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The Newsstand - What's Hot!


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The Newsstand -What's Hot

Christine Pollock, Newsletter Editor
"In golf, as in life, it is the follow through that makes the difference."


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Turning your TV Time into Quality Time
October 5, 2004 Issue #11
Christine L. Pollock, Editor
Ranny Levy, Publisher

CQCM Newsletter Archive:

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Issue #5
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Issue #11


St. Petersberg Times Presents KidFlix Iternational Children's Film Festival






1. Letter from the Editor / Letter from the President
2. Featured KIDS FIRST! Web Store Titles
3. New Endorsements
4. Member News
5. New Members / Renewing Members
6. Media News
7. Family and Parenting News
8. Behind the Scenes at "Blue's Clues" by Christine L. Pollock
9. Media and Sex-What is Influencing Your Child?
10. Events
* Permission to forward or reprint the content herein is granted with complete attribution
Welcome to KIDS FIRST!®!® NEWS. All articles are by Coalition for Quality Children's Media unless otherwise noted.

Autumn is a second spring when every leaf's a flower. --Albert Camus

Dear Friends,

Maybe it's the bustle of autumn, I'm not sure, but it seems like I just finished last month's newsletter and here we are again.

As school and activities are picking up, we are also seeing an increase in membership. We would like to welcome the new and renewing members listed in the section below.

I am excited to see that several readers are making use of the Member News section of the newsletter to talk about upcoming products and special events. Please feel free to send in notices of awards, publications, products, and other important happenings

This month I had some fascinating interviews with the creators of "Blue's Clues." I knew good shows took a lot of work, but the amount of research put into each episode really impressed me. What makes kids love Blue's Clues so much? Why should parents and educators love the show? My article this month shows how research puts Blue's Clues at the top of the list for quality children's media.

This summer, the creators of Blue's Clues were informed that there would be no new episodes. The older episodes will still run, but this is the final year of new episodes. How do you feel about that? Let us know by emailing with the words "Blue's Clues" in the subject header.

Have a wonderful month!
Christine Pollock
Editor, KIDS FIRST! News

Dear Readers,

I just had the most amazing birthday celebration ever! My son and daughter-in-law teamed up with my boyfriend and other friends to create a day full of surprises and wonder. Starting with breakfast in bed, continuing with round of golf at the Gruet Wine and Chile Golf Classic and concluding with a surprise party that evening, it was a fabulous birthday!

The next morning, I visited my favorite online astrologer, Susan Miller's website ( which predicted the next 13 months to be extraordinary for us Libras. This includes the Coalition which was created on my birthday in 1991.

To paraphrase Susan, "Luck is on your side. You will find yourself at the right place at the right time, and doors that have been previously closed to you will now start to open wide. This will be a delicious time. Drink it in!"

Luck surely has been on my and the Coalition's side. Two weeks ago we received a surprise check for $12,500 from Celebrity Poker thanks to the generosity of Steve Harris who donated his winnings to CQCM.

Susan also says, "You've worked hard and now the universe will rally around you."

We have indeed worked hard. And the results are paying off. Our growth in the past year is extraordinary. Our KIDS FIRST! Film and Video Festivals will travel to fifty cities this year and reach more than 200,000 kids, parents and caregivers! This makes us the world's largest children's film festival, in terms of attendance. Many kudos go to Ann Church, a former CQCM board member, who is now our staff member responsible for managing our alliances with our festival partners.

Susan Miller's astrological forecast continues, "You may want to take a partner to help you with your endeavor." We certainly could never have this kind of expansion without our wonderful festival partners from Alamogordo to Vancouver, Portland to Philadelphia, LaCrosse to Denver, Houston to Forest Grove, New Orleans to Albuquerque, Boston to Fargo, Los Angeles to Oklahoma City, Orlando to Santa Barbara, Tampa to Nashville. For updated information about venues, programming and schedules, please visit

We are grateful for the participation of these outstanding community groups who partner with KIDS FIRST! to bring this outstanding collection of films and DVDs to their communities.

