Wednesday, March 20, 2013


Today, a link to a UTube video from The Center for Puppetry Arts showed up on my Twitter Feed.   The video shows a wonderful interaction between Fred Rogers and a 12-year-old breakdancer.

The exchange is reflective of the sincere respect for young people which Fred Rogers demonstrated toward the young people who appeared on his show and who constituted his television audience.

Fred Rogers, who would have turned 85 yesterday,  was not just a guy who routinely changed his sweater and tennis shoes on a children's television show.  With a bit of research you'll find that he was a quietly powerful man with deeply-held convictions who was a passionate advocate for young people.  For example:

  • He gave a famous testimony to a U.S. Senate committee to request government funding for children's television.
  • He received the Presidential Medal of Freedom in addition to forty honorary degrees and a Peabody Award.
  • He was inducted into the Television Hall of fame, and was recognized by two Congressional resolutions.  (Source: Wikipedia)
Also - and this is heartening - there is a Fred Rogers Center for Early Learning and Children's Media at St. Vincent College.  The Center's mission is "to advance the fields of early learning and children’s media by acting as a catalyst for communication, collaboration, and creative change."  Take a look at their moving online exhibit about Fred's life and work.

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