Monday, March 28, 2022

Big news!

Madeline Fretz - Hi, Sproutlets. It's me, Maddie. Today, I have some news - since 2020, this site has been a part of Blogger/Blogspot. All that changes today, as this is my last Blogger post.

Don't despair! 

You heard me right, folks! As of today, we'll be on Wordpress ( Our new Wordpress website will have almost all of my more-than-400 posts over the past two years, plus, as I've heard, will be easier for sharing and posting. Pretty soon, this URL will redirect to our new Wordpress site.

As always, you can still contribute to Parents and Kids - either (or both) take part in one of our series or write your own, Sprout-related article. I run this blog alone, but would definitely love more writers! In addition, the Parents and Kids Share Together forum (I'm one of their only members right now) will still be up, and I'll still link you to their discussions. I'll also love it if you join me there!

Oh, and one more thing. I was originally going to launch Parents and Kids on Wordpress to commemorate 400 posts, but found it hard to do it. Well, here we are, a few days later and time to welcome our newly-launched Wordpress site to the world!

Special thanks to everyone who helped me make Parents and Kids Share Together a success on Blogger - that includes everyone who engaged in my series, fellow Sprout fans, including those on the Discord fan server, and of course, you, the readers. No, I wasn't kidding when I said you. Without you, there wouldn't be a Sprout blog on the internet - even Let's Grow would have not existed! Thank you!

Well people, it's been two years on this blog. Two years and we're just getting started! I'll admit. Moving to Wordpress and starting writing there is a bizarre feeling - if your site, like mine, started out on Blogger but moved to Wordpress, you've probably had this feeling too. Most blogs are associated as being Blogger sites, but other sites, and that goes to Wordpress, are sometimes called "blogs" as well. Despite the changes, Parents and Kids Share Together will always (forever?) be associated as a Blogger blog. I love Parents and Kids, and I bet you do too. This blog has allowed me to meet new Sprout fans-turned-friends, show off my writing skills, and most importantly, write about my childhood. I thank you all for making the past two years of my life an adventure.

New logo

Click here to pack your bags on the Parents and Kids Share Together forum!

Sunday, March 27, 2022

Sprout cart


Madeline Fretz - I knew I just had to write about this once I saw a girl in a cart in Kroger a few days ago(?).

As early as 2014, a Sprout cart was made for grocery stores. The cart had images of Sprout characters such as Chica and Star, and inside was a television where kids could watch footage from Sprout shows. 

Aside from those(that?), not much is known about the Sprout cart. A few photos of the cart, which also has its own PBS Kids Sprout TV Wiki page, are seen online.

Image from AisleWorx

UPDATE (3/27/2021): Found another pic online. As you can see, the cart has green flowers instead of the Sprout logo and the screen shows what I think is Noodle and Doodle.

Despite being a small channel, Sprout did produce merchandise over the years, and the Sprout cart is one of them.

Click here to go to the grocery store on the Parents and Kids Share Together forum!

Saturday, March 26, 2022

The history of Parents and Kids Share Together

Madeline Fretz - Dear friends, as of today, we've reached 400 posts. That's right, folks, 400 posts about what made children's television great. Over the past two years, I've established myself as the #1 go-to site for Sprout fans. Okay, people, without further ado, let's take a look at some of the highlights of my 400 posts so far. Enjoy!

I first discovered the blogosphere with Big Bird Bridge, a blog dedicated to the Langhorne theme park Sesame Place created by noted theme park historian Guy Hutchinson. Big Bird Bridge, which hasn't posted since 2020, contained of posts about Sesame Place history - from former attractions to information about the ill-fated Tokyo park. I instantly fell in love with the blog. 

A parent and a kid sharing together.

PBS Kids Sprout launched on September 26th, 2005 as a joint venture between PBS, HiT Entertainment, Sesame Workshop, and Comcast. I, along with my sisters, was born in Richmond on September 21st two years later, and was (and still am) the only one in my family with autism. Back then, Sprout and I had nothing in common. 

