All right Mr. DeMille, I'm ready for my close-up

11 November 2012

Still The Coolest Street-Happy 43rd Birthday Sesame Street!

"Sesame Street's mission is to "create innovative, engaging content that maximizes the educational power of media to help children reach their highest potential."
  This week everyone's favorite 8' 2"yellow feathered friend, along with all his neighbors on one of the world's most famous streets, celebrated 43 years of educating kids while having a lot of fun! The first episode of Sesame Street aired November 10,1969.
  It has been anxious time for our friends on Sesame Street as they became the center of the PBS funding cut chatter during the election-Good news pals Barack has your back!
  The importance of Sesame Street in the lives of pre-schoolers across the globe kids cannot be overstated.  In a society becoming more fractured economically kids with limited to no access to the plugged in world of apps and the internet and cable do have access to public broadcasting and Sesame Street at no charge-no special technology or fees required.  Sesame Street provides all kids the start they need to succeed in the critical early learning grades.
via The Atlantic and Mental Floss
  Sesame Street has not only helped kids learn their letters and numbers, but it has also held their hand through difficult time and taught them important life lessons-caring, friendship, sharing, tolerance, understanding...and coping skills-most memorably after the death of Mr. Hooper the grocer and September 11 and this week in the aftermath of Hurricane Sandy Sesame Street announced that it would air a special episode to help kids understand the effects of a hurricane as Big Bird's nest is destroyed in a storm.
 Sesame Street has always been a hot destination for celebrities, many of whom would never make public appearances on any other show...and of course every First Lady since Pat Nixon has stopped in to say Hi to the gang including Michelle Obama who along with Elmo talked about the importance of healthy eating and gardening.
  Sesame Street is seen in over 140 countries worldwide from South Africa, where an HIV Positive character was included, to Israel where Oscar's Israeli counterpart is Moishe Oofnik, whose last name means "grouch" in Hebrew,  and last season in Afghanistan   where supposedly the characters of Oscar the Grouch and The Count von Count were set aside due to cultural taboos around trash and vampires
 In Egypt 's version-Alam Simsim, a strong and gutsy girl character named Khokha not only teaches the alphabet and numbers but also inspires and eductates girls that they can grow up to be anything they want and she wants to be a lawyer and a doctor and an engineer when she grows up! In Bangladesh Tuktuki intends to learn to read and go to school just like the boys do!  This week Supreme Court Justice Sonia Sotomayor came to Sesame Street to talk to Abby Cadabby about careers.  Abby wants to be a Princess but Justice Sotomayor explains that really isn't a career  "... a career is "a job you train for, or prepare for and plan on doing for a long time...pretending to be a princess is fun, but it is definitely not a career... you can go to school and train to be a teacher, a lawyer, a doctor, an engineer, and even a scientist..."  Abby decides to go for the gavel!
Sesame Street weaves the culture and societal concerns of each country through the characters and lessons of each show, and for the original Sesame Street, the characters and cast reflect who we are-different, special, unique and a melting pot of cultures and customs and beliefs -maybe the next political party should come from a special neighborhood called Sesame Street!
Did you know...
- According to Sesame Workshop, Elmo is the only non-human to testify before Congress.
 He lobbied for more funding for music education, so that “when Elmo goes to school, there will be the instruments to play.
-Oscar the Grouch used to be orange 

-Mr. Snuffleupagus has a first name--Aloysius
- All Sesame Street's main Muppets have four fingers except Cookie Monster, who has five