Blue’s Clues

by: Angela Santomero | Filed under Blue's Clues, Kids, Parenting, Super Why!

Let’s see your Child’s Halloween Photo!

Simply LIKE us on our Facebook fanpage and email a non-professional photo (of your 3 month to 8 yr old) to Angela@AngelasClues.com. The winning photo will be chosen on Halloween – October 31st.

The winner will receive $50 worth of Super Why & Blue’s Clues merchandise and have their winning photo posted on the Angela’s Clues website (your contest entry will serve as permission to post the photo).

All decision making will be final & entirely up to the discretion of our Fearless Judges: Mr. Willy Wonka & Miss Veruca Salt:

by: Angela Santomero | Filed under Blue's Clues, My Projects, Super Why!

Linda Simensky, Vice President of PBS Kids programming, is one of those people who has been inspiring creatives all of her life.  I first met her at Nick Jr where she gave me great advice when I was creating Blues Clues.  She talked with me and my co creators about our BIG meeting we were to have with the network.  She offered us pointers, tips and insight into our pilot.  There’s no doubt about it, Linda was instrumental in getting Blues Clues on the air.

12 Years later, when Blues Clues went on hiatus, Linda (now at PBS) asked me what project was next.  I talked with her about a reading show that had been my Masters Thesis.  I gave her a copy of the pitch materials.  Months later, as I was still contemplating my next career move, the phone rang…Linda.  She said that PBS wanted to do the literacy show.  Was I interested?  I literally dropped the phone on my toe.

It was comforting to hear Linda discuss her belief in our vision. Especially when my little Blue puppy was taking a little R&R.  She discussed that while it was important to her that we create a show that kids would want to watch, it was more important that we teach them to read & LOVE to read.

I was thrilled and inspired by Linda’s passion.  Linda has been a champion of developing educational shows with a sense of purpose, clever humor, great characters and interesting storylines.  She has been inspiring producers for a long time.  She has a gift and I’m honored to be a part of her circle.

Alright, enough of the love-in…check out my interview with The Linda Simensky on The Parent Show.

Regardless of any SpongeBob controversy, I’ve always believed that TV is an uber powerful medium.  If created with intent to teach, we can use it to further develop reading skills, thinking skills, & positive socio emotional behavior.  But creating with intent to teach is not an easy thing to do.  My shows have a foundation in child development, an understanding of how kids think, of how kids learn & how they watch TV.  My colleagues and I know that when you model something on television, chances are that kids who watch will model it, too.  That’s why, in the midst of all the negative research onTV, I’ve always wanted to turn it around to the positive!

Yes, kids model what they see.  Kids want to be part of the action.  Kids want to help.  So, what if instead of slapstick comedy where characters fall down and hurt each other, we showed characters thinking, solving problems with REAL strategies, and asking kids at home to help?  Could that be interesting and actually fun for kids?  YES!

Blue’s Clues, Super Why and Daniel Tiger’s Neighborhood came from years of work perfecting the way we present stories and curriculum on television for kids so they laugh, learn, and grow.  We don’t just throw something up on the screen because it’s funny.  We don’t promise to teach something we don’t deliver on.  We don’t believe in over stimulating kids, or having them nervously scream at the television – just because we’re afraid they will turn our show off.

We believe in good storytelling.  We believe in great characters.  And we believe in kids.  If we give kids the important formal features of adequate pacing and a strong curriculum so they can think and learn, we know that we will be impacting millions of kids in a positive way.

They will learn to read

They will score better on kindergarten readiness skills.

They will know & practice important life skills.

Sometimes I feel that our shows are the newly ripened avocados of the children’s television world.  We sit there, like an avocado, full of vitamins and minerals.  We taste awesome, but we don’t have all this fancy packaging that screams out HEY!  We Are So Very COOL!.

No, we avocados just sit there and patiently wait while, one by one, they figure it out.  And soon enough, someone picks us up and says, “Wow, this avocado tastes great. And look, our brains are growing and we’re healthier too!”

