Sesame Street has been admired by children and families for 40 years for its winsome, yet deceptively educational content. It has taught littlies (and perhaps even you!) the joys of cooperation, literacy and numeracy, inclusion and more.

It’s probably no surprise then that Sesame Street’s programming and multimedia resources are rooted in psychological and educational research. In fact, Sesame Street claims to be the most researched show on television. As part of its wide brief, Sesame Street aims to, and succeeds in, developing social and emotional skills in children:

“Children who view Sesame Street episodes with pro-social messages exhibit significantly higher levels of pro-social behavior — such as cooperating, helping, and sharing — than those who do not watch, as much as 40% higher. Just as importantly, children display less antisocial behavior (1).”

The Sesame Workshop – the not-for-profit educational organisation behind Sesame Street - offers the global community, including mental health practitioners, innovative evidence-based resources that can be used to “teach the whole child” valuable life skills.

Health and community professionals incorporating multimedia aids into their work with children and families may find the following of interest to build pro-social competencies: 

Also have a look at the Sesame Street outreach resources for big issues affecting children, such as literacy gaps, obesity, the needs of military families, and early childhood education in developing and war torn nations.
1. Zielinska, I. E., & Chambers, B. (1995). Using group viewing of television to teach preschool children social skills. Journal of Educational Television, 21, 85-99.