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Reading Rainbow Poster

Reading Rainbow

IMDB Logo8.4/10
Children Family all1983 - 200621 SeasonsSeries EndedOn: Free Services Prime Video 

Reading Rainbow was an American children's television series that aired on PBS from June 6, 1983, until November 10, 2006, that encouraged reading by children.The public television series garnered over 200 broadcast awards, including a Peabody Award and 26 Emmy Awards, 11 of which were in the "Outstanding Children's Series" category. The series was created under the leadership of Cecily Truett Lancit and Larry Lancit, at Lancit Media Productions in New York. The concept of a reading series for children originated with Twila Liggett, Ph.D., and Paul Schupbach, of the Great Plains National Instructional Television Library at the University of Nebraska–Lincoln; and Tony Buttino, of WNED-TV Buffalo, New York. The original team included Lynne Brenner Ganek, Ellen Schecter, and host LeVar Burton.Each episode centered on a theme from a book, or other children's literature, which was explored through a number of segments or stories. The show also recommended books for kids to look for when they went to the library. It is the third-longest running children's series in PBS history, after Mister Rogers' Neighborhood and Sesame Street. It was also one of the first PBS shows to be broadcast in stereo.Reading Rainbow has one or more episodes streaming with subscription on Prime Video, streaming with subscription on PBS KIDS (Via Prime Video), available for purchase on iTunes, and 3 others. It's a children and family show with 165 episodes over 21 seasons. Reading Rainbow is no longer running and has no plans to air new episodes or seasons. It has a high IMDb audience rating of 8.4 (3,002 votes).

Where to Watch Reading Rainbow

Where to stream every episode from all 21 seasons of Reading Rainbow. Filter these episodes by what's available to watch free or on your streaming services using the tabs above.

Season 1

Prime Video | PBS Kids | Rent or Buy
Season 01, Episode 01 Tight Times

S01 E01

Jun 6, 1983
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Tight Times Jun 6, 1983 A young girl's father loses his job.

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Season 01, Episode 02 Miss Nelson Is Back

S01 E02

Jun 7, 1983
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Miss Nelson Is Back Jun 7, 1983 As part of his birthday celebration, LeVar gets made-up like a movie monster, and then gets involved in Harry Blackstone's magic act. Ruth Buzzi reads Miss Nelson Is Back, all about a group of rowdy students who try to take advantage of their teacher's absence when she's out sick one day, and how she gets revenge on them by pretending to be "the meanest teacher in the world, Viola Swamp."

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Season 01, Episode 03 Bea and Mr. Jones

S01 E03

Jun 8, 1983
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Bea and Mr. Jones Jun 8, 1983 LeVar is already worn out after working on several scenes all day long on the production of the series. He feels he needs to take on another identity, segueing into introducing the featured book, Bea and Mr. Jones. Madeline Kahn reads the book about a kindergarten student and her father who get so bored with their jobs that they decide to experiment by switching places for the day.

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Season 01, Episode 04 Bringing the Rain to Kapiti Plain

S01 E04

Jun 9, 1983
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Bringing the Rain to Kapiti Plain Jun 9, 1983 Bringing the Rain to Kapiti Plain

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Season 01, Episode 05 Louis the Fish

S01 E05

Jun 10, 1983
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Louis the Fish Jun 10, 1983 Louis the Fish

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Season 01, Episode 06 Digging Up Dinosaurs

S01 E06

Jun 13, 1983
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Digging Up Dinosaurs Jun 13, 1983 Technically not the first science-related show in its history, LeVar seeks a place where archaeologists retrieve dinosaur bones. At the end of the program, LeVar buries a time capsule, containing (among other things) a can of old Coke and his picture. Linda Gilman reads Digging Up Dinosaurs, a story about how paleontologists unearth dinosaurs skeletons and preserve them in museum exhibits.

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Season 01, Episode 07 Liang and the Magic Paintbrush

S01 E07

Jun 14, 1983
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Liang and the Magic Paintbrush Jun 14, 1983 Liang and the Magic Paintbrush

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Season 2

Prime Video | Rent or Buy
Season 02, Episode 01 Hot-Air Henry

S02 E01

Sep 3, 1984
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Hot-Air Henry Sep 3, 1984 LeVar goes to South Carolina to ride a hot-air balloon. In another study of how air travel has advanced, schoolchildren visit the Space Camp for Aspiring Young Astronauts. William Windom reads the story of Hot-Air Henry, the misadventures of a cat who sneaks on board his family's hot air balloon and how he gets back down again.

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Season 02, Episode 02 Simon's Book

S02 E02

Sep 4, 1984
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Simon's Book Sep 4, 1984 Simon's Book

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Season 02, Episode 03 Ox-Cart Man

S02 E03

Sep 5, 1984
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Ox-Cart Man Sep 5, 1984 Ox-Cart Man

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Season 02, Episode 04 Mystery on the Docks

S02 E04

Sep 6, 1984
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Mystery on the Docks Sep 6, 1984 Mystery on the Docks

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Season 02, Episode 05 A Chair for My Mother

S02 E05

Sep 7, 1984
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A Chair for My Mother Sep 7, 1984 A Chair for My Mother

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Season 3

Prime Video | PBS Kids | Rent or Buy
Season 03, Episode 01 Paul Bunyan

S03 E01

Jul 1, 1985
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Paul Bunyan Jul 1, 1985 Lavar visits a lumberjack camp in the forest. Today's featured book is based on the legend of Paul Bunyan, the giant woodsman.

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Season 03, Episode 02 The Patchwork Quilt

S03 E02

Jul 2, 1985
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The Patchwork Quilt Jul 2, 1985 The Patchwork Quilt

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Season 03, Episode 03 Hill of Fire

S03 E03

Jul 3, 1985
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Hill of Fire Jul 3, 1985 Hill of Fire

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Season 03, Episode 04 The Tortoise and the Hare

S03 E04

Jul 4, 1985
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The Tortoise and the Hare Jul 4, 1985 LeVar has entered a bicycle race. He's in competition not just with the other bikers, but with himself as well. This program also includes a lengthy piece on a karate class. Comedienne Gilda Radner reads the Aesop's tale of "The Tortoise and the Hare," about an arrogant rabbit that's over confident that he can beat a determined turtle in a foot race.

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Season 03, Episode 05 Perfect the Pig

S03 E05

Jul 5, 1985
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Perfect the Pig Jul 5, 1985 LeVar visits a pig farm in Hawaii to find out why pigs are so popular. He also interviews Kermit the Frog to ask him about his famous girlfriend, Miss Piggy.James Coco reads the story of Perfect the Pig, about a little runt pig who makes a wish to have wings in order to be special, and how he found a special person to be his friend and companion.

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Season 03, Episode 06 Animal Cafe

S03 E06

Jun 23, 1986
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Animal Cafe Jun 23, 1986 LeVar goes to a 24-hour diner to look into night jobs, and profiles people who have occupations in the evening and early morning hours, like radio DJ's, bakers, cab drivers, and police officers. In a separate story, a man ventures into a cave to see bats and other nocturnal animals. Martin Short narrates the story of "Animal Cafe," about a cat and dog who operate a third shift restaurant for all the animals in their neighborhood while keeping it a secret from their human owner.

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Season 03, Episode 07 Alistair in Outer Space

S03 E07

Jun 24, 1986
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Alistair in Outer Space Jun 24, 1986 LeVar checks out the Library of Congress. Among the activities shown: how a book is delivered to the front desk, the vast film library, and how damaged books are repaired. Arnold Stang reads Alistair in Outer Space, a story about a young boy that is so dedicated to returning library books on time that he doesn't even let getting abducted by space aliens stop him.

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Season 4

Prime Video | PBS Kids | Rent or Buy
Season 04, Episode 01 Space Case

S04 E01

Jun 23, 1986
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Space Case Jun 23, 1986 Is there life on other planets and stars? LaVar sends a message to aliens who might be watching and a radio telescope in Puerto Rico is profiled. Today's featured story is about a being from outer space who visits Earth.

