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    Sesame Street

    Sesame Street

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    PBS
    Sesame Street is a widely recognized and perpetually daring experiment in educational children's programming. This show has taken popular-culture and turned it upside-down. The fast-paced advertisements that had parents of the new era worrying for their children were the basis for the original format of this show. The show has often satirized pop culture, and made itself easier for parents to watch along too. And thus, the positive impact this show has had on modern society is beyond another. No show is more recognized the world over by as many generations and walks of life. Shown in its original format or with changes to reflect a regional education focus, Sesame Street is now seen in over 140 countries. The show that Entertainment Weekly named the "20th Best Ever Show" has changed the education scene to focus on "entertainment." This has turned out to be a valuable theory that not only helps the medicinal learning go down easier, but it also increases the effectiveness of the information being taught. In an almost backwards sense, the show stays fresh by recycling programming ideas every three years, by which time a new group of kids is watching. Unlike most PBS Kids shows, which have an original run, then go into continuous repeats until getting dropped by PBS or sold to another network, Sesame Street has created many new episodes every season since its debut Nov. 10, 1969. American teachers now expect children to arrive on the first day of school knowing the basics about letters, numbers, and language. "Kindergarten now does what first grade used to do," creator Joan Ganz Cooney has said, "and I think that's directly due to Sesame Street." International versions have changed Sesame Street to be more relevant to their culture and environments. They adjust the unique American inner city, with a cast made up mainly of Muppets, African-Americans, Spaniards and Chinese to reflect their own lifestyles. For example, Canada's Sesame Park features a small suburban town inhabited by folks like an otter and a bear, a bush pilot, a disabled child in a wheel-chair and her cat and Russia's Ulitsa Sesame set in a Russian dvor (courtyard) has a 9-foot tall tree spirit who has his joyous and problem-solving Muppet friends. No show can help in tumultuous or troubled times like Sesame Street. For example: • The Israelis and the Palestinians have now merged their independent spin-offs, to help teach the fighting cultures to accept each other for who they are, not what they have done in the past. • The original American Sesame Street helped children deal with the incidents of 9-11 • On the week of October 4-8, 2004, Sesame Workshop actually dug up reruns of Sesame Street episodes from its 32nd season, in which a hurricane plundered the neighborhood. This move was to come to grips with those disabused by the four hurricanes that struck Florida in a six-week span the previous August and September. It also sent a message about the news' propensity for covering violent acts. • The current South African government has not taken much action on the matters of HIV and AIDS, so in 2003, the South African version of Sesame Street added in a 5-year-old girl monster who manages to go about daily life with ease, even though she intercepted HIV through a blood transfusion shortly after birth. This led to an American backlash, even though her exposure in the States has always been restricted to sesameworkshop.org. Undoubtedly, she is the hardest-edged Muppet since Jim Henson's ill-fated "Creatures from the Planet Gorch" on Saturday Night Live's first season. • No other puppet than a Muppet, namely Elmo, could be taken seriously when asking America's congressional Education Appropriations Subcommittee for more funding to school music programs, so that "when Elmo goes to school, there will be the instruments to play." (Unfortunately, Newt Gingrich's Congress chose instead to divert to Sesame Street production funds from other PBS series. Among the casualties was one of Sesame Street's godchildren, Ghostwriter.) •In the mid-70s, they introduced Linda Bove, a deaf actress playing a deaf librarian that lives a life equal to all the rest of the area's inhabitants. Please note that Sesame Street's air time varies between various PBS stations in America. In recent years, a few PBS stations have dropped the show (including WNYE in New York, whose last airing was in June 2003). sesame street even had a touring show, SESAME STREET LIVE,which has just recently celebrated 25 years of performing. Characters Cookie Monster Cookie Monster has always had a passion for cookies, gobbling them up whenever he can. However, in order to promote healthy eating habits, Cookie Monster recently learned that cookies are a "sometime" food. So now, Cookie Monster also eats fruits and vegetables in addition to his trademark snack. Elmo Elmo is a cute little red monster, who wants to know more about the world he is growing up in. Oscar the Grouch Oscar lives in a dustbin, sure its not the most hygienic of places, but Oscar isn't the most hygienic of creatures. He likes to cause mischief but also enjoys learning. Ernie and Bert Best friends and room-mates, both showing us how people get along with each other and how sometimes you may even fall-out with your best friend. The Count The Count, would teaches us to count, whether it be really difficult numbers or easy numbers, the Counts thing is maths and counting, and he sure is good at it. Big Bird A huge yellow bird, who's everyone's friend. No matter what species, color or race you are.moreless
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    Reading Rainbow

