News

Noggin Retools for `Connected Learning'

2/23/2003 4:03 PM Eastern

Placing a greater emphasis on pre-kindergarten education, Noggin will add
several new shows and revamp its schedule to better support a "connected
learning" curriculum for toddlers, executives said.

Noggin is embracing an emerging educational concept called "connected
learning," which aims to teach preschoolers lessons through everyday
activities.

Each show on commercial-free Noggin will touch upon subject areas in a
standard preschool curriculum now in use in 25 states, such as emergent literacy
and language, mathematics, science and technologies, social sciences and visual
arts.

To mimic a preschool classroom environment, Noggin will introduce an animated
instructor, Moosey A. Moose, and a teacher's "helper," a bird named Zee. The
characters will appear during interstitial programming to reinforce lessons
through such activities as field trips, story times and show and tell.

The repositioning effort follows Nickelodeon's purchase of former partner
Sesame Workshop's 50 percent stake in Noggin last August. The predominantly
digital network has about 30 million subscribers, up from 25 million a year
ago.

"Nobody has tried to do this in the media today, so it's a way of
differentiating ourselves," general manager Tom Ascheim said. "We want to become
the PBS of the next generation."

The repositioning does not change its target-audience focus from kids ages
two through five, he added.

Ascheim would not comment on the cost of the repositioning, but said the
network would not increase its license fee to operators.

March