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Season 04, Episode 02 The Milk Makers

S04 E02

Jun 24, 1986
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The Milk Makers Jun 24, 1986 The Milk Makers

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Season 04, Episode 03 Imogene's Antlers

S04 E03

Jun 25, 1986
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Imogene's Antlers Jun 25, 1986 LaVar visits the zoo, to learn about animals with horns and antlers. In the featured story, a young girl wakes up one morning to discover she's grown her own pair of antlers.

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Season 04, Episode 04 Germs Make Me Sick!

S04 E04

Jun 26, 1986
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Germs Make Me Sick! Jun 26, 1986 Germs Make Me Sick!

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Season 04, Episode 05 Abiyoyo

S04 E05

Jun 27, 1986
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Abiyoyo Jun 27, 1986 Abiyoyo

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Season 04, Episode 06 The Life Cycle of the Honeybee

S04 E06

Jun 30, 1986
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The Life Cycle of the Honeybee Jun 30, 1986 LeVar visits a beehive to look into beekeeping and how honey is made. Barbara Feldon narrates The Life Cycle of the Honeybee, which goes into detail about how bees make hives in natural habitats such as trees.

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Season 04, Episode 07 Keep the Lights Burning, Abbie

S04 E07

Jul 1, 1986
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Keep the Lights Burning, Abbie Jul 1, 1986 Keep the Lights Burning, Abbie

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Season 5

Prime Video | PBS Kids | Rent or Buy
Season 05, Episode 01 The Bionic Bunny Show

S05 E01

Jun 22, 1987
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The Bionic Bunny Show Jun 22, 1987 The reader takes a tour on a television studio as they film an episode of Bionic Bunny, learning about acting and special effects.

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Season 05, Episode 02 Bugs

S05 E02

Jun 23, 1987
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Bugs Jun 23, 1987 We share our world with ants, crickets, flies, centipedes and lady beetles. In 'Bugs', by Nancy Winslow Parker and Joan Richards Wright, viewers learn where insects live, what they're good for, how they grow and much more. LeVar visits Insect World at the Cincinnati Zoo for an in-depth look at some of the more fascinating members of the insect world. The incredible story of the monarch butterflies' migration to the Sierra Cinqui Mountains in Mexico is an added highlight.

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Season 05, Episode 03 Chickens Aren't the Only Ones

S05 E03

Jun 24, 1987
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Chickens Aren't the Only Ones Jun 24, 1987 LeVar wants to find the answer to the old question, "Which came first, the chicken or the egg?" Posing as field reporter for E.G.G.-TV , he uncovers other discoveries instead, such as loggerhead sea turtles emerging onto the sand to lay eggs. Georgia Engel narrates Chickens Aren't the Only Ones, a book told in rhyme showing all kinds of animals who lay eggs like chickens. In this unedited, original episode of Reading Rainbow, join LeVar Burton on an educational and entertaining adventure through classic books, video field trips and the always favorite "kid book reviews."

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Season 05, Episode 04 The Paper Crane

S05 E04

Jun 25, 1987
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The Paper Crane Jun 25, 1987 LeVar provides insight on Japanese culture. Keye Luke reads the story of a kind restaurant owner who is thanked by a customer with a magical crane made from a napkin, whose dancing spectacle soon brings in the guests to make the failing business prosperous again. In this unedited, original episode of Reading Rainbow, join LeVar Burton on an educational and entertaining adventure through classic books, video field trips and the always favorite "kid book reviews."

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Season 05, Episode 05 The Runaway Duck

S05 E05

Jun 28, 1987
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The Runaway Duck Jun 28, 1987 In a small boat on the Chesapeake Bay, LeVar is on the lookout for ducks who are spending the winter. During the trip, he gets a chance to see a duck up close and show how a couple turns a block of wood into a duck. Orson Bean reads The Runaway Duck, a story of a toy duck named Egbert who gets tied to a car by accident and how he then travels all over the world when the car drives off. In this unedited, original episode of Reading Rainbow, join LeVar Burton on an educational and entertaining adventure through classic books, video field trips and the always favorite "kid book reviews."

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Season 05, Episode 06 A Three Hat Day

S05 E06

Jun 29, 1987
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A Three Hat Day Jun 29, 1987 A totally unreal hat store called "Hats... to Where?" sells hats that transport customers to all parts of the world. LeVar whisks himself to the horse racetrack at Turf Paradise, to a model train display in Three Bridges, New Jersey, and to the Nassau Coliseum, where he gets a goal tending lesson from Kelly Hurdey of the New York Islanders. Zelda Rubenstein reads A Three Hat Day, a story about a man who loves hats very much, and how he meets his soul mate when he goes shopping in a new hat store. In this unedited, original episode of Reading Rainbow, join LeVar Burton on an educational and entertaining adventure through classic books, video field trips and the always favorite "kid book reviews."

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Season 05, Episode 07 Rumpelstiltskin

S05 E07

Jun 30, 1987
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Rumpelstiltskin Jun 30, 1987 This looks like an extension of the previous episode, but it is a separate venture. LeVar appears in proper attire for an English Renaissance festival. Ralph Waite reads the fairy tale of Rumpelstiltskin, about a poor miller's daughter who is stuck between a greedy king and a conniving elf to get out of a difficult situation. In this unedited, original episode of Reading Rainbow, join LeVar Burton on an educational and entertaining adventure through classic books, video field trips and the always favorite "kid book reviews."

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Season 6

Prime Video | Rent or Buy
Season 06, Episode 01 The Bionic Bunny Show

S06 E01

Aug 15, 1988
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The Bionic Bunny Show Aug 15, 1988 LeVar launches into the television production process during the filming of Star Trek: The Next Generation, on which he played a major role. In this unedited, original episode of Reading Rainbow, join LeVar Burton on an educational and entertaining adventure through classic books, video field trips and the always favorite "kid book reviews."

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Season 06, Episode 02 Bugs

S06 E02

Aug 16, 1987
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Bugs Aug 16, 1987 With microorganisms under his belt, LeVar now goes on the lookout for insects. In this unedited, original episode of Reading Rainbow, join LeVar Burton on an educational and entertaining adventure through classic books, video field trips and the always favorite "kid book reviews."

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Season 06, Episode 03 The Robbery at the Diamond Dog Diner

S06 E03

Aug 17, 1987
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The Robbery at the Diamond Dog Diner Aug 17, 1987 LeVar tries to have lunch at a diner, but soon finds himself thrust into work. For some reason, he just doesn't understand luncheonette lingo. In this unedited, original episode of Reading Rainbow, join LeVar Burton on an educational and entertaining adventure through classic books, video field trips and the always favorite "kid book reviews."

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Season 06, Episode 04 Brush

S06 E04

Aug 18, 1988
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Brush Aug 18, 1988 Can inanimate things come to life, as the feature book suggests? LeVar finds out for himself in a factory where all the goods for the Macy's Thanksgiving Day Parade are stored. In this unedited, original episode of Reading Rainbow, join LeVar Burton on an educational and entertaining adventure through classic books, video field trips and the always favorite "kid book reviews."

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Season 06, Episode 05 The Purple Coat

S06 E05

Aug 19, 1988
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The Purple Coat Aug 19, 1988 In New York again, LeVar goes to get a tailor-made jacket. In between comes a visit to the Fashion Institute of Technology. In this unedited, original episode of Reading Rainbow, join LeVar Burton on an educational and entertaining adventure through classic books, video field trips and the always favorite "kid book reviews."

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Season 06, Episode 06 Barn Dance!

S06 E06

Aug 27, 1989
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Barn Dance! Aug 27, 1989 LeVar is in Tennessee where he is going to a barn dance. Along the way, he meets the band who will be playing their Bluegrass music and meets a man who makes his own fiddles. At the barn, LeVar also learns a few dance steps for the big night Roy Clark narrates Barn Dance!, a story about a hoedown that is unlike any other. In this unedited, original episode of Reading Rainbow, join LeVar Burton on an educational and entertaining adventure through classic books, video field trips and the always favorite "kid book reviews."