I hope you will check out what's going on in a community close to you. And remember, if there isn't a KIDS FIRST! Film and Video Festival nearby, contact us to let us know who might be willing to host one.

Blessings and love,

Ranny Levy
President, KIDS FIRST!

Never believe that a few caring people can't change the world. For, indeed, that's all who ever have.
Margaret Mead

***My Grandbaby and Me-A learn and play program encouraging grandparents and grandbabies to play together. It combines exercise, music, and learning. There are rhymes, circle-time activities, lullabies and tips on how to best physically interact with your grandbaby.

Video/DVD–Ages 0-2
***So Smart: First Words-Using simple stories and a gentle, original music soundtrack, this open-ended format uses different scenes to teach 30 different words. Slow and simple. Beautifully constructed with perfectly suited vocabulary and images. Interactive game shows similar content in a different format, good for parent and child interactions. "Best infant program I've seen."

Video/DVD-Ages 2-5
***The Family Team-Each song is a lesson about positive family interactions. Comes with lyrics, ideas for games, and hand motions. Well produced, good pace. Encourages sharing, reading, and eating together as a family. Encourages good decision-making skills and cooperation. Catchy songs, simple, easy-to-learn lyrics helped by playing each song twice.

Video/DVD-Ages 5-8
***Kidpop-All-original, upbeat, interactive music for children ages three to ten by recording artist, Judy Pancoast. Features 14 songs, including the award-winning "Swimming in Jello." Nicely assembled CD with many different styles of music from country to rap to dance. Lesson songs are interspersed with plain old silly songs so it doesn't feel preachy. Voices are cute and the lines in the original songs are ones the kids will relate to.

Video/DVD-Ages 8-12
***Families of United Kingdom-Two children, in both rural and urban landscapes, share their daily world with the viewer. Live-action program presents the customs and culture of the U.K. including foods, celebrations, family interaction, schools, home and more. Offers insight into life outside the U.S. It shows the typical day in a UK child's life (who lives on a farm), from start to finish. It's very believable and shows parents who are caring and teach responsibility to their child.

Video/DVD-Ages 0-2
** KNOW A BABY. Children's educational video. Adult Juror Comments: Pop art for babies. Brilliant, contrasty, minimalist abstractions in no apparent order. Rich sound. Calming-to-upbeat music paces a seamless flow of crisp, densely colored images. Entertaining. "Good to use to fill the minutes before a meal or a nap." Kid Juror Comments: Loved it in small parts and randomly asked for more. The pictures were on just long enough to keep their interest. Kids with language skills talked to the TV and each other about things that they recognized, and asked about things that they didn't. DVD. 28 min.; $19.95; Age: 1-3. KNOW A BABY LLC.

Video/DVD-Ages 2-5
*** THE A TO Z SYMPHONY. Twenty-six independent, one-minute videos set to the melodies of some of history's greatest composers. Each letter's vignette is preceded by an introduction of the title and composer, so they become memorized naturally by young minds. Adult Juror Comments: Excellent. Can't-miss classical music in a kid-friendly format. Extremely high quality sound. One-minute tracks good for short attention spans. Images are not the usual kiddy alphabet stuff. Intriguing material for those just learning the alphabet. Kid Juror Comments: Loved it. Repeated letters and associated words out loud, labeled foods (Boo! Mushrooms!), giggled (The arrow and the apple are funny!) and asked lots of questions. "How does the yo-yo work?" "What are Stonehenge and the Olympics?" "Is this all true?" DVD. 32 min.; $19.95; Age: 0-5. CLASSICAL FUN MUSIC, INC..

