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Cookie Monster: The Ultimate Impatient Optimist

By Sesame Workshop


Today, 2.5 billion people don’t have access to toilets. Investing in sanitation leads to healthier people and stronger communities. The Bill & Melinda Gates Foundation’s Water, Sanitation & Hygiene program focuses on the development of tools and technologies that can lead to radical and sustainable improvements in sanitation in the developing world. An important component is reaching children and families with critical health messages. A new grant to Sesame Workshop will promote hygiene and sanitation among children and families in Bangladesh, India, and Nigeria. Cookie Monster was so excited to work with the Gates Foundation that he sat down with the Impatient Optimist, the foundation’s blog, and answered a few questions. Sesame Workshop looks forward to working with the Gates Foundation in the coming years.

Impatient Optimist: Cookie Monster, we know you are very busy. Why have you taken the time to speak with us today?

Cookie Monster: Well, me heard that if me be very patient, there will be chocolate chip cookies available at the end of this interview. Me not see them yet, but me optimistic. Read More

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April 10, 2013

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The ABCs and 123s of Preschool Apps

By Michelle Newman


Michelle Newman is a Senior Curriculum Specialist at Sesame Workshop.

Touch screen devices have dramatically changed the way young children interact with technology. Preschoolers no longer have to struggle with a mouse or a laptop touch pad – they can now use their fingers to tap, drag, and trace items directly on the screen. When we started to develop one of our first robust iPad apps in 2010, we were extremely optimistic about all of the affordances of this new technology. What surprised us was the number of new challenges we needed to overcome to create a quality developmentally appropriate learning experience for young children. Read More

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March 28, 2013

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Sesame Workshop Launches Road Safety Campaign in Australia

By Graydon Gordian


Sesame Workshop is best known for our commitment to the mental and emotional development of children around the world. But we’re also committed to the physical safety of children. That’s why, as part of the U.N.’s Decade of Action for Road Safety, we’ve launched a new major road safety campaign in Australia.

Between 2006 and 2008, there were 6 deaths and 430 seriously injured pedestrians aged 0-14 in the province of Victoria alone. Driveway run-overs in the province resulted in the death of 14 children under the age of six and 73 serious injuries between January 2000 and September 2012.

Our campaign, spearheaded by Sesame Street’s Elmo and Grover, hopes to educate children, parents and teacher on simple road safety practices so in the future children’s lives can be saved. The campaign, created in partnership with Australian child safety advocates Kidsafe, the TAC, RACV and Holden, includes a storybook entitled Elmo Stays Safe: How Furry Little Monsters – and Children – Play Safely. The stories, games and activities in the book help encourage important safety tips like holding a parents hand while crossing the street, treating driveways like roads instead of safe play spaces and using correct restraints when traveling in a car. Additionally, a Community Service Announcement featuring Elmo and Grover is being broadcast on television and social media platforms and urges children and families to play in safe places away from driveways and roads.

To learn more about our efforts to encourage road safety, click here.

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March 25, 2013

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Sesame Street Helps Children Cope with Divorce

By David Cohen


David Cohen is the director of domestic research for Sesame Workshop.

When my friend tried to explain her divorce to her 8-year-old niece, her niece reflected “It’s going to take me awhile to process this.” Her niece’s reaction might be considered precocious, but it also shows the deep emotions children grapple with when faced with such a life altering effect.

Young children need ongoing and sensitive help from trusted adults who approach this event in age appropriate ways. In fact, young children are at risk of having more adjustment problems than older children, since they are still in the early process of developing the coping skills necessary to deal with all the changes associated with divorce. They also often blame themselves for the divorce or feel that it is their responsibility to bring their parents back together. Read More

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March 19, 2013

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Sesame Workshop Partners with IICF to Support Literacy

By Graydon Gordian


Literacy. It’s been at the heart of Sesame Workshop’s mission since Sesame Street began airing in 1969. We’re continually spreading our message of laughter and learning to new countries and utilizing emerging technological platforms to educate American preschool children. All the while, literacy remains a central element of Sesame Worskhop’s curriculum, no matter where or how a child is seeing our educational material.

