A children’s radio show goes online to tell the story of the South West

Katie Stone has worked with the radio show “The Children’s Hour” for over two decades.

In 2018, she started The Children’s Hour Inc., a non-profit organization that produces the internationally broadcast children’s public radio show and podcast.

Beginning at 10 a.m. on March 14, the radio show will begin a six-part Southwestern history online series titled “A Brief History of the American Southwest for Children,” featuring a virtual excursion into White Sands National Park.

“We are blessed to be able to speak and work with guests on this program,” Stone said. “I’ve expanded what ‘Kids Hour’ is and can partner with teachers to create radio shows together.”

Katie Stone

Stone says she works with Title I schools and works with at-risk children.

“The skills they can take away from working on the program are the ones that help build confidence,” she says.

Stone says the upcoming project is to partner with native students so New Mexico’s history can be explored through their stories.

In the first episode, Stone says the story begins around 23,000 years ago at White Sands National Park, with a series of fossilized footprints.

Fossilized footprints in White Sands National Park are said to be over 23,000 years old. (David Bustos/White Sands National Park)

“The discovery of these footprints puts humans in this area long before we originally thought,” Stone says. “What’s great is that the footprints found near White Sands are those of a teenager.”

Stone will be joined by White Sands National Park resource program manager David Bustos and archaeologist Mary Weahkee of the New Mexico Office of Archaeological Studies.

Teachers and students from Native American Community Academy and the Native American Community Academy (NACA) Inspired Schools Network will participate, with plenty of opportunities for questions and discussions with our experts, as they lay out the story of our region, evidenced by footprints deep inside White Sands National Park.

The public will be able to view the events on a live YouTube stream.

Chaco Canyons Pueblo Bonito is one of the places “Kids Hour” will highlight. (Courtesy of Robert Parisot)

“We hope this project connects children to the rich and enduring history of the American Southwest,” says Stone, who also serves as executive producer of “The Children’s Hour.” “We want to create an enduring program to share the remarkable stories of endurance, perseverance, resilience and ingenuity that created the place we call home today.” Each episode will include a learning guide that meets New Mexico and national educational standards.

Find the full program and more information at childrenshour.org/history.

Stone says the children are integral to the production of “The Children’s Hour” and take part in the aired arts training program each week.

The radio show is broadcast on more than 120 stations worldwide.

“Kids’ Hour” airs at 9 a.m. Saturdays on KUNM-FM.

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