WUCF TO LAUNCH FREE LOCALIZED 24/7 MULTIPLATFORM PBS KIDS SERVICES
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Today, WUCF announced it will launch new, free localized 24/7 children’s services. Provided by WUCF, the free services include a new TV channel and live stream on digital platforms. This channel, 23.3, will be available over air by doing a simple re-scan of your digital channels on or after January 16th.
The effort is WUCF’s latest initiative to support early learning in the community. WUCF will broadcast PBS KIDS shows 24 hours a day on an additional television channel and offer a live stream, making it easy for Central Florida children to watch their favorite series during primetime and other after-school hours when viewing among families is high. Viewers will be able to watch the WUCF branded live stream through pbskids.org and on the PBS KIDS Video App, which is available on a variety of mobile devices, tablets and over-the-top platforms such as Roku, Apple TV, Amazon Fire TV, Android TV, Xbox One and Chromecast. The live stream complements on-demand clips and full episodes, which will continue to be available for free on the PBS KIDS Video App and streaming via pbskids.org.
Following its initial launch, the localized live stream experience will expand to offer an integrated games feature, enabling children to toggle between a PBS KIDS show and an activity that extends learning – all in one seamless digital experience. The live stream and games feature is grounded in research demonstrating that measurable gains in learning are achieved when children engage with PBS KIDS content on multiple platforms. The games will align with the learning goals of each TV series, deepening children’s involvement and supporting learning.
“WUCF has been an integral part of the community for years, delivering content and services that parents trust and that move the needle in early learning,” said Dr. Phil Hoffman, WUCF Executive Director. “We are excited to build on the work we do every day for Central Florida families by adding these new 24/7 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.”
PBS stations reach more kids aged 2-5, more moms with children under 6 years old and more children from low-income families than any other kids TV network. With its new 24/7 channel and digital offerings, WUCF will build on this reach and impact.
Through this effort, WUCF will extend its commitment to early learning by offering more families high-quality PBS KIDS content that is trusted by parents and proven to help kids learn. In a recent survey, PBS KIDS led all networks in improving kids’ behavior, with 74% of parents saying their child exhibits more positive behavior after engaging with PBS KIDS. And years of research confirm that PBS KIDS media content helps children build critical skills that enable them to find success in school and life, while also helping parents increase their own engagement. A recent study conducted by WestEd found that PBS KIDS resources can help narrow the math achievement gap for children from low-income families and better prepare them for kindergarten. Additionally, parents’ awareness of their children’s math learning increased significantly – as did their use of strategies to support their children’s learning.
Designed to meet the needs of today’s kids, WUCF’s new, free 24/7 services will provide learning opportunities for children whenever and wherever they access media. Nielsen data demonstrate that live TV is the dominant way children access video, accounting for 68% of the time children spend watching video content. Most kids’ TV viewing takes place on weeknights and weekend afternoons and evenings. This trend is true for all children, but especially for those in low-income families.
The new channel will include popular favorites such as DANIEL TIGER’S NEIGHBORHOOD, ODD SQUAD, WILD KRATTS and DINOSAUR TRAIN; the new series NATURE CAT, READY JET GO! and SPLASH AND BUBBLES. WUCF will provide the PBS KIDS 24/7 channel in addition to its current primary WUCF channel, which will continue to feature a PBS KIDS day part. The schedule of children’s programming on the primary WUCF channel will be different from the 24/7 channel, offering families a variety of options.
The WUCF PBS KIDS channel is among the latest changes to the WUCF channel lineup.
WUCF Central Florida PBS will remain on channel 24.1.
WUCF 24.2, currently home to WUCF Create, will remain. Create gives you around-the-clock programming about gardening, arts & crafts, travel and home improvement.
WUCF 24.3 will become the WUCF PBS KIDS channel as current Spanish-language programming currently provided by Vme is being phased out nationwide.
WUCF 24.4 programming is TBD.
WUCF will soon launch a fifth channel (early spring). WUCF 25.5 will be home to WUCF World as well as future programming from students at the University of Central Florida's Nicholson School of Communication.
Spectrum customers can find WUCF PBS Kids on channel 472. Click here to see where else to watch the channel.