That’s why we’re excited to partner with the Insurance Industry Charitable Foundation whose National Early Childhood Education Initiative focuses on literacy for young children, particularly those in underserved communities around the U.S. The partnership will develop a program that provides children, parents, caregivers, and facilitators with tools to support young children’s development of essential literacy skills around rich conversations, reading, and writing. This program will provide rich and engaging opportunities for IICF Volunteers. Read More

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January 09, 2013

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Sesame Workshop and Qualcomm Announce Mobile Technology Collaboration

By Graydon Gordian



It began with television. Sesame Workshop co-founder Joan Ganz Cooney looked at the television and realized we could be utilizing this powerful, evolving form of technology to educate children. 43 years later a willingness to use technology in groundbreaking ways remains a major reason why Sesame Workshop is an effective educational organization.

With that legacy of innovation in mind, we are proud to announce a new collaboration with Qualcomm centered on researching and developing new ways to educate children using mobile devices and applications. By bringing together Qualcomm’s cutting-edge mobile technologies and Sesame Workshop’s expertise in educating young children, Qualcomm and Sesame hope once again to revolutionize early childhood education. Read More

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Sesamstrasse Celebrates 40th Anniversary

By Graydon Gordian


In January 1973 the children of Germany turned on their televisions and were introduced to the lovable Muppets of Sesamstrasse. 40 years later, we’re proud to celebrate the fact that Sesame Workshop’s longest continuously running co-production is still on the air. On Monday at a press conference in Hamburg, Germany, Sesame Workshop CEO Mel Ming and Lutz Marmor, CEO of German television and public radio broadcasters NDR and ARD, along with beloved Sesame Street and Sesamstrasse characters Bert, Ernie and Cookie Monster, celebrated the tremendous achievement.

Congratulations to the entire Sesamstrasse team for making young children in Germany laugh and learn for the last 40 years.

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January 08, 2013

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Sesame Workshop and CA Technologies Partner to Support STEM Education

By Graydon Gordian


CA Technologies Chief Marketing Officer Andrew Wittman and Super Grover 2.0

Students in the United States are falling behind their peers globally in the subjects of science, technology, engineering and math, known as STEM. That is why Sesame Workshop and CA Technologies, a leading IT management solutions company, have partnered to encourage young children to focus on STEM learning even before they reach kindergarten. Read More

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January 02, 2013

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Happy New Year from Sesame

By Graydon Gordian


Sesame Workshop wishes you a Happy New Year! We are excited for another year filled with laughter and learning on Sesame Street and around the world.

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December 20, 2012

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With a Little Help from Sesame Street: A Teacher’s Story of How Her Class Survived a Storm

By Mary Jane Gould


Image via blackrose916... on Flickr, used under a Creative Commons license.

I have taught in a K-4 elementary school for twenty-five years.  The school is located at the south end of a beautiful old seaport on the south shore of Long Island, the last exit before Jones Beach.  I lived here for over thirty of my adult years, and as a child, my family docked our boat behind an antique shop on one of the canals.  I remember families of otters swimming in front of the boat and real church baptisms held on the opposite bank from our dock.  A lot of things have changed here over the years, and a lot of the old Victorian homes have seen better times, but it is still a beautiful place.

The school was built fifty years ago, a blue two story building opposite a large park, and at the head of a canal that is home to many restaurants, fishing boats, and party boats.  It is a popular Long Island destination especially in summer.  From the classrooms, you can hear the horns blow as the fishing boats go out for half day charters in the early afternoon.  Mergansers, gannets, and Canadian geese spend time in the park across from the school.  Sometimes you can spot what looks like a football floating on the canal and upon second look realize that it is a seal.  I have always felt lucky to be here. Read More

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