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Season 06, Episode 07 Duncan and Dolores

S06 E07

Aug 28, 1989
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Duncan and Dolores Aug 28, 1989 There's more to the cat that meets the eye. It culminates with one of the stars of what was then believed to be Broadway's permanence: CATS. Jane Curtain narrates the featured book about a girl who wants a cat. In the story, Duncan and Dolores learn how to be themselves and earn each other's friendship. In this unedited, original episode of Reading Rainbow, join LeVar Burton on an educational and entertaining adventure through classic books, video field trips and the always favorite "kid book reviews."

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Season 7

Prime Video | PBS Kids | Rent or Buy
Season 07, Episode 01 Humphrey the Lost Whale: A True Story

S07 E01

Jul 3, 1989
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Humphrey the Lost Whale: A True Story Jul 3, 1989 LeVar sailing on the Atlantic coast whale watching. He and a team of scientists learn about how whales eat and how they live in their habitats in the ocean. Jane Pauley narrates the true story of Humphrey, the Lost Whale, all about a humpback whale who gets separated from his pod and gets stuck under a bridge over the Sacramento River. In this unedited, original episode of Reading Rainbow, join LeVar Burton on an educational and entertaining adventure through classic books, video field trips and the always favorite "kid book reviews."

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Season 07, Episode 02 Stay Away from the Junkyard!

S07 E02

Jul 4, 1989
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Stay Away from the Junkyard! Jul 4, 1989 LeVar decides it's time to clean out the things cluttering up his house. What he finds is only memories of his entire life. None of this is junk, as it turns out. Michelle Mariano reads the story of a young girl visiting relatives who befriends the local junkyard manager, even though the rest of the town avoids him and spreads rumors. In this unedited, original episode of Reading Rainbow, join LeVar Burton on an educational and entertaining adventure through classic books, video field trips and the always favorite "kid book reviews."

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Season 07, Episode 03 Little Nino's Pizzeria

S07 E03

Jul 5, 1989
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Little Nino's Pizzeria Jul 5, 1989 LeVar takes a shot at making his own pizza. He gets the yeast right, but he underestimates just about everything else. (That includes the volume of "vox pops" shots.) Josh Saviano reads Little Nino's Pizzeria, a story about a boy who works with his father at a neighborhood pizzeria when one day his father closes it up to work at a more fancy restaurant. In this unedited, original episode of Reading Rainbow, join LeVar Burton on an educational and entertaining adventure through classic books, video field trips and the always favorite "kid book reviews."

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Season 07, Episode 04 Ludlow Laughs

S07 E04

Jul 6, 1989
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Ludlow Laughs Jul 6, 1989 Ludlow is a big grump who never laughs or even smiles. One night he has the funniest dream ever. When he starts laughing, the whole world laughs with him. Also includes LeVar "Clowning Around", Stand Up Comic and book reviews for Pig William, Shake My Sillies Out and The Make Me Laugh! Joke Books.

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Season 07, Episode 05 Dinosaur Bob and his Adventures with the Family Lazardo

S07 E05

Jul 7, 1989
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Dinosaur Bob and his Adventures with the Family Lazardo Jul 7, 1989 It's spring 1989, and LeVar gets in the training camp of the Oakland Athletics (back when it was Tony LaRussa, Dave Stewart, Mark McGwire and Terry Steinbach) for a program on baseball. Edward Asner reads the story of a family who meets a dinosaur who they soon find out loves to play baseball. In this unedited, original episode of Reading Rainbow, join LeVar Burton on an educational and entertaining adventure through classic books, video field trips and the always favorite "kid book reviews."

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Season 07, Episode 06 Dive to the Coral Reefs

S07 E06

Mar 26, 1990
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Dive to the Coral Reefs Mar 26, 1990 Within the sea, lies a combination of scuba diving and (just slightly) snorkeling as LeVar and a friend of his dive beneath the ocean to explore a living coral reef and the life around it. Fran Brill narrates Dive to the Coral Reefs, a book that shows the life and structures of the beauty that lies beneath the sea. In this unedited, original episode of Reading Rainbow, join LeVar Burton on an educational and entertaining adventure through classic books, video field trips and the always favorite "kid book reviews."

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Season 07, Episode 07 Desert Giant: The World of the Saguaro Cactus

S07 E07

Mar 27, 1990
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Desert Giant: The World of the Saguaro Cactus Mar 27, 1990 LeVar explores the Sonoran Desert in Arizona, photographing its natural environment and learning about how animals in the desert adapt to this kind of climate. Philip Basco narrates the feature book on the natural world of the famous desert cactus, the giant saguaro. In this unedited, original episode of Reading Rainbow, join LeVar Burton on an educational and entertaining adventure through classic books, video field trips and the always favorite "kid book reviews."

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Season 8

Prime Video | Rent or Buy
Season 08, Episode 01 The Magic School Bus Inside the Earth

S08 E01

Sep 10, 1990
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The Magic School Bus Inside the Earth Sep 10, 1990 Burton introduces the episode by talking about cavern and cave exploring. The featured book, "The Magic School Bus Inside The Earth", is narrated by Keshia Knight Pulliam. Burton then visits California Caverns, where he learns about stalagmites, stalactites, and other crystal formations and goes spelunking with a cave expert.

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Season 08, Episode 02 Jack, the Seal and the Sea

S08 E02

Sep 11, 1990
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Jack, the Seal and the Sea Sep 11, 1990 LeVar takes a journey aboard a fishing boat to explore small ocean wildlife, such as plankton, sea horses, and small sharks as he learns information from oceanographers about caring for the seas and oceans. Leslie Uggams reads the featured story of a fisherman who decides to educate his neighbors about prevention of water pollution after he must rescue a small seal trapped in debris. In this unedited, original episode of Reading Rainbow, join LeVar Burton on an educational and entertaining adventure through classic books, video field trips and the always favorite "kid book reviews."

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Season 08, Episode 03 The Bicycle Man

S08 E03

Sep 12, 1990
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The Bicycle Man Sep 12, 1990 Wheels are set in motion for this program. In-line skating, then a brand-new commodity, get featured side-by-side with bicycles. Tom Matsusaka narrates The Bicycle Man, a story about an American soldier who visits Japan and performs amazing tricks on a bicycle. In this unedited, original episode of Reading Rainbow, join LeVar Burton on an educational and entertaining adventure through classic books, video field trips and the always favorite "kid book reviews."

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Season 08, Episode 04 Florence and Eric Take the Cake

S08 E04

Sep 13, 1990
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Florence and Eric Take the Cake Sep 13, 1990 LeVar visits a famed wax sculpture museum, where an expert wax artist makes a statue of him. Julia child reads the story of two children helping their grandmother plan a party, and how they accidentally mistake a fancy decorated hat for a cake decorated in the same way. In this unedited, original episode of Reading Rainbow, join LeVar Burton on an educational and entertaining adventure through classic books, video field trips and the always favorite "kid book reviews."

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Season 08, Episode 05 Sunken Treasure

S08 E05

Sep 14, 1990
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Sunken Treasure Sep 14, 1990 A hurricane of the coast of Florida in 1662 caused the Atocha, a Spanish galleon to sink. This book describes the many-years-long search for the treasure believed to be on it. Also contains The Atocha, The Titanic and book reviews for The Titanic: Lost... and Found, A Day Underwater and What's in the Deep? An Underwater Adventure.

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Season 9

PBS Kids | Rent or Buy
Season 09, Episode 01 Alistair's Time Machine

S09 E01

Sep 16, 1991
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Alistair's Time Machine Sep 16, 1991 Alistair's Time Machine is a story of a boy who enters his time machine in a science competition. Althought Alistair knows his machine works, he isn't able to prove it to the judges.

