PBS KIDS Launches App and Online Games for New Series, PEG + CAT

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New collection of digital content includes online games, a mobile app and offline activities that engage preschoolers and teach math concepts and skills 

ARLINGTON, VA, October 3, 2013 – Today, PBS KIDS launched a collection of new online and mobile games and activities from its newest media property PEG + CAT. The collection includes a new app: the PEG + CAT Big Gig App for iPad, Kindle Fire and other Android devices, in addition to online games and offline activities that families can enjoy together.A new series for preschoolers, PEG + CAT premieres on PBS KIDS on October 7 (check local listings) and follows the adorable Peg and her sidekick Catas they embark on adventures, solve problems and learn foundational math concepts and skills. The zany quandaries that Peg and Cat face happen in a variety of different worlds – from a farm to a distant planet, from a pirate island to a prehistoric valley, and more.

“At PBS KIDS, we are committed to providing educational and engaging content for children across media platforms, encouraging them to continue learning and exploring long after the screen is turned off,” said Lesli Rotenberg, General Manager, Children’s Programming, PBS.  “PEG + CAT was built as an on-air, online and mobile experience for kids, with related content for parents. With integrated episodes, games and hands-on activities, PEG + CAT will help kids learn math and problem-solving concepts in a variety of ways, deepening not only how much fun they will have with these great characters, but also how many critical skills they will build.”

PEG + CAT Big Gig App
Designed for children ages 3 to 6, the PEG + CAT Big Gig App leverages the original music from PEG + CAT to help kids understand math concepts such as numbers, counting, patterns and more. The app includes two activities: Big Gig and Sound Check. The PEG + CAT Big Gig App is available from the App Store on iPad or at www.AppStore.com/PBSKIDS. The app is also available for Android tablets on the Amazon Appstore.

Big Gig: Big Gig invites children to pick an instrument and play songs with Peg, Cat and their friends wherever they may be – on the farm, Pirate Island, the Magic Forest, even on the Purple Planet! While playing “warm-ups” and simple melodies from PEG + CAT, children practice counting up and down by ones and twos, adding ones, and extending patterns. Once they play the song, the show begins and kids can watch and sing along as the characters rock out. There’s even a karaoke-style feature that helps players follow along with the lyrics.

Sound Check: In Sound Check, children are invited to explore and make music on their own. They’ll find a chorus of chickens ready to cheep, musical instruments, song loops, and characters who will sing and shout on cue. Players can even record little ditties and play them back.

The PEG + CAT Big Gig App will be made available for free to families in low-income communities through the PBS KIDS Mobile Learning Program, a national outreach program in collaboration with PBS stations nationwide that distributes free app download codes so that educators and families can better support children’s learning in Head Start centers, Title I schools and other community-based organizations in low-income neighborhoods.

Online Games
Through this series of online games, players join Peg and Cat as they travel to a variety of whimsical worlds and help complete the “rockin’-est” rock collection in the galaxy. The Totally Rocks collection includes eight online games (each set in a different world from PEG + CAT), plus three open-ended activities, including a global reward system called Peg’s Rock Collection, where players can use these colorful rocks to make art and to practice counting skills. In these games, kids practice counting, 2D and 3D shape recognition and spatial skills, location and direction, and measurement, all while helping Peg and her friends solve a story-based problem. The games, listed below, are all available on pbskids.org/peg and will also be made available to educators on PBS LearningMedia.

8 Interactive Games:

Magical Shape Hunt – Players join Peg to find 3D shapes.

Star Swiper – In this game, players clap their hands to help add stars to the sky, using counting and addition skills.

Chicken Blast Off – Kids use their powers (of geometry and compound shape selection) to build a spaceship.

Hungry Pirates - The Pirates are on the hunt for the buried treasure chest full of delicious snacks! Players must follow the maps and some clues to where X marks the spot.

Peg’s Pizza Place - Players use counting skills to make pizzas that have the right number of toppings.

Chicken Dance – Players learn patterns as they help the chickens complete their dance routines.

Scrub-a-dub – Kids help farm animals get clean by matching them to containers that are the right size.

3-2-1 Snack – Players use their numbers and counting skills to help feed Cat his snack.

3 Free-play Activities:

Rock Art – Players explore Peg’s out-of-this-world collection of rocks.

Costume Box – Kids dress up characters like Peg, Cat, Ramone and Pig in wild and silly outfits.

Paint-a-long – Kids doodle to their hearts’ content in this digital paint activity, and they can use one of the pre-made templates to learn how to draw shapes or characters from PEG + CAT.

