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On "Sesame Street," It's All Show

Kay S. Hymowitz

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Kay S. Hymnowitz argues that with "Sesame Street" and television programs ostensibly geared to childhood education tears the meaning out of learning by presenting knowledge out of sequence and incoherently.

From the beginning, the show's creators were more entranced with their jazzy medium than with their message. And no wonder: they started out with the wrong message. The Sesame Street curriculum focuses on mere technical skills, the tools of mental cultivation rather than mental cultivation itself, the building blocks of thought rather than thought. Why anyone would want to read, what wider world literacy might unlock--on these questions of the purpose and value of the skills it teaches, Sesame Street is silent. Worse, the show's anti-intellectualism and its glorification of television culture over print send the implicit message that the skills of literacy have no meaningful purpose.

The show's technocratic educational curriculum, in other words, is inert and inconsequential.

For the complete article go to the City Journal website.



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Copyright 2001-2014 OrthodoxyToday.org. All rights reserved. Any reproduction of this article is subject to the policy of the individual copyright holder. See OrthodoxyToday.org for details.


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