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Season 09, Episode 02 The Adventures of Taxi Dog

S09 E02

Sep 17, 1991
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The Adventures of Taxi Dog Sep 17, 1991 LeVar is a taxi driver in New York for a day, but the focus of this show soon lands on the subject of a service dog as well as how dogs are such good pets to us. Vincent Gardenia reads the story of an adopted stray dog who helps his new owner, a cab driver, get better tips when he entertains the customers on rides. In this unedited, original episode of Reading Rainbow, join LeVar Burton on an educational and entertaining adventure through classic books, video field trips and the always favorite "kid book reviews."

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Season 09, Episode 03 The Legend of the Indian Paintbrush

S09 E03

Sep 18, 1991
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The Legend of the Indian Paintbrush Sep 18, 1991 This show gets steeped into a world of Native American art. In this unedited, original episode of Reading Rainbow, join LeVar Burton on an educational and entertaining adventure through classic books, video field trips and the always favorite "kid book reviews."

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Season 09, Episode 04 Galimoto

S09 E04

Sep 19, 1991
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Galimoto Sep 19, 1991 There is a lot one can do with wire, from sculpture to circus acts. In this unedited, original episode of Reading Rainbow, join LeVar Burton on an educational and entertaining adventure through classic books, video field trips and the always favorite "kid book reviews."

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Season 09, Episode 05 Fox on the Job

S09 E05

Sep 20, 1991
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Fox on the Job Sep 20, 1991 There's a wide job market out there, but just what kind of job does a person want? In this program are both conventional and unconventional occupations to straddle the flow of the feature book. In this unedited, original episode of Reading Rainbow, join LeVar Burton on an educational and entertaining adventure through classic books, video field trips and the always favorite "kid book reviews."

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Season 09, Episode 06 Opt: An Illusionary Tale

S09 E06

Sep 23, 1991
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Opt: An Illusionary Tale Sep 23, 1991 Exactly what its title says it is, Reading Rainbow this time all is not what it seems as LeVar demonstrates optical illusions from the book by Arline and Joseph Baum. He also shows how special effects are created for television; meets artist Christian Thee, who paints trompe l'oeil, or "trick-the-eye," paintings; and shows clips of kids creating their own optical illusions as well as optical illusions in nature--camouflage tricks that animals use to deceive predators. In this unedited, original episode of Reading Rainbow, join LeVar Burton on an educational and entertaining adventure through classic books, video field trips and the always favorite "kid book reviews."

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Season 09, Episode 07 Raccoons and Ripe Corn

S09 E07

Sep 24, 1991
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Raccoons and Ripe Corn Sep 24, 1991 LeVar spends the day following around wildlife artist and children's book author Jim Arnofsky, who shows LeVar how he is inspired to create the stories by the signs of animals around the woods near his home. Julia Barr reads several of Arnofsky's books: Raccoons and Ripe Corn, about a family of raccoons that feast on a nearby corn crop; Come Out, Muskrats!, about some shy muskrats hiding in their pond home; and Deer at the Brook, about a family of deer taking a drink at the stream. In this unedited, original episode of Reading Rainbow, join LeVar Burton on an educational and entertaining adventure through classic books, video field trips and the always favorite "kid book reviews."

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Season 10

PBS Kids | Rent or Buy
Season 10, Episode 01 Tar Beach

S10 E01

Oct 5, 1992
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Tar Beach Oct 5, 1992 LeVar's presence looms over New York once again, this time literally. He's taken to the roof of one of the nondescript skyscrapers, very close to the bridge mentioned in the featured book, Tar Beach. In this unedited, original episode of Reading Rainbow, join LeVar Burton on an educational and entertaining adventure through classic books, video field trips and the always favorite "kid book reviews."

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Season 10, Episode 02 The Wall

S10 E02

Oct 6, 1992
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The Wall Oct 6, 1992 LeVar visits the Vietnam Veterans Memorial in Washington DC, and discusses its historical significance to helping people learn about the service men and woman who died in the war. Artist Mia Lin, who designed the black granite wall, is profiled as she describes the reasons she chose the materials and design style for the monument. Jason Ruggiero reads the featured story of a boy who accompanies his father to the monument to search for his paternal grandfather's name on the wall, and his observations of other visitors. In this unedited, original episode of Reading Rainbow, join LeVar Burton on an educational and entertaining adventure through classic books, video field trips and the always favorite "kid book reviews."

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Season 10, Episode 03 Sam the Sea Cow

S10 E03

Oct 7, 1992
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Sam the Sea Cow Oct 7, 1992 LeVar goes to Florida to help take care of manatee with a crew of marine biology experts. He gets to feed a baby manatee, and assists in returning a rehabilitated manatee back to the ocean. Jason Robards reads the feature story of a true tale about a young manatee named Sam whose curiosity caused him to get stuck in drain pipe, and how he was rescued and returned to the sea. In this unedited, original episode of Reading Rainbow, join LeVar Burton on an educational and entertaining adventure through classic books, video field trips and the always favorite "kid book reviews."

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Season 10, Episode 04 Rechenka's Eggs

S10 E04

Oct 8, 1992
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Rechenka's Eggs Oct 8, 1992 LeVar takes up decorating eggs and shows us that they're one of nature's extraordinary wonders. The author of the featured book shows us how she got the idea for the story. We also see how animals in nature hatch their eggs. In this unedited, original episode of Reading Rainbow, join LeVar Burton on an educational and entertaining adventure through classic books, video field trips and the always favorite "kid book reviews."

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Season 10, Episode 05 Sophie and Lou

S10 E05

Oct 9, 1992
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Sophie and Lou Oct 9, 1992 LeVar takes a spirited leap into the world of dance. He gets a mambo lesson from Latin dancer, Jackie Rios, and has a hop while learning some fresh hip-hop moves. LeVar also shows that there are different kinds of dancing done all over the world. Lola Falana narrates Sophie and Lou, a story of a young lady who is very shy and lives all alone. Sophie learns to dance by herself until she meets her match. In this unedited, original episode of Reading Rainbow, join LeVar Burton on an educational and entertaining adventure through classic books, video field trips and the always favorite "kid book reviews."

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Season 10, Episode 06 Come a Tide

S10 E06

Oct 12, 1992
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Come a Tide Oct 12, 1992 LeVar discusses the weather: how it is traced, tracked, and covered in the media. Kids our shown how they can make a "soda bottle tornado", how a barometer works, and read the book, "Come a Tide". All this is prelude to the dramatic footage of Hurricane Hugo as it wrought havoc on South Carolina in 1989. In this unedited, original episode of Reading Rainbow, join LeVar Burton on an educational and entertaining adventure through classic books, video field trips and the always favorite "kid book reviews."

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Season 10, Episode 07 The Piggy in the Puddle

S10 E07

Oct 13, 1992
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The Piggy in the Puddle Oct 13, 1992 A program devoted to mud sees LeVar get his hands into the claymation of the featured book, The Piggy in the Middle. In this unedited, original episode of Reading Rainbow, join LeVar Burton on an educational and entertaining adventure through classic books, video field trips and the always favorite "kid book reviews."

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Season 11

PBS Kids | Rent or Buy
Season 11, Episode 01 Amazing Grace

S11 E01

Oct 11, 1993
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Amazing Grace Oct 11, 1993 LeVar visits a theater to discuss acting and how pretending to be someone else sometimes helps people express themselves in different ways. He also visits with his friend, Whoopi Goldberg, who was launching her own talk show, and discussed how her unique look has sometimes helped, and hindered her career as an actress/ comedienne. Tyne Daly reads Amazing Grace, a story of a little girl who loved acting out all the stories she read and heard, and how she wouldn't let her classmate's prejudiced remarks prevent her from auditioning for the lead in the school play. In this unedited, original episode of Reading Rainbow, join LeVar Burton on an educational and entertaining adventure through classic books, video field trips and the always favorite "kid book reviews."

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Season 11, Episode 02 The Furry News

S11 E02

Oct 12, 1993
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The Furry News Oct 12, 1993 The feature book has animals putting together all the parts that make up a newspaper. Some, but not all parts, are further discussed in the live-action sequences. As LeVar discusses his favorite parts of a newspaper and interviews other people for different viewpoints, other functions of a newspaper staff are explored. Cartoonist Ray Billingsley, who draws Curtis, shows how he illustrates a comic, and a high school newspaper staff is profiled making a weekly publication. In this unedited, original episode of Reading Rainbow, join LeVar Burton on an educational and entertaining adventure through classic books, video field trips and the always favorite "kid book reviews."

