ThisFunktional Junior: March 2020

Home \\ Archive: March 2020



Enter ThisFunktional’s contest to win a copy of “Sonic the Hedgehog:

Here’s some hedgehog facts you never knew:

It’s Nearly Impossible to Unroll a Curled-Up Hedgehog
If you come across a hedgehog that’s rolled into a tight ball, leave it be. It’s virtually impossible to unroll one, anyway. When a hedgehog feels relaxed and unthreatened, he’ll unroll on his own.
 
Baby Hedgehogs Are Called Hoglets
Hoglets remain with their mothers for just four to seven weeks. After that, the animals are largely solitary. Their lifespan is about 7 to 10 years.
 
Groundhog Day Used to Be Hedgehog Day
In fact, the tradition of using hedgehogs to predict when spring would arrive started in Germany. When German settlers arrived in Pennsylvania, there were no hedgehogs around so they had to settle for groundhogs.
 
Hedgehogs Like to Make Spitballs
Hedgehogs have a tendency to lick new scents and then form a similarly scented spit ball that they use to coat their spines. It’s thought this may be a way for the animals to take on a new scent, thereby “camouflaging” themselves from predators’ sharp noses. They also use this spit-ball process to spread saliva with plant poison (to which they’re immune) over their spikes, offering them even more protection against predators.
 
Hedgehogs Are Primarily Nocturnal
Some hedgehog owners learned the hard way that these creatures like to run, search for food and play at night, while you’re probably trying to sleep. Their activity levels also depend on their climate. In cold weather, wild hedgehogs hibernate, and in hot climates they aestivate (similar to hibernation but during hot, dry spells). If they live in temperate regions, hedgehogs will stay active year-round.
 
Hedgehogs Make a Wide Variety of Noises
It’s often thought that hedgehogs are silent creatures, but this is a myth. They may grunt, squeal, snort and snuffle, as well as click or hiss. When they’re happy and content, hedgehogs purr or whistle.
 
Source: https://healthypets.mercola.com/sites/healthypets/archive/2017/09/19/hedgehogs.aspx

Download fun activity sheets:


THE ACTION-PACKED ADVENTURE THAT’S FUN FOR THE WHOLE FAMILY SPEEDS HOME FOR DIGITAL PURCHASE MARCH 31

Level-Up with Bonus Features Including a New Animated Short, Deleted Scenes, Hilarious Bloopers and More! *
 
4K Ultra HD & Blu-ray™ Combo Packs Arrive May 19 with a Limited Edition Comic Book**

Get ready for epic fun and super-sonic action when everyone’s favorite hedgehog races home in the blockbuster hit “SONIC THE HEDGEHOG,” debuting early for purchase on Digital March 31 from Paramount Home Entertainment.

The film will be available on 4K Ultra HD, Blu-ray, DVD and for rental on demand or disc May 19.
 
The Digital*, 4K Ultra HD, and Blu-ray releases are packed with sensational bonus features: See Sonic the Hedgehog’s next adventure around the world in a new animation; get more of Sonic in deleted scenes; laugh at the hilarious blooper reel; explore the origins of the legendary blue hedgehog; see Jim Carrey bring Dr. Robotnik to life; watch along with awesome commentary by director Jeff Fowler and the voice of Sonic, Ben Schwartz; and more.

Plus, for a limited time, the 4K Ultra HD and Blu-ray Combo packs will include a printed, Limited Edition comic book featuring an adventure with Sonic and The Donut Lord.**
 
Powered with incredible speed, Sonic the Hedgehog (voiced by Ben Schwartz), aka The Blue Blur, embraces his new home on Earth.

That is, until he accidentally knocks out the power grid and sparks the attention of super-uncool evil genius Dr. Robotnik (Jim Carrey).

Now it’s super-villain vs. super-sonic in an all-out race across the globe to stop Robotnik from using his unique power for world domination.

Sonic teams up with The Donut Lord, aka Sheriff Tom Wachowski (James Marsden), to save the planet in this action-packed hit that’s fun for the whole family.
 
BONUS FEATURES ON DIGITAL*, 4K ULTRA HD COMBO, & BLU-RAY COMBO
  • Commentary by director Jeff Fowler and the voice of Sonic, Ben Schwartz
  • Around the World in 80 Seconds—See Sonic’s next adventure!
  • Deleted Scenes—Director Jeff Fowler introduces deleted scenes
  • Bloopers—Laugh along with Jim Carrey and the cast
  • “Speed Me Up” Music Video
  • For the Love of Sonic—Jim Carrey and the cast discuss what Sonic the Hedgehog means to them
  • Building Robotnik with Jim Carrey—See Jim Carrey bring supervillain Dr. Robotnik to life
  • The Blue Blur: Origins of Sonic—Explore the origins of the legendary Blue Blur
  • Sonic On Set—Visit the set with the voice of Sonic, Ben Schwartz
                            
The 4K Ultra HD Digital and 4K Ultra HD disc releases present the film in Dolby Vision®, which brings entertainment to life through ultra-vivid picture quality with spectacular colors, highlights that are up to 40 times brighter, and blacks that are 10 times darker.

The film also boasts a Dolby Atmos® soundtrack remixed specifically for the home to place audio anywhere in the room, including overhead.***  
 
The “SONIC THE HEDGEHOG” DVD includes the feature film in standard definition.
 