    Reading Rainbow

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    PBS (ended 2006)
    Reading Rainbow is a children's series designed to promote reading comprehension in elementary school age children. Host LeVar Burton introduces the theme of the episode and the book to be profiled in an animated story using the illustrations from the book and narrated by a celebrity such as Bill Cosby, Ruby Dee, Richard Gere, and the late great stars Ossie Davis, Julia Child, Raul Julia and Gilda Radner for example. After the story is finished, feature stories in the same subject as the book are profiled and youth reviewers give critiques of three additional books. LeVar usually introduces the children critics by saying, "But you don't have to take my word for it."moreless
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    This Old House

    This Old House

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    PBS
    The Emmy Award winning This Old House is the television's premier home improvement series. The show that unlocked America's passions for home, celebrates its 25th anniversary season on PBS this year. This Old House's mission is to demystify the home improvement process and to celebrate the fusion on old world craftsmanship and modern technology. Each season features two renovation projects. Project One traditionally consists of eighteen or more so episodes and is filmed in Massachusetts. Project Two is taped in a different region of the country to highlight the variety of American architectural styles and renovation issues. Additionally, the second project is generally located in a town with a mild climate where outdoor work can be undertaken in the winter months. New episodes of This Old House are broadcast exclusively on PBS. Vintage, off-network episodes of the series, entitled This Old House Classics, air on Home and Garden Television network (HGTV), Do It Yourself network (DIYnet) and on selected commercial broadcast stations around the country (Syndicated). This Old House can be seen in the UK on Discovery Home & Leisure and on Australia's Lifestyle Channel. America's favorite home improvement series just got even better. The new This Old House Hour, exclusively on PBS, starts off each week with a new episode of the latest This Old House project. The second half of the hour features the all-new series Ask This Old House, in which the crew answers questions on home improvement topics.moreless
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    Frontline

    Frontline

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    PBS
    Since it began in 1983, ‘Frontline' has been airing public-affairs documentaries that explore a wide scope of the complex human experience. Frontline's goal is to extend the impact of the documentary beyond its initial broadcast by serving as a catalyst for change.moreless
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    Mister Rogers' Neighborhood

