WNET

Picturing America - Augustus Saint-Gaudens and Winslow Homer

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Learn about the Civil War through the art of Augustus Saint-Gaudens and Winslow Homer in this video from Picturing America on Screen.  Saint-Gaudens's Robert Shaw Memorial in Boston Common depicts a resonant, courageous act of the Civil War, in which the first regiment of African American soldiers recruited in the North for the Union Army fought a doomed battle on a South Carolina fortress.

The Winslow Homer image of a soldier returning to his farm after the Civil War in The Veteran in a New Field refers to both the desolation of war and the country’s hope for the future. While the farmer’s scythe called to mind the bloodiest battles fought—and lives lost—in fields of grain, the bountiful crop of golden wheat could also be seen as a Christian symbol of salvation.

Building Video Literacy: Purpose

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The basis for a filmmaker’s decision regarding how a shot is framed, what sound to include or add and what movement to show has to do with the purpose of the shot. Those decisions hinge on what the shot is designed to accomplish in order to create the overall meaning of the film.

ANNIE ON BROADWAY: What Do Stage Managers Do?

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Stage managers Peter Lawrence and Rachel Wolff discuss how they keep things running smoothly backstage at Annie: The Musical. Peter and Rachel also discuss the added challenge of working with a young cast.

Strange Fruit: A Song Born of Protest

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This video segment explores how the song Strange Fruit became one of the best known and most enduring songs of protest. In 1939, the legendary blues singer Billie Holiday performed the song as a daring criticism of the commonplace practice of the lynching of African-Americans. Civil rights groups such as the NAACP had made countless appeals, but it was Holiday’s haunting rendition that made it impossible for white Americans and lawmakers to ignore the widespread crime.

Estimating Costs, Estimating Profits

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In this video segment from TV411, Franklin works with Laverne to create a budget and understand his pay for a job painting a room. Franklin is not sure if he should take on a job where he will be paid $250 for painting a friend’s family room. He must take into consideration the cost of supplies as well as how long the job will take him. He consults with Laverne and realizes he has to make some estimates to come up with the budget for the job.

Nature | Crash: A Tale of Two Species - Horseshoe Crabs and Humans

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Learn about horseshoe crabs in this video from Nature. Horseshoe crabs spend most of their time, and are safest, on the ocean floor, but when it is time to spawn, they take a risk by coming to the surface to lay eggs. With the current moratorium imposed on fisherman using crabs as bait, they now harvest crabs for medical purposes and are then required to return them alive to Chesapeake Bay. Horseshoe crabs have blue blood containing a coagulant that detects minute levels of bacteria, forming a protective shield within the body akin to a "primitive antibiotic."

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