Portland Based Ad Agency Sponsors Female-Led, Accessible and Inclusive STEM Focused Streaming Video Content

The leading direct-to-consumer advertising agency, Rain the Growth Agency, is embarking on an exciting sponsorship for online interactive video series “The Fab Lab With Crazy Aunt Lindsey.”

With the agency's support, “the Fab Lab” is launching new programming at a time where educational content is in high demand due to parents and children staying at home during the COVID-19 pandemic.

In response to national school closures and mandatory work from home efforts, “the Fab Lab” has launched a brand new live stream experience called “The Fab Lab Digital Daycare™,” featuring four hours of live daily "virtual childcare" in the form of supplementary educational programming for children K-5 including a science DIY, kids workout, snack ideas, storytime, and more. 

“The Fab Lab” activities are designed to be done with the whole family to encourage bonding, good behavior, and great memories, but are easy and safe enough for slightly older kids to do on their own.

The projects promise to be quick and inexpensive, using things that can easily be found in the kitchen, the bathroom, or garage.

Every project is eco-friendly (reduce, reuse, recycle!) and yields a result that kids can both be proud of and use again and again as all of the science projects double as gifts, snacks, or home decor. 

“The Fab Lab” hosted by Lindsey Murphy, known as "Crazy Aunt Lindsey" is one of YouTube's most beloved and longest-running kids science and STEM education-focused web series, celebrating its tenth year and fifth season online. 

The show turns everyday STEM concepts into easy DIY projects and crafts for children ages 6-12, with a mission to bring accessibility, inclusivity and representation to STEM.  
"Now more than ever, it's critical that parents and children have access to high-quality, educational and entertaining content on a daily basis," Michelle Cardinal, co-founder and CEO of Rain the Growth Agency, said. "With schools being closed and a lot of parents working from home, having a trusted place to turn to for streamable content to keep kids busy (and learning) is a huge relief. We're proud to be able to support Lindsey and this project in such a time of need."     
Lindsey Murphy, creator of the Fab Lab, has been producing “The Fab Lab” out of Rain the Growth Agency's artist in residence program since Q4 of last year as the agency has provided mentorship and resources for production, generating awareness, driving traffic, and marketing support.
"I love my audience and this lightbulb pivot in format is truly a service to them," Murphy said. "When I was a babysitter back in the day, parents knew that come hell or high water, I would be there for them and their kids. The show has always been an extension of that. What Rain the Growth Agency has offered at this urgent time, makes it possible for thousands of parents, families, and support facilities to occupy little minds and bodies in a safe and engaging online space during our own mandatory office closures." 
“The Fab Lab's Digital Daycare™“ is streaming Monday-Friday from 11 a.m. - 3 p.m. PST / 2-6 p.m. EST on Facebook.com/TheFabLabHQ with replays on their YouTube channel YouTube.com/TheFabLabHQ.

In addition to video content, “The Fab Lab” also produces a daily email newsletter with replay and live links, recaps, recipes, announcements and more to support parents while staying at home with their children.

Sign up at

About Rain the Growth Agency
Rain the Growth Agency is an independent, women-led, performance-minded, fully integrated advertising agency. We link strategy, creative and production with audience targeting, dynamic media buying and advanced analytics to achieve sales and branding goals simultaneously, without compromise. Our holistic Transactional Brand Building approach produces transformational growth for clients ranging from DTC fast companies and category disruptors to established brands with traditional models. For more than 20 years, we have been scaling businesses such as Humana, Mercari, 23andMe, Chewy, SimpliSafe, 1-800 CONTACTS, Consumer Cellular and LendingTree. Headquartered in Portland, Oregon and co-founded in 1998 by Michelle Cardinal, the agency has grown to over 240 employees in four offices across the U.S.

Ep. 102 “Diary Days, Making Mulan, Animation Legends” 

Writer Ilana Peña tells us how she turned her real life diary into the hit Disney+ show "Diary of a Future President.”

Director Niki Caro tells us how she created her new film "Mulan."

Legendary Disney animators Burny Mattinson and Andreas Deja take us inside the Walt Disney Animation Vault.

“DISNEY INSIDER” is a docuseries taking fans behind the curtain of The Walt Disney Company.

The series peels back the curtain of The Walt Disney Company like never before.

Tune in each week as the series takes fans behind movies, theme parks, destinations, music, toys, and more.

Each episode offers three unique stories that capture the magical moments and heartfelt storytelling that is Disney.

We will be there first, to share our amazing stories, and through unrivaled access fans will see the true magic behind all things Disney.


Films available for digital purchase on March 27

The Walt Disney Studios announced that 20th Century Studios’ “The Call Of The Wild” and Searchlight Pictures’ “Downhill” will be available to buy digitally and on Movies Anywhere beginning March 27 in the U.S.
 
Both films debuted in theaters in February.

With cinemas currently impacted by closures due to the global health crisis, “The Call Of The Wild” and “Downhill” will be available ahead of schedule to purchase on digital platforms in the U.S. for $14.99 and $9.99 respectively.
 
“The Call of the Wild” delighted audiences upon opening February 21, earning an 89% Verified Audience Score on RottenTomatoes®.

