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Pulitzer Center Update July 6, 2021

On-Demand Webinar for Educators: 'Extra Life' in the Classroom

Extra Life: A Short History of Living Longer

A century ago, at the end of the Great Influenza, global life expectancy was in the mid 30s. In the...

On Thursday, June 10, 2021 at 5:00pm EDT, bestselling author Steven Johnson moderated a conversation with educators about their experiences connecting students to Extra Life and "The Living Century," two multi platform projects from PBS and The New York Times Magazine that trace the modern history of life expectancy. Science journalist Steven Johnson, who led the reporting for both projects, will moderate the discussion.

In the last century, global life expectancy has almost doubled. Childhood mortality worldwide has decreased by a factor of ten. This change, the "extra life" brought about by the aggregate effects of healthcare interventions, experiments, and innovations, should be understood as the single most important development of our era. It also has distinct implications for how history and science can be taught to students in K-12 classrooms. 

In the PBS Extra Life documentary series, Steven Johnson shines a light on the vaccines, interventions, breakthroughs, and environmental factors that have enabled longer average lifespans, while examining how those same factors have led to new challenges and inequities. 

In this webinar, Johnson was joined by middle and high school teachers from across the country who have shared Extra Life with their students. The panelists discussed how they have implemented the project in their curricula, reception in their school communities, and lessons learned.

Panelists include:

  • Akwete McAlister: Social Studies teacher at Career Center High School in Winston-Salem, NC
  • Anne-Michele Boyle: Global Citizenship teacher at Whitney M. Young Magnet High School in Chicago, IL
  • Chalya Pudlewski: English teacher at Cooperstown Jr./Sr. High School in Cooperstown, NY
  • Dr. Cleopatra Warren: U.S./World Affairs, A.P. U.S. History, U.S. Film, and Economics teacher at the Coretta Scott King Young Women’s Leadership Academy in Atlanta, GA
  • Dr. Tonita Dozier: Media specialist at Hardy Middle School in Washington, D.C.

The Pulitzer Center invites educators to view this webinar at their convenience to discover tools for connecting their students with reporting on today's crucial issues. Please contact [email protected] if you have any questions or would like to connect a journalist to your classroom.

Viewing guides and curricular resources for Extra Life can be found on the Pulitzer Center lesson library at this link.


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