** WE SIGN: FUN TIME. A collection of playful, interactive songs for young children and families which combine music and American Sign Language (ASL) vocabulary. Join our "We Sign kids" as they sing, sign, laugh, move and play along. Adult Juror Comments: Fun, educational and suitable way for kids to learn signing. Catchy songs and lots of ethnic and racial diversity. Meaningful concepts are repeated at a slow pace. Provides a link to hearing-impaired populations. "Kids do a great job teaching signs." Kid Juror Comments: Really struck a chord with some kids, who continued to sign for days. Littler ones watched intently, bouncing to the music; older ones sang and followed the signs the entire time. "Can I take it to school?" "Everyone was smiley." "Too hard for me." Video. 30 min.; $14.95; Age: 2-6. PRODUCTION ASSOCIATES.

Video/DVD-Ages 5-8
* JUANITO JONES VOL. 2. Currently airing on Univision, Juanito Jones uses his imagination to travel on fantastic adventures. When confronted with complicated situations, he works things out using wit, skill and intelligence. Adult Juror Comments: Uneven content. Visually appealing and engaging. Encourages kids to stay focused and use imagination to solve problems. Valuable Hispanic depiction with desirable and undesirable behaviors. Desirable by Juanito, undesirable by his sister. Kid Juror Comments: Si! Si! A big hit with Hispanic boys, who gave three fingers for three-star rating. "Vanessa is bad! I relate to her because I cry to get my way sometimes. But Juanito is good, I want to be more like him." "I use my imagination, too, with my brother." DVD. 50 min.; $14.99; Age: 4-8. STUDIOWORKS ENTERTAINMENT.

Video/DVD-Ages 8-12
*** ROUND THE CAMPFIRE. Compilation of favorite Girl Scout campfire songs. Adult Juror Comments: Superior recording of a lovely voice with a lot of range. Folk songs have lots of heritage, texture and history. Imminently listenable and sing-along-able. Perfect for music programs in Scouts, schools or churches – or family singing in the car. Kid Juror Comments: Loved the cannibal song and wanted to play it over and over, dancing and laughing. Liked songs with kids' voices. "Good variety." Woody Guthrie's "This Land Is Your Land" was a big hit. "It's very patriotic." "I like the African beat of Kumbaya." Audio. 30 min.; $14.99; Age: 6-18. KT MUSIC PRODUCTIONS INC.

Video/DVD-Ages 12+
* BRATZ THE VIDEO: STARRIN' & STYLIN'. Packaged in an ultra-hip purse, the DVD and VHS flaunt the film, one rockin' music video, and specially created out takes. Adult Juror Comments: Worrisome superficial values in otherwise acceptable story. Hip music. Teen themes (fashion, makeup, prom) promote materialism and vanity. No sexuality, violence or ugly language. Shows multi-cultural friendship, loyalty, forgiveness and achievement. Kid Juror Comments: Yep, girls liked it, even one 12-year-old girl who just made the football team. "They talk the way we do. We act like them and pretty much think like them - except not that much about clothes." "I liked it, but it didn't move me like some movies do." DVD. min.; $24.98; Age: 11-17. TWENTIETH CENTURY FOX HOME ENTERTAINMENT.

Congratulations to All By Myself!
In the September 6th issue of TIME Magazine, All By Myself was chosen as one of the "Mothers of Invention" companies. Their third video of the series, "I Can Help" is scheduled to be released in the Summer of 2005. For more information please visit their website:

More Congratulations to Dawn Westlake
DOTTIE has been written up as one of the four best films at the Istanbul Fest with a recommendation that others go see it.

So Smart! Releases its latest DVD
"Shapes," will be popular with new moms who want a developmentally appropriate, progressive learning experience that they can share with their little ones. "Shapes," developed for babies as young as six months, and effective up to age three, will delight both parents and babies as Cecil the Circle, Suzie the Square, and Traci the Triangle teach little ones how simple shapes can be part of everything from fish and bubbles to clocks and trucks. Comprised of large, slow moving illustrated images and characters, and choreographed to gentle music in a ballet-like fashion, "Shapes" is faithful to the unique learning format developed by So Smart! Similar to other So Smart! educational programs, "Shapes" utilizes images that build in a unique, puzzle-like fashion as each scene progresses, at a pace developed specifically for young children. The "Shapes" DVD also includes a supplemental activity guide with other fun, stimulating activities that parents can share with their child.

