NET Television, in partnership with Vision Maker Media, is continuing to develop multimedia features for the Regional Emmy®-Award winning film Standing Bear’s Footsteps. The interactive website will house digital learning objects for PBS Learning Media. Visit the educational site at http://standingbearsfootsteps.netnebraska.org/home to download the curricula by Larry Wright (Ponca), Cindy Renner, and Joe Starita. NET Television is also developing an e-book about Standing Bear with Virginia Driving Hawk Sneve (Rosebud Sioux/Ponca). With grants from Humanities Nebraska and the Shakopee Mdewakanton Sioux Community, the e-book will launch this fall.

Rogers State University’s Public TV worked with Vision Maker Media for curriculum for Will Rogers & American Politics. The film explores the life and influential political persuasion of Oklahoman Will Rogers (Cherokee) through some of America’s difficult times in the 1920s and 1930s and how his efforts on the political landscape still have a powerful effect today. Digital learning activities such as research skills and outlined technology demonstrations will engage students. Discover the breadth of educational resources available online today at www.willrogersed.com.

Vision Maker Media and Montana PBS are currently developing an interactive curriculum for Indian Relay, which follows several teams from three different Native communities as they compete in bareback horse races, leaping from one horse to another at speeds topping 40 miles per hour. Indian Relay will premiere on the PBS series Independent Lens this fall.

Vision Maker Media shares Native stories with the world that represent the cultures, experiences, and values of American Indians and Alaska Natives. Founded in 1977, Vision Maker Media, a nonprofit 501(c)(3) which receives major funding from the Corporation for Public Broadcasting, nurtures creativity for development of new projects, partnerships, and funding. Vision Maker Media is the premier source for quality Native American and Pacific Islander educational and home videos. All aspects of our programs encourage the involvement of young people to learn more about careers in the media—to be the next generation of storytellers. Located at the University of Nebraska-Lincoln, we offer student employment and internships.

About Eight, Arizona PBS

Eight, Arizona PBS is a trusted community resource. For 50 years, the PBS station has focused on educating children, reporting in-depth on public affairs, fostering lifelong learning and celebrating arts and culture. Eight achieves its mission through the power of noncommercial television, the Internet, educational outreach and community-based initiatives. Its signal reaches 86 percent of the homes in Arizona. With more than 1 million viewers weekly, Eight consistently ranks among the most-viewed public television stations per capita in the country. For more information, visit azpbs.org.

Eight is a member-supported service of Arizona State University.