Adapted from the novel by Jack London, it vividly brings to the screen the story of Buck, a big-hearted dog whose blissful domestic life is turned upside down when he is suddenly uprooted from his California home and transplanted to the exotic wilds of the Canadian Yukon during the Gold Rush of the 1890s.

As the newest rookie on a mail delivery dog sled team — and later its leader — Buck experiences the adventure of a lifetime, ultimately finding his true place in the world and becoming his own master.

As a live-action/animation hybrid, “The Call of the Wild” employs visual effects and animation technology in order to bring the animals in the film to life.

“The Call of the Wild” is directed by Chris Sanders and stars Harrison Ford, Omar Sy, Dan Stevens, Karen Gillan, Bradley Whitford, Cara Gee, Michael Horse, Jean Louisa Kelly, Colin Woodell, Adam Fergus and Abraham Benrubi. Erwin Stoff, p.g.a. and James Mangold, p.g.a. are producing with Diana Pokorny, Ryan Stafford and screenwriter Michael Green serving as executive producers.
 
“Downhill” debuted in theaters on February 14 after premiering at the Sundance Film Festival in January.

Barely escaping an avalanche during a family ski vacation in the Alps, a married couple is thrown into disarray as they are forced to reevaluate their lives and how they feel about each other.

Julia Louis-Dreyfus and Will Ferrell star in this biting comedy.

“Downhill” is directed by Nat Faxon and Jim Rash, written by Nat Faxon, Jim Rash and Jesse Armstrong and stars Will Ferrell, Julia Louis-Dreyfus, Zach Woods, Zoe Chao, Giulio Berruti, Kristofer Hivju and Miranda Otto.

Anthony Bregman p.g.a., Julia Louis-Dreyfus p.g.a. and Stefanie Azpiazu p.g.a. are producing with Erik Hemmendorff and Ruben Östlund serving as executive producers.
 
About The Walt Disney Studios
For over 95 years, The Walt Disney Studios has been the foundation on which The Walt Disney Company was built. Today it brings quality movies, episodic storytelling, music, and stage plays to consumers throughout the world. The Walt Disney Studios encompasses a collection of respected film studios, including Disney, Walt Disney Animation Studios, Pixar Animation Studios, Disneynature, Marvel Studios, Lucasfilm, 20th Century Studios, Searchlight Pictures, and Blue Sky Studios. It is also home to Walt Disney Records, Hollywood Records, and Disney Theatrical Productions, producer of world-class stage shows.

Meghan, The Duchess of Sussex Lends Voice to “Elephant”   

Academy Award® Winner Natalie Portman Narrates “Dolphin Reef”

April Earth Day-Themed Collection on Disney+ To Also Feature Titles From National Geographic and Disneynature

In recognition of Earth Month, Disney+ announced the Disneynature film “Elephant,” narrated by Meghan, The Duchess of Sussex, will premiere on April 3 alongside previously announced “Dolphin Reef,” with narration by Academy Award®-winning actress Natalie Portman. 

Following its theatrical release last year, the Disneynature film “Penguins” will also make it’s Disney+ debut on April 3. 

The Earth Month collection on Disney+ will also contain additional Disneynature titles premiering on the service on April 3 including “In the Footsteps of Elephant,” “A Life on the Edge” and “Diving with Dolphins” which give viewers behind-the-scenes access into the unique filmmaking process of all three films.
 
These captivating films will join an already robust collection of animal and nature titles highlighted throughout the month including National Geographic’s “America’s National Parks,” “Wild Yellowstone,” “The Flood,” “JANE,” “Before the Floods,” “Planet of the Birds,” “Sea of Hope: America’s Underwater Treasures,” “Kingdom of the White Wolf,” “Tree Climbing Lions,” Hostile Planet” and “Wild Russia.”
 
Directed by Mark Linfield, co-directed by Vanessa Berlowitz and Alastair Fothergill, and produced by Mark Linfield, Vanessa Berlowitz and Roy Conli, “Elephant” follows African elephant Shani and her spirited son Jomo as their herd make an epic journey hundreds of miles across the vast Kalahari Desert.

Led by their great matriarch, Gaia, the family faces brutal heat, dwindling resources and persistent predators, as they follow in their ancestor’s footsteps on a quest to reach a lush, green paradise.
 
In recognition of “Elephant,” Disneynature and the Disney Conservation Fund are supporting Elephants Without Borders, an organization working in Botswana to ensure people and elephants thrive.

Elephants Without Borders is working on strategies to protect Botswana’s elephant haven, helping to reduce human-wildlife conflict through education, economic development, and solutions that either redirect elephant migration away from people, or provide communities with tools that help to protect themselves and their properties when elephants are nearby.
 
“Dolphin Reef” dives under the sea to frolic with some of the planet’s most engaging animals: dolphins.

Created with Disneynature’s signature storytelling style, the film introduces Echo, a young Pacific bottlenose dolphin who can’t quite decide if it’s time to grow up and take on new responsibilities.

Dolphin society is tricky, and the coral reef that Echo and his family call home depends on all of its inhabitants to keep it healthy.

But Echo has a tough time resisting the many adventures the ocean has to offer.

Keith Scholey, who directed Disneynature’s “Bears,” helms the film.
 
