our blog

May 10, 2013

Tags
share this +

There’s a New Neighbor on Sesame Street!

By Graydon Gordian


It’s a wonderful day, and not just cause the sun is shining on Sesame Street. It’s a wonderful day because this morning we learned a new friend was moving in to the neighborhood. Armando, or “Mando” as the gang on Sesame Street has nicknamed him, is join the cast on the upcoming 44th season.

Played by actor Ismael Cruz Córdova, Mando is part of Sesame’s increased focus on engaging with and educating children in the Hispanic community in the United States. The show is constantly evolving and has a long-standing history of modeling a diverse community.  As producers were identifying the realities of the changing American population, it was important to represent that diversity in the new addition to the cast. “Armando,” a writer from Puerto Rico, will join Maria (played by Sonia Manzano), Luis (Emilio Delgado) and Muppets™ Rosita and Ovejita (Carmen Osbahr) as part of Sesame Street’s bilingual community.

To learn more about Mando and his new home on Sesame Street, check out the video above.

share this +
printprint
divider

May 08, 2013

Tags
share this +

Solutions, Not Just Ideas: Finding Ways to Help Kids in Need

By Maura Regan


On June 6, K.I.D.S – Kids in Distressed Situations – will be honoring Maura Regan, Sesame Workshop’s Senior Vice President and General Manager, Global Consumer Products, at their annual Women in Industry Luncheon

Throughout Sesame Street’s history, we’ve seen the power that our characters have. When children interact with Cookie Monster, Big Bird, Elmo and the gang, their faces light up and even a bad day can turn around quickly. And while a gently used item can elicit the same effect, there’s  something special about a brand new toy, shirt, or similar item. Knowing that this is yours – and only, and always yours – carries a bit of extra weight.

A few years ago, a friend in my professional network introduced me to an organization called K.I.D.S. – Kids in Distressed Situations – which provides new, in package items to children in need around the globe. Even in our own backyard, we’ve seen this need pop up; for example, when Hurricane Sandy struck the Eastern Seaboard, thousands upon thousands of children found their foundations shaken. As active members of our communities, both Sesame Workshop and K.I.D.S. look for ways to help.  And like Sesame Street, K.I.D.S. goes in with solutions, not just ideas.

The nuances of the retail world result in a significant amount of product – all new, never used – which goes unsold. Sometimes those items sit in warehouses until they eventually become unusable or are otherwise destroyed. But K.I.D.S works with licensees and others in the retail supply chain to get those products into the hands of children like those affected by Sandy, and for free.  Their work is done with immediacy, and they are able to make a meaningful difference in the lives of children.

Sesame, also being an organization which is committed to empowering the lives of children, is glad to be working with K.I.D.S whenever we can. In fact, they may be honoring me, but the true honor is ours.

share this +
printprint
divider

How Sesame Street Got Its Name

By Susan Tofte


NEW! Meet the Newest Member of the Neighborhood, Armando! >>

Susan Tofte is Sesame Worskhop’s archivist.

There is a scene in the promo film for Sesame Street where ad-men type Muppets in business suits meet around a large conference table debating potential names for the show. Ridiculous titles are suggested like the Two and Two Ain’t Five Show and the Itty-Bitty, Farm-and-City, Witty-Ditty, Nitty-Gritty, Dog-and-Kitty, Pretty-Little-Kiddie Show. Rowlf the Dog fires the entire group of Muppets and Kermit the Frog eventually comes up with the name Sesame Street. “You know, like ‘Open Sesame.’ It kind of gives the idea of a street where neat stuff happens,” he suggests. Read More

share this +
printprint
divider

May 03, 2013

Tags
share this +

The Longest Street in the Galaxy: Star Wars on Sesame Street

By Joe Hennes


Joe Hennes works at Sesame Workshop and is the co-proprietor of Tough Pigs.

The 4th of May has become an unofficial holiday for fans of the Star Wars films.  While the date seems arbitrary, it’s a day when we can all break out the pun, “May the Fourth be with you”.  A play on words like that absolutely deserves its own holiday.

But why, you may be asking, is the Sesame Workshop blog writing about Star Wars? That’s a perfectly good question, and much easier to answer than “What’s a Midichlorian?”  You might be surprised to learn that R2-D2 and C-3PO traveled from their galaxy far, far away to visit the most famous street in the world (or perhaps the universe??). Read More

share this +
printprint
divider

May 03, 2013

Tags
share this +

5 Photo Tips for Capturing Your Child’s World

By Me Ra Koh


Sesame Workshop and professional photographer and TV photo expert Me Ra Koh have joined forces to bring you the “My World” photo contest with grand prizes that include a luxury, family vacation from Sandals or one-on-one coaching from Me Ra Koh and more! Click here to enter your own My World photos! Deadline is May 4th! Find Me Ra at www.merakoh.com.

