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TV Smarts

February 15, 2001

Some broadcast and cable programs contain material included in the public school curriculum and on standardized examinations. Here are home-viewing tips:

* Today--"Your Police Commission" (CITY Channel 35, 7:30-8 p.m.) Initial episode in a new series on community service focuses on the Los Angeles Police Commission and its oversight of community policing. Also, "The Write Stuff" (KLCS 9-9:30 p.m.) Language arts program features tips for curing student writers' block when faced with writing an essay.

* Friday--"Sergeant Rutledge" (AMC 5-7 p.m.) Portrayal of race relations on the frontier starring Oscar-winner Woody Strode as an African American U.S. cavalryman. Also, "Hopes on the Horizon" (KCET 9-11 p.m.) Surveys political, social and economic reform in six African countries. Also, "Test Pilots: Flying the Wing" (TLC 10-11 p.m.) Follows the creation of the first B-2 stealth bomber, explaining how it avoids radar detection.

* Saturday--"Wrapped in Pride: The Story of Kente in America" (KLCS 10-10:30 p.m.) Traces an ancient African art form that survived suppression by colonial powers only to emerge worldwide as a symbol of African independence and ethnic pride. Also, "Great Books: Upton Sinclair's 'The Jungle' " (TLC 10-11 p.m.) Documentary on the novel that exposed conditions in the meat industry, which led to the creation of the U.S. Food and Drug Administration. Also, "Salt of the Earth" (TCM 10:30 p.m.-midnight) Classic movie written by Oscar-winner Michael Wilson employed Latino American mine workers' wives as actors to dramatize the 1950 New Mexico strike in which they were involved.

* Sunday--"The Reagan Years: Inside the White House" (CNN 7-8 p.m. repeats 10-11 p.m.) Includes interviews with former Reagan Cabinet members and White House staff and includes a tour of the Reagan Library in Simi Valley. Also, "Public Lives--Elizabeth: The Struggle for the Throne" (C-SPAN2 8-9 p.m.) Historian David Starkey discusses the youth of England's Queen Elizabeth I. Also, "National Geographic Explorer" (CNBC 8-9 p.m.) Follows the 300-mile migration of zebras and the cooperative social structure of the meerkats of the Kalahari Desert.

* Monday--"Abraham and Mary Lincoln" (KCET 9-11 p.m.) Covers the childhood years and eventual marriage of this famous first couple. Part 2 airs Tuesday covering their first term in the White House up to the Emancipation Proclamation. Part 3 airs Wednesday on the end of the Civil War and events after the president's assassination. Also, "The Unfinished Civil War" (HIST9-10 p.m.) Explores the passions and eccentricities that take thousands to Civil War battlefields to reenact events from America's greatest internal conflict.

* Tuesday--"School's In" (DISN 7-8 p.m.) Profiles six of the teachers honored at Disney's American Teacher Awards ceremony last December.

* Wednesday--"Lost City of the Pyramids" (KCET 8-9 p.m.) Covers the latest archeological discoveries about the people who built the pyramids, including the living conditions near their work, their food, even the medical treatment available. "Fats: Health Effects" (KLCS 9-9:30 p.m.) Explains the various kinds of fats in our diet.

*

Compiled by Richard Kahlenberg in consultation with Crystal J. Gips, dean of the School of Education, College of St. Rose, Albany, N.Y. Columns available at http://www.calendarlive.com/go/tvsmarts.

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