On the computer

The first things I ever watched on TV were Baby Einstein videos, which I'm still a big fan of even at this age and even to this day. I first discovered Sprout when watching Caillou on my parents' bed. Needless to say, I was hooked. I grew up with Sprout, and was both hooked and scared. I even remember some things from watching the channel and going on its website that probably no one else remembers. However, it wasn't until 2015 (or was it 2014?) that I became a superfan, watching videos on YouTube, having fun on and Sprout apps, and sending in content. As much as I wanted to make a guest appearance on The Sunny Side Up Show and showcase my submissions, become a host even, I hosted a similar series in my elementary school. When I got older, I gathered more information on the history of Sprout - uploading videos on my then-new YouTube channel Playtime All the Time and editing as Maddiellabie on PBS Kids Sprout TV Wiki, founded in May 2019 by NeptuneID13. 

I adored Sprout and constantly visited Big Bird Bridge, but there wasn't even a Sprout fan blog on the internet. In 2016, I, under my old account, founded a blog known as Let's Grow and started writing. Back then, there was Let's Grow, a YouTuber named after Sprout's original slogan who uploaded videos of rare Sprout content from Vimeo, Dailymotion, and Facebook, amongst other websites. There hasn't been a new Let's Grow video since 2018. I probably named the blog after him(her?) and wrote posts inspired by his(her?) videos. However, I abandoned the blog as time went by.

Me in 2020.

My family moved from Richmond to Midlothian in 2018, and since then I've spent most of my life ... sad (a Debbie Downer, or so to speak). Since we moved, I've grown an obsession with CBeebies, the BBC's children's brand, and started uploading CBeebies videos on YouTube and even started a CBeebies wiki, now a wiki full of fake information. Many people on the internet have criticized me for many things, and the CBeebies wiki is one of them. I eventually migrated to PBS Kids Sprout TV Wiki. Nowadays, I regret starting that wiki. I became obsessed CBeebies because it, as well as other children's programs around the world, was similar in many ways to Sprout, and wrote a whole post about differences and similarities between the two this year.

The year was 2019 and I had launched a Twitter account (@TimePlaytime). As of 2020, the account is no longer up. On Twitter, I copied other people's tweets, mainly from other kids' TV fans. Once again, something many people have criticized me for. One of the things I tweeted about constantly was Sprout, once again obsessing over my childhood channel. The same year, I launched accounts on both Facebook and Instagram and uploaded Sprout videos on Playtime All the Time. I even called NBCUniversal to see if they could get Sprout back. This wasn't the first time I called them.

The first two images I uploaded on this blog.

As 2019 became 2020, I was still obsessed with Sprout and wanted to express my fandom with the brand even more, so I started the blog you are on right now. While Let's Grow was named after Sprout's original slogan (and a YouTube channel I watched and took inspiration from constantly back then), Parents and Kids Share Together was named after an old Sprout tagline "Sprout, the 24-hour preschool channel parents and kids share together." My first post, a carbon(?) copy of Guy Hutchinson's first Big Bird Bridge post (right down to the title), was about why I started my blog - to connect kids' TV nowadays with kids' TV from when I was little. 

As time went by, I created a custom crossover series known as Daniel Tiger and the Tweenies and a Sunny Side Up Show series starring my OC known as Kaitlin & Friends, and "abandoned" my blog. It wasn't until July 2020 that I would start writing on Parents and Kids again. My comeback post was a two-part one about the "complete" history of Sprout, mostly about the first and second generations. In December, I adapted the posts into a video on my YouTube channel. Back then, I wrote about the likes of old Sprout shows, old articles about Sprout, the "We Share" campaign, the Sprout Channel Cubby, and The Super Sproutlet Show, amongst other important parts of Sprout's history. In August, I wrote a post about Sprout's timeline which slowly became one of my most popular posts. If you know me, you know that I for some reason am a big fan of children's shows, but despite this, I hate certain children's shows, mostly ones that everyone else hates. One of those shows at the time was The Let's Go Show, and I even wrote a Let's Go Show hate post. Nowadays, I changed my mind about Let's Go and was one of many posts that I deleted. Inspired by the Sesame Place book from 2015, I started working on a Sprout book, which I've "published" this year and am hoping will become a real book (we need to find a publisher!).

In December 2020, I became an admin and started editing constantly on PBS Kids Sprout TV Wiki, once again abandoning the blog and only occasionally writing posts. This was around the time I wrote posts about articles from the Sprout Press Room and Sprout for Parents websites. In July 2021, I tried to revive Parents and Kids Share Together with a ToughPigs-inspired series known as "My Week with...," in which I would talk about a Sprout-related topic for a whole week. My first My Week was "My Week with 2010," in which I would focus on Sprout happenings from that year. I rarely do My Weeks nowadays.

