WTCI will debut its all-new PBS KIDS channel and the one-hour movie special, One Big Ocean, on Monday, January 16, 2017. Provided by WTCI, with generous support from Ken and Byron DeFoor, the free services are a part of WTCI’s latest initiative to support early learning in the community. WTCI will broadcast PBS KIDS shows 24 hours a day on an additional television channel (45.3) and offer a live stream, making it easy for Tennessee Valley children to watch their favorite series during primetime and other after-school hours when viewing among families is high.

WTCI will debut on-air broadcasts of the SPLASH AND BUBBLES movie, One Big Ocean on January 16th and 20th at 10 AM and 2 PM. Produced by the Jim Henson Company and Herschend Studios in collaboration with a board of marine biologists, including Dr. Sylvia Earle, this exciting new program teaches children about marine life and the ripple effect that can arise from even the smallest of gestures.

Viewers will be able to watch the WTCI-branded live stream on-air (Channel 45.3), through pbskids.org and on the PBS KIDS Video App, which is available on a variety of mobile devices, and tablets. The live stream will be available on Roku, Apple TV, Amazon Fire TV, Android TV, Xbox One and Chromecast. 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. 

WTCI collaborated with the Tennessee Aquarium, Read20 and the City of Chattanooga’s Youth and Family Services Department, all partners in the Chattanooga 2.0 movement, to engage over 500 students in a special preview screening of the Splash and Bubbles movie, One Big Ocean. Participants were provided with lunch and free entrance to the Tennessee Aquarium. Jason McKinney, YFD Deputy Director for Education, said “I think my aha moment was during the ‘get your feet wet’ section and they said, ‘Maybe one of you will be the next ocean explorer.’  I guarantee that was the first time anyone in the crowd was ever told that.  If one seed was planted, then all of the work and effort was worth it.” 

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, WTCI will build on this reach and impact. Through this effort, WTCI 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.

“WTCI has been an integral part of the community for more than 45 years, delivering content and services that parents trust and that move the needle in early learning,” said Paul Grove, President and CEO of WTCI. “We are excited to build on the work we do every day for Chattanooga area 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.”

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 WTCI PBS KIDS channel will include popular favorites such as DANIEL TIGER’S NEIGHBORHOOD, ODD SQUAD, WILD KRATTS and DINOSAUR TRAIN; PBS KIDS’ newest series SPLASH AND BUBBLES, NATURE CAT and READY JET GO! will also be featured. Full local schedules are available at wtciTV.org.

The WTCI PBS KIDS channel offering is an integral part of WTCI’s long-term vision for its children’s service and will build on its reach and impact in the community, where it provides essential services for kids, parents and teachers. WTCI serves over 440,000 television households in the Tennessee Valley with quality, trusted educational programming on-air and resources on-line, in the classroom and in the community. 

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