More television programs are being created today to help progress early childhood development than ever before. However, one of the most prolific children’s shows to do so dates back to the 1960s, and it is still improving the lives of our youth today. Since its inception, the Sesame Workshop has been dedicated to improving the lives of young children by educating them in important life skills and tackling real-world issues.

PBS’s nearly 50-year-old enterprise, Sesame Street, has introduced countless characters and storylines that have helped children across the world learn, grow and deal with a variety of familial and societal issues. The dedicated team of individuals behind the program has continued to allow the show to be at the forefront of early childhood development.

For this episode of Caucus: New Jersey with Steve Adubato, show host Steve Adubato, PhD., spoke to one of these dedicated individuals: Dr. Jeanette Betancourt is the senior vice president for the United States Social Impact at the Sesame Workshop. Betancourt described how nurturing early childhood learning helps children build important skills to succeed in school and life.

The Sesame Workshop is the New York City-based nonprofit organization behind Sesame Street, which provides educational learning resources through television, articles and other media.

Sesame Workshop Life Skills
This video was made possible thanks to Turrell Fund & Right From the Start NJ.

“[Sesame Workshop’s] mission is to help children grow smarter, stronger and kinder,” said Betancourt.

The organization targets more than 180 million children in close to 150 different countries. It affords a number of initiatives to help young children deal with various issues, which may include grief, parents’ unemployment and economic uncertainty. It also promotes formal learning and outreach programs.

Another one of the organization’s initiatives is titled “Words Are Here, There, and Everywhere,” which was formed in partnership with the PNC Grow Up Great program.

“With this particular initiative, it’s really scaffolding on the long-term effort that we have around school readiness for children birth to five years of age,” Betancourt explained. “And in this particular initiative, we’re looking at how important vocabulary is in helping children understanding the world, but also getting ready for school and understanding that words are all around us.”

To learn more about how the Sesame Workshop is working to facilitate early childhood development, check out this episode of Caucus: New Jersey with Steve Adubato.

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