My Week was a success, and I started writing on the blog more. One of my posts from around that time was about the history of The Sunny Side Up Show (this wasn't the first time I wrote about the history of Sunny). In August, I started high school, and the day before I wrote about my life as a Sprout fan, which is once again one of my most popular and personal favorite posts. In school, I wrote even more "My Weeks" and introduced a new Muppet Mindset-inspired series known as "Weekly Character Wednesdays," in which I would write about a certain Sprout character and his or her importance every wednesday. It's still going strong! My first weekly wednesday was on Mr. Mailman

Also in September, my blog and I reached a major milestone - 200 posts. That day, I launched the Parents and Kids Share Together forum, which is still going strong, but I'm one of the only members.

In October, I introduced Sprout-tober, an Instagram challenge in which I would post a picture of or draw one of my Sprout favorites for every day of October - well, almost every day.

In November, I started The Great Sprout Survey, a series in which Sprout fans would talk about their favorite Sprout-related things. As time went by, I introduced a Sunny Side Up Show-inspired series known as When I Was a Sproutlet. Here's how to submit your answers to these series. And don't forget, you can write your own articles too!

Sprout's two longest-running blocks were The Good Night Show and The Sunny Side Up Show. I wanted to express my feelings on these blocks and have fans take a look at which one was better, so I wrote a post comparing the two and seeing which was better. At the end of the post, I explained why I wrote it. This is once again one of my favorite posts.

I grew an obsession with The Muppets (2011) and to a lesser extent the Muppet Show Muppets in general, giving me the idea to write a BIG Sprout fanfiction on the internet. In November, I published the fanfic online, and, on the blog, I wrote a post about the trailer and a post a day before releasing my story. "One Sleep to Go" slowly became one of my most popular posts. I released my fanfic on November 23rd, the tenth anniversary of the Muppet movie. As time went by, I started working on a sequel, and posted an announcement. As I've said here before, while I've always admired creative people, Parents and Kids Share Together isn't usually a place for fanfiction, but, since this was one of my biggest Sprout projects ever, I knew I just had to post about my fanfic. Nowadays, I'm working on making my fic a real movie.

I made my fanfic for one reason - I wanted Apple TV+ to revive Sprout and even started a petition, and, in order to do so, I wanted to get the old Sprout gang back together for a telethon to convince them to do so, which is what we do in the fanfic soon-to-be movie. On December 25th, a former Sprout employee whom I'm friends with on Facebook sent me the most amazing thing ever, which took my Sprout fandom to the next level. It seems like some of them really want Sprout back too. A day after, we took a vacation to New York for a few days, and I wrote about my experiences in one of my many, if not very few, non-Sprout posts.

And here we are now in 2022. As I said before, I've spent most of my new life depressed, wondering if they'll ever bring back my childhood (I even wrote and sang an original song about Sprout), and wrote a post about possible plans for Sprout's future. Some of my posts this year have included, but not limited to, Sprout Fan Memories, Sprout Fan Confessions, Early Installment Weirdness, Ten Years of The Super Sproutlet Show, The Girls of Sprout, Black History Month, Dennisha, Carly, Kaitlin, and KellyThe ABCs of Sproutproof the second generation started on September 21st, 2009, Nostalgic Field Trip, more posts about old articles, and even more posts about the history(histories?) of things. I even began to write about non-Sprout children's shows from outside the US, as, well, I'm a noted children's television historian. This was no ordinary year, as it was the year we 1. reached 300(!!!) posts; 2. turned two with a series of posts to commemerate(sp?).

And there you have it, Sprout fans and readers of this blog, that was the (almost) complete history of Parents and Kids. I hope you enjoyed this post, and keep reading! Without you, I would have never started this blog. 

Oh, and besides, thanks for 400 Sprouterrific posts! Here's to 400 more!

Click here to blow out 400 candles on the Parents and Kids Share Together forum!

Friday, March 25, 2022

Proof the Second Generation began on September 21st, 2009

Madeline Fretz - September 21st, 2009 was a great day, as my sisters and I turned two. You know what else happened that day? Sprout rebranded and the "second generation" was introduced.

