PBS KIDS® Engages Kids with New Spanish Content and Original Music on the Popular PBS KIDS Preschool Destination Beginning May 19th
Dash's Secret Treasure Game Ties On-Air Curriculum to Online Learning Moments
Innovative Online Content for Children at pbskids.org Invites Kids to
Interact with Animated Guinea Pig Hooper
(April 16, 2008 Arlington, VA) - To kick off its third season on May 19th, PBS KIDS' preschool destination invites kids to discover new cultures and build language skills through Spanish language content and new original music. Spanish language content will be introduced by Miss Rosa, played by teacher and actress Jennifer Pena, to encourage children to explore new cultures and experiences. New original music from Mr. Steve, performed by award-winning children's recording artist Steve Roslonek, will tie in to the day's interactive curriculum theme. Miss Rosa and Mr. Steve join current teacher Miss Lori and the loveable animated guinea pig Hooper in the two-hour on-air block that includes CURIOUS GEORGE - the #1 preschool series among kids ages 2-5, SUPER WHY! - which will premiere new episodes the week of May 19th, DRAGON TALES and CLIFFORD THE BIG RED DOG. Out of the Blue Enterprises, the award-winning kids' educational entertainment company, created, produced and directed the all-new third season, continuing their successful collaboration with PBS KIDS.
As part of the third season, a new on-air segment with PBS KIDS icon Dash highlights a series of online "minigames" at pbskids.org that reveals Dash's Secret Treasure. The games were developed to provide short learning moments that emphasize age-appropriate content such as shapes and literacy skills. Pbskids.org will also launch an interactive, animated version of Hooper to help kids select learning games and invites kids to contribute their own creation to Dot's Story Factory, which recently celebrated its 200,000th story created and shared by kids.
"The new season of the PBS KIDS preschool destination is designed to encourage children's curiosity about the world around them by providing an interactive and contemporary environment where they can meet new people and experience different cultures," says Lesli Rotenberg, SVP PBS KIDS Next Generation Media. "With the addition of a Spanish teacher and a music teacher, PBS KIDS is offering all children the opportunity to benefit from an enriching and diverse preschool experience."
On the new segment "Music Time with SteveSongs," Mr. Steve plays original songs including "Rhythm Safari" and "Stop, Look, Listen," as kids embrace the day's curriculum theme by interacting, singing and dancing along. Miss Rosa introduces Spanish words and phrases while guiding children in exploring age-appropriate activities around themes including transportation, rhyming and counting.
Jennifer Pena, who plays Miss Rosa, is a Florida certified teacher with classroom experience, fluent in Spanish, who decided to incorporate her love of teaching with her first love - acting. She is now teaching Acting for Kids and Teens classes, private coaching and workshops. Jennifer started acting professionally at the age of nine and has had roles in several national commercials including Sea World and Universal Studios, television appearances on several Nickelodeon shows and was a host for Shamu TV. Jennifer recently performed as Miss Rosa in a bilingual DVD released by PBS KIDS Raising Readers to 10 target markets across the country in partnership with PBS stations serving their community. The DVD features episodes of SUPER WHY! and WORDWORLD, as well as Miss Rosa engaging the audience with reading games and offering tips on how to make learning to read fun.
Steve Roslonek, also known as "SteveSongs," is Mr. Steve on the PBS KIDS preschool destination. Steve has been writing and performing his award-winning music for kids and families for the past ten years. He delights audiences throughout New England and across the country at prestigious venues such as the White House and the Kennedy Center in Washington, D.C., Wolftrap in Vienna, VA, and the Symphony Space in New York City and Fenway Park in Boston. Steve initially began writing children's songs for his brother's first grade class in 1997. Positive feedback and inspiration quickly followed, leading Steve to record his first album, Morning 'Til Night, independently in 1999. Eight years and four albums later, Steve has performed at over 2,000 shows across the country. He's won numerous prestigious awards, including two Parents' Choice Gold Awards, a Nappa Honor, iParenting Media Award, and a Children's Music Web Award. His current and critically acclaimed CD, Marvelous Day was released in 2006 on Rounder Records. Combining his two passions, music and kids, has yielded what Steve calls "the coolest job ever."
About the PBS KIDS preschool destination:
PBS KIDS preschool destination launched in September 2006 as part of PBS KIDS Next Generation Media, an initiative to define the unique contribution public television can make in the changing digital children's media landscape. PBS KIDS Next Generation Media continues to engage in research with children, parents, teachers and caregivers and consultation with its advisory board of experts to aid in the development of the highest quality and most innovative educational and entertaining media experiences. The series within the preschool destination, including CURIOUS GEORGE, SUPER WHY!, DRAGON TALES and CLIFFORD THE BIG RED DOG, have continuously ranked in the top 10 among kids 2-5 and moms.
About PBS KIDS and PBS KIDS GO!
PBS KIDS, for preschoolers, and PBS KIDS GO!, for early elementary school kids, are committed to providing the highest quality non-commercial content and learning environment for children across the country. Providing age-appropriate, diverse programming for kids, PBS KIDS and PBS KIDS GO! programs consistently earn more prestigious awards than any other broadcast or cable network. Only PBS KIDS and PBS KIDS GO! have earned the unanimous endorsement of parents, children, industry leaders and teachers. With additional PBS resources to complement its programming, including PBS KIDS online (pbskids.org), PBS KIDS GO! online (pbskidsgo.org), PBS Parents (pbsparents.org), PBS Teachers (pbs.org/teachers), PBS Ready To Learn services and literacy events across the country, PBS is providing the tools necessary for positive child development. PBS is a nonprofit media enterprise owned and operated by the nation's 355 public television stations, serving nearly 73 million people each week and reaching 99% of American homes.
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 Source: For PBS, NTI Pocketpiece for November, 2007. For broadcast, cable, and syndication, Nielsen Galaxy Explorer, November 1-30, 2007.