Up to date information about children’s entertainment – film, TV, DVD and more…. from founder and president of KIDS FIRST! Ranny Levy

PBS KIDS® and PBS KIDS GO! Are in Full Bloom for Earth Day 2009

PBS KIDS and PBS KIDS GO! celebrate Earth Day on Wednesday, April 22, with the fourth annual “PBS KIDS Share the Earth Day” and a new Web-based Earth Day Channel on pbskidsgo.org. The celebration features premiering episodes from CURIOUS GEORGE, ARTHUR and CYBERCHASE; themed favorites from SUPER WHY!, SID THE SCIENCE KID and more; and eco-focused Web content on pbskidsgo.org, pbskids.org, PBS Parents (pbsparents.org) and PBS Teachers (pbsteachers.org).

“As the future leaders of our world, children need to understand the importance of cultivating a healthy environment for themselves and generations to come,” said Lesli Rotenberg, SVP, Children’s Media, PBS. “With our online, in-home and in-classroom resources and content, we’re encouraging kids, parents and educators to explore the role they can play in helping sustain the Earth’s resources.”

Whether it’s the importance of dirt on SID THE SCIENCE KID, water conservation on SUPER WHY!, planting a garden on MAYA & MIGUEL or the effects of pollution on CYBERCHASE, no seed of knowledge is left unsown. The on-air event also will feature a music video from the award-winning kids’ rock band Milkshake, as well as Earth-friendly tips from PBS KIDS hosts Mr. Steve, Miss Rosa and Miss Lori.

The new PBS KIDS GO! video player (pbskids.org/go/video) will host an Earth Day channel with themed content from ARTHUR, DESIGN SQUAD, THE GREENS and MAYA & MIGUEL. This new online channel invites kids to learn about how their favorite character role models share the Earth, whenever they want. In addition to Web content from PBS KIDS GO! TV series, Web-exclusive sites such as EEKOWORLD — an environment where kids create their own creatures and monitor them in the wild — and THE GREENS – a pbskidsgo.org series about the Green family and their exploration of sustainability, ecology and environmental care — will further explore what it means to be green.

On pbskids.org, younger children and their parents can create an original Earth Day-centered tale at “Dot’s Story Factory” and enjoy games and activities with environmental themes. Additionally, pbskids.org/video will feature themed videos from CURIOUS GEORGE, SID THE SCIENCE KID, IT’S A BIG BIG WORLD and more.

For parents and caregivers, PBS Parents features two new guests as part of its popular “Expert Q&A;” series. Dr. Alan Fortescue of the Earthwatch Institute and advisor to THE GREENS, will take questions from April 1-15 on how to raise environmentally-conscious children. Halle Stanford, Executive Vice President of Children’s Entertainment for The Jim Henson Company and an Executive Producer on SID THE SCIENCE KID and the upcoming PBS KIDS series DINOSAUR TRAIN, will take questions from April 16-30. Ms. Stanford’s discussion will focus on relating the character experiences on SID THE SCIENCE KID to children’s everyday world and the collaborative process of creating the series, including the careful balance and integration of curriculum and entertainment.

PBS Parents also will feature ideas on creating crafts from recyclable materials as well as links to activities at pbskids.org, related book recommendations, an article on “How to Grow Green Kids,” ideas for how to throw an eco-friendly birthday party and more.

To help bring the “green” theme into classrooms nationwide, PBS Teachers offers a new Earth Day Activity Pack for educators to use in the classroom or to post on their classroom, school or favorite social networking Web sites. The Activity Pack is designed for multiple grade levels and contains links to Earth Day-themed education resources and activities from PBS to support environmental awareness.

Episodes for April 22 include:

PBS KIDS (check local listings for air times)

Night of the Weiner Dog
Poor Hundley! It’s the first time he’s been apart from the Doorman in over three years and George’s room isn’t exactly this dapper daschund’s idea of “neat and orderly.” Being a good host, George follows the Doorman’s detailed instructions. George accurately measures Hundley’s food, graciously lets him watch his favorite TV show, “Poodle Groomers,” and even rearranges his living room to make Hundley feel more at home. Though Hundley’s strict demands are not George’s idea of a fun sleepover, George comes through for his friend by rescuing Hundley’s squeaky mouse from the balcony. Now, at last, Hundley can fall asleep! Later that night, when George is having a nightmare, how can Hundley return the favor and help his friend?