Now, I know you may be asking "but didn't it start on August 24th?" Well, that's the day Sprout's Wiggly Waffle launched and episodes of the Wiggles' show premiered on Sprout, but the second generation actually launched a month later, and today I'm looking at proof.

Image from YouTube

First up: news articles. The website Cynopsis has covered Sprout a lot over the years in its news articles, and one article mentioned Rubbadubbers premiering during the fifth season of The Good Night Show on September 21st, and Sprout "sprouting" a new look the same day. I took a look at the article in one of my YouTube videos probably a few months ago (see the top). The above picture, of a Season 5 Good Night Show promo, is from a broadcast of The Sprout Sharing Show that has to be from 2009. The picture says "starting monday." September 21st was a Monday, so it has to be anywhere from the preceding week.

On Season 5 premiere day, Nina guest hosted The Sunny Side Up Show for "New Adventures Week" and Dennisha auditioned, making her Sprout debut on December 31st. In addition, five lucky families could win a chance to call Nina from the 21st to 25th (source).

The next three things have to do with Sprout's Wiggly Waffle.

If you've read this blog, chances are, you know The Ways of the Blue Dog, a children's television forum on Tapatalk. I mention the Blue Dog a lot in my posts, and one post on the site inspired a frantic search for a Sprout history video from 2011. I even wrote about Jumpman256's idea for a Sprout live show once! One post on the Blue Dog, "Little More on Sprout," was about the "controversy" surrounding Kevin's Sunny Side Up Show departure and letters to Sprout, amongst other things. As you probably know, Pajanimals started off as a series of music videos in 2008 and became a full-length series in 2011. Prior to 2011, many fans, including "Blue Doggers" Jumpman (Matthew Hiltner) and Agent0042, longed for a full-length series and even wrote letters and e-mails to Henson and Sprout.

At the start of the post, Jumpman writes about the new intros to The Good Night Show and The Sunny Side Up Show, noting that while the piano in the intro to the latter was a "nice touch," the intro to the former was a bit reluctant, as Nina sang the exact same song a few seconds later. I wrote about both intros, amongst others, in a post comparing the two blocks. Jumpman and Agent0042 also point out that the theme song to Wiggly Waffle changed a month after its premiere. Again, even though this post was made in October, proof the second generation began on September 21st.

Look at this video containing clips from the very first broadcast of Sprout's Wiggly Waffle on August 24th:

The video contains two things: 1. A "don't go away" bumper that's NOT of Sproutoramas and was probably also used on Australia's ABC2 in mid-2009. 2. When Wiggly Waffle launched, it was sponsored by Garanimals, a children's clothing brand whose commercials aired on Sprout. A short bumper featuring Garanimals used first generation branding. MORE proof!

And finally, a video of PICMe.

PICMe, an Irish cartoon made by Jam Media and distributed by HiT Entertainment, aired during The Sprout Sharing Show from launch day in 2008 to 2011. It also aired during The Sunny Side Up Show. This video, which is of the "Puzzle" episode and stars a boy named Ryan, is from August 28th, 2009, presumably a few days after Wiggly Waffle launched, and was uploaded a day later on the 29th.

Image from YouTube

The video contains the pink sticker(?) screenbug and "We'll Be Right Back" bumper from The Sharing Show's first year, the 2005 flowers screenbug...

Image from YouTube

...and Ricky's "next" sign for The Mighty Jungle EVEN READS THE SHOW'S TITLE! You see, during the first generation, next bumpers featured characters from the show coming up next and would read the show's title. Even more proof!

So there you have it, "misnomers" - proof the second generation began on September 21st and not August 24th. Make sure to show this post, full of accurate information, to anyone who mentions the second generation starting on August 24th (AKA Waffle Day). Thanks for reading, bye!

Oh, and did you know that there's a whole song about the 21st? You've probably heard of it!

Click here to write letters and e-mails on the Parents and Kids Share Together forum!

Thursday, March 24, 2022

Madeline Fretz - Was just surfing the internet, when I came across this neat little review of the Sprout website which has to be from either 2005 or 2006 - the era. This review, which from a website known as, supplies readers with information about the Sprout website at the time such as, if you didn't get Sprout, you could learn more about its programming through its website.