Big Idea's New Products
Bob & Larry's How to Draw-Join Larry and the artists from Big Idea to learn how to draw Bob the Tomato and other favorite Veggie Tales characters in this fun-filled, 90-minute show. Turn a pencil and a plain sheet of paper into a party and discover fun tips and tricks that will make whatever you draw better than ever! With groundbreaking animation, live action, and all new music, Bob & Larry's How to Draw is sure to be a favorite of young artists everywhere! Available in Christian bookstores November 9th.

The Complete Silly Song Collection-All the great music! All the silly lyrics! All in one fantastic 4-DVD box set! Three best selling VeggieTales silly song discs, including Very Silly Songs, The End of Silliness and The Ultimate Silly Song Countdown, plus the all-new Veg-O-Rama Jukebox that plays 35 of your personal favorite songs on your TV - in the order you choose! Enjoy hours of silly fun as you sing along with Dance of the Cucumber, The Water Buffalo Song, The Bunny Song, The Pirates Who Don't Do Anything, I Love My Lips, His Cheeseburger, School House Polka and so many more, it's silly to list them all! Caution: This product is only for serious silly fans. Available everywhere November 9th.

Brightening Minds Releases a New Series
Brightening Minds, Inc. has announced the release of the all new "Baby and Parent Nursery" DVD series, which uniquely pairs stimulating video for babies with useful information for parents. Each DVD in the series includes one section for babies to watch (Baby Nursery), together with a separate section just for moms and dads (Parent Nursery). Baby Nursery is specially designed for little ones from birth to two years, and is filled with vibrant images that playfully introduce the wonders of music, language and numbers. Parent Nursery is packed with practical tips and suggested learning games to help parents raise happier, healthier and smarter children.

All By Myself, Inc.
The All By Myself Video/DVD series was founded and created by three moms - Jill Avery-Zuleeg, Michele Free and Carmela Zamora-Robertson. The trio met working together at Apple Computer over a decade ago, and having children brought the three back together, this time, to start their own company. When Jill's almost three-year-old son came bounding out of his bedroom, dressed for the first time triumphantly exclaiming, "I did it all by myself!," Jill knew her son's new found self-empowerment needed to be harnessed and fostered. Jill met with Michele and Carmela about her idea and the trio were off and running - 3 moms on a mission. What makes this series a "stand out" is its simplicity. The All By Myself series helps children discover their own capabilities; promotes healthy independence; teaches self-sufficiency and responsibility which in turn self-empowers them in the process.

Big Idea, Inc.
This independent producer of the ever-popular Veggie Tales series has a serious mission. They want to markedly enhance the moral and spiritual fabric of our society through creative media. Look for new products coming out this fall (listed in the Member News section of this newsletter).

Brightening Minds, Inc.
Originally founded by physicians who specialize in the fields of pediatrics, obstetrics, child psychiatry and family practice, Brightening Minds is dedicated to helping families build a rich learning environment at home.

Classical Fun Music, Inc.
The mission of Classical Fun Music is to "preserve and enjoy classical music with our children" by combining highlights of timeless masterpieces with child-centered images, lyrics and activities to create fun and memorable experiences.

Fine Media Group
Fine Media Group was established in August of 2000 with the mission of providing quality animated feature films and educational instructional videos. "Our cartoons focus on teaching character education and promoting cultural diversity. We feel that one of the best ways for young children to learn is through entertainment. Our goal is to provide kids with an alternate source of entertainment free of all the sex and violence that is widespread in today's mainstream media."