And see, when you choose “avocado” everyone wins.  😉

by: Angela Santomero | Filed under Blue's Clues, PRESS
By Lianna Albrizio
Northern Valley Suburbanite

The Harrington Park Public School likes to live up to its, “Leading the way” and on June 20, the k-8 school recognized Angela C. Santomero, co-writer of the Emmy award-winning children’s television show, “Blues Clues,” as the latest Circle of Leadership inductee during the school’s moving up ceremony.

“I am so honored to be here,” she said. “There’s something in the water in Harrington Park.”

In celebration of the school’s tradition in the development of student leadership, the Circle of Leadership was established in 2006 to honor exemplary former students and community members’ accomplishments.

In his address, Superintendent Adam Fried sited persistence, courage and honesty as key components of leadership qualities.

“The idea of being ‘all in’ is about the total commitment to being the very best you can be,” Fried told the students.

A member of the class of 1982, Santomero is someone who Fried feels embodies this idea.

In her remarks, the soft-spoken mother of two shared the secret of her success with the eighth-grade class, attributing her love of reading, journaling adventures and her concern for student potential as the basis for her vision for her shows.

Santomero is also the creator, executive producer and head writer of “Super WHY!,” a preschool program for PBS Kids that helps build literacy skills. The show has received a Ready to Learn Grant from the Corporation for Public Broadcasting and the federal Department of Education.

“I want you guys to look around and think about who’s going to be standing here 30 years from now talking and inspiring,” Santomero said to the students.

“And remember that when you use your mind and take a step at a time, you can do anything that you want to do.”

 

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by: Angela Santomero | Filed under Blue's Clues, Super Why!

In honor of Father’s Day this weekend, the 1st 25 people to like the Angela’s Clues fan page will win Blue’s Clues or SuperWhy merchandise for their kids.

Happy Father’s Day!

Thanks to all that clicked away this weekend!  We’ll be contacting you within the next week (or 2) to send your little ones’ something fun.

by: Angela Santomero | Filed under Blue's Clues, My Projects

Blue’s Room is the spin-off of Blue’s Clues where Blue could talk!  Kids had been asking us forever if Blue could talk and how they could hug her.  We made Blue’s Room as a place that Blue discovers that is filled with new playroom friends!  When she is in Blue’s Room she turns into a three-dimensional huggable Blue puppet that talks!  Was this jumping the shark or answering kids’ dreams?  I prefer to think of it as the latter!   🙂

 

 

by: Angela Santomero | Filed under Blue's Clues, PRESS, Super Why!


Meet the imaginative powerhouse behind the über hit Blue’s Clues and the new sensation Super Why!

One day a fellow nursery school dad told me that one of the creators and writers of Blue’s Clues, Angela Santomero, lives in Greenwich. (The town appears to be a magnet for kids’ TV geniuses: Muppets creator Jim Henson, so essential to Sesame Street’s success, lived here from 1964 to 1971, and Barney and Friends creator Sheryl Leach lives here now.) The Santomero family — Angela and Greg and their daughters Hope and Ella — moved from Manhattan in 2006, a pivotal time in Angela’s career: Blue’s Clues had just ended production; she had started her own company, Out of the Blue Enterprises, with former Nickelodeon executive Samantha Freeman Alpert, and the two dynamos were readying Angela’s new creation, Super Why!, for its September 2007 debut on PBS Kids.

By the spring of 2009, Super Why! appeared to be on the brink of catching fire — an improbable second lightning strike for Angela. Who is this remarkable woman? What sorcery does she work on millions of littlekids? In order to find out, I went off to Out of the Blue in midtown Manhattan. The day was cloudy, but up on the company’s fourteenth floor offices, where the walls are painted sky-blue, light poured in anyway, as if the place radiated some sort of invincible kid energy. An assistant apologized: Executives from Hasbro, the toy company, were sequestered in the conference room and the meeting was running long. Presently Angela emerged, an attractive blonde with a light gold tan and a blazing smile.