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Season 11, Episode 03 Mrs. Katz and Tush

S11 E03

Oct 13, 1993
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Mrs. Katz and Tush Oct 13, 1993 LeVar pays a visit to a family friend, who is Jewish, to learn how to prepare special foods served during a Seder dinner, like Challah bread and potato latkes. Reizyl Bozyk and Rick English read the featured story of an elderly Jewish lady and how she befriends her neighbor's young son after she is widowed and he gives her a pet cat to keep her company. In this unedited, original episode of Reading Rainbow, join LeVar Burton on an educational and entertaining adventure through classic books, video field trips and the always favorite "kid book reviews."

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Season 11, Episode 04 The Salamander Room

S11 E04

Oct 14, 1993
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The Salamander Room Oct 14, 1993 LeVar explores the rain forest and animals in their habitats by visiting a park that recreates the rain forest environment artificially to make the animals comfortable. This episode also includes a film of scientists who study the region's animals from above by climbing inside a tree's canopy. Lynne Thigpen reads The Salamander Room, about a little boy who finds a small newt while on a nature walk, and all the rationalizing he does to convince his mother to let him keep the salamander as a pet by turning his bedroom into a model rain forest. In this unedited, original episode of Reading Rainbow, join LeVar Burton on an educational and entertaining adventure through classic books, video field trips and the always favorite "kid book reviews."

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Season 11, Episode 05 Silent Lotus

S11 E05

Oct 15, 1993
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Silent Lotus Oct 15, 1993 This episode takes a look-in at deaf culture. LeVar discusses forms of communication that doesn't involve words, like hand signals, mime, and gestures, like in charades. He also asks a friend who is a deaf actress to teach him some sentences in sign language. Lea Salonga reads the featured story of a shy young girl in Cambodia, whose parents realized her lack of communication was due to being a deaf mute, but in noticing her natural talent for dancing, approached the king to request that their daughter be allowed to join the royal dancing troupe. In this unedited, original episode of Reading Rainbow, join LeVar Burton on an educational and entertaining adventure through classic books, video field trips and the always favorite "kid book reviews."

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Season 11, Episode 06 Follow the Drinking Gourd

S11 E06

Oct 18, 1993
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Follow the Drinking Gourd Oct 18, 1993 LeVar reflects on a time when Africans were brought to America as slaves. He talks about how African-Americans risked their lives for freedom, and discusses how the music from slavery times effected the African culture. Keith David reads the featured story, which explains that the African-American folk song, "Follow the Drinking Gourd," was in fact a coded message to slaves giving them instructions on how to take the Underground Railroad north to states that abolished slavery. In this unedited, original episode of Reading Rainbow, join LeVar Burton on an educational and entertaining adventure through classic books, video field trips and the always favorite "kid book reviews."

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Season 11, Episode 07 If You Give a Mouse a Cookie

S11 E07

Oct 19, 1993
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If You Give a Mouse a Cookie Oct 19, 1993 One thing leads to another in this episode, with LeVar in a bowling alley, showing how certain actions lead to consequences. Included is a piece on an expert at domino displays and domino art. Beth Howland reads If You Give a Mouse a Cookie, the tale of a little boy who offers a cookie to a mouse, and all the events that occur afterwards as a result. In this unedited, original episode of Reading Rainbow, join LeVar Burton on an educational and entertaining adventure through classic books, video field trips and the always favorite "kid book reviews."

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Season 12

Prime Video | PBS Kids | Rent or Buy
Season 12, Episode 01 Nosey Mrs. Rat

S12 E01

Oct 3, 1994
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Nosey Mrs. Rat Oct 3, 1994 Observing people is the theme of the day, as LeVar finds himself with time to kill before a business meeting and chooses to watch children at a playground while he waits. In this unedited, original episode of Reading Rainbow, join LeVar Burton on an educational and entertaining adventure through classic books, video field trips and the always favorite "kid book reviews."

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Season 12, Episode 02 Borreguita and the Coyote

S12 E02

Oct 4, 1994
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Borreguita and the Coyote Oct 4, 1994 LeVar spends the day in a barrio in East Los Angeles studying Mexican culture as he visits friends who make their own guitars, eats some traditional food, and discusses the cultural differences that are practiced in both Mexico and the US. LeVar even meets up with the popular Latin rock band, Los Lobos. Olga Merediz reads Borreguita and the Coyote, the tale of a clever lamb who continually outsmarts a coyote determined to eat her. In this unedited, original episode of Reading Rainbow, join LeVar Burton on an educational and entertaining adventure through classic books, video field trips and the always favorite "kid book reviews."

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Season 12, Episode 03 Summer

S12 E03

Oct 5, 1994
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Summer Oct 5, 1994 Not just summer, but all the seasons are highlighted in the feature book. Ossie Davis narrates a photographic pictorial book about animals that are more active during the summer months, and great photos of weather conditions during the warm months, like sunsets, night skies filled with fireworks, and fun activities like swimming and boating. In this unedited, original episode of Reading Rainbow, join LeVar Burton on an educational and entertaining adventure through classic books, video field trips and the always favorite "kid book reviews."

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Season 12, Episode 04 Once There Was a Tree

S12 E04

Oct 6, 1994
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Once There Was a Tree Oct 6, 1994 There is still use to a tree stump, as the feature book entails. Eli Wallach reads the story about the lifetime of a tree, and how different animals and people made use of the tree during its many stages, from sapling to tall tree to a cut down stump. In this unedited, original episode of Reading Rainbow, join LeVar Burton on an educational and entertaining adventure through classic books, video field trips and the always favorite "kid book reviews."

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Season 12, Episode 05 Appelemondo's Dreams

S12 E05

Oct 7, 1994
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Appelemondo's Dreams Oct 7, 1994 Creativity is the theme as LeVar spends the day painting a mural and other artwork. Michael Learned tells the story of Appelemondo, a boy whose daydreams were so vivid that they could be seen developing above his head, and how his friends learned how to capture the dreams to make beautiful paintings to decorate their town. In this unedited, original episode of Reading Rainbow, join LeVar Burton on an educational and entertaining adventure through classic books, video field trips and the always favorite "kid book reviews."

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Season 12, Episode 06 The Lotus Seed

S12 E06

Oct 10, 1994
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The Lotus Seed Oct 10, 1994 Young people who emigrated to the United States from Asian countries are interviewed and discuss having to learn a new language and fitting in with other children their age while dealing with language and cultural barriers. Rona Figueroa reads the story of The Lotus Seed, about a woman who flees her native country during wartimes and manages to save only one memento, a lotus seed given to her by her mother from the garden she tended for the emperor. In this unedited, original episode of Reading Rainbow, join LeVar Burton on an educational and entertaining adventure through classic books, video field trips and the always favorite "kid book reviews."

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Season 12, Episode 07 Hail to Mail

S12 E07

Oct 11, 1994
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Hail to Mail Oct 11, 1994 Al Roker reads the story about how mail is delivered all around the world by following a letter that keeps getting forwarded every time it misses reaching the addressee, who is moving around on a long term trip. In this unedited, original episode of Reading Rainbow, join LeVar Burton on an educational and entertaining adventure through classic books, video field trips and the always favorite "kid book reviews."

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Season 13

PBS Kids | Rent or Buy
Season 13, Episode 01 The Wonderful Towers of Watts

S13 E01

Oct 2, 1995
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The Wonderful Towers of Watts Oct 2, 1995 LeVar visits the suburb of Watts in L.A. California to talk to some of the young people in the area and find out how they are trying to change the negative image of the town due to incident like the Watts riots in 1964. Angela Bassett reads a true story of a man who worked in a ceramic dishware company, and brought home broken scraps of pottery to create his own massive sculpture that he spent years building that eventually became the Watts Towers. In this unedited, original episode of Reading Rainbow, join LeVar Burton on an educational and entertaining adventure through classic books, video field trips and the always favorite "kid book reviews."

