The Benefits of “Sesame Street”

There is a recent study that is going to be released next Monday that finds that the kids’ show “Sesame Street” has long-term educational benefits that are comparable to those benefits kids get from attending preschool.

The study show that children who watched “Sesame Street” during their formative preschool lives were more likely to stay at the appropriate grade-level of learning than their peers who did not watch “Sesame Street.” The study goes on to say that the positive effect is even greater among low-income children.

“Sesame Street” focused on presenting young viewers with an academic curriculum that was heavy on math and reading. The daily episodes were always brought to you by letters and numbers~something that hearkened back to the days when adverstisers sponsored television shows. 

These findings should give some comfort to those parents, like me, who put their kids down to watch the show everyday.

The study also raises the question: If “Sesame Street” can have the same benefits as a good preschool, does the U.S. department of education really need to spend the money on mandatory preschool education?

This study shows lawmakers and taxpayers that it is beneficial and cost-effective to have public-funded shows like “Sesame Street” out there for kids to watch.

The scientists who commissioned the test, say that this study shows the importance of long-term preschool education in any form.

“Sesame Street” debuted in 1969 with a wonderful diverse cast of human characters and a group of puppets called “muppets.” It was the first show on television that was specifically for children’s educational viewing. It set the tone for future shows.

From the very beginning, the show was targeted at low-income urban kids in a desire to get them ready for school.

As the needs of American kids grows, so does the content of the show. For example, the show now incorporates the scientific method and character development into the plot of the series.

“Sesame Street” relies on the art of storytelling, which is an excellent method of teaching. “Sesame Street” also repeats the same skill in different ways throughout each episode. This formula~repetition and storytelling~is a formula that can easily work with any age group, which should be of benefit to teachers of all students.

On a side note~my daughter, now twenty, loved Elmo. She had a “Sesame Street” bumper around the inside of her crib; at night, she would scoot down to get even with Elmo and she would “talk” to him. We heard her over the monitor. 

*The image is mine; it is an old photo of some flowers that I enhanced in PicMonkey and added embellishments and text.


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