Disney has a long history of supporting oceans and marine life around the world.

Grants from the Disney Conservation Fund and expertise from Disney Conservation Team Wildlife have helped leading conservation organizations and communities to establish coral nurseries to help to re-grow their damaged reefs, build fisheries that save fish and provide local job opportunities, rescue stranded dolphins, and inspire children to explore and protect coastlines, reefs and other marine habitats.
 

About Disney+
Disney+ is the dedicated streaming home for movies and shows from Disney, Pixar, Marvel, Star Wars, National Geographic, and more. From The Walt Disney Company’s Direct-to-Consumer and International segment, Disney+ is available on most internet-connected devices and offers commercial-free programming with a variety of original feature-length films, documentaries, live-action and animated series and short-form content. Alongside unprecedented access to Disney’s incredible library of film and television entertainment, the service is also the exclusive streaming home for the latest releases from The Walt Disney Studios. Visit DisneyPlus.com to subscribe and/or learn more about the service.
 
About Disneynature
The first new Disney-branded film label from The Walt Disney Studios in more than 60 years, Disneynature was launched to bring the world's top nature filmmakers together to share a wide variety of wildlife stories on the big screen in order to engage, inspire and educate theatrical audiences everywhere. All seven of Disneynature's theatrical film releases - "Earth," "Oceans," "African Cats," "Chimpanzee," "Bears," "Monkey Kingdom" and "Born in China" - rank among the top 10 highest overall grossing feature-length nature films to date, with "Chimpanzee" garnering a record-breaking opening weekend for the genre. Disneynature's commitment to conservation is a key pillar of the label and the films empower the audience to help make a difference, with each film driving significant conservation outcomes, supporting wildlife featured in the films.

To celebrate what would have been Aretha Franlink’s 78th birthday, National Geographic will be making a donation to Feeding America to continue her legacy, which included support for numerous charities and advocacy organizations.

In honor of her birthday, a new photo of the global miniseries about her life has also been released.

ABOUT GENIUS: ARETHA
GENIUS dramatizes the fascinating stories of the world’s most brilliant innovators, exploring their extraordinary achievements along with their volatile, passionate and complex personal relationships. The third season of the anthology series will explore Franklin’s musical genius and incomparable career as well as the immeasurable impact and lasting influence she has had on music and culture around the world, in the first-ever, definitive and only authorized scripted limited series on the life of the universally acclaimed Queen of Soul. Grammy Award winner Franklin was a gospel prodigy and outspoken civil rights champion; she is widely considered to be the greatest singer of the past 50 years, receiving countless honors throughout her career. 
 
Imagine is partnering with Warner Music Entertainment for this third season, which will again be executive produced by Imagine’s Brian Grazer and Ron Howard. Suzan-Lori Parks is showrunner and executive producer, and Anthony Hemingway is executive producer and producing director for the season. Legendary hit record producer Clive Davis and Atlantic Records Chairman and CEO Craig Kallman have also joined as executive producers. Returning executive producers include Francie Calfo (GENIUS, “Empire”), Ken Biller (GENIUS: EINSTEIN, GENIUS: PICASSO), Gigi Pritzker and Rachel Shane (MWM Studios), and Sam Sokolow (EUE/Sokolow). In addition, Imagine’s Anna Culp serves as producer alongside Peter Afterman.

GENIUS: ARETHA

JanSport announced plans to donate 10,000 backpacks to World Central Kitchen, a non-profit dedicated to creating smart solutions to hunger and poverty, in response to the COVID-19 pandemic.

Through this donation, World Central Kitchen will use the packs as a vessel for delivering much-needed food to students in Oakland, California and Los Angeles, Calif.
"The COVID-19 pandemic has forced thousands of schools and colleges to close. For some students, that means access to daily nutrition and meal plans is cut off," Monica Rigali, Senior Director of Marketing at JanSport, said. "By partnering with World Central Kitchen, JanSport can help get food and necessary supplies to those in need. We've always been there for students and we intend to be by their side during this uncertain time." 
Timed with this donation, JanSport is working with JUV Consulting, a youth-focused think tank run by members of Gen Z, to launch the #UnpackThatChallenge on TikTok for displaced students to promote a hopeful message while adjusting to their new normal. 
To participate, simply:
  • Grab your backpack from the left of the frame 
  • Pull out your unique school day essentials, whether that be a laptop, textbooks, or something out of the box 
  • Hand your backpack off to the left 
  • Include #UnpackThatChallenge in your caption 
  • Pair video with Greyson Chance's "Seasons Nineteen"
The challenge encourages duetting other participant's videos to build connections, while giving back to other students in need through World Central Kitchen. 
"We were happy to team up with JanSport to help them better understand what Gen Z is going through during this challenging time," Ziad Ahmed, CEO and Co-Founder of JUV Consulting, said. "JanSport is such an iconic brand and we were excited work with them to help students cope with their new school from home situation." 
For more information on how to get involved, please visit JanSport.com.

About JanSport®
JanSport, a division of VF Outdoor, LLC., was founded in 1967 in Seattle, WA, by three pioneers in the outdoor industry. Though the brand began by manufacturing and marketing world-class outdoor backpacks, today the product offering includes outdoor gear and daypacks sold on jansport.com, department stores, and specialty and boutique retail locations throughout the world. All JanSport packs are backed by a lifetime warranty to guarantee they stand by customers through their life's adventures.

