New ‘Science Trek’ Digital Shorts Explore the Purpose of Wildfires

Idaho Public Television’s original series Science Trek ends its 19th season with a series of digital shorts released in May about wildfires and the role they play in ecosystems.

Each month throughout the school year, Science Trek Wildfireexplores a subject with short videos available on the Science Trek website, on a Facebook page for parents and teachers, on YouTube, and on PBS LearningMedia, a free media site for preK-12 educators.

The following digital shorts are available on these platforms in May:

Wildfires: Wildfire Basics – Wildfires are a natural part of the ecosystem, but they can get out of control and cause lots of damage. Find out about wildfires and what it takes to put a fire out.

Wildfires: Wildfire Types – Not all fires are alike. Find out about the different types of wildfires.

Wildfires: Wildfire Characteristics – How do you describe a wildfire? Learn more about the parts and characteristics of wildfire.

Trees: Tree Basics – Trees are the oldest, tallest and heaviest things on Earth. How do they grow and survive? Why are they essential to life on our planet? Find out more about trees.

Wildfires: When Is Fire Good? – Some trees need fire for their survival. Find out why.

Wildfires: After the Fire – After a fire burns an area, that’s when land managers come in to restore the habitat. How do they do it?


About Science Trek

Science Trek continues its 19th season with a new digital content focus. Instead of producing new 30-minute broadcast shows, Joan Cartan-Hansen and the Science Trek team will deliver more online-first content.

“Each month, we explore a scientific subject with digital shorts available on the Science Trek website, on a new Facebook page for parents and teachers, on YouTube, and on PBS Learning Media, a free, online media-on-demand service developed for preK-12 educators,” says Cartan-Hansen. The Science Trek team is even experimenting with 360-degree immersive video production.

Cartan-Hansen says in addition to the video, each month’s topic will have facts, links, reading lists, lesson plans, games and other educational support material all available on the website. The Science Trek website has more than 90 different scientific topics with video and supporting educational material all correlated to Idaho’s science standards and the Common Core science standards.

Production of Science Trek is made possible by support from the Laura Moore Cunningham Foundation, Idaho National Laboratory and the Walmart Foundation.

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