Peep and the Big Wide World: A Television Science Series for Three to Five Year Olds

September 10th, 2001 - August 31st, 2007 | PROJECT

WGBH is producing and disseminating two seasons of a daily, half-hour television science series and accompanying outreach for three to five year olds. The series will be carried nationally as part of Discovery Television's newly expanded Discovery Kids. The project, "Peep and the Big Wide World," will model a developmentally-appropriate process of inquiry and exploration, nurture young children's innate curiosity, catalyze further hands-on exploration of the world around them, and motivate parents and care-givers to support and encourage these activities. The television programs will combine animation and short, live-action segments. The animation will weave the early childhood science curriculum into stories about three birds and their animal friends as they explore the world. Science content, unifying concepts, and habits of mind will be reinforced through two-minute live-action segments that show kids engaged in science play relating directly to the previous story. The television series will be supported by a comprehensive "Anywhere Science" outreach component of the project. "Anywhere Science" reinforces the fact that opportunities to experience and enjoy science exist in most facets of life. It will offer a range of activities -- through both web and print materials -- that can be enjoyed by just about anyone, just about anywhere. "Anywhere Science" is being designed to show parents and caregivers how important it is to support children's curiosity and how easy it is to engage in activities that help develop their science "habits of mind." The outreach campaign will be built around the new National Association for the Education of Young Children professional development standards and Head Start's science framework. The content director for "Peep and the Big Wide World" is Karen Worth, Senior Scientist at the Education Development Center and the Co-Director of the Center for Urban Science Education Reform. She is also the Principal Investigator of "Tool Kits for Early Childhood Science Education" that is developing national standards for preschool science education. The Executive Producer for the project is Kate Taylor who has previously served as Executive Producer for"ZOOM," " Where in the World is Carmen Sandiego," and "Degrassi Junior High." The creator of PEEP and animation artist is Kai Pindal, former Head of Animation at Danish Television. The head writer is Kathy Waugh who has written four seasons of the Emmy winning children's series, "Arthur." Evaluation will be conducted by Rockman et al. Advisors for the series include Barbara Bowman, President of the Erikson Institute for Advanced Study in Child Development; Diane Levin, Professor of Education at Wheelock College; Tera O'Hora, Consultant and Workshop Facilitator for "Science Beyond the Sandtable;" Kathy Paget, an early childhood educator working as a science curriculum developer and evaluator of science-related educational projects at the Technical Education Research Center; Diane Whitehead, a Quality Initiative Coordinator for the National Head Start Association; and Elizabeth Young, Director of Head Start Child Care in Cambridge, MA.

Project Website(s)

(no project website provided)

Project Products

Season One Evaluation: PEEP Television Series Final Report
Peep and the Big Wide World: Season 1 Evaluation Report
Season 1 Evaluation: Web Site Final Report
Season 1 Evaluation: PEEP Explorer's Guide Final Report

Team Members

Kate Taylor, Principal Investigator, WGBH
Brigid Sullivan, Co-Principal Investigator, WGBH


Funding Source: NSF
Funding Program: ISE/AISL
Award Number: 0104700
Funding Amount: 5911050


Audience: Museum | ISE Professionals | Parents | Caregivers | Pre-K Children (0-5)
Discipline: General STEM | Nature of science
Resource Type: Project Descriptions
Environment Type: Broadcast Media | Media and Technology