The Lasting Legacy of Fred Rogers

Steve Adubato goes on-location to The Turrell Fund Day for Children in Shelburne, Vermont to talk to Dr. Junlei Li, Saul Zaentz Senior Lecturer in Early Childhood Education at Harvard Graduate School of Education and Senior Fellow at Fred Rogers Center for Early Learning and Children’s Media. Steve and Dr. Li discuss the lasting legacy of Fred Rogers, the impact of simple, everyday acts of love and the state of children’s television and media today.

8/17/19 #109






"Hi, I'm Steve Adubato. No, we are not in a studio in New Jersey or in New York. We're all the way up here in Vermont. This is Shelburne, Vermont. We're actually at this historic, iconic, beautiful location. This is Shelburne Farms in Shelburne, Vermont. We are here for a series of very important interviews. Interviews about child care. Interviews about early childhood development. This is an event sponsored by the Turrell Fund. The Turrell Fund Day for Children. The theme is the importance of love in early childhood. That importance of love, that message of love about children, for children, comes from Fred Rogers. Fred Rogers on PBS debuted in 1968. 51 years later, those of us in public broadcasting, still trying to talk about issues that matter to children. That's what Right From the Start NJ is all about. So you're about to see a series of interviews from a whole range of interviews we've conducted up here in Vermont. Why Vermont? They're seen as a national model in terms of early childhood education, child care, advocacy for our children. So we're up here in Shelburne, Vermont. This is Right From the Start NJ. And this is programming you can't afford to miss. Doctor Junlei Li, who is a senior lecturer in early childhood education at Harvard Graduate School of Education, also a Senior Fellow at Fred Rogers Center for Early Learning and Children's Media. Good to see you doctor. Good to see you Steve. The main message in your keynote today, it was so powerful. And it really comes from Fred Rogers. A lot of the themes about Doctor Fred... excuse me, Fred Rogers and his work on PBS, starting in 1968. Love and early childhood. Make the connection Doctor. I think Fred would often say that none of us grow to be who we are, and grow to a place where we can serve other people without having been loved and accepted for who we are when we were young. And along the way as well. And I think Fred tried to be that. One of those people through the television screen. But he really believed so strongly that it is important to surround children with people who can love and support them and encourage them and listen to them over time. And I think love... love not just as a feeling, but as in very concrete actions. For example? Well I'll give you an example So we... part of our work takes place in orphanages. You know, orphanages are..."