    Mister Rogers' Neighborhood

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    PBS (ended 2001)
    "In a little toy neighborhood, a tiny trolley rolls past a house at the end of a street. Welcome toMister Rogers' Neighborhood." In the annals of children's TV, Mister Rogers' Neighborhood ranks among the longest-lasting and beloved shows. Upon its conclusion, Mister Rogers' Neighborhood was the longest-running series in PBS history (a record eclipsed by Sesame Street in 2003). Host Fred Rogers (known to millions as simply "Mister Rogers") used his gentle charm and mannerisms to communicate with his audience of children. Topics centered on nearly every inconceivable matter of concern to children, ranging from everyday fears related to going to sleep, getting immunizations and disappointment about not getting one's way to losing a loved one to death and physical handicaps. Rogers used simple songs and, on nearly every show, segments from the Neighborhood of Make-Believe (NOM) to make his point. A scale-model trolley was often (but not always) used to segue into the Make-Believe segments, said neighborhood being inhabited by puppet characters including King Friday XIII, Lady Elaine Fairchild and Daniel Striped Tiger. Many shows also featured visits from cast members – most often Mr. McFeely (tagline: "Speedy Delivery"), Robert Trow, Joe Negri and Chef Brockett (the local baker). Many times, Rogers also visited the neighborhood shops of both the regulars and guests. Each show began and ended with a camera panning over a scale neighborhood (said to represent the town where Rogers lived). Production History While today's longer-running PBS Kids shows reinvent themselves every five years, Mister Rogers' Neighborhood achieved, throughout its 31 seasons, that rarest of elements: consistency. It is a legacy that can all be traced through every aspect of Fred Rogers' television career. Some of the characters in Mister Rogers' Neighborhood, both real and imagined, had appeared in two of Fred Rogers' earlier programs, The Children's Corner for Pittsburgh's WQED in 1954 and the CBC's Misterogers in 1963. It was for Misterogers that Fred first appeared on-camera. Rogers returned to WQED in Pittsburgh to begin writing and hosting Mister Rogers' Neighborhood May 22, 1967. Several other public television stations from Chicago to Boston carried the show on a trial basis that year. Beginning February 19, 1968, the Mister Rogers' Neighborhood program that we know today, began airing nationwide on National Educational Television (NET), the predecessor to PBS. This was also the year David Newell, returned from Europe, began work for Rogers. He was in charge of the production as well as the neighborhood's Speedy Delivery service. (AN ASIDE: Rogers wanted to call the delivery man Mr. McCurdy after the man at the Sears-Roebuck Foundation, whose support launched Mister Rogers' Neighborhood. But the people at Sears-Roebuck called Rogers and said "Mr. McCurdy" was too self-serving. Thus Rogers went to his roots to rename Newell's deliveryman. "McFeely" was Rogers' middle name and the last name of his maternal grandfather.) Shows were produced as a daily strip from 1968 to 1976, at which time production was suspended. Counting black-and-white episodes, 590 shows were produced in that span. Production resumed at the beginning of the remote video age in 1979. Rogers went on location more, supervising videos of how people make things (a precursor to the TVO series Here's How!). Other characters would be introduced in the subsequent two decades. In all, 305 new programs were taped from 1979 through 2001. Of that volume, the most notable shows came in 1991, with Rogers focusing on calming children's fears during the first U.S. war with Iraq. PBS gradually narrowed the window for the 460 "pre-79" episodes with each new season from 1980 onward. When the number of "post-75" episodes was enough to cover entire years, the classic shows were retired, last airing on PBS in the summer of 1995. Despite the production stoppage and the subsequent passing of Fred Rogers on February 27, 2003, PBS continues to repeat Mister Roger's Neighborhood in all its original glory–an accomplishment unique among all PBS Kids shows.moreless
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    Austin City Limits

    Austin City Limits

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    PBS
    Austin City Limits has established a reputation for showcasing great live musical performances. The show's studio allows for intimate and engaging performances by independent, mainstream, critically acclaimed, and popular artists. The show was originally created to display the emerging talents of the alternative country music scene in Austin, TX in the 1970s. Soon, however, the show branched out to include all types of music: alt country, pop rock, bluegrass and zydeco are just a few. Many television historians attribute MTV, CMT and VH1'a success to the contributions of this groundbreaking musical series. On Wednesday, November 12th, 2003; President Bush presented ACL with the National Medal of the Arts. ACL was the first television show (ever) to win the award.moreless
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    The Joy of Painting

    The Joy of Painting

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    PBS (ended 1994)
    The Joy of Painting was a television show dedicated to the art of the late Bob Ross, during this half an hour television show, Bob would do his best to teach everyone, from the most talented painter, to casual art type, his special techniques. Bob was famous for his landscapes and "Happy little trees" that would be our little secret.moreless
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    NOVA

    NOVA

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    PBS
    Seen in more than 100 countries, NOVA is the most watched science television series in the world and the most watched documentary series on PBS. It is also one of television's most acclaimed series, having won every major television award, most of them many times over. Each week NOVA takes an in depth look at a particular topic or individual in the science field. NOVA's topics cover all branches of science and engineering. NOVA's unique way of presenting each topic can be interesting to both those with no prior knowledge or those whose life's work is being covered.moreless
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    Masterpiece Theatre

    Masterpiece Theatre

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    PBS
    Welcome to the Masterpiece Theatre guide at TV.com.

    On the air since 1971, in its early days the show consisted entirely of British drama productions, more than half of them from the BBC. Since the year 2000, some classic productions from the American Collection have also been included, but the bulk of the show still comes from the UK.

