For Immediate Release                                                                                   
Contact: Kristin Tutino, WXXI, (585) 258-0253


(Rochester, New York) June 16, 2011 – The WXXI Educational Outreach Center is proud to announce that Williamson High School science teacher Brendan Noon has won a PBS Teacher Innovation Award. Noon was one of 12 educators across the country who was recognized for his creative and inventive use of public media to engage students and improve learning.

PBS invited educators across the U.S. to show how they innovate and engage students with PBS resources. Noon’s winning entry shared how his physics students built pumpkin launchers to study 2-dimentional projectile motion. Noon’s students accessed his multimedia website,, along with a variety of WXXI and PBS resources, including two NOVA programs, Medieval Siege and Galileo Battle for the Heavens, to help in building their creations. Students also learned about projectile motion from a computer simulated lab activity found on WXXI’s Video In Teaching & Learning (VITAL)/ Teachers’ Domain. The public media and video on-demand service, provided by WXXI and other New York State public broadcasting stations, is just one of many free resources WXXI’s Educational Outreach Center offers to schools and educators.

A major upgrade to the VITAL/Teachers’ Domain system is planned in the coming months, which will increase available resources to teachers. Additionally, WXXI and PBS provide broadcast and on-demand media programs such as NOVA with educational rights that make them readily available to use in the classroom. WXXI also provides training events for teachers on how to use media in the classroom. Educational Outreach Center staff often present or exhibit at statewide conferences or provide training through local teacher professional associations. For more information about educational resources:

Sponsored by The Henry Ford and SMART Technologies, the second annual PBS Teacher Innovation Awards granted first place spots to 12 educators, one from each of 12 subject and grade-level groupings. Twenty-eight educators were selected as second place winners. 

“Early in my career I was introduced to an Integrated Science program developed by the University of Alabama and adopted by a large number of schools statewide. It incorporated video presentations with hands-on inquiry allowing students to participate in a diverse range of activities,” said Noon. “It is my endeavor to create my own online version of this program on my website,, with PBS resources and additional interactive laboratory simulations and self-grading computer based learning modules that better prepare students for the New York State Regents examinations.”

As first place award winner, Noon will receive a unique week-long “Innovation Immersion Experience” at The Henry Ford in Dearborn, Mich., from July 31 to Aug. 5, 2011, a SMART Slate wireless slate, free enrollment in a PBS TeacherLine online professional development course, and a tote bag of PBS educational resources.

A gallery of the winning entries, including Noon’s, is featured on the PBS Teachers website at

PBS Teachers is the Web portal to PBS’ preK-12 educational services and its searchable library of more than 9,000 free local and national standards-based instructional resources, including on-demand video and interactive games.

WXXI is the essential, life-long educational media resource for the Greater Rochester area. WXXI puts the community first with programming that stimulates and expands thought, inspires the spirit, opens cultural horizons and promotes understanding of diverse community issues. Log on to for more information about our services and programs.

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