I will never forget the afternoon it happened.  Pascaline, my daughter, was 18 months old and playing on the living room floor.  The afternoon sun began to spill into the room and illuminated her with this magical, golden light.  Everything in me wanted to capture that moment, to make time stand still.  But I didn’t even own a camera.  At thirty years old, I decided to buy my first camera.  Ten years later I’m still in love with the magic of photography. For years I assumed good photography was out of my reach.  I’m so glad I found I was wrong. Whether we are documenting the latest blanket fort our child has built or our baby’s chubby legs, there are several simple ways to tell their story and capture their world through the photos we take, even if you don’t have a professional photography background.

Here are five photo tips for capturing your child’s world.  You don’t have to own an expensive camera for these photo tips.  The built in camera of your SmartPhone will do the trick.  Knowing what story to tell is the focus. Read More

share this +
printprint
divider

May 01, 2013

Tags
share this +

How to Read Comics: Part I

By Dan Lewis


Elmo can help with lots of things. Even reading comic books.

Stay tuned for more information about the Sesame Street comic book available as part of Free Comic Book Day on Saturday.

share this +
printprint
divider

April 30, 2013

Tags
share this +

Illuminating the Experience of Military Children

By Graydon Gordian


April is the month of the military child, and as it comes to a close we want to provide you with some information to help illuminate the experiences of children in military families. It’s important to remember both the unique challenges children from military families face and the resilience skills they possess that help them to thrive when facing those challenges. Sesame Workshop remains committed to providing military families with the resources they need to ensure their children achieve their highest potential.

share this +
printprint
divider

April 29, 2013

Tags
share this +

Translating a Sneeze

By Kurt Swenson


Kurt Swenson is an associate producer for Sesame Workshop’s international co-productions.

Permit me to introduce you to a couple of our Irish friends. The big purple one you see on the left in the picture above is Potto Monster. He’s a jovial, caring, slightly neurotic inventor. The redhead with the big ears on the right is Hilda the Hare. She’s a rambunctious and energetic Irish Hare. And they’re the best friends who populate Sesame Tree, our adaptation of Sesame Street, produced for the children of Northern Ireland. Read More

share this +
printprint
divider

April 24, 2013

Tags
share this +

Wonder Child: Richie Havens on Sesame Street

By Joe Hennes


Joe Hennes works at Sesame Workshop and is the co-proprietor of Tough Pigs.

Folk singer-songwriter Richie Havens passed away this week at the age of 72. In 1969, he brought his unique voice and rhythmic guitar style to Woodstock, where he performed as the festival’s opening act. And in 1975, Havens brought the same raw talent and enthusiasm to Sesame Street.

Richie Havens was brought into the studio to record four songs for the sixth season of Sesame Street, all of which were captured in one day of filming. His best known contribution was “Wonder Child”, a beautiful tune celebrating imagination and the innocence of youth. Read More

share this +
printprint
divider

April 19, 2013

Tags
share this +

More Tragic Times, Helping Families Cope

By Sesame Workshop


Once again families are coping with how to explain tragic and scary news events to their children. These events shake our very foundation, as our sense of security erodes with each incident. In times such as these, it is important to reassure your child that you, their teachers, law enforcers, and members of their community are doing everything possible to keep them safe from harm. Children are resilient and can use coping strategies to help them deal with their fears. As a caregiver, you know your child best and can tailor your communication about these news events in an age-appropriate and sensitive manner.

Here are some tips to help you and your children cope with frightening events:

Providing Reassurance 

* As parents and caregivers, it is important to first calm your own fears before talking with your child. Children will first react to your level of fear and anxiety. To help you plan what you will say to your child, talk to friends, neighbors, and your child’s teacher to get their advice. Please take care of yourself by limiting your television viewing and seeking comfort from your family and community.

* Be available and provide physical comfort. In fearful times, children need to be reassured that their parents and caretakers have their family life under control and are comforted by having their loved ones physically close to them. This family time reassures them that they and the whole family are safe. Hugs and special comfort items also help them to cope with their fears.

* Try to keep a normal routine. Children will be less anxious if life is as stable and predictable as possible. To the degree possible, stick to your usual schedules and routines.

* Avoid watching television coverage. Older children who know what is happening are often traumatized by the ongoing news coverage. For the younger children, they may interpret the ongoing news coverage of an event to mean that it’s actually happening over and over and possibly occurring in their neighborhood.

* Listen and allow your child to ask questions. Create an atmosphere during together time with your child to allow him or her to freely express his or her thoughts and concerns. Once you have an idea of the source of fear or anxiety, you can have an open dialogue with your child.

Coping with Emotions 

* Help your child deal with frightening times by discussing activities you can do together to feel better (e.g. drawing pictures, writing letters, reading, playing games). Resilient children learn that although they might feel sad, angry, or anxious, these emotions will change. They will not always feel this way and there are things they can do to feel better.

* Children need to know that it’s okay to express their feelings in their way. Your child may want to talk about his or her emotions openly or may prefer drawing pictures, writing stories, or taking comfort by reading books, listening to music or playing games.

* Empowering your child with a sense of control of his or her life is also beneficial to coping with this situation. Involve your child in decision making about activities the family can do together, and for older children, discuss strategies for maintaining their activities while being mindful of their safety.

 

share this +
printprint
divider