A Talk with Sesame Street about the New Foster Care Muppet

We talk with Kama Einhorn, one of the creators of Karli, the new Sesame Street Muppet who is in foster care, about how they decided on this storyline, how they created the muppet, cast the puppeteer, and what other resources are available on Sesame Street for foster children and foster parents.

Hit the Highlights
  • What goes into the decision of creating a new storyline especially one that calls for a new Muppet?
  • What is the difference between appearing on the show or on SesameStreetincommunities.org
  • Of all the many important issues we want children to be aware of, how did you decide on foster care.
  • What has been your experience with the Muppet Julia, the Muppet with autism.
  • Did any of the creators have a personal experience with the foster care system?
  • How do you go about the process of creating the storyline for the new foster care muppet?
  • How did you come up with how Karlie would look and talk?
  • Who is Karli’s puppeteer?
  • I love the song: You are Safe, You are Strong. Who wrote it? Who sang it?
  • How did you cast the voice of Karli the new foster care muppet?
  • The world of foster care brings up a lot of really hard topics. Which topics will you cover?
  • Karli’s storyline focuses on reunification. How did you reconcile this with the fact that not all children will be able to reconcile with their birth family?
  • Who is your intended audience?
  • You give adults and kids words for how to talk about difficult subjects. Do you spend a lot of time going over and rewriting to find the right tone or does it happen pretty seamlessly?
  • How much focus testing did you do for this storyline? What did that look like?
  • How long will this character be on air? Will she be a recurring character?
  • What is the mission of Sesame Street in Communities?
  • What other big issues will you be tackling?
  • SesameStreetInCommunities.org—full of resources and materials for foster parents, children in care, and the providers that serve them.

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Music credit: Michael Ashworth

Image credit: Sesame Street