Offline Activities
Related offline activities are also part of PEG + CAT Totally Rocks. Parents and kids can do a variety of things together to explore math along with Peg and Cat. The activities, listed below, are all available on pbskids.org/peg.

4 PEG + CAT flip books that kids and parents can print, cut out and assemble.

Pirates and Peaches – Kids and parents collect and share peaches in this fun make-it-yourself Peg + Cat board game for 2 - 4 players.

Peg + Cat Stick Puppets - Using paper, wooden craft sticks and a little yarn (for Peg’s hair), it's easy to make these shapely stick puppets.

Recipe: The Pirates’ Great Banana Fruit Salad - Make a tasty fruit salad, counting each fruit yourself.  Then turn it into little treasures by dividing it among special, make-it-yourself treasure chests.

Recipe: Peg’s Perfect Pizza - Make, or cut, this pizza into different shapes, with some “dough-it-yourself” edible geometric fun.

Recipe:  Peg and Cat’s Incredibly Popular Honey Cake - This cake is fun to make and even more fun to decorate with fruity patterns.

PEG + CAT Television Series 
Co-creators Billy Aronson (Rent, Postcards from Buster) and Jennifer Oxley (Little Bill, The Wonder Pets!) have teamed with The Fred Rogers Company to bring young viewers a new way to experience math through Peg and Cat’s relatable, and often hilarious, adventures. Each PEG + CAT episode features original songs and fascinating stories in which Peg and Cat encounter a problem that requires them to use math and problem-solving skills in order to move forward. The series will air daily on PBS KIDS following its premiere on October 7 (check local listings).

PEG + CAT is funded in part by the U.S. Department of Education through the Ready To Learn Initiative, a program that supports the development of innovative educational television and digital media targeted at preschool and early elementary school children and their families, and by the Corporation for Public Broadcasting (CPB).

“Peg + Cat is the first original preschool transmedia property developed as part of the federal Ready To Learn Initiative, a program that supports the development of innovative educational television and media content especially for preschool and early elementary children and their families,” said Debra Sanchez, Senior Vice President for Education and Children’s Content, Corporation for Public Broadcasting (CPB). “CPB is pleased to be helping kids build the skills they need to succeed in school and life through this long-standing partnership with PBS KIDS and the U.S. Department of Education.”

For information and images from PEG + CAT and the PEG + CAT Big Gig App, visit PBS PressRoom.

PBS KIDS, the number one educational media brand for kids, offers all children the opportunity to explore new ideas and new worlds through television, online, mobile and community-based programs. Kidscreen- and Webby-award winning pbskids.org provides engaging interactive content, including the PBS KIDS video player, now offering free streaming video accessible on computer- and mobile-device-based browsers.  For more information on specific PBS KIDS content supporting literacy, science, math and more, visit pbs.org/pressroom, or follow PBS KIDS on Twitter and Facebook.

About CPB 
The Corporation for Public Broadcasting (CPB), a private, nonprofit corporation created by Congress in 1967, is the steward of the federal government's investment in public broadcasting. It helps support the operations of more than 1,400 locally-owned and -operated public television and radio stations nationwide, and is the largest single source of funding for research, technology, and program development for public radio, television and related online services.

About The Ready To Learn Initiative 
The Ready To Learn Initiative is a cooperative agreement funded and managed by the U.S. Department of Education’s Office of Innovation and Improvement. It supports the development of innovative educational television and digital media targeted at preschool and early elementary school children and their families. Its general goal is to promote early learning and school readiness, with a particular interest in reaching low-income children. In addition to creating television and other media products, the program supports activities intended to promote national distribution of the programming, effective educational uses of the programming, community-based outreach and research on educational effectiveness.

About The Fred Rogers Company
The company was founded by Fred Rogers in 1971 as the nonprofit producer of Mister Rogers’ Neighborhood for PBS. In the years that followed, it not only created hundreds of episodes of this much-loved program, but also extended Fred’s values and approach to other efforts in promoting children’s social, emotional and behavioral health and supporting parents, caregivers, teachers and other professionals in their work with children. The Fred Rogers Company continues to build on Fred’s legacy in innovative ways through a wide variety of media, and engaging new generations of children and families with his timeless wisdom. For more information, visit us at www.fredrogers.org.

Maria Vera, PBS; 703.739.3225; mvera@pbs.org 
Meredith Gandy, 360PR; 646.568.3238; mgandy@360pr.com

The contents of this release were developed under a grant from the Department of Education. However, those contents do not necessarily represent the policy of the Department of Education, and you should not assume endorsement by the Federal Government. [PR/Award No. U295A100025, CFDA No. 84.295A]