WGCU partners with local early childhood educators, families in Sesame Street in Communities grant

WGCU is one of 20 PBS stations across the nation participating in a special Sesame Street in Communities Public Media Champions project, funded by the Corporation for Public Broadcasting. The goal of WGCU’s project is to support our region’s rural early childhood educators, child care providers and families, particularly during children’s critical years for brain development, from birth through age 6.

WGCU is partnering with the Guadalupe Center, Child Care of Southwest Florida and the Children’s Network of Southwest Florida to engage staff and families with Sesame Street in Communities’ newest resources on topics such as health emergencies, resilience, literacy and learning through play. Timely topics such as learning and working at home and building social and emotional skills will be covered as well, in workshops through April 2021.

This collaborative project will provide an opportunity for WGCU and our partners to:

  • Train local early childhood educators and day care providers on the use of Sesame Street in Communities resources.
  • Distribute materials to early childhood educators, child care providers and families. These materials include make-and-take activities, books, resource kits, and more.

“Our teachers focus on preparing children academically, socially, behaviorally and emotionally for the future, but we also want to empower parents to excel at work and advance their education,” said Chris Hansen, CEO of Child Care of Southwest Florida. “We’re excited to participate in the Sesame Street in Communities program because it, too, recognizes the importance of a strong school-home connection in a child’s overall development.”

Sesame Street in Communities builds on Sesame Street’s 50-year commitment to addressing kids’ developmental, physical, and emotional needs. Its time-tested research model and thorough testing with families and providers ensures that resources have a measurable, positive impact in the lives of parents and children.

Resources provided by Sesame Street in Communities are in English and Spanish. Hundreds of bilingual multi-media tools engage kids and adults in teachable moments in everyday situations and daily routines — in early math and literacy concepts, to eating nutritious foods, to more serious situations such as grief and food insecurity.

Like the long-running children’s show from which it evolved, Sesame Street in Communities aims to help children and families not only cope but thrive.

WGCU’s work on the Sesame Street in Communities Public Media Champions project is made possible by the Corporation for Public Broadcasting.

More information about Sesame Street in Communities is available at sesamestreetincommunities.org.