Join Cosmo the flying squirrel, Terra the river otter and their friends on a journey of discovery through the natural landscapes of Pennsylvania. Learn about Pennsylvania’s biodiversity, invasive species, endangered species and how climate change may affect our plants and animals.
Cosmo and Terra are the stars of a new video series, Cosmo’s World, produced by the Wild Resource Conservation Program and PBS 39 (Allentown, Pa.) to teach elementary school children about some of the most important environmental issues of today, while helping to cultivate a personal relationship with nature.
In the four videos, elementary school students will be introduced, in a fun way, by animated characters to important science topics. Educators will be interested to know the videos address environmental and ecology Pennsylvania academic standards.
Although the "Cosmo’s World" videos are aimed at the 4th grade level, Wild Resource Conservation Program Executive Director Greg Czarnecki says, "We have heard from teachers from kindergarten to 6th grade that they are finding the videos useful." The six-minute videos have accompanying lesson plans and classroom activities.
Czarnecki describes the "Biodiversity" video as the foundation of the entire series, "because the other videos all look at issues affecting Pennsylvania’s biodiversity." The video looks at what biodiversity is, why it’s important and habitats with low and high biodiversity.
The "Invasive Species" video explains what invasives species are, what some of the important ones are in the state, and how invasive species affect biodiversity. The video "Endangered Species" shows what endangered species are, how they got that way, gives examples in Pennsylvania, and looks at the peregrine falcon, a recovering species. The video "Climate Change" deals with what climate change is and how it may affect Pennsylvania’s native species.
So meet Cosmo, a happy-go-lucky daredevil who’s always doing flying stunts, and Terra, who’s the more serious, studious type, and find out about Pennsylvania’s natural world and the challenges it faces.
The videos are viewable on a DVD player or computer. They can be seen on the Wild Resource Conservation Program website and on YouTube. The DVDs are also available for educators and home-schoolers from WRCP, P.O. Box 8764, Harrisburg, PA 17105; 717-787-3212; e-mail firstname.lastname@example.org. The DVDs are free, but please include $2 to cover postage.