Know A Baby LLC
Stimulate babies' minds and let them use their senses to learn about the world around them. Check out this independent producer's video in the 0-2 section of our endorsed titles.

So Smart! Productions
So Smart! Productions is the creator of two animated, children's educational programs: So Smart!, a subject-based video, DVD, music and book series for babies and toddlers, ages birth to three years; and King Otis and the Kingdom of Goode, a new video and DVD series featuring funny tales and big lessons for preschoolers, ages three years to six years of age. So Smart! has won over 30 national awards since its founding in 1997.

Kaiser Family Foundation Release
Earlier this month, the Kaiser Family Foundation released a new study, "Children, the Digital Divide and Federal Policy." This study demonstrates disparities on quality internet accessability.

A New Reality Show Starring Kids – Is it Ethical?
Eight-year-old Frankie Evangelista, the star of the show, doesn't have any problems with the idea. HBO's special, "Family Bonds" is raising some eyebrows, however. Is Frankie mature enough to understand the repercussions of his exposed life? And why do his parents let him do this? The full story is at:

Lucas Launches His Educational Magazine
Along with thousands of other educators in the country, this month I received a glossy copy of George Lucas' magazine, "Edutopia." This magazine, geared towards educators and parents, covers topics ranging from technology to senioritis to music and budget cuts. More information can be found at:

Watch the Debates. Remember to Vote!
Thanks to television, for the first time the young are seeing history made before it is censored by their elders. Margaret Mead

Parents, Media, and Public Policy
This new national survey from the Kaiser Family Foundation examines parents feelings about media content and ratings systems. Sixty percent of parents are concerned with the amount of sex their children are exposed to and fifty-three percent are worried about their children's exposure to violence. Sixty-three percent of the parents surveyed are in favor of regulating the amount of sex and violence displayed on television in the early evening when kids are more likely to be tuned in.

Is Your Child Left Behind?
Check out This comprehensive website lets you sort through articles from over 500 local newspapers to see where your area stands on the "No Child Left Behind" policies.

Nickelodeon Tunes Kids to the Outdoors
If you turned on Nickelodeon on Saturday, October 2, you might have noticed a screen that told you to go play outside. This significant event lauds those who have participated in TV-Turnoff week for the past ten years. The eleventh TV-Turnoff week is set for April 25-May 1, 2005.

FCC Fights for Children
As with American broadcast programs, digital programming is required to have a minimum of three hours of educational and informational children's programming a week beginning in 2005.

Behind the Scenes at "Blue's Clues"
by Christine L. Pollock

"Again, Mommy, can you please read this book to me again?" my five-year old beseeches.

"Sure, Hon," I respond. "We'll read it together" for the eight hundredth time.

I wrap my arms around him and flip open the book, beginning to recite the first page even before the words are shown. Hudson "reads" aloud along with me.

This phenomenon of preschooler hunger for repetition carries through from literature to videos. Finding titles worthy of repeated viewing is of utmost importance to any media-viewing child's well being. According to M. L. Mares' report in "Annals of the American Academy of Political and Social Science" (1998), "Sixty-nine percent of parents of children aged 2-4 reported that their children ‘almost always' watched (the same) videos repeatedly."

I agree with these parents. Hudson watched one taped episode of "Sesame Street" daily for two weeks! In the early 1990's, studies were already showing that repetition helped pre-school children obtain knowledge and retain it.

In 1996, "Blue's Clues," a highly popular show on Nickelodeon, became the first children's television program to use repetitious programming as a key learning feature. Each episode is run five consecutive days. This encourages better absorption of the material by young viewers, allows the production team a longer production schedule, and helps stretch the budget. "Blue's Clues," creator Angela Santomero points out "studies show that kids absorb information on the first viewing and are interacting and growing by the fourth viewing."

