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THE NEIGHBORHOOD ARCHIVE - All Things Mister Rogers

Let's Talk About It

In the late 1970's, a series of books and videos were produced to help children understand and feel more comfortable with a few common medical scenarios.

The Let's Talk About It series was produced by Family Communications through the support of Johnson & Johnson Baby Products as well as the McFeely-Rogers Foundation (Latrobe, PA). Major cooperation was also received from the American Academy of Pediatrics, the American Hospital Association, and the American Medical Association.

While each of these videos takes place in Mister Rogers' television home, the structure of each "episode" is significantly different from a typical visit to the Neighborhood. Each video opens with Mister Rogers entering to the instrumental theme of I Like to Be Told. After introducing himself to viewers ("Hello, I'm Mister Rogers. I like to talk with people about important things."), Mister Rogers spends the next 20 minutes discussing the feelings that children might have when dealing with these medical experiences. His talk with viewers is divided throughout various video clips of children in these situations along with calming conversations with experts in the medical field.

Entering to an instrumental version of I Like to Be Told could not be more fitting for these videos. It is very obvious from the detail he covers that Mister Rogers placed a great deal of importance on children being informed. Children deserve to have a sense of comfort and an understanding of their experiences -- especially times such as these when a child is likely unsure. While these videos are comforting to children, Mister Rogers does not sugarcoat the topics and is very direct and honest about what children might experience.

Supplemental books were published to go along with each video:

For more details, select one of the following titles:

Other similarly titled videos were released in the 1980s:

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Corner image by Spencer Fruhling. Used with permission.
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