Sesame Street

a popular US television series for young children on PBS. The programmes, which combine education and social values with entertainment, began in 1969 and are now shown in more than 50 countries. They include real actors and the Muppet Show characters created by Jim Henson, such as Bert and Ernie, Big Bird, the Cookie Monster, Kermit the Frog and Oscar the Grouch.

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▪ American television program
      American educational television series for children that debuted in 1969 on the National Educational Television network, an entity that became the Public Broadcasting Service (PBS) in 1970. The show has been continually broadcast since its inception, making it one of the longest-running shows in American history. It is watched by almost half of all American preschool-aged children.

      Sesame Street is a pioneering children's education series featuring animations, live actors, and a core cast of puppet characters, the Muppets. Designed by Jim Henson (Henson, Jim), the Muppets—especially the impossibly cute Elmo, Big Bird, the inseparable Bert and Ernie, and Cookie Monster—have become American icons and have starred in a series of motion pictures and television specials. The show's name refers to the fictional urban street where many of its characters live and interact. Using brief skits, musical numbers, cartoons, and live-action video footage (e.g., of children in other countries), the program seeks to engage children's minds and foster learning, basic academic skills, self-esteem, positive socialization, and problem-solving.

      Although geared toward children, the show also employs a subtle, mature sense of humour intended to encourage parents to watch along with their children and take part in the learning process. The show has featured scores of guests, including prominent politicians, journalists, musicians, and actors. Over its long run, the show has won a record 109 Emmy Awards and has inspired two feature films, along with various television specials and videos. Sesame Street is broadcast in 120 countries, with more than 30 international versions in production.

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Universalium. 2010.

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