KIDS FIRST!® has awarded All-Stars to four "Blue's Clues" videos and has included several others in our KIDS FIRST!® Film and Video Festival. My children were jurors for "Reading With Blue." Although they reviewed it well over a year ago, the tattered VHS jacket attests to the popularity it still has in our household. Clearly our jurors, adults and kids alike, hold the Blue's Clues productions in high regard. We find that quality programs hold up to repeated viewings and it's good to have our anecdotal observation verified in Mares' report.

In my interviews with Angela Santomero and "Blue's Clues" Director of Research and Development Dr. Alice Wilder, I learned about the prodigious effort involved in making each and every episode of "Blue's Clues."

Santomero and Wilder designed a show that encourages audience participation in a revolutionary way that invites children to talk and "help" the characters on the screen.

"Blue's Clues" is a curriculum-based television program with a live host who lives in a computer animated house with his animated dog, Blue. As each episode progresses, the viewer is asked to help the host solve a problem with three clues marked by Blue's paw print. The host looks directly into the camera and asks pointed questions such as, "Will you help me find...?"

As each clue is uncovered through educational activities, the viewer is encouraged to answer questions that result in solving the main problem of the program. The host pauses so children at home get a chance to work out the problems and answer. After a moment, children's voice-overs give the correct answer. According to Dr. Wilder, studies show that as the week progresses children are able to answer questions they could not answer previously and they understand the actual problem-solving process better.

The mission statement for "Blue's Clues" is to "empower, challenge, and build the self esteem of preschoolers while making them laugh." The creators do this using a method called "situated cognition" in which they take the ordinary and make it extraordinary.

The episode development process begins with questions. What topic should we choose? How will preschoolers relate to this topic? What will be our approach to the activities? What do we want to portray?"

A good example of the process is the episode where Blue goes to the doctor. Almost every child has visited a doctor, and almost every child experiences significant anxiety during the visit.

Before scripting begins, Wilder and Santomero brainstorm with the producers and the writers to determine how to make the doctor's visit less intimidating. By what approach? By making the characters appear not TOO nervous. By familiarizing them with a doctor's office by using it for a setting. By playing games to learn the instruments a doctor might use.

When the script is complete, Dr. Wilder and the writers take it to one of 150 schools in the New York tri-state area that have opened their doors to "Blue's Clues." The children in the schools don't realize they are listening to a new episode, they just know that someone is going to read them a story about their friend, Blue.

As Dr. Wilder and the writers read the script to the children, they closely monitor the children's reactions. They rewrite according to the children's feedback, then create the "animatic" – the backbone of the episode wherein the storyboard becomes a movie. The art, design, and live acting are added before returning to the schools for further critiques. Only in the final stages of program design are the animation, voice-overs, and music added.

Early on, the creators chose not to use basic preschool music because they wanted children to hear a wide variety of styles. They have live musicians come to the recording studio to perform with real instruments for each episode so the viewers can get as close to an authentic musical experience as possible.

When I asked Dr. Wilder for an example of changes made to the show based on viewer feedback, she mentioned the theme song. During production, they realized that the song was too fast for children to interact with, so production was halted and the song was changed.

Perhaps the true success of the program comes right down to the creator's attitude. "We have such a responsibility," says Santomero. "We don't think of it as a TV show, but rather an educational medium."

It takes about nine months to produce one episode. Santomero points out that there are 2,507 curriculum-based elements in the first fourteen episodes, averaging an astonishing 7.31 educational incidents each minute.

Last month, as I read Shalom Fisch's book, "Children's Learning From Educational Television: Sesame Street and Beyond," I noticed that "Blue's Clues" stood out in a number of studies as an example of positive children's programming. One study, "Researching ‘Blue's Clues': Viewing Behavior and Impact," was spearheaded by Dr. Wilder and Dr. Daniel Anderson, a psychology professor at the University of Massachusetts at Amherst. It found that "A longitudinal study comparing children who regularly watched ‘Blue's Clues' to demographically similar children who could not receive the program indicated that the program had a positive impact on cognitive development."

