The new daily TV series will debut on December 22nd at 5.30pm. Sesame Street’s Big Bird Looks at the World, targets three to seven-year-olds and introduces viewers to three best friends, Big Bird, Lily and Elmo.
Viewers will already know Big Bird and Elmo from the interactive educational program Magic Map Show, which ran twice daily at the Expo 2010. Lily is a four-year-old girl tiger who loves martial arts. She’s just learning to read which she thinks is a lot of fun — almost as fun as singing and dancing.
The series teaches children about nature and science and encourages hands-on exploration. Each episode is triggered by a question that the Muppet characters have when they notice something about the world around them.
Within each episode, two live-action films provide in-depth information and real-world visuals. One of the live action films features a hands-on activity that relates to the question raised. A second live action film presents additional information and insight on the topic.
In addition, some of the activities viewers’ see trigger a second question that stems from the Muppet characters’ initial question, modeling the ways in which one discovery can, in turn, open up an opportunity for continued learning.
Sesame Street’s Big Bird Looks at the World, 52 eleven-minute episodes in Chinese Mandarin, is made possible through the generous support of MSD.
Gary Knell, president and CEO of Sesame Workshop, said: “Sesame Workshop has had a proud history of serving the needs of children globally since 1969 and in China since 1983 when Big Bird first visited.
“Toonmax, being committed to building a premier educational preschool brand, and MSD, investing in Chinese children’s growth and well-being, are exceptional partners.
"Sesame Street’s Big Bird Looks at the World serves as a positive example of what can be accomplished with successful people-to-people exchanges. While our cultures may be diverse, we’ve both gained incredible insight and friendship through sharing ideas and experiences for Sesame Street.”
Ye Chao, deputy general manager of Shanghai Toonmax Media Co, added: “Through the continued efforts of those in the industry, the children’s media landscape in China has made big strides in the last few years. With a core focus on children’s programming and animated content, Toonmax is actively engaged in the edutainment field. Ten years later, we are partnering with Sesame Workshop again.
"This time to bring Sesame Street’s Big Bird Looks at the World to a specially dedicated children’s TV channel. This really speaks to the mission of Toonmax, which is all for children. We hope the series will provide a new experience to millions of children.”
Michel Vounatsos, Senior Vice President of Merck and President of MSD China said: "MSD is committed to working with Chinese authorities and partners to improve people's health and quality of life. Merck Foundation has been working with Sesame Workshop for many years worldwide.
I believe with this new series launching on the Ha Ha Channel of Toonmax of Shanghai Media Group, we will continue to bring premier preschool education to Chinese families and help benefit the growth and well-being of Chinese children.”
In 1998, Sesame Workshop and STV partnered to produce 130 episodes of Zhima Jie, the Chinese version of Sesame Street. It debuted to great acclaim.