About JUV Consulting
JUV Consulting (juvconsulting.com) is a purpose-driven Generation Z agency that was founded in 2016 by a group of Generation Z-ers. The company exists to help clients better connect with young people through research, strategy, marketing, and creative services -- empowered by the belief that the world looks better when diverse young people themselves have a seat at the table. Since 2016, JUV has worked with over 20 Fortune 500 companies, has been profiled by the likes of The New York Times, and has been recognized as one of the top start-up employers in the country by Forbes.

THE ACTION-PACKED ADVENTURE THAT’S FUN FOR THE WHOLE FAMILY SPEEDS HOME FOR DIGITAL PURCHASE MARCH 31

Level-Up with Bonus Features Including a New Animated Short, Deleted Scenes, Hilarious Bloopers and More! *
 
4K Ultra HD & Blu-ray™ Combo Packs Arrive May 19 with a Limited Edition Comic Book**

Get ready for epic fun and super-sonic action when everyone’s favorite hedgehog races home in the blockbuster hit “SONIC THE HEDGEHOG,” debuting early for purchase on Digital March 31 from Paramount Home Entertainment.

The film will be available on 4K Ultra HD, Blu-ray, DVD and for rental on demand or disc May 19.
 
The Digital*, 4K Ultra HD, and Blu-ray releases are packed with sensational bonus features: See Sonic the Hedgehog’s next adventure around the world in a new animation; get more of Sonic in deleted scenes; laugh at the hilarious blooper reel; explore the origins of the legendary blue hedgehog; see Jim Carrey bring Dr. Robotnik to life; watch along with awesome commentary by director Jeff Fowler and the voice of Sonic, Ben Schwartz; and more.

Plus, for a limited time, the 4K Ultra HD and Blu-ray Combo packs will include a printed, Limited Edition comic book featuring an adventure with Sonic and The Donut Lord.**
 
Powered with incredible speed, Sonic the Hedgehog (voiced by Ben Schwartz), aka The Blue Blur, embraces his new home on Earth.

That is, until he accidentally knocks out the power grid and sparks the attention of super-uncool evil genius Dr. Robotnik (Jim Carrey).

Now it’s super-villain vs. super-sonic in an all-out race across the globe to stop Robotnik from using his unique power for world domination.

Sonic teams up with The Donut Lord, aka Sheriff Tom Wachowski (James Marsden), to save the planet in this action-packed hit that’s fun for the whole family.
 
BONUS FEATURES ON DIGITAL*, 4K ULTRA HD COMBO, & BLU-RAY COMBO
  • Commentary by director Jeff Fowler and the voice of Sonic, Ben Schwartz
  • Around the World in 80 Seconds—See Sonic’s next adventure!
  • Deleted Scenes—Director Jeff Fowler introduces deleted scenes
  • Bloopers—Laugh along with Jim Carrey and the cast
  • “Speed Me Up” Music Video
  • For the Love of Sonic—Jim Carrey and the cast discuss what Sonic the Hedgehog means to them
  • Building Robotnik with Jim Carrey—See Jim Carrey bring supervillain Dr. Robotnik to life
  • The Blue Blur: Origins of Sonic—Explore the origins of the legendary Blue Blur
  • Sonic On Set—Visit the set with the voice of Sonic, Ben Schwartz
                            
The 4K Ultra HD Digital and 4K Ultra HD disc releases present the film in Dolby Vision®, which brings entertainment to life through ultra-vivid picture quality with spectacular colors, highlights that are up to 40 times brighter, and blacks that are 10 times darker.

The film also boasts a Dolby Atmos® soundtrack remixed specifically for the home to place audio anywhere in the room, including overhead.***  
 
The “SONIC THE HEDGEHOG” DVD includes the feature film in standard definition.
 

Are you looking for constructive ways to keep your children stimulated and engaged during the COVID-19 school shutdown?

The line of groundbreaking toys from SmartGurlz Inc. uses an award-winning robotics platform to teach basic coding skills to girls as young as 6. 
“Many girls’ toys lag behind in the development of spatial skills, hands-on problem solving skills, and confidence with coding and computer science,” SmartGurlz founder Sharmi Albrechtsen said. “These are exactly the skills that SmartGurlz aims to develop.”
The SmartGurlz line of unique, interactive, self-balancing robots and dolls are controlled with the SugarCoded™ App that can be downloaded onto an IOS or android phone or tablet that once downloaded requires no Wi-Fi, just Bluetooth. 
 
A full, step-by-step tutorial teaches basic coding strategies so young girls can maneuver the toys around obstacle courses of their own design.

With several levels of learning and challenges, the toy keeps kids occupied several hours a week for 4-6 months. 
 
The company is also offering a free weekly webinar for parents and kids affected by COVID- 19 that includes getting started, tips and tricks, and weekly home assignments.

Girls playing with SmartGurlz products learn three key concepts:
  1. Spatial Reasoning. Girls learn how to direct/orient their robots in new environments and interpret maps. 
  2. Computer Programming. Girls learn to program their robots using our kid-friendly coding App called SugarCodedTM.
  3. Storytelling & Problem Solving. Girls learn to tell stories and solve missions via coding.
The SmartGurlz product line also includes an e-book series available through the App that focuses on the everyday adventures of four talented young women studying at the fictional New York Institute of Technology — N.I.T.
 
