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Sesame Street Goes to Prison

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Sesame Street Goes to Prison

Sesame Street Goes to Prison is a documentary produced in conjunction with the Children's Television Workshop in 1977. In an answer to the inadequate waiting areas for children when visiting incarcerated parents in prison, the program was initiated in the early 1970s by a federal prison warden. The documentary focuses on prison programs which feature the rehabilitation of inmates by working with children, all of which are initiated by training sessions with experts from the Children's Television Workshop.

Filmed at the Seagoville Federal Correctional Institution in Dallas, Texas, and the Federal Correctional Institution of Fort Worth, Texas, the film does not feature characters from Sesame Street, but rather examines child development programs based on the teachings of Sesame Street. Some of these activities include singing songs and playing games featured on Sesame Street (sometimes with the help of mock-Muppet puppets), and are emphasized by those involved as having helped children form closer bonds with their families.

The film won several awards for Peter Rosen Productions, Inc., including the IFPA Cindy Award, the American Film Festival Blue Ribbon and the CINE Golden Eagle. The program is available for viewing at The Paley Center for Media.

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