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Season 13, Episode 02 Martha Speaks

S13 E02

Oct 3, 1995
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Martha Speaks Oct 3, 1995 Martha Speaks is a funny story of a dog who magically develops the ability to speak after eating alphabet soup. This amusing story teaches a subtle lesson in manners and has a happy outcome. Learn about dogs in movies and see life from a dog's view. See amazing dog tricks.

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Season 13, Episode 03 Alejandro's Gift

S13 E03

Oct 4, 1995
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Alejandro's Gift Oct 4, 1995 Alejandro gives the gift of water to various desert animals. Also includes Desert Scenes, At the Oasis, Niagara Falls and book reviews for It Rained on the Desert Today, The Desert Alphabet Book and Water, Water Everywhere.

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Season 13, Episode 04 The Sign Painter's Dream

S13 E04

Oct 5, 1995
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The Sign Painter's Dream Oct 5, 1995 LeVar is back in New York (as he always seems to be), this time on Broadway. It's a sign mecca, and part of this program shows the making of a huge advertisement. Jamie Farr tells the story about a cranky sign painter who has a revelation about his job when he's asked to commission a sign for free as a good gesture. In this unedited, original episode of Reading Rainbow, join LeVar Burton on an educational and entertaining adventure through classic books, video field trips and the always favorite "kid book reviews."

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Season 13, Episode 05 Archibald Frisby

S13 E05

Oct 6, 1995
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Archibald Frisby Oct 6, 1995 Archibald Frisby becomes obsessed with science and teaches fellow campmates how science is a part of everyday life.

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Season 14

PBS Kids | Rent or Buy
Season 14, Episode 01 Fly Away Home

S14 E01

Oct 8, 1995
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Fly Away Home Oct 8, 1995 Homelessness is discussed as families have lost jobs and homes through tragic circumstances. One family, who lost their home in a fire and now reside in a shelter, is profiled. Daniel Saltzman reads Fly Away Home, the story of a young boy and his father who secretly live at the airport after the father lost his job and they became homeless when the boy's mother died, so they couldn't pay their rent. The little boy finds a lost bird flying around the terminal and helps it get back outside. In this unedited, original episode of Reading Rainbow, join LeVar Burton on an educational and entertaining adventure through classic books, video field trips and the always favorite "kid book reviews."

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Season 14, Episode 02 Uncle Jed's Barber Shop

S14 E02

Oct 9, 1995
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Uncle Jed's Barber Shop Oct 9, 1995 LeVar visits his favorite barbershop for a trim, and reads the featured book while waiting his turn. Regina Taylor tells the story of how Uncle Jed, who had a dream of owning his own barbershop and kept saving up despite several financial setbacks, including the bank crash at the start of the Great Depression, finally achieved his goal at the age of 79. In this unedited, original episode of Reading Rainbow, join LeVar Burton on an educational and entertaining adventure through classic books, video field trips and the always favorite "kid book reviews."

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Season 14, Episode 03 How to Make an Apple Pie and See the World

S14 E03

Oct 10, 1995
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How to Make an Apple Pie and See the World Oct 10, 1995 LeVar and a friend point up that following recipes and cooking foods tend very much to be science experiments. They work on recipes which include lasagna made with rice, a marinara sauce, and apple raisin muffins. Helen Mirren reads How to Make an Apple Pie and See the World, a tale of a lady who goes to elaborate lengths to get all the ingredients to make a pie after she finds her local grocery store closed. In this unedited, original episode of Reading Rainbow, join LeVar Burton on an educational and entertaining adventure through classic books, video field trips and the always favorite "kid book reviews."

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Season 14, Episode 04 Owen

S14 E04

Oct 11, 1995
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Owen Oct 11, 1995 It's easy to get flashbacks while watching Reading Rainbow. Now it's LeVar's turn, as he gets in touch with visions of "his boyhood." Matthew Broderick reads Owen, about a little mouse who's very attached to his security blanket and doesn't want to give it up, even if it means he will be teased when he starts school. In this unedited, original episode of Reading Rainbow, join LeVar Burton on an educational and entertaining adventure through classic books, video field trips and the always favorite "kid book reviews."

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Season 14, Episode 05 How Many is a Million?

S14 E05

Apr 12, 1996
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How Many is a Million? Apr 12, 1996 Using New York once again, LeVar takes a stab at a vast array of numbers: How much food is delivered in a stadium? How many tickets are counted? How many people are expected to come and watch a football game? LeVar even takes the viewers on a tour of a factory where millions of crayons are made every year. Nick Sullivan, along with a curious of children, read How Much Is a Million?. In the book, they explore how to measure large sums like million, billion, and trillion, and how they would be explained in different terms, like how long would it take you to count up that high, how big a gold fish bowl should be to hold that many fish, and so on. In this unedited, original episode of Reading Rainbow, join LeVar Burton on an educational and entertaining adventure through classic books, video field trips and the always favorite "kid book reviews."

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Season 15

Prime Video | PBS Kids | Rent or Buy
Season 15, Episode 01 Always My Dad

S15 E01

Oct 7, 1996
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Always My Dad Oct 7, 1996 A girl, whose parents are divorced, doesn't see her father very often but frequently thinks about him and treasures the time they have together. Also contains Family Day Picnic, Love to Go Around, A Special Bond and book reviews for Boundless Grace, Taxi! Taxi! and The Perfect Spot.

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Season 15, Episode 02 Bread is for Eating

S15 E02

Oct 8, 1996
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Bread is for Eating Oct 8, 1996 How all different types of bread are made, and how just about every culture has some form of bread, is explored in this episode. In this unedited, original episode of Reading Rainbow, join LeVar Burton on an educational and entertaining adventure through classic books, video field trips and the always favorite "kid book reviews."

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Season 15, Episode 03 Hotel Animal

S15 E03

Oct 9, 1996
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Hotel Animal Oct 9, 1996 Big and small is looked at in different ways. John Cunningham reads a story about a lizard couple who go on vacation, only to find that the hotel they booked is much more equipped to service large animals, so they end up sleeping in a dollhouse. In this unedited, original episode of Reading Rainbow, join LeVar Burton on an educational and entertaining adventure through classic books, video field trips and the always favorite "kid book reviews."

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Season 15, Episode 04 Someplace Else

S15 E04

Oct 10, 1996
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Someplace Else Oct 10, 1996 LeVar is in his travel room where he has a collection of maps. He shares the wonders of traveling across the United States and seeing all the different sites, as well as exploring the excitement of using maps. Carol Kane reads a tale about a lady who decides to visit her children all over the country, but never stays long because of a need to be "someplace else." In this unedited, original episode of Reading Rainbow, join LeVar Burton on an educational and entertaining adventure through classic books, video field trips and the always favorite "kid book reviews."

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Season 15, Episode 05 Zin! Zin! Zin! A Violin

S15 E05

Oct 11, 1996
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Zin! Zin! Zin! A Violin Oct 11, 1996 Music and orchestras are profiled in this tuneful show. The episode soon gets rhythmic when LeVar introduces the viewers to the theatrical percussion group, Stomp. Gregory Hines reads Zin! Zin! Zin! a Violin, a counting story that mentions all the different types of instruments that are played in bands and orchestras and the kinds of groups they make based on many play at once. In this unedited, original episode of Reading Rainbow, join LeVar Burton on an educational and entertaining adventure through classic books, video field trips and the always favorite "kid book reviews."

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Season 16

Prime Video | PBS Kids | Rent or Buy
Season 16, Episode 01 On the Day You Were Born

S16 E01

Apr 7, 1997
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On the Day You Were Born Apr 7, 1997 LeVar goes to a 24-hour diner to look into night jobs, and profiles people who have occupations in the evening and early morning hours, like radio DJ's, bakers, cab drivers, and police officers. In a separate story, a man ventures into a cave to see bats and other nocturnal animals. Martin Short narrates the story of "Animal Cafe," about a cat and dog who operate a third shift restaurant for all the animals in their neighborhood while keeping it a secret from their human owner.

