As Rachel Coleman of Two Little Hands Productions explains, “most children’s television shows are like fruit snacks – they’re only 10% real fruit juice.” Coleman is the host and creator of the new show, Rachel and the TreeSchoolers, which has hit up Kickstarter to fund what TV networks could not – a show that’s teaching a real preschool curriculum “every minute.”
When Two Little Hands brought the pilot to TV networks, Coleman says that they “were told more than once that the shows were just too educational for television.”
Listed among the skills learned in the first episode are concepts and values like weather concepts, sign language and courage. Coleman brings 12 years of experience to the show as the Emmy-nominated creator of Baby Signing Time and Signing Time, projects close to her heart as the mother of a deaf daughter.
The addition of sign language to the learning in the new TreeSchoolers program makes it more accessible to kids like Coleman’s daughter while making learning an active, engaging experience for everyone. As Coleman explains, “with our show, you watch them learn – you see that they’ve acquired a new skill.”
The shows use different methods of learning aimed at best for retention and teaching kids how to learn, including whole body learning and the “CORI” method, short for concept oriented reading instruction. Each show comes with a printable PDF activity guide to take learning further.
Coleman also believes that there aren’t enough kid’s shows featuring real people. “Why would we want our kids’ role models to be mosnters, aliens and sponges that yell out every conversation they have?” she asks. “Who talks like that in real life? Where is the Mr. Rogers for the next generation?”
The first three episodes have already been made, and each episode is created as it meets its “stretch goal.” The first episode is available on Amazon, and is available as a set with its CD so kids can keep reinforcing the show’s lessons when the TV is off.
If you want to contribute, you can find Coleman’s Kickstarter page here. A few of the rewards for contributing include a personalized bedtime song, coffee with Rachel, and even a spot in one of Two Little Hands’s shows.