 

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by: Angela Santomero | Filed under Blue's Clues, PRESS, Super Why!

Four towns poured into Northern Valley Regional High School in Old Tappan New Jersey. There couldn’t have been more than 5,000 people in each town. Harrington Park was one of them- a sleepy little area in Bergen County that I called home. It’s the type of town where everyone knows one another with a single elementary school encompassing kindergarten through eighth grade. I fondly remember two sisters who lived in Harrington Park: Jennifer and Angela. They were kind and sweet and the type that you’d want your own daughters to befriend.

And now, thanks to Facebook, I have learned that they still are. Angela is not only kind and sweet- she is hugely successful. Your children may want to hug her for co-creating, producing and writing Nick Jr.’s Blue’s Clues and PBS KIDS Super WHY! You may want to kiss her for educating and entertaining your kids while you take a much need break!

Amongst her many accomplishments, Angela led the production and development of the Emmy nominated Blue’s Big Musical Movie, wrote two Blue’s Clues’ theatrical productions that played in venues across the nation and co-founded Out of the Blue Enterprises. As a pioneer in interactive children’s programming, Angela continues to educate and captivate our kids with Super WHY! And all the while, she raises two beautiful daughters. In an exclusive interview with Butterfly, Angela shares her innovative approach to children’s programming and parenting.

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by: Angela Santomero | Filed under Blue's Clues, PRESS

Co-create, become the Executive Producer and write a landmark Emmy nominated Nick Jr. television show; Blue’s Clues of course. Right?

Well, that’s exactly what co-founder of Out of the Blue Enterprises Angela Santomero did.

I spoke with her from her office in New York as she explained why she chose to pursue education through the entertainment industry versus teaching in a classroom. “Since watching Mr. Rogers, I knew how influential television can be and how modeling can be used as a teaching tool,” she said.  Angela is also the creator of the PBS Kids show, Super Why! which was actually her master’s thesis at Columbia Teacher’s College.

 

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by: Angela Santomero | Filed under Blue's Clues, My Projects

Blue’s Clues is my first baby. It premiered in September 1996 and is still going strong.  I spearheaded this project from start to finish.  I had no idea what I was getting into – I just knew that I wanted to teach a million kids at a time …and television was a way to do just that.  Blue’s Clues started out as a “game show for preschoolers”.  What that meant to me was that I could get kids playing the games and learning skills that they need for kindergarten.  We ask kids questions, through Steve, and then WAIT for them to answer us back.  Everyone thought we were crazy …. But it was the start of the entire “interactive preschool television” generation.

What is it About?:  Blue’s Clues is an interactive “game show” where live action host Steve (and later his pretend brother, Joe) live with a preschool animated puppy named Blue.  They play Blue’s Clues to figure out what Blue wants by finding three blue pawprints and sitting in the Thinking Chair when they find them to figure it out.  Along the way, Blue, Steve and the home viewers “help” their animated friends by playing thinking games based on skills preschoolers need to know to do well in Kindergarten.

Stats:  We created 165 episodes which air on Nick Jr in the States and on stations all around the world. Blue’s Big Musical Movie – full length feature – the movie is awesome and the songs are so good. Blue’s Clues books, 2 live shows which still travel and Blue’s Clues toys.

KIDS ARE LEARNING FROM BLUE’S CLUES!:  One of our biggest accomplishments with the show was the Blue Balloon in the Macys Day Parade (just kidding!) it was the research from Dr. Jennings Bryant from University of Alabama who proved that kids who watched Blue’s Clues scored better on standardized tests than kids who did not watch the show.  Kids were learning kindergarten readiness skills – colors, shapes, numbers, matching, sorting, letters, pre-reading skills, and critical thinking skills.  Kids did not just learn what was on the show, but the strategies we taught them were used to help them master concepts on their own.  Success!