Animal Trackers
It’s Nature Week and George is taking pictures of wild animals and their tracks for the big exhibit. Bullfrogs, squirrels, raccoons and hawks are all nice, but George wants a picture of something really exciting and unusual. While George searches for the fawn Bill spotted, he finds an unusual set of tracks that look like a cross between a gigantic duck and a colossal snake. George decides there must be a duckbilled dinosaur on the loose, which would make for a perfect photo for Nature Week! George leaves a trail of fruits and vegetables to lure the dinosaur, but then he remembers that not all dinosaurs are friendly! George frantically rushes to warn everyone, when he bumps into the real culprit behind those tracks – and it’s very different than a dinosaur!

The Dirt on Dirt
In an Earth Day-themed episode, Sid wants to know what makes dirt so dirty? At school, Sid and his friends discover that dirt is really important to the Earth because it helps things grow, and it’s also filled with tiny rocks, pieces of leaves, and even living things like bugs and worms!

Tiddalick the Frog
Whyatt’s mom tells him that he’s wasting water. This is a really big problem and he’s not sure how to fix it. So the Super Readers dash into the Australian folk tale of Tiddalick the Frog and make the acquaintance of a funny amphibian whose puddle jumping is using up all the water and leaving his neighbors in the dust – literally! As the Super Readers help Tiddalick and his dry friends, they learn how important water is to the planet along with a valuable lesson about conservation.

Doggie Garden
It is Keep Birdwell Beautiful month and the kids are doing their part by planting a flower garden. Seeing this, the dogs decide to create a doggie flower garden of their own. But when Cleo hears that almost anything grows in Birdwell Island soil, she decides she’d much rather grow a garden full of dog toys! She soon learns, however, that working alone for a selfish end is not nearly as rewarding as working together for the whole community.

Captain Birdwell’s Treasure
Clifford and his dog friends find the long-lost trunk of Captain Birdwell, filled with wonderful items brought to the Island by the explorer long ago. But through a misunderstanding, Jetta is given credit for the discovery. She knows that telling the truth is the right thing to do, but she can’t resist the promise of a gold medal award. It doesn’t take long for her to realize, however, that awards don’t give much pleasure when they’re not deserved.

World Tree Day
It is World Tree Day and Snook has made badges to give to all of the residents who do something nice for the tree. While everyone finds their own ways to care for the tree, Bob is worried because he can’t think of anything to do. After a talk with Snook and Oko, Bob writes a song to celebrate the tree and earns a badge from Snook.

World Tree Cuisine
It is time to celebrate the World Tree’s birthday and Madge and Snook are planning a surprise party for the tree’s residents. But when Burdette and Wartz overhear them say they are baking a cake, all of the animals start dropping hints to ensure that foods they eat are included in the cake. When everyone gathers for the celebration, they are excited to find individually flavored cupcakes!

BJ is pretending to be a great detective, but all great detectives need a mystery to solve! A case quickly comes his way when something nibbles on one of Baby Bop’s healthy snacks. BJ, Barney, and Baby Bop uncover several clues along the way and soon realize the animal is someone’s pet rabbit. Educational objective: To learn about rabbits.

Ducks and Fish
Barney sees Riff protecting a nest full of duck eggs. Together, they leave the eggs to look for food for when the ducklings hatch. When they return, Riff is pleasantly surprised to find the eggs have cracked open and the baby ducklings have hatched! Educational objective: To learn about ducks and fish. Music curriculum: musical instruments (guitar).

PBS KIDS GO! (check local listings for air times)

The Blackout
It’s the hottest day in Elwood City, when a total blackout leaves its residents without any electricity. Will Arthur and DW survive without AC and TV? Luckily, the Molina family steps in to teach the Reads a lesson on how to keep cool and have fun as a community even under the toughest of weather conditions!

Mei Lin Takes a Stand
Binky’s baby sister Mei-Lin isn’t keen on learning to walk and would rather stick to crawling. But then Baby Kate and Pal’s flea friends, brothers Sale and Pepe, return to Elwood City and share a tale of a little princess in the land of “Hanzan-Niis” who learns to walk in order to save her beloved court jester. Will Mei Lin be inspired to take a stand or continue to stumble?

The X-Factor
All is not well in Perfectamundo, a dome-enclosed cybersite, when orange spots are discovered building up on the dome’s interior surface, blocking the site’s precious sunlight. What source could be responsible for the spots multiplying so fast? Is it Hacker’s new factory that pours out orange clouds through smoky stacks? It can’t be that new Digifizz toy, with its tiny burst of colorful sparkles shooting into the air each time it gets used. With time running out, the CyberSquad must come to grips with the power of multiplication and use it to undo the site’s pollution problem.

Every Day is Earth Day
For a school Earth Day project, the kids decide to clean up an old lot and plant a community garden. But as the deadline approaches, a rainstorm hits, turning the patch of dirt into a muddy mess. How will Maya get her friends out of the muck this time?

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