Hallmark to strengthen bond with kids through new show

MUMBAI: Now preschoolers can have their very own playdate with some of their favourite Sesame Street friends every day. Featuring Ernie, Bert and Grover, Play With Me Sesame, an interactive half-hour series produced by Games Productions. In association with Sesame Workshop and Noggin, will debut on the Hallmark Channel on 1 October.

An official release informs that the show mimics a child's playdate. In this manner it gives them lots of ways to play along and participate with their favourite Sesame Street Muppets. Each episode features newly created segments mixed with classic Sesame Street footage inviting children to engage in a specific activity. Play With Me Sesame will air Monday to Friday at 8 am and 3:30 pm, while on Saturday and Sunday it will air at 8 am.

Play With Me Sesame's participatory approach aims at helping young children prepare for school socially, emotionally, and intellectually. The on-air activities support children's creativity and individual expression. In addition, they stress the fundamental concepts critical to learning how to read, and to do math and science, the release states.

Ernie's segment Ernie Says (a la "Simon Says"), gets kids playing along right from the start. Bert invites kids to work on the computer, creating oatmeal art and matching and sorting socks. And Grover's Move and Groove with Grover gets kids singing and dancing to classic Sesame Street songs.

Hallmark Asia Pacific's sales and business development VP Simon Lai added, "We recognise that parents everywhere see the need to prepare their pre-schoolers for primary education. Play With Me Sesame's interactive approach will satisfy the needs of today's parents in ensuring the best for their children."

Sesame Workshop's VP global television distribution Jennifer Monier-Williams said, "We are thrilled to be able to deliver a new, interactive way for kids to laugh and learn. We are especially pleased to have the series debut in France, Spain, and throughout key Asia markets where we continue to grow the Sesame brand. Play With Me Sesame is an extension of Sesame Street's long tradition of encouraging children to share, cooperate, and have fun doing it."

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