Sesame Street Back On-Air in Arabic Version-Iftah ya Simsim

latest Gulf news-Sesame Street Back On-Air in Arabic Version-Iftah ya Simsim-YesGulf

Sesame Street Muppets, after 25 years hiatus, will return to Middle East TV screens. Officials in the latest gulf news stated that this move is aimed to reaffirm Arabic language. Another reason behind the re-emergence of world famous kids’ show is to highlight and address the issues of Arab children they often face in relation to traditions and prevalent fundamental principles in the region.

In reference to astounding changes witnessed by Gulf and Middle East countries in last couple of years, need of such children-focused programs becomes mandatory to be addressed. Shows like Iftah ya Simsim will help the kids to become beneficial element of their societies and to work for the welfare of others.

CEO of Sesame Workshop, Mr. Steve Youngwood voiced, “There is a need to have the media assist in instilling the fