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"Peg + Cat" premieres with math fun for preschoolers, starting Oct. 7

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  • Katie Culpepper
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What does the new season of AETN PBS KIDS hold for you and your family? One thing is sure - a new program, "Peg +Cat," is coming! The hilarious, relatable adventures with plucky Peg and lovable Cat, best friends who work together to solve everyday problems using math and problem solving skills, starts Monday, Oct. 7. 

Coming to you from the creators of "Postcards from Buster" and "Little Bill", "Peg + Cat" brings young viewers a new way to experience math through relatable - and often hilarious - adventures. Each episode follows fascinating stories where plucky Peg and goofy, lovable Cat encounter an everyday problem that requires them to use math and problem solving skills. From capturing chickens that have flown the coop to organizing a room that's become a teensy bit messy, these skill demonstrations are entertaining and tons of fun (even for the grown-ups watching in the audience).

So why are we especially excited about this new program? Beyond the fact that the production company, The Fred Rogers Company, is a longtime partner who recently created "Daniel Tiger's Neighborhood," (another program we love) we're glad to see "Peg + Cat" will fill an important learning gap. 

Math understanding and skills are essential in childhood development and school-readiness, but national assessments show that, by fourth grade, 60 percent of American students are performing below proficient levels. "Peg + Cat" is a direct answer to the National Research Council's Committee on Early Childhood Mathematics' call highlight the need for, "increased informal programming, curricular resources, software and other media" to help build key math skills. 

While that may sound a little more technical that what most preschoolers are looking for, we're here to tell you that the exciting storylines and engaging characters and music "Peg + Cat" provides make discovering how to use math concepts - on top of practicing core skills like cooperation, perseverance and resiliency - a fun, exciting new way to explore the world, both on-screen and off. 

Each episode of the show features two, 11-minute stories (and a new song) where the bosom buddies find themselves in the midst of an unexpected math word problem - but it's not just an abstract exercise! It's a messy, funny quandary to solve. 

We also love that the adventure exercises go beyond building basic math skills, like adding or subtracting, and also focus on how to think about larger math concepts - and those concepts help form the foundation for math at any level, from kindergarten to calculus! Modeled on Common Core State Standards, this provides a huge leg up for future school learning by introducing foundational concepts like relative size, geometry and algebraic thinking.

But how can you and your preschooler get to know Peg and her furry friend before Monday? For starters, pbskids.org/peg shares the fun with interactive online content - soon to be followed up with tons of additional interactive features, including more games, parent resources and a mobile app, after the series premiere. 

For even more fun, take time to meet the voice of Peg, fifth-grader Hayley Faith Negrin, who gives life to our perky heroine!



Beginning Monday, Oct. 7, 2013

"Peg + Cat," weekdays at 8 a.m. and 2 p.m. 

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