    Masterpiece Theatre has won thirty Primetime Emmy Awards, as well as many other awards. To buy episodes of Masterpiece Theatre on DVD, visit its online store.moreless
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    The Berenstain Bears

    The Berenstain Bears

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    PBS
    Based on the fantastic and best-selling book series, The Berenstain Bears, written by Jan and Stan Berenstain, brings you a cartoon television series that stems from cartoons which aired from 1985 to 1987 on CBS Saturday mornings. After a number of NBC television specials between 1979 and 1983, it finally became a series adapted from selective texts. Later, many of the episodes were released on VHS (1988-1989), and was reformatted in the early 1990's, along with one LaserDisc of the Berenstain Bears cartoon, before that technology took a backseat to the superior DVD format. The Berenstain Family Papa Q. Bear, a woods bear, who always helps others, sharing his wisdom, but also has a bad tamper with troubling situations. Mama Bear is a great quilter, and is a great problem solver. Brother Bear has interests in dinosaurs and he loves to play soccer, while Sister Bear is an expert at jump-roping and is Lizzy Bruin's best friend. Honey Bear is introduced later in the book series as a new family member of the Berenstains. Grizzly Gran is the grandmother who gives good advice and treats, and Grizzly Gramps is the grandfather of Brother and Sister Bear and father of Papa. Cousin Fred is the son to Dot and Ed, and Brother's best friend. Friends of the Cubs Lizzy Bruin is the sister to brother, Barry and best friends with Sister Bear. Brother and Sister's friend, Bigpaw is feared by many, as Queenie McBear is a student at Bear Country School. She is a sister to twin brothers, and the daughter of the owner of a Real Estate agent. Babs Bruno, Anna and Millie are also friends of the Cubs. The School Jane, Bob, Honeybear, and Hrizzmeyer are some of the teacher's at Bear Country. Honeycomb is the principal at the school, while Grizzly Gus is the kids' bus driver. Jane is the Scout Leader of the Cubs, while Dr. Wise Old Owl is the Bear Scouts' faithful friend. Villians Too Tall Grizzly, always up to no good with his gang members, Vinny, Smirk, and Skuzz, as another villian is on the loose. This is a con man named, Raffish Ralph/Ripoff Ralph Other Farmer Ben is an award-winning farmer, alongside his wife, Mrs. Ben, who enjoys cooking and works very hard. Actual Factual is an intelligent professor who works at the Bearsonian Institution, while Gert Grizzly is a doctor, and Maguerite is a police officer. The mayor, Honeypot is the husband to Mrs. Honeypot, and Mrs. Grizzle is Brother and Sister's favorite babysitter. Neighbors of the Bear family are Mr. Skunk and Miz McGrizz.

    This way to Bear Country. You'll know when you're there. As soon as you enter, You'll feel like a bear. A great grizzly bear, A Berenstain Bear! We are the Berenstain Bears Mama, Papa, Sister, Brother We appreciate each other We live in a split-level tree Mama, Papa, Sister, and me! Snug as bugs in our split-level tree. Here are more Berenstain Bears: Actual Factual, Big Paw, Raffish Ralph, Horace T. Honeypot, I'm the Mayor. Lots, lots more - bears galore!

    Version # 2:

    Somewhere deep in Bear Country Live the Berenstain Bear family They're kind of furry around the torso They're a lot like people only more-so

    (CHORUS): The bear fact is that they're just like you and me The only difference is they live in a tree The Berenstain Bears

    When things go wrong as things might do The Berenstain Bears will find a way through Mama, Papa, Sister and Brother will always be there for each other

    (CHORUS): The bear fact is that they can be sweet as honey Sometimes you'll find they might be just plain funny

    The Berenstain Bears (repeat 1x)moreless
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    Mathnet

    Mathnet

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    PBS (ended 1992)
    Mathnet is a mystery serial that is a parody of Dragnet, produced by Janette Webb, the widow of Dragnet's producer Jack Webb. Each five-part story, which ran Monday through Friday as part of the PBS program Square One TV, featured crime-solving by a pair of police detectives in a special mathematics unit. The first two seasons took place in Los Angeles and featured Sergeant Kate Monday and Officer George Frankly, assisted by Debbie Williams and Chief Thad Green. In season 3, the show moved to New York City, and the secondary characters were cab driver and undercover NYPD officer Benny Pill and Captain Joe Greco. One season later, Kate Monday was replaced by Pat Tuesday. As the introduction says, "The story you are about to see is a fib, but it's short. The names are made up, but the problems are real." In addition to airing in serial form to conclude each episode of Square One TV, several of the mysteries were compiled and aired as standalone specials, and two were eventually released as VHS tapes.moreless
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    The New Yankee Workshop

