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‘Sesame Street’ helps kids of imprisoned parents cope...

I cannot believe this. ...

.""The incarceration of parents has all kinds of effects on children, especially preschoolers and grade schoolers whose emotions can vary from anger to anxiety to guilt that they are somehow to blame. Some experts link the forced detachment to an increased likelihood that the children will end up in prison themselves.

The little-discussed problem gained national attention Wednesday when a campaign by the creators of “Sesame Street” was announced at the White House to help children of incarcerated parents cope and to teach adults in and out of prison how to talk with children about these issues.

The “Sesame Street” campaign, titled “Little Children, Big Challenges: Incarceration,” is targeted to children in preschool and grade school.

Tips from the campaign include honest discussion about parents’ incarcerations so that children don’t construct reasons for the absence of parents or assume the parents left because of them. The campaign also describes prison as a place where adults go when they break rules, rather than a place for bad people — which is what children might hear from friends or see in movies.

It’s a campaign with a local tie, as the Washington County jail will be an early test site and a University of Minnesota researcher will be studying it to see if the program actually helps children and families. The university’s Rebecca Shlafer will compare children who view a “Sesame Street” video and other age-appropriate information before seeing their parents in the Washington County jail with children who don’t.

There is more at this link...

I feel very bad for these kids, but let's face it, watching a Sesame Street video justifying and minimizing why mommy or daddy are in jail will only exacerbate the "victim" mentality of our society. How about a video about making good decisions, playing by the rules, respecting authority and growing up to be a good person? Let's see what 'Big Bird' has to say about that...IMO, children have no business going anywhere near one of those hell holes. Sad, but the parent should of thought of their kids before breaking the law. They should lose their rights once convicted of a Felony. It is obvious they have no parenting skills when they can't even parent themselves. 

 I can hear it now in the Count's voice: ONE YEAR! HAHA, TWO years HAHA.  And the next question I have, what episodes will Sesame Steet have? Something like..."We Have a New Daddy!"  Or  "Don't Hide Things in THERE!" Oh and lets not forget..."Mommy Has a Wife" and of course everyone's favorite..."Snitches Get Stitches!"   

Ahhhhh kinda makes you want to bring back shows like "The Electric -Chair- Company" also.

I am sure you can tell I am not on board with this idea.


Answer Question

Asked by Michigan-Mom74 at 1:09 AM on Jun. 20, 2013 in Politics & Current Events

Level 34 (66,351 Credits)
Answers (17)
  • Wow, that's a pretty strong reaction. I can tell you're not on board with the idea. Honestly, I think the campaign may have some merit, at least enough to warrant a bit of study. Since in the near future, convicted felons in America probably won't start automatically losing the rights to their children, finding ways to help the children cope with their anger, anxiety, and confusion when their parents are incarcerated, and training adults to discuss the issue openly with kids, seems like a good idea to me. I'm not sure how much watching a Sesame Street video will help, but I don't see how hearing that prison is where grown-ups who break the rules go will hurt, either. It's true. Many of the adults in prison have broken some extremely big rules, but hearing that Mom and Dad made very poor choices and have to face the consequences would be better for preschoolers and grade schoolers than hearing that they're bad or evil.

    Answer by Ballad at 1:51 AM on Jun. 20, 2013

  • IDK...Just the idea of a child having to go through that, just makes me feel sick. Then you compound that fact with the other kids who find out that kid's parent/s are in prison for rape, murder, drug possession, whatever and get made fun of. I am sure the pre-schoolers wouldn't do that, because none of them understand what is going on. So maybe in that fact it may be a good idea. But as the grade schoolers I am not so sure. We all know kid bully others if that kid is in any way different from the others. What happens then? Whats the chance of that child actually start resenting the parent that is locked up? Especially for murder?? Rape?? You are 8 yrs old, and other kids learn your dad raped someone.
    No thank you, I understand what they want to do, but I do not like it. I do not see any good coming out of this.

    Comment by Michigan-Mom74 (original poster) at 2:09 AM on Jun. 20, 2013

  • Grade schoolers that still watch Sesame Street... that's what I'm having a hard time understanding. The age range for children who watch the program typically ends at about 7 years old, and before that point in their lives they're incapable of really truly understanding what's going on. I have no problem with this, and they deserve to have someone explain it - preferably someone who hasn't been incarcerated themselves.

    Answer by Ginger0104 at 2:19 AM on Jun. 20, 2013

  • Ballad took the words out of my mouth. The only "problem" I can see with it are in the kids whose parents aren't incarcerated and may be confused as all hell. The last thing I'd want is my 4 year old having nightmares about me going to jail because he heard it on Sesame Street and doesn't know the difference between a law abiding citizen and a convict. I think the best idea would be for Sesame Street to film special episodes on video that can be played for children in therapy/counseling centers.

    Answer by maecntpntz219 at 6:01 AM on Jun. 20, 2013

  • This is not something that will be broadcast on the show it's self. It is a tool kit the have created and volunteers are carrying into the prisons to help those who need it.  They also have them for parents of soldiers, divorced families, and families struggling financially.  It is there goal to help adults help their kids navigate through life's challenges-what ever that challenge may me.

    Answer by But_Mommie at 7:10 AM on Jun. 20, 2013


    This is one of those things that if ot doesn't affect you or your child, you will never understand why something like this is needed.



    Answer by But_Mommie at 7:10 AM on Jun. 20, 2013

  • Other tool kits available  Each header has multiple related videos and tool inside it.


    Answer by But_Mommie at 7:13 AM on Jun. 20, 2013

  • I can somewhat agree with some of what they want to do. My ex was in jail when we divorced, and he barely avoided prison time by pleading out. If he'd gone to prison, it likely would have been at a minimum, until my kids were both pretty much grown. I agree with making sure the kids know that the parent didn't go away because of the child or something the child did. I can even agree, to a point, with the "prison is a place for adults who break the rules, not bad people" - I think in some cases, there is no distinction, but some of those parents probably will get out and change their lives, and we should try to make sure they can have a relationship with their kid without their kid thinking they're an awful person.

    But I simply cannot fathom taking a child to visit a parent in jail/prison. it's not a place for children. There's too much that can happen, too much they could see and hear, that just isn't appropriate.

    Answer by wendythewriter at 7:44 AM on Jun. 20, 2013

  • I really don't see the problem with it. It isn't going out to the general public. It is specifically for those kids who are dealing with that type of situation. It explains things on their level, so they can possibly understand why mommy/daddy aren't there anymore. It gives them something concrete to latch onto.

    Not sure why you connected this video with other kids finding out MM? It isn't like they are rounding the kids with incarcerated parents up at school and forcing them to watch this video. The other kids won't find out unless that kid tells them, which could happen with or without watching the video.

    I do agree that younger kids have no business being in a prison.

    Answer by kmath at 8:46 AM on Jun. 20, 2013

  • well, I think the statistic they mentioned when I heard about this yesterday, was that 1 in 28 kids has a parent in jail. That's a lot!
    I see no problem with it. They said it won't be a major part of the show

    Answer by charlotsomtimes at 10:14 AM on Jun. 20, 2013

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