We’re all adjusting to a new normal.

You can use this extra time at home to inspire the female tech leaders of tomorrow with toys that integrate the power of play with the power of technology.
 
SmartGurlz CEO Sharmi Albrechtsen is a robotics aficionado, educator, author and mom with a passion for closing the diversity gap in technology. 
 
In 2015, Sharmi started SmartGurlz after becoming frustrated with the lack of STEM toys available for her daughter.

The SmartGurlz flagship product, Siggy, was the first robotics product designed specifically for girls.

More than 30,000 girls have been educated with SmartGurlz. SmartGurlz partners include BlackGirlsCode, Girl Scouts of America and Morrison Mentors.
 
SmartGurlz recently expanded its product line to include Smart Buddies (a joint-venture with Pitsco Education), which features a diverse set of characters suitable for both girls and boys, targeted towards schools.
 
Sharmi was recently given AdWeek's Disruptor Award in Championing Gender Diversity in Advertising and Tech.

She has also been named Women Entrepreneur of the Year 2018 by the Asian Chamber of Commerce as well as named a Morgan Stanley Multi-Cultural Innovation Lab fellow.

Sharmi has been featured in Forbes, Huffington Post, Financial Times, Fox Business News, Fox and Friends and CNN. She is also a featured TEDx speaker.
 
For more information:

Connect on social media:

Beginning today, WWE is pleased to unlock a vast portion of the WWE Network library and extend free access to thousands of hours of extraordinary on-demand content, including every WrestleMania in history, countless pay-per-view spectaculars, original documentaries and more, for a limited time.

This unprecedented offering to WWE fans worldwide includes each epic installment to date of WrestleMania, plus, every Royal Rumble, SummerSlam and Survivor Series event; every NXT TakeOver and NXT UK TakeOver; and groundbreaking originals such as the entire WWE 24 docuseries, Steve Austin’s Broken Skull Sessions interview show, the recent five-episode hit, WWE Ruthless Aggression, and its 20-episode predecessor, The Monday Night War series.

Also included:
  • Recent episodes of Monday Night Raw
  • Recent episodes of Friday Night SmackDown
  • Every episode of WWE Untold
  • A Future WWE: The FCW Story
  • Much, much more
We’ve already doubled down with a historic WrestleMania this year that’s Too Big for Just One Night, streaming on WWE Network on April 4 and April 5 at 7 p.m. ET/4 PT.

The two-night event is only available to WWE Network subscribers and on Foxtel’s Main Event April 5 & April 6 at 9 a.m. (AEST)

Now, in the lead-up to The Show of Shows, you can relive classic matches, re-experience sports-entertainment’s defining moments and celebrate WWE’s greatest Superstars, past and present.

Just create your account and stream on your favorite device.

Start watching for free NOW at watch.wwe.com.

Looking for a sax-y way to pass the day?
 
Sit back and let Smooth Jazz Chaz serenade you for the next 10 HOURS!!! #TrollsWorldTour

For those of you working from home, kids home from school, or just trying to keep stress levels low, heres Smooth Jazz Chaz’ serenade that people can follow now on YouTube and Twitter.

Also, here’s the “Just Sing music video that can be fun for families to watch and sing along with.



Watch Smooth Jazz Chaz in
TROLLS WORLD TOUR
In Theaters, At Home On Demand April 10

The short-form video platform is donating $3M to help provide millions of meals to families across the U.S.

As schools across the country close, one of the greatest challenges facing many parents is how to feed their children. 

Millions of students, teachers and families depend on school resources for more than learning.

TikTok announced it is partnering with After-School All-Stars (ASAS) to provide critical meal support to those in need.

TikTok's $3M donation will enable ASAS, an organization founded by former California Governor Arnold Schwarzenegger, to feed families affected by school closings due to COVID-19.

Families in 60 cities across the U.S. with ASAS chapters will receive food vouchers and gift cards to be used on food and other essential items through local grocery store partners.
"We are all operating in uncertain times, and it's more important now than ever before for both our local and global communities to come together to help those in need," Vanessa Pappas, General Manager of TikTok U.S., said. "This pledge to ASAS will help more students get access to meals, safely provided to them, during this crisis. While this alone won't mitigate the impact of the current situation, we hope it can relieve one worry for parents who are balancing social distancing mandates, work and caring for children who can no longer go to school each day."
ASAS' distribution of food credits and gift cards will first reach families in highly impacted cities, including Los AngelesMiamiNew York CityNewarkSan FranciscoSeattle, Washington D.C., and more.

The organization is working with local grocery partners including Food Land, Giant, Kroger, Publix, Ralphs, Safeway, Target, and Walmart.

These resources will help the communities that have been hit the hardest by the residual impact of the coronavirus pandemic.