    The New Yankee Workshop

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    PBS (ended 2009)
    America's favorite craftsman, Norm Abram, continues to re-create timeless classics while taking on new challenges. Join Norm in TNYW for his trademark, step-by-step approach that will inspire woodworkers-from casual to expert-to roll up their sleeves, put on their safety goggles, and get building.moreless
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    Nature

    Nature

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    PBS
    Nature is a wildlife documentary program that has been airing on PBS since 1982. Its longevity is explained partly by its quality; Nature has won numerous Emmy awards. Documentaries have explored a multitude of different animals, plants, and other aspects of the natural world. Subjects vary from "Africa" to "Yellowstone Otters." Some documentaries have featured celebrities, such as "Wild Horses of Mongolia with Julia Roberts" and "John Denver: Let This Be a Voice." While the documentaries vary in creator, style and narrator, they are all educational and suitable for the entire family.moreless
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    Great Performances

    Great Performances

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    PBS
    Great Performances is the longest running performing arts anthology on television. It is part of of the PBS tradition of bringing the arts to viewers free of charge. The show began as Theater in America in 1972. The next year, several arts productions, including Dance in America, were brought together under the Great Performances umbrella. Great Performances at the Met would join the family in 1977. Over the years the productions have moved more toward music than plays. Check your local listings for air times.moreless
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    American Experience

    American Experience

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    PBS
    Since 1988, PBS has broadcast a series that focuses on the history of the United States and what has made it unique. Called American Experience (originally titled The American Experience), the program examines the people, events, technology, and natural resources that have shaped the country. Hosted by David McCullough until 2002 and narrated by a number of well-known personalities - American Experience uses historians and authors, period images and film, music, dramatic re-enactments, and contemporary context to set the stage for its topics.

    The series continues to this day with a variable number of installments produced each year. Episodes are generally 60 minutes in length, but some longer episodes and multi-part series have also been produced. The show airs at different days and times on local PBS stations.

    Though American Experience has used many films from independent film makers and has been assisted by various PBS stations throughout the country, it has always been spearheaded by WGBH in Boston.moreless
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    Cosmos

    Cosmos

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    PBS (ended 2005)
    Carl Sagan brings us the Cosmos, everything that ever was and ever will be, in an approach that is easily accessible even for those of us that are not science wizards. This 13 part series covers everything from the history of astronomy, the challenges it faced at its creation, how the universe was created and how it all might end, to the evolution of life on Earth, and the nature of the human brain. First aired in 1980 by the Public Broadcasting Service, Cosmos has seen multiple versions over the years. When the series was released on home video in the late 1980s, a 14th episode was included, which consisted of an interview between Dr. Sagan and Ted Turner. Dr. Sagan taped new epilogues for the 10th anniversary version in 1990, in which he addressed new discoveries and alternate viewpoints. The Science Channel rebroadcast the series on its 25th anniversary in 2005 with enhanced computer graphics. The series was awarded an Emmy and a Peabody Award. It has been broadcast in 60 countries and has been seen by an estimated 500 million to 1 billion viewers worldwide.moreless
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    Square One TV