The review opens with what you were greeted with when you entered in 2005: “Hello, Sproutlets! Welcome to PBS Kids Sprout. We’re so glad you could join us. Use your mouse and find what you can play and do!” This is the greeting that you and your child will receive when you visit Sprout online.

The review also says "Sprout is PBS Kids for pre-schoolers." Two things: 1. While Sprout replaced the 24-hour PBS Kids channel (which returned in 2017) when it launched, I assume select PBS stations still aired preschool programs at the time, most of which also aired on the Sprout channel. A year earlier, PBS Kids GO!, a block of PBS shows for older kids, launched. 2. Some people get Sprout confused with regular PBS Kids, and wrote about it in a post about notable Sprout misnomers.

Also mentioned in this review are games that used to be on the website: "Jay Jay the Jet Plane has a fun flying game that you and your child can play. Bob the Builder has puzzles and mazes for you and your child. Thomas the Tank Engine has a match game, a racing game, and even a game where you can build your own engine!"

One thing Sprout is known for is that, unlike most American children's channels, it had original hosted programming blocks that aired in between shows, and that the blocks' hosts (both human and puppet) would show the likes of artwork, pictures and videos, messages, and birthday wishes, all sent in by viewers. When Sprout launched, the only thing you could send in to be featured on TV was birthday cards. The review mentions that you could send in birthday cards and wishes via the website, and you might see your wishes daily on The Birthday Show.

The review is written by Jaime Egan.

I'm always looking for old articles on Sprout to write about here, something I've been doing since I founded this blog, and this is one from Sprout's early days that deserves to be revisited.

Click here to play fun games on the Parents and Kids Share Together forum!

R.I.P Leo Eaton, co-creator of Zoboomafoo


Madeline Fretz - We are saddened to learn that Leo Eaton, the man responsible for bringing the Kratt Brothers to TV, has passed away. Preschool Show Fan Page (Preschool Series News and Galore on Facebook), an Instagram page that posts pictures, videos, and news of preschool shows, said so

What do Eaton and the Kratt Brothers have to do with Sprout? Chris and Martin's second show, Zoboomafoo, aired on the channel from 2005 to 2012 - the PBS era. The brothers' first show, Kratt's Creatures, which premiered in the 90s, aired on Sprout when it launched in 2005, but was probably exclusive to Sprout on Demand. Eaton was the co-creator of both shows.

Leo Eaton was the sweetest man, and without him, there would've been no Kratt's Creatures, Zoboomafoo, or Wild Kratts. We are incredibly grateful that he brought these series, which taught animals and "creatures," to life and introduced them to us.

UPDATE (3/24/2022): According to Preschool Show Fan Page, Eaton was 76 when he died. He was vaccinated and boosted.

Click here to help us remember Leo Eaton on the Parents and Kids Share Together forum!

Sprout Media Kit


Image from Rob Kelly Design

Madeline Fretz - Despite being a pretty small channel with a quite small fanbase, Sprout did spawn some merchandise such as toys and DVDs over the years. I have talked about Sprout puzzles in a previous post, today I'm talking about another rare(?) piece of Sprout merchandise that I really want. I believe I talked about this toy(?) in a previous post on this blog, and I'm deeply sorry if I did.

The Sprout Media Kit was made by Rob Kelly (source) and a company known as Structural Graphics. Shaped like the green flower in the iconic Sprout logo, the media kit contained an easel, an LCD screen that would show images of Sprout characters and shows such as Mr. Mailman, The Berenstain Bears, and Caillou, pockets for collateral printing, and a hand-made fabric pouch to reinforce branding and programming. Above is a video of a woman talking about and showing how the Sprout media kit works.

This is a brilliant idea, and I wish it was released to the public. The Sprout media kit was not only essential to Sprout fans, but also felt like a great way to introduce newcomers to Sprout - introducing them to a who's who of Sprout programming.

Now, if the Sprout media kit was available in stores and/or online, I would've definitely bought it. The idea of having one sounded(sounds?) fun and pretty cool!

Click here to show how something works on the Parents and Kids Share Together forum!

Big news!

Madeline Fretz - Hi, Sproutlets. It's me, Maddie. Today, I have some news - since 2020, this site has been a part of Blogger/Blogspot. ...