TikTok will also match up to $1M in employee donations to ASAS to further the organization's ability to provide food for those in need.
"During a crisis, improvisation is critical and everyone has to look at new ways to help the most vulnerable," Arnold Schwarzenegger, former California Governor and Founder of After-School All-Stars, said. "The After-School All-Stars programs are paused with schools closed, but we remain committed to supporting the 100,000 families we work with year-round. When I founded After-School All-Stars in 1992, the goal was always to support the families who need it the most. I'm grateful to TikTok for their donation which allows us to shift our priorities so our team can safely deliver groceries and gift cards for groceries to the families we help."
Schwarzenegger shared additional information about After-School All-Stars and the partnership with TikTok in a video shared to his TikTok page @arnoldschnitzel
Ben Paul, President and CEO, After-School All-Stars, said, "The communities we serve are already very vulnerable, and this situation has further magnified the hardships many families face. This crisis has had a profound impact on millions of people, and I'm heartened by the tremendous generosity, collaboration and creativity that we've seen across communities and industries. I am excited to work with TikTok as we address immediate needs and examine the unique role that technology plays in bringing individuals and communities together."
To further support the community, TikTok's online Safety Center, developed in partnership with trusted local health officials, is being regularly updated with information on how people can stay connected and safe during this time.

About TikTok
TikTok is the leading destination for short-form mobile video. Our mission is to inspire creativity and bring joy. TikTok has global offices including Los AngelesMountain View, New YorkLondonParisBerlinDubaiMumbaiSingaporeJakartaSeoul, and Tokyotiktok.com

About After-School All-Stars
Founded in 1992 by Arnold Schwarzenegger, After-School All-Stars is a leading national provider of school-based, free, comprehensive after-school programs. The organization's mission is to keep children safe and help them succeed in school and in life. Every school day, students in under-resourced communities have access to free programs that allow them to increase academic readiness, explore career opportunities, develop regular health and wellness habits, practice visual and performing arts, and build STEM skills. 90,000+ children from 19 U.S. locations benefit: AtlantaChicagoClevelandColumbusHawaiiLas VegasLos AngelesNewark, New YorkNorth TexasOrlandoPhiladelphia & Camden, San AntonioSouth FloridaTampa BayToledo, WashingtonD.C., Bay Area and Puget Sound. For more information, visit afterschoolallstars.org #TeamAllStars

Starting March 20, the Boca Raton Museum of Art is launching a new series of free Online Community Art Initiatives for all ages at this link.

Featuring the new Keep Kids Smart with ART series to help parents and their children who are home from school.

The Museum has always provided the community the added benefit of an Art School campus with an innovative art faculty, since its very beginnings in 1950.

These art educators are using their expertise to develop online resources using the power of art.

Also for seniors who are keeping social distance and who might feel isolated.

This series will provide art-oriented ways for people to creatively utilize their new free-time at home.

Online art lessons, tips for parents to use art-making and creativity with their kids at home, and activities for all ages.

The resources on this landing page will evolve as time passes, as the art teachers receive feedback, and reactions from families about their needs.

It will also branch out to the Museum's social media channels for ongoing activities through hastag #BocaMuseumatHome.
“Art, culture, and creativity have always made a difference in powerful ways, especially during challenging times,” Irvin Lippman, the executive director of the Boca Raton Museum of Art, said. “While the Museum is temporarily closed, we will continue to give back to the community. Being inspired and creative have not been canceled. These artists in our new exhibition, ‘Eye to I: Self Portraits from the National Portrait Gallery,’ made a lasting mirror effect of themselves, cutting across time and creating a very personal art that engages us – the viewer.”
According to the National School Boards Association, kids who study art are four times more likely to be recognized for academic achievement.

Studies show that art helps kids earn higher report card grades because skills developed through art lead to better learning in other areas.

Tips for parents and students on using art in your home:
  • Provide a special “creative zone” at home.
  • Make sure that your "creative zone" is mess-friendly and able to stand up well to spills and art-related fun.
  • Focus on the fun process, not on the outcome.
  • Create a special area to showcase your child’s artwork.
  • Watch and encourage your children as they work on their art.
  • Ask them questions to engage them while they create.

Lights, Camera, Action!
 
Universal Studios Hollywood Takes Annual Pass Members On an Immersive, Behind-the-Scenes Adventure, Including Top Picks to Original, Premium Special Events from “Bravo’s Top Chef Food & Wine Festival” to “Halloween Horror Nights”

Visit Here tLearn More and to Purchase

Universal Studios Hollywood’s Popular Annual Pass
It’s always a thrill to visit Universal Studios Hollywood and Universal CityWalk.

With unparalleled, technologically-advanced thrill rides that must be experienced to be believed, premium restaurants, eclectic shopping and state-of-the-of-art Cinema, the world-renowned destination offers an array of incomparable entertainment the whole family can enjoy.

And with the addition of new rides, one-of-kind special eventsexciting seasonal programs and new dining options, one day visit just isn’t enough time to experience it all.

So, with so much to see and do, an Annual Pass is the ticket of choice to spend quality time at the place where movies are made.

Where else can movie buffs and thrill seekers get up close and personal with Blue the Velociraptor, the star of the Jurassic World films and “Jurassic World—The Ride,” embrace their inner witch or wizard while sipping Butterbeer in Hogsmeade village at “The Wizarding World of Harry Potter,” or create a little mischief with Illumination’s Minions at “Despicable Me, Minion Mayhem.”

But it’s the moments, custom designed by each Pass member, that elevates membership to whole other level.  

