IPTV to launch new PBS KIDS channel

Posted: September 21, 2017

Recent Survey Shows Parents Say TV Viewing Is a Top Family-Time Activity, Want Anytime Access to High-Quality Educational Content and Rank PBS KIDS as Best Use of Family Screen Time

Iowa Public Television, a trusted provider of educational media for Iowa children, will launch IPTV KIDS, a new, additional program channel in high definition on December 1, 2017. IPTV KIDS will feature children’s favorite PBS KIDS shows as well as IPTV KIDS Clubhouse, available via broadcast and live streaming on digital platforms. The free program service will feature educational programming and ensures that high-quality content is available to all children and caregivers on a platform and at a time that works for them, including primetime, weekends and other out-of-school times when they are most likely to tune in.i In fact, a national study by Marketing & Research Resources of parents with children ages 2-6 finds TV viewing is one of the top ways that families spend time together, with 89 percent of parents reporting they watch TV together as a family, 74 percent in favor of anytime access to educational programming and 37 percent ranking PBS KIDS as the best use of family screen time.

“Iowa Public Television has been an integral service to Iowans’ for nearly half a century, delivering educational and entertaining content and services that parents trust and that move the needle in early learning,” said Molly M. Phillips, General Manager and Executive Director for IPTV. “We are excited to build on the work we do every day for Iowa’s families by adding these new services to our offerings, ensuring that our proven educational content is accessible anytime and anywhere to all kids – especially those who need it the most.”

The channel will also be available as a 24/7 live stream on Iptv.org, pbskids.org and on the free PBS KIDS Video App for mobile and tablet devices, which delivers more than four billion streams each year. The live stream will also introduce a first-of-its kind integrated games feature, enabling children to toggle between a PBS KIDS show and online game that extends learning – all in one seamless digital experience. This new feature is grounded in research, demonstrating that measurable gains in learning are achieved when children interact with both PBS KIDS videos and games. The games will align with the learning goals of each TV series, deepening children’s engagement and supporting learning.

Iowa Public Television is one of 108 PBS licensees, listed here, that are expected to launch the PBS KIDS channel on TV by the end of the year, making it available to 90 percent of U.S. TV households.                                                                                     

PBS KIDS Ranks #1 in Preparing Kids for Success in School and Life

For more than a decade, the American public has consistently ranked PBS KIDS as the number-one educational media brand for children.ii In a recent survey, PBS KIDS ranked first in school readiness among children’s TV networks. When asked how well networks prepare children for school, 81 percent of parents said PBS KIDS helps a lot/somewhat, topping the next closest network by 11 percent. Parents also credited PBS KIDS for more positive behavior exhibited by children after watching. PBS KIDS stands out as the most trusted and safe place for children to watch television and the best use of families’ screen time, according to the study. PBS commissioned the study with an independent research firm. More findings are available here.

Leading children’s media experts point to PBS KIDS as a trusted resource for families, too. “PBS KIDS’ series are consistently among the highest-rated shows that Common Sense Media reviews,” said James P. Steyer, founder and CEO of Common Sense Media. “Millions of children across our country stand to benefit from the increased access to PBS KIDS’ exceptional content with the launch of the 24/7 PBS KIDS channel.” Similarly, the American Academy of Pediatrics (AAP), in its recently updated guidelines for children’s media use, recommends PBS KIDS as the leading resource for quality, educational screen time. The new AAP guidelines also encourage parents to watch TV with their children and talk about it together.

Decades of research confirms that PBS KIDS media content helps children build critical skills – among them, early literacy, math and social-emotional skills – that enable them to find success in school and life, while also helping parents increase their own engagement in their children’s learning. A study conducted by WestEd found that PBS KIDS resources can help prepare children from low-income families for kindergarten.iii Additionally, parents’ awareness of their children’s math learning increased significantly – as did their use of strategies to support their children’s learning.iv

Learning Opportunities for All

Live TV is the dominant way children access video, with most of kids’ TV viewing taking place on weeknights and weekends.This is true for all children, but especially for those in low-income families, who make up a significant percentage of PBS’ audience.vi The new PBS KIDS channel will be a critical resource for young children living in low-income households, who are more likely to rely on TV for educational content, and to be under-connected, with many families able to connect only via mobile devices and with inconsistent access to the internet.vii