Naturally all of us at KIDS FIRST!® are disappointed that new episodes of "Blue's Clues" will not be made (see editor's letter). Still, Nick Jr. will continue to run the 150+ episodes already made with new episodes airing through 2005. Blue will continue to entertain and educate children globally through games, videos, and media events like the KIDS FIRST!® Film Festival.

Anyone who walks through a toy store or watches Blue float down Broadway in the Macy's parade will have to agree that the program has succeeded in capturing the hearts of children. As "Researching ‘Blue's Clues': Viewing Behavior and Impact" points out, "Given the program's large audience, it appears that the program is not only doing well, but it is also doing good."

Media and Sex-What is Influencing Your Child?
A recent study has shown that 12- to 17- year-old children watching shows with high sexual content are twice as likely to have intercourse within a year than their peers watching less sexual content. Parents can help by limiting the viewing or watching the shows with their children and discussing the sexual situations.
KIDS FIRST!®! Film and Video Festival Schedule:
For details go to
Alamogordo, NM, Flickinger Center for the Performing Arts. Weekly.
Alamogordo, NM, Otero County Film Commission, Annual Festival, February 2005 (tent).
Albuquerque, NM Explora Science Center and Children's Museum. Monthly.
Boston, MA, Children's Museum, Every Thursday.
Brookline, MA, Coolidge Corner Theater, Every Saturday.
Dallas, TX, USA Film Festival, Annual Film Festival
Denver, CO, Denver Film Society, Every Saturday.
Denver Film Festival. October 14-24.
Fargo, ND, Fargo Film Festival, Weekly. Annual Festival.
Forest Grove, OR, Forest Theater, Daily.
Fort Wayne, IN, Fort Wayne Cinema Center, Weekly.
Houston, TX, Houston Children's Museum, Daily.
Indianapolis, IN, Association of Children's Museums, Annual Conference.
LaCrosse, WI, Children's Museum of La Crosse, Every Friday & Saturday. Annual Festival.
Los Angeles, CA, Los Angeles County Museum of Art, Weekly, starting in 2005.
Mariposa, CA, Rural Media Arts & Education Project, Weekly.
Nashville, TN, Belcourt Theater, Weekly. Annual Festival, Feb. 2005.
New Orleans, LA, Louisiana Children's Museum, Weekly. Annual Festival.
Newport Beach, CA, Newport Beach Film Festival, Annual Festival.
Oklahoma City, OK, Oklahoma City Museum of Art, Quarterly.
Orlando, FL, Downtown Media Arts Center. Weekly. Annual Festival.
Portland, ME, Barbara Bush Children's Hospital, Fundraiser for Barbara Bush Child.
Salt Lake City, UT, Salt Lake City Children's Film Festival, Annual Event.
Santa Barbara, CA, Santa Barbara International Film Festival, Annual Festival.
Santa Fe, NM, KIDS FIRST!® Film Festival, Annual Event.
Tampa, FL, Kid Flix International Children's Film Festival, Annual Event.
Vancouver, WA, Kiggins Theater, Daily.

Other Events:
October 11: Deadline for proposals for the 2005 National Media Education Conference, sponsored by Association for a Media Literate America, in San Francisco! Submit proposals in order to share and showcase your work with others in the field. Plan now to attend this extraordinary conference to see what's new and what others are doing. June 25-28 - put it on your calendar AND in your budget - now. To find out more about the conference including the proposal form, visit the newly updated AMLA web site - online all the time.

October 14-15: Project Look Sharp's "Literacy in a Media Age: Integrating Critical Thinking and Media Production across the K-12 Curriculum" conference with workshops on "Media Literacy and Presidential Campaigns" and "Media Construction of War." For more information on the conference, visit

October 14-16: Ryerson University, Toronto. The Fourth Interdisciplinary Conference on The Evolution of World Order addresses high-priority global issues. More details at

October 21-22: KIDS FIRST!® Fall Meeting
We're inviting the CQCM Board, Trustees, Members and Sponsors to attend this meeting. We'd like to invite you to share your expertise with this high-level audience. We're seeking session proposals that describe industry trends and issues in-depth, describe up-to-date research in children's media, and successful strategies for fulfilling the mission of the CQCM.

