Robin Buss's pick of the week
BBC2, Friday, June 9, 10.30-11.10am
The last of these six films for 7 to 11-year-olds on Britain in the post-war period is called "Towards a New Millennium". It ties in with the programme in the series "Writing Across the Curriculum", which immediately follows it. In fact, there is plenty to write about in today's episode, which includes the arrival of the internet and the Northern Ireland peace process. Next week sees the start of a four-parter on Saxons and Vikings.
All are now available in Video Plus packs. These cost pound;37.99 from BBC Children's Learning. Tel: 0870 839 6000.
New Kid in Class
BBC2, Fridays, June 9 and 16, 11.10-11.30am
Two documentaries for 7 to 11-year-olds look at the lives of children who, for one reason or another, frequently change school. Robyn's father is in the army, Gareth was training for the circus, and Ashley and Dianne have complicated family situations. In the second part we meet a Lithuanian refugee, a traveller and a victim of bullying. They talk about the difficulties of making new friends and settling into new classes. Hearing these stories should make your PSHE class more sensitive to the needs of others.
BBC2, Mondays to June 19, 11.10-11.30am
A fictional pop band provides a microcosm of society in this three-parter for PSHE with older primary-school children. BUDZ is the group, and its members are soon quarrelling over the choice of a new band member. Then Chris, the band's founder, fails to come up with the songs BUDZ need for their album because he prefers to spend time with his girlfriend. Soon BUDZ are at loggerheads again over whether they should do a charity concert without being paid...
BBC2, Tuesdays to June 20, 10.30-11.10am
The Megamaths playing card characters tackle problems of length as a sports day, the King's new clothes, decorating, a treasure hunt and holidays provide the themes for these five programmes introducing the basic concepts needed for measurement of the running track and the King's trousers. We find out what words and equipment we must have to calculate metres, centimetres and millimetres, and the relationship between the different metric units.
The South Bank Show: Romeo and Juliet
ITV, Sunday, June 11, 10-11pm
Most people who go to Verona pay at least a token homage to the courtyard with Juliet's balcony - it isn't Juliet's, of course, but the municipal authorities are hardly likely to emphasise that point given the huge number of amorous tourists who come to have themselves photographed there. The South Bank Show examines the power of the lover's story and its influence on the modern concept of romantic love. It should prove useful not only for English literature, but also for discussion of relationships in wider contexts, such as PSHE.