IPTV’s schedule will include IPTV KIDS Clubhouse and the following PBS KIDS series:
Arthur
Bob the Builder
Caillou
The Cat in the Hat Knows a Lot About That!
Clifford the Big Red Dog
Cyberchase
Daniel Tiger’s Neighborhood
Dinosaur Train
Fetch! With Ruff Ruffman
IPTV KIDS Clubhouse
Nature Cat
Odd Squad
Peg + Cat
Ready Jet Go!
Sesame Street
Sid the Science Kid
Splash and Bubbles
Super WHY!
Thomas & Friends
Wild Kratts
WordGirl
Word World

IPTV KIDS will debut “PBS KIDS Family Night,” weekly family viewing events featuring movie specials or themed programming every Friday from 6 to 8 p.m. CST, and repeating on Saturday and Sunday evenings. “Family Night” will kick off on December 1, 2017, with four half-hour programs based on books by British children’s author Julia Donaldson, including The Gruffalo, The Gruffalo’s Child, Stick Man and Room on the Broom. Future family night features will include world premiere movie events. A full list is available on PBS PressRoom.

Iowa Public Television will continue to provide a PBS KIDS day part on its primary IPTV.1 channel. The schedule of children’s programming on IPTV.1 will be different from the IPTV KIDS .2 channel and IPTV’s 24/7 PBS KIDS live stream, offering families a variety of options. 

Fans of IPTV’s how-to programs currently appearing on .2 will be happy to learn they will no longer share a channel. With continuous children’s programming on the new IPTV KIDS .2 channel, the best of public television’s how-to shows on cooking, arts and crafts, gardening, home improvement and travel will now be available during primetime on IPTV Create, available on a new .4 sub-channel. Viewers who watch IPTV’s broadcast with an antenna will need to rescan their televisions to find IPTV Create .4. IPTV WORLD, featuring public television’s signature documentary, science and news programming, will continue to be available on IPTV’s .3 sub-channel.

IPTV Channels beginning December 1, 2017
IPTV .1
IPTV KIDS .2
IPTV WORLD .3
IPTV Create .4

IPTV KIDS is an integral part of Iowa Public Television’s children’s service and will build on its reach and impact in the community, where it provides essential services for kids, parents and teachers. For more information about IPTV’s educational services, visit Iptv.org/Education.

Cornerstone support for the establishment of the IPTV KIDS channel and IPTV’s 24/7 PBS KIDS live stream has been provided by: Community Foundation of Greater Des Moines; Carol Lea and John Cotton; W.K. Kellogg Foundation; Lohse Family Foundation Fund; and the O’Halloran Family Foundation Fund.

About PBS

PBS, with nearly 350 member stations, offers all Americans the opportunity to explore new ideas and new worlds through television and online content. Each month, PBS reaches nearly 100 million people through television and nearly 33 million people online, inviting them to experience the worlds of science, history, nature and public affairs; to hear diverse viewpoints; and to take front row seats to world-class drama and performances. PBS’ broad array of programs has been consistently honored by the industry’s most coveted award competitions. Teachers of children from pre-K through 12th grade turn to PBS for digital content and services that help bring classroom lessons to life. PBS’ premier children’s TV programming and its website, pbskids.org, are parents’ and teachers’ most trusted partners in inspiring and nurturing curiosity and love of learning in children. More information about PBS is available at www.pbs.org, one of the leading dot-org websites on the Internet, or by following PBS on Twitter, Facebook or through our apps for mobile devices. Specific program information and updates for press are available at pbs.org/pressroom or by following PBS Pressroom on Twitter.

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iNielsen NPOWER Live PUT, 9/21/2015-9/18/2016, K2-11, select dayparts.
iiMarketing & Research Resources, Inc. (M&RR), January 2017. Survey of 1,002 adults, 18 years of age and older, who participated via phone January 3-10, 2017.
Results were weighted to be statistically representative of the adult U.S. population.
iiiLearning with PBS KIDS: A Study of Family Engagement and Early Mathematics Achievement, WestEd, 2015.
ivLearning with PBS KIDS: A Study of Family Engagement and Early Mathematics Achievement, WestEd, 2015.
vNielsen Total Audience Report 2Q2016.
viNielsen NPOWER Live PUT, 9/21/2015-9/18/2016, K2-11, K2-11 in HH w/Inc <$20K, select dayparts.
viiZero to Eight: Children's Media Use in America 2013, Common Sense Media; Opportunity for all? Technology and learning in lower-income families. A report of the Families and Media Project, The Joan Ganz Cooney Center at Sesame Workshop, 2016.

Parent Study Methodology
The survey of 1,004 parents of children ages 2-6 was conducted November 30 - December 15, 2016, by Maru/Matchbox. Parents completed the survey online. The survey base is representative of TV-viewing households with young children with regard to household income and ethnicity.