Saturday, January 12, 2008

Get ready to TIVO! Here comes "Ni Hao, Kai-Lan!"

"Ni Hao, Kai-Lan" premiers on Nick Jr. on Thursday, February 7th at 11am. I've been especially excited about this. If this show is popular like Dora the Explorer, my child's peers will grow up watching a cartoon child as an Asian American role model and it may influence them to be more accepting of Asian Americans and Chinese culture.

The show's web site describes the curriculum: Ni Hao, Kai-lan is the next generation of preschool television programming that introduces the psychology of biculturalism. If Dora and Diego popularized bilingualism, Kai-lan will weave together being bilingual and bicultural. Ni Hao, Kai-lan reinforces the idea that being bicultural and bilingual is being American.

The show will familiarize the viewing audience with elements of Chinese and Chinese American cultures to promote multicultural understanding in the next generation and goes beyond featuring "culture" as only ethnic food and festivals. Instead, it celebrates growing up in an intergenerational family, having friends from diverse backgrounds, and "habits of the heart" that are Chinese American. These values include:

Mind-body connection Typically, television portrays excitement as the good emotion to feel. In many Chinese-American communities, the good thing to feel is often calmness and contentment. Feeling excited and feeling calm can both be happy feelings, but they differ in how aroused the body is.

Perspective-taking In many Chinese and other East Asian families, children are encouraged to take the perspective of others to maintain harmony in relationships with other people.

Being a good member of the group Ni Hao, Kai-lan also emphasizes the Chinese and Chinese American value of being a good member of a group.

Social & Emotional Goals Highlight cause-and-effect thinking about social and emotional issues germane to preschoolers and to support preschooler's social and emotional development.

1 comment:

  1. I can't tell you how excited we are for the premiere of this show. Tivo button - activate!

    - Judy K.


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