TheMoms & Sesame Street: Divorce App & Resources for Families #lcbcdivorce

Today I attended a panel discussion about divorce and it's impact on children hosted by Denise Albert, TheMoms, and Sesame Workshop. As a women who's divorced (twice!), I can tell you going through a divorce can be a painfully emotional experience.

Even when the divorce is amicably between adults, there's still a world wind of confusing feelings and uncertainly about life after the divorce. If such strong feels are affecting adults then just image how a young child must feel dealing with such a big issue.

Denise Albert, TheMoms Divorce panel at Sesame Workshop

It was these issues and more discussed with panelist
  • Denise Albert (Co-Founder of TheMoms and Huffington Post Divorce)
  • Dr. Jeanette Betancourt (SVP of Sesame Workshop Outreach and Educational Practices)
  • Greg Levins (Parenting panelist)
  • Harolyn Mitchell (Parenting panelist)
  • Ben Taylor (Parenting panelist)
  • Alison Bartlett O'Reilly (Parenting panelist who plays Gina Jefferson on Sesame Street)

Each panelist shared how their family was affected by the divorce process and how they've coped with answering their child questions, finding ways to co-parent and developing a system that supports the child and helps them cope.

Having this panel tackle the subject of divorce and how to help children is extremely important because

Divorce is one of the most common major transitions in children's lives, with 40 % of all children experiencing the divorce of their parents.

Sesame Street Little Children, Big Challenges: Divorce

Recognizing this, Sesame Workshop/Sesame Street has created resources for families with young children (ages 2 8) as they encounter the tough transitions that come with divorce.

There are few resources to show children they are not the only ones with big questions and feelings about divorce. In response, Sesame Workshop has launched Little Children, Big Challenges: Divorce, a series of free multi-media resources.

Little Children, Big Challenges: Divorce includes:
  • A new Sesame Street DVD, featuring the Muppets and real families, that highlights strategies around expressing emotions and how to talk to children about divorce;
  • A Parent/Caregiver Guide providing helpful resources, language and advice for discussing divorce with children and helping them navigate changes;
  • A Children’s Storybook, Two-Hug Day, about a young boy named Niko who is transitioning between his parents’ two homes, and
The Little Children, Big Challenges: Divorce,  is an online toolkit providing access to all project resources, as well as additional online-only materials:
  • An Extended Family & Friends tip sheet
  • Webinars and online discussion sessions giving service providers and families a thorough understanding of how to engage with their families and communities
  • A Facebook page called Sesame Street in Communities connecting our online community to Sesame’s resiliency messages and materials.
  • A mobile app: Sesame Street: Divorce, featuring resources and tools for parents and caregivers; available on the App Store (SM) and Google Play ™.

Sesame Street: Divorce App

During the event I had a chance to use the Sesame Street: Divorce App, which is free, and I really like that Sesame Workshop is keeping in step with modern families. With the app, both parents and children can have various divorce discussions no matter where they are. The app also gives parents tools they can use with their kids including

  • Videos featuring real families and Sesame Street’s Abby Cadabby (who's parents are divorced)
  • Conversation Starters with age-appropriate language
  • Interactive Tools such as the Face Maker and Coloring Pages to use with your children

If you would like to learn more about Little Children, Big Challenges: Divorce and the ways Sesame Workshop is supporting families going through a divorce, then visit http://www.sesamestreet.org/divorce

Note: I was invited as media to this event. No other compensation was received. Any personal views expressed are always 100% my own.

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