From catching the latest blockbuster at the Universal Cinema an AMC© Theatre, and grabbing a bite at CityWalk’Antojitos Cocina Mexicana restaurant beforeheading over to the theme park to experience a few rides at their leisure, it’s the flexibility of their visits that truly define the ultimate value of an Annual Pass.

In addition to dynamic rides and memorable moments, Universal Studios Hollywood is also the purveyor of uniquely created special events that come to life with Annual Pass members in mind.

From specially-priced tickets to its first-ever “Bravo’s Top Chef Food & Wine Festival” and Running Universal events to its wildly popular “Halloween Horror Nights,” or programs included with the price of admission, such as “Lunar New Year” and “Grinchmas,” Pass members are in a league of their ownwhen Universal Studios Hollywood rolls out the red carpet with first-come, first served offercatered just for them

And just like stepping into scene from a movieUniversal Studios Hollywood shines a spotlight on valued Annual Pass members by putting them among the first….to experience new rides including the all-new “The Secret Life of Pets: Off the Leash!,” among the first…to receive discounted offers on special events, among the first…to receive insider updates on what’s new and exciting, among the first…to enter sweepstakes to attend red carpet movie premieres and screenings; firstto win blockbusters movies on DVDamong the first…to enjoy free offerings, and of course, leisurely access to the theme park to experience favorite rides over and over again.

Because Universal Studios Hollywood shares real estate with Universal’s movie and television production studio, a spin on the world-famous Studio Tour is chock full of adventure for friends and family, that couldn’t be experienced anywhere else.

With a chance to peek behind the velvet curtain for a glimpse at Hollywood movie-making in action, every Studio Tour journey is ripe with opportunity.

Celebrities come and go routinely, sosightings may be just a tram ride away

And as part of its commitment to its valued Pass members, Universal Studios Hollywood recently introduced Pass Member Appreciation Days.

This program, hosted over a six-week period in late summer and early fall, celebrates Pass members with a variety of exclusively created perks.

So, why become an Annual Pass member? Recent conversations with new and repeat Annual Pass guests helped convey the why, in their own words:

• I visited often as a kid and now I have the chance to share my childhood memories with my daughter and her friendsWvisit together as a family because Universal Studios Hollywood is a great family experience.”
• “There is always something new every time we visit.”
• “There’s something nostalgic about visiting Universal Studios Hollywood. It gives me a chance to reconnect with my childhood and the memories I have when I visited as a child.”
• “I like the access I get with being an Annual Pass member and makes the trips we take to the park very convenient.”
• “Honestly, for me, it’s about the movies. Being at the place where movies and television shows are filmed is so exciting.”
• “Because can ride my favorite rides all the time.”
• “I love it because it’s my favorite place to enjoy a Butterbeer with friends, and check out a ride or two, whenever I want.”
• “Because I can bring my teenagers to the park with their friends, knowing it’s a safe and fun environment for them.”
There are several unique Annual and Season Pass options to choose from designed to meet a variety of needs and budgets, but all serve as a passport to funPlatinum Annual Pass, Gold Annual Pass and Silver Annual Pass as well as the California Neighbor Season Pass.

All 12 month passes also offer FlexPay™ with low monthly payments options with an auto-renewal feature.More information can be found here.

Visit UniversalStudiosHollywood.com for more details and to save up to $60 on an Annual Pass when purchased online. Offer valid through April 23, 2020. Restrictions apply.  Like Universal Studios Hollywood on Facebook and follow @UniStudios on Instagram and Twitter.  Download the official Universal Studios Hollywood app, available for free in the App Store and on Google Play.
 
 
About Universal Studios Hollywood
Universal Studios Hollywood includes a full-day, movie-based theme park and Studio Tour. As a leading global entertainment destination, Universal Studios Hollywood delivers highly themed immersive lands that translate to real-life interpretations of iconic movie and television shows. Attractions include “The Wizarding World of Harry Potter™” which features a bustling Hogsmeade village and such critically-acclaimed rides as “Harry Potter and the Forbidden Journey” and “Flight of the Hippogriff™”, the new mega attraction “Jurassic World—The Ride, and the all-new “The Secret Life of Pets: Off the Leash!” ride. Other immersive lands include “Despicable Me Minion Mayhem” and “Super Silly Fun Land” as well as “Springfield,” hometown of America’s favorite TV family, located adjacent to the award-winning “The Simpsons Ride™” and DreamWorks Theatre featuring “Kung Fu Panda Adventure.”  The world-renowned Studio Tour is Universal Studios Hollywood’s signature attraction, inviting guests behind-the-scenes of the world’s biggest and busiest movie and television production studio where they can also experience such thrill rides as “Fast & Furious—Supercharged” and “King Kong 360 3D.” The adjacent Universal CityWalkentertainment, shopping and dining complex also includes the all-new multi-million dollar, redesigned Universal CityWalk Cinema, featuring deluxe recliner seating in screening room quality theatres, and the “5 Towers” state-of-the-art outdoor concert stage.

GKids, Shout Factory present anime WEATHERING WITH YOU, coming to Blu-ray in Collector’s Edition November 17

North American DVD/Blu-ray debuts on September 15, on Digital August 4 Written by Jesus Figueroa @ThisFunktional of ThisFunktional.com The ...