Thursday, June 20, 2013

Children's Television

It seems like I grew up during an era where family TV was a trend.  Sadly, that trend seems like its gone.  Full House, Family Matters, even Saved By The Bell were all shows that had some sort of moral to each episode.

I never really noticed the lack of truly wholesome TV shows today until I had my son.  You never know what you're going to get with "Reality TV" and most shows on the family channels seem to be geared to pre-teens and teens.  I think all of this contributed to me falling in love with good ol' Sesame Street again.

Yes, Cookie Monster now eats fruits and veggies, and yes, Elmo seems to be the main character instead of Big Bird, but Sesame Street continues to use television media as an educational tool - both academically and socially. Not only does Sesame Street teach numbers, letters, and counting; they also continue to tackle any social issues kids may be facing while dealing with tough issues head on. 

Did you know Sesame Street conducts research for every single episode before airing? They do this to make sure each episode is educational and has a positive effect on children.  One episode in which Snuffy's parents decide to divorce was never aired simply because the research showed kids would be too devastated to receive the positive message Sesame Street was trying to convey. I can't think of any other show that does so much to ensure the well being of children.

Below is a clip from one of my favorite episodes.  It's an oldie but a goodie.  When the actor who plays Mr. Hooper died, the producers decided to face the issue of death head on instead of replacing the actor.  It's a sad episode but I love how they truly deal with death (Saying "he died" instead of "he passed away"). The emotion you see from the actors is genuine and was shot in one take.

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