    Square One TV

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    PBS (ended 1992)
    Mathman, your mission is to explore the Square One TV guide at TV.com. You will explore the guide, taking in the details about the show and contributing any information you may have about the show if you so desire. But beware the evil Mr. Glitch. He will eat you if you navigate away too quickly. Square One TV was a PBS series dedicated to making math fun. Airing daily on most PBS stations, this show was full of pop-culture parodies, great music, excellent skits and so much more. Much like The Electric Company, a celebrated phonetics series of the 1970s, Square One TV went from one concept to the next. The series had occasional celebrity guests, such as talented musicians and even magician Harry Blackstone. Legendary announcer Gary Owens became a regular in the second season, voicing Lt. Dirk Niblick, who helped his friends understand certain sales traps. The most recognized element of Square One TV, appearing at the end of each episode, was "Mathnet," a parody of the show Dragnet. Each Mathnet case lasted for one week (or five episodes) of the show and featured detectives George Frankly and his partner Kate Monday (Pat Tuesday in Seasons Four and Five) solving a fictional crime through the use of math. A big part of Square One TV seemed to be its devotion to The University of Michigan. Pac-Man parody Mathman wore a Wolverines helmet; programs in the third season made estimates based on the Michigan Stadium; Lt. Dirk Niblick's mother was a Michigan fan, and so on. It was all within reason: Square One TV's executive producer, the late David D. Connell, graduated from The University of Michigan in 1953 and the show's senior producer, Jim Thurman, is from the UM class of 1957. Square One TV was a production of the Children's Television Workshop, known today as Sesame Workshop. Some major changes came to the show in Season Four: the opening theme music and credits as well as the closing credits were changed, many new segments were added and the Mathnet series moved permanently from California to New York. The series was continued till the end of its fifth season and then canceled, much to the disappointment of its many fans. The show continued in repeats on most PBS stations until 1994 and then left the airwaves pretty much entirely... until it was picked up by the satellite/cable station Noggin. But Noggin took the show off along with a bunch of other Sesame Workshop shows in May 2003, so now Square One TV isn't on any station any more. Special thanks to Brian Hilley for information on segments that Noggin cut out when they showed the program. Noggin also aired some episodes of "Mathnet" on a program called Phred on Your Head. Still looking to watch some Square One TV? Look for online videos, check your local library (including any inter-system loan setup they may have) and GPN --- a great resource for this and other classic shows, including Ghostwriter and 3-2-1 Contact. Note: Square One TV only showed credits at the end of each five-episode run. Guest stars will be credited, to the best of the editor's abilities, for only those episodes in which they appeared, but special crediting notes (such as actors credited by a different name) will only be shown for every fifth episode. Special thanks to RantinAnton and Curtis Olmsted for their help in adding information to this guide. May the math be with you!moreless
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    Washington Week

    Washington Week

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    PBS
    Washington Week in Review first aired on February 23, 1967 and became the first local program to air on the new Public Broadcasting Service (PBS) in 1969. With its 40 years of broadcasting it became the longest-running public affairs program on PBS. Every week a group of journalists participate in a roundtable discussion of current news events. Since October 01, 1999 Gwen Ifill is moderating the show. In 2001, the show was renamed Washington Week.moreless
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    Over Easy

    Over Easy

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    PBS (ended 1983)
    Over Easy was an Emmy-winning informational show for senior citizens, featuring interviews, entertainment and reports on topics like consumer affairs and health. Hosts included Hugh Downs, Frank Blair, Mary Martin, Margaret Kuhn, and Jim Hartz.moreless
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    Learn to Read

    Learn to Read

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    PBS (ended 1987)
    By the mid-1980s, an estimated 27 million American adults had no reading skills. It would take a total team effort to conquer adult illiteracy anywhere. That is why The Kentucky Network (KET) and Scripps-Howard Broadcasting created Learn to Read, with portions shot in Kentucky and Michigan. Indeed, content on Learn to Read was based on the Michigan Method. The format of Learn to Read was designed to help any adult with any defree of reading problem. Thirty programs, designed for broadcast over a six-week span, covered everything: letters, sounds, words, cursive handwriting, sentences. Besides instructors Doris Biscoe and Charlotte Scot, Learn to Read also relied on a handful of characters (we need their identities, so any submissions are welcome). Among them was Les the Letterman and Word Woman, quick to point up key sounds. Three other regulars displayed common signs and other reading material in real-life situations. Among the footage videotaped in Kentucky was the timid Billy Green, the "Book Guy," who was also taking the Learn to Read course. Wally "Famous" Amos opened and closed almost all the shows and provided handwriting lessons as well. Today, Learn to Read is still being broadcast in four areas (Kentucky, Detroit, New York and San Francisco), but not all run the show on a consistent basis. Indeed, only New York's Thirteen/WNET continues to air Learn to Read five days a week, as the old six-week course format had requested. Still, it's an effective series, always eager to accomplish its goal: to help America become more literate, one person at a time.moreless
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