October 21-31: The 21st annual Chicago International Children's Film Festival (CICFF), taking place October 21-October 31, 2004, features over 200 animated and live action films from 40 countries. The Festival welcomes over 24,000 Chicago area children, adults, and educators to the screenings and over 100 filmmakers, media professionals and celebrities attend the Festival to lead interactive workshops with kids. Screenings will take place at Facets Multi-Media, the Vittum Theater, AMC City North 14 and the Village Burnham Plaza. Two-time Emmy Award-winner and the host of Reading Rainbow, LeVar Burton will serve as Master of Ceremonies at the Opening Night Gala and will attend the Chicago premier of his latest directorial effort, the family film, Blizzard. For more information, visit

October 21-29 Heartland Film Festival (Indianapolis, IN) whose mission is to recognize and honor filmmakers whose work explores the human journey by artistically expressing hope and respect for the positive values of life. Heartland screens films from around the world, ranging from dramas to documentaries to animation and awards over $100,000 in prize cash each year to the Festival's top entries, including a $50,000 Grand Prize for best Dramatic Feature. The Jimmy Stewart Memorial Crystal Heart Award for the best student films and the Crystal Heart Award winner shares the remaining award money. In its first 10 years, Heartland awarded over $1,000,000 to support filmmakers in their quest to create great cinema. For more information, visit

November 19-21: National Council for the Social Studies Annual Conference, Democracy and Diversity: Social Studies in Action. If you plan to attend the conference, don't miss the media literacy sessions including the pre-conference workshop on "Integrating Media Literacy and Critical Thinking into K-12 Social Studies" by Cyndy Scheibe and Chris Sperry of Project Look Sharp and sessions on "Presidential Elections through Media Documents in American History" and "Media and the Middle East."

June 25-28, 2005 National Media Education Conference 2005: Giving Voice to a Diverse Nation, San Francisco, CA.


Become a Coalition for Quality Children's Media Member *** If you've found our e-zine and web site helpful, please consider becoming a member of KIDS FIRST!® Members help underwrite the various projects of this organization. The Coalition for Quality Children's Media's relies on the generous support of its members and donors to support its programs. An individual/family membership is only $25/year. An organizational membership is $100/year. An independent producer membership is $200. To join, go to: or contact our office at 505.989.8076.

VISIT OUR MEMBERS' SITES ******************
Please visit our website for an up-to-date list of Coalition members by clicking here:


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Copyright 2002 by Coalition for Quality Children's Media,

**************ABOUT CQCM AND KIDS FIRST!®***************

KIDS FIRST!® is the not-for-profit Coalition for Quality Children's Media's initiative that evaluates and rates children's media - videotapes, CD-ROMs, and television - using a highly acclaimed method that has been praised by parents and educators alike. It utilizes professionally designed criteria and evaluation tools and engages a volunteer jury comprising child development professionals, teachers and parents nationwide and children of diverse geographic, socioeconomic and ethnic backgrounds. KIDS FIRST!® endorsed titles appeal to people around the world and include many programs on topics important to children's development. KIDS FIRST!®-endorsed titles are available on CQCM's award-winning Internet site, in the KIDS FIRST!® Film and Video Festival, and in reviews we provide to more than 75 publications.

CQCM evaluates feature films, television programs, videos, CD-ROM, DVDs, and audio recordings. For an application form and application deadlines, visit our website at, call our office (505.989.8076)
Coalition for Quality Children's Media, 112 W. San Francisco St., Suite 305A, Santa Fe, NM 87501.

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