For many of us, Sesame Street brings up memories of The Count counting bats or Oscar the Grouch singing "I love trash". Sesame Street has a long running history of reflecting changes in our national culture. Recently, this multi Grammy award winning children's program began addressing the issue of divorce through multimedia, such as videos, games and a free online kit named Little Children, Big Challenges: Divorce.
The debut included Abby Cadabby, appearing in a video talking about her parent's divorce. The three year old Muppet voices her emotions and experiences about divorce. Through talking and singing about her emotions, she lets children viewers know it's ok to have an entire range of feelings when one's parents are going through a divorce.
Abby sings a song to help children process their big feelings about their own parents' divorce. By drawing pictures of her two homes she helps young viewers understand that they will continue to be an important part of their parent's lives. Ms. Cadabby has already helped many viewers feel a less bit crabby about the divorce they are experiencing in their family. You can get a preview of the pink sparkling fairy helping kids feeling loved and supported on YouTube.
The online kit is targeted to children between the ages of two and eight. Also, there are components for parents as well as caregivers to assist their child with the kit. Some of the features offered to parents/caregivers include: how to watch the video with their child, strategies and activities to address issues surrounding divorce and advice on how to explain divorce in kid friendly terms.
Sesame Street's multimedia kit has several options for children to interact online, including materials in Spanish. In addition to the sing along, kids can: read the Two-Hug Day, How Am I Feeling activity sheet, access a mobile app and create a playlist of videos and games. Also, mp3 downloads of the Bird family is available online, including Kermit the Frog's interview of a little bird whose parents live in different trees.
The world of Sesame Street has had a history of covering topics which sometimes are considered sensitive in nature. Some of the areas in which they have given children insights and comfort include: adoption, race, pregnancy and death.