In Sesame’s New Show, To Play Is To Learn
Turn on your TV and surf the stuff meant for kids. I dare you.
You’ll likely find a surfeit of fast action and fart jokes. And that’s what makes Esme & Roy so unusual.
The new show, about an unlikely duo who babysit monsters, is Sesame Workshop’s first animated children’s program in more than a decade, and it deftly combines the Workshop’s parallel passions — for learning and play. In fact, Esme & Roy is dedicated to an idea that can feel radical these days:
That learning and play aren’t parallel at all. When done right, they should converge, each in service of the other.
“Guided play captures your imagination, it’s fun, it keeps you motivated,” says Kathy Hirsh-Pasek, who teaches psychology at Temple University. Her work studying the power of guided play influenced the show’s development. “And we think that those features are an important learning tool for helping young children master skills.”
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