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Season 16, Episode 02 Hip Cat

S16 E02

Apr 8, 1997
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Hip Cat Apr 8, 1997 Jazz music is profiled in this episode, as LeVar listens in on musicians like Joshua Redman as he and some others rehearse for a performance. Ann Duquesnay reads the featured story of a cat who plays the saxophone and how he makes a living playing music in jazz clubs. In this unedited, original episode of Reading Rainbow, join LeVar Burton on an educational and entertaining adventure through classic books, video field trips and the always favorite "kid book reviews."

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Season 16, Episode 03 Regina's Big Mistake

S16 E03

Apr 9, 1997
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Regina's Big Mistake Apr 9, 1997 As LeVar works to make a clay model of his childhood home as a birthday gift for his mother, artists and their different mediums are profiled. Anna Holbrooks reads the story of Regina, who frets about making the perfect drawing in art class, and gets frustrated when her classmates accuse her of copying them when she has difficulty deciding what to draw after the teacher gives the class a theme. In this unedited, original episode of Reading Rainbow, join LeVar Burton on an educational and entertaining adventure through classic books, video field trips and the always favorite "kid book reviews."

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Season 16, Episode 04 Giving Thanks: A Native American Good Morning Message

S16 E04

Apr 10, 1997
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Giving Thanks: A Native American Good Morning Message Apr 10, 1997 LeVar discusses how people show gratitude for kind acts and how we can repay each other in acts of kindness to spread good will in the world. Nicholson Earl Billey reads the featured story, a poem of greeting that native Americans say each day to bless the earth and pray for all the gifts they have been given by respecting the planet. In this unedited, original episode of Reading Rainbow, join LeVar Burton on an educational and entertaining adventure through classic books, video field trips and the always favorite "kid book reviews."

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Season 16, Episode 05 The Carousel

S16 E05

Apr 11, 1997
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The Carousel Apr 11, 1997 LeVar discusses how people cope with losing things, and how memories of special events or favorite things help when the lost item is someone rather than something. Sarah Hubbard reads The Carousel, about two young girls who decide to walk through their favorite park during a rainstorm, because it reminds them of something their late mother liked to do, and how they must use their mother's tools to repair the carousel after the horses magically come to life and run off the ride. In this unedited, original episode of Reading Rainbow, join LeVar Burton on an educational and entertaining adventure through classic books, video field trips and the always favorite "kid book reviews."

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Season 17

PBS Kids | Rent or Buy
Season 17, Episode 01 Math Curse

S17 E01

Oct 5, 1998
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Math Curse Oct 5, 1998 A story of a girl bombarded with problems that all seem related to math. Also contains Math is Important in Organizing, Math is an Important Art, Math is Important to Federal Express and book reviews for Marvelous Math: A Book of Poems, Twelve Snails to One Lizard: A Tale of Mischief and Measurement and Pigs on a Blanket: Fun with Math and Time.

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Season 17, Episode 02 My Life with the Wave

S17 E02

Oct 6, 1998
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My Life with the Wave Oct 6, 1998 Scott Irby Ranier tells a tale of a boy who is followed home by a wave of water after a vacation at the beach, and how he and his family must convince the wave it is better off living in the ocean than in his bathtub. In this unedited, original episode of Reading Rainbow, join LeVar Burton on an educational and entertaining adventure through classic books, video field trips and the always favorite "kid book reviews."

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Season 17, Episode 03 Saturday Sancocho

S17 E03

Oct 7, 1998
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Saturday Sancocho Oct 7, 1998 LeVar attends a rummage sale to observe how people sometimes barter for items when they don't have money to buy them. He also makes some trades of his own to get some items he wanted. Josie de Guzman reads the feature story about a girl who follows her grandmother around the farmer's market to trade items to get the ingredients for their weekly chicken stew after they discover they are out of all the groceries they need and don't have cash to buy them. In this unedited, original episode of Reading Rainbow, join LeVar Burton on an educational and entertaining adventure through classic books, video field trips and the always favorite "kid book reviews."

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Season 17, Episode 04 When Aunt Lena Did the Rhumba

S17 E04

Oct 8, 1998
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When Aunt Lena Did the Rhumba Oct 8, 1998 LeVar explores Broadway as he looks at live entertainment options. Lucie Arnaz reads the feature story, about a young girl who decides to put on a show for her aunt, who usually treats her to Broadway play matinees, but now Aunt Lena is laid up in bed following a fall, and she gets depressed because she's missing her "stories." In this unedited, original episode of Reading Rainbow, join LeVar Burton on an educational and entertaining adventure through classic books, video field trips and the always favorite "kid book reviews."

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Season 17, Episode 05 Worksong

S17 E05

Oct 9, 1998
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Worksong Oct 9, 1998 All different types of jobs are explored in this episode. David Canary reads the poem Work Song, about how different types of jobs are needed throughout the day and at all types of hours, and how some jobs are dependent on others. In this unedited, original episode of Reading Rainbow, join LeVar Burton on an educational and entertaining adventure through classic books, video field trips and the always favorite "kid book reviews."

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Season 18

Prime Video | PBS Kids | Rent or Buy
Season 18, Episode 01 The Shaman's Apprentice: A Tale of the Amazon Rain Forest

S18 E01

Oct 23, 2000
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The Shaman's Apprentice: A Tale of the Amazon Rain Forest Oct 23, 2000 LeVar visits the Amazon rain forest to meet the real people profiled in today's featured book, a story about how a young man was chosen to follow around his tribe's medicine man to learn all the natural methods of treating injuries and illness using plants of the rain forest. In this unedited, original episode of Reading Rainbow, join LeVar Burton on an educational and entertaining adventure through classic books, video field trips and the always favorite "kid book reviews."

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Season 18, Episode 02 Pet Stories You Don't Have to Walk

S18 E02

Nov 20, 2000
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Pet Stories You Don't Have to Walk Nov 20, 2000 Pet Stories You Don't Have to Walk", read by Jason Alexander, features stories about pets. LeVar Burton throws a birthday party for his golden retriever, Roy, and treats the dog to a bath at a pet spa for his special day. In this unedited, original episode of Reading Rainbow, join LeVar Burton on an educational and entertaining adventure through classic books, video field trips and the always favorite "kid book reviews."

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Season 18, Episode 03 Lemonade for Sale

S18 E03

Jan 19, 2001
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Lemonade for Sale Jan 19, 2001 LeVar explores way that young people can earn money before they're old enough for official jobs in this show. One of the profiles is of a young man trying to earn his college tuition by selling nail polish to his fellow students. Andrea McArdle reads the feature story of a group of kids who decide to run a lemonade drink stand to raise money to make repairs to their clubhouse, and how a new neighbor helps them drum up business. In this unedited, original episode of Reading Rainbow, join LeVar Burton on an educational and entertaining adventure through classic books, video field trips and the always favorite "kid book reviews."

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Season 18, Episode 04 The Secret Shortcut

S18 E04

Feb 16, 2001
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The Secret Shortcut Feb 16, 2001 In the first of two map shows, LeVar Burton wants to show how to use maps. But he is not Rick Steves. Tim Conway reads a story about two boys who decide to try a new route to school after getting there late all the time and being reprimanded by the teacher. In this unedited, original episode of Reading Rainbow, join LeVar Burton on an educational and entertaining adventure through classic books, video field trips and the always favorite "kid book reviews."

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Season 18, Episode 05 My America: A Poetry Atlas of the United States

S18 E05

Mar 16, 2001
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My America: A Poetry Atlas of the United States Mar 16, 2001 LeVar goes around the United States asking children about different words for the same items, different climates, and different customs that make the United States such an interesting place to live. Author Nikki Giovanni reads one of her poems about life in the South from the book, My America: A Poetry Atlas of the United States. Also from today's featured book, Lea Salonga and car experts Tom & Ray Magliozzi read poems from the book about Hawaii and the Northwest. In this unedited, original episode of Reading Rainbow, join LeVar Burton on an educational and entertaining adventure through classic books, video field trips and the always favorite "kid book reviews."

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Season 18, Episode 06 Badger's Parting Gifts

S18 E06

Apr 20, 2001
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Badger's Parting Gifts Apr 20, 2001 LeVar discusses cathartic ways to adjust to losing a loved one in this episode. He and fellow viewers talk about family members that are now gone that they miss, and how they try to remember the good times rather than dwell on the pain. Ruby Dee reads the featured story about an aging Badger, who knows he doesn't have much longer to live and tries to prepare his friends for his passing; after he is gone, they all reminisce about all the things they learned from Badger's teachings. In this unedited, original episode of Reading Rainbow, join LeVar Burton on an educational and entertaining adventure through classic books, video field trips and the always favorite "kid book reviews."

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Season 19

Prime Video | PBS Kids | Rent or Buy
Season 19, Episode 01 The Tin Forest

S19 E01

Sep 2, 2002
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The Tin Forest Sep 2, 2002 LeVar visits a school in New York City to ask the class how they have coped since the past year when the World Trade Center was destroyed nearby and they had to evacuate and some children lost family members. Jeff Bridges reads the story of The Tin Forest, about a lonely man who builds a metal forest of trees and animals in hopes of attracting real animals to ease his sadness. In this unedited, original episode of Reading Rainbow, join LeVar Burton on an educational and entertaining adventure through classic books, video field trips and the always favorite "kid book reviews."

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Season 19, Episode 02 Max

S19 E02

Sep 3, 2002
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Max Sep 3, 2002 LeVar profiles people who are considered "Everyday Heroes" for doing important jobs to provide services, like firefighters, doctors, police officers, nurses, and even jobs like lawyers, judges and teachers. Regina King and Ian Desdone read the story of Max, a boy born into a family of superheroes who hasn't shown any signs of having powers yet. In this unedited, original episode of Reading Rainbow, join LeVar Burton on an educational and entertaining adventure through classic books, video field trips and the always favorite "kid book reviews."

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Season 19, Episode 03 Enemy Pie

S19 E03

Sep 5, 2002
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Enemy Pie Sep 5, 2002 LeVar observes activity in a playground to see how people do and don't get along with each other. Ed Harris reads Enemy Pie, a story about a boy who dislikes one of his new classmates, and how his father helps bring the two boys to start a friendship by making a secret recipe Enemy Pie. In this unedited, original episode of Reading Rainbow, join LeVar Burton on an educational and entertaining adventure through classic books, video field trips and the always favorite "kid book reviews."

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Season 19, Episode 04 Our Big Home: An Earth Poem

S19 E04

Sep 6, 2002
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Our Big Home: An Earth Poem Sep 6, 2002 LeVar visits the United Nations building to learn more about how different countries of the world try to work together. Naomi Judd reads Our Big Home, a poem about how everything in the world is connected to each other and how we all must work together to make it succeed. In this unedited, original episode of Reading Rainbow, join LeVar Burton on an educational and entertaining adventure through classic books, video field trips and the always favorite "kid book reviews."

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Season 20

Prime Video | PBS Kids | Rent or Buy
Season 20, Episode 01 Visiting Day

S20 E01

Dec 15, 2004
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Visiting Day Dec 15, 2004 The series tackles a delicate subject of how some children must deal with a parent in prison. Alfre Woodard reads Visiting Day, a tale about a young girl preparing to visit her father in jail on his birthday, and how she and her grandmother get ready for the trip to the prison. Afterwards, LeVar visits a real family planning to see their father and husband in jail as he finishes his prison term for shooting at a man during an argument, and how they have to cope with the social stigma of having to explain an ex-convict. In this unedited, original episode of Reading Rainbow, join LeVar Burton on an educational and entertaining adventure through classic books, video field trips and the always favorite "kid book reviews."

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Season 20, Episode 02 Unique Monique

S20 E02

Dec 16, 2004
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Unique Monique Dec 16, 2004 Eliza Dushku reads a story about a girl attending private school who attempts to create her own unique style without breaking any of the school's strict dress code rules. In this unedited, original episode of Reading Rainbow, join LeVar Burton on an educational and entertaining adventure through classic books, video field trips and the always favorite "kid book reviews."

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Season 20, Episode 03 Mr. George Baker

S20 E03

Dec 17, 2004
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Mr. George Baker Dec 17, 2004 Wayne Brady narrates the story of an elderly man who decides to go back to school to learn to read, even though he is almost 100, and his relationship with his young neighbor as they wait for the bus every day. In this unedited, original episode of Reading Rainbow, join LeVar Burton on an educational and entertaining adventure through classic books, video field trips and the always favorite "kid book reviews."

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Season 20, Episode 04 Beegu

S20 E04

Jan 20, 2005
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Beegu Jan 20, 2005 As LeVar investigates types of communication, Freddie Prinze Jr. reads Beegu, the story of an alien who visits Earth while lost from its parents and befriends a group of young children who help Beegu contact her family. In this unedited, original episode of Reading Rainbow, join LeVar Burton on an educational and entertaining adventure through classic books, video field trips and the always favorite "kid book reviews."

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Season 20, Episode 05 Two Old Potatoes and Me

S20 E05

Jan 21, 2005
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Two Old Potatoes and Me Jan 21, 2005 Jordan Puryear reads Two Old Potatoes and Me, about a girl who works with her father to recycle two rotted potatoes by replanting them using the sprouts to grow a whole new crop of potatoes. LeVar, working with his daughter, is inspired to make potato dishes from recipes in the book. In this unedited, original episode of Reading Rainbow, join LeVar Burton on an educational and entertaining adventure through classic books, video field trips and the always favorite "kid book reviews."

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Season 21

PBS Kids | Rent or Buy
Season 21, Episode 01 The Biggest Test in the Universe

S21 E01

Nov 6, 2006
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The Biggest Test in the Universe Nov 6, 2006 In addition to discussing accomplishing difficult tasks, LeVar profiles the New York children's theater group Tada, as they prepare auditions for their newest show. Richard Gear reads The Biggest Test in the Universe, a story about a grade school class having anxiety over an annual aptitude test.

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Season 21, Episode 02 I Lost My Tooth in Africa

S21 E02

Nov 7, 2006
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I Lost My Tooth in Africa Nov 7, 2006 LeVar discusses different rites of passage in growing up. The book "I Lost My Tooth in Africa" is read about a young girl who loses her first tooth while visiting her father's family in Africa, and how the tooth fairy tradition is different in other countries. We visit with some young people who are having their first dental appointment, and LeVar discusses other culture's customs regarding loose teeth. In another rite of passage, a friend of LeVar's celebrates her 15th birthday with a Quincenara ceremony.

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Season 21, Episode 03 Boxes for Katje

S21 E03

Nov 8, 2006
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Boxes for Katje Nov 8, 2006 LeVar profiles Children For Children, a New York based youth organization that creates care packages for relief to children affected by Hurricane Katrina in August 2005. Elizabeth Jute reads a story about a US penpal who sends care packages to her friend in war-torn Holland after WWII.

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Season 21, Episode 04 Game Day

S21 E04

Nov 9, 2006
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Game Day Nov 9, 2006 James Avery reads a story written by identical twin brothers Tiki and Ronde Barber, who became professional football players, and how they learned the importance of teamwork when they played together in junior high.

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Season 21, Episode 05 Show Way

S21 E05

Nov 10, 2006
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Show Way Nov 10, 2006 As LeVar helps his wife and daughter construct his family tree, Diahann Carroll narrates Show Way, in which the author chronicles her family back to her Great, Great, Great, Great Grandmother, who was a slave in the South. Through traditions passed down to each generation, her family learned to sew "Show Way" quilts that were secretly maps designed to help slaves escape to the north to freedom, and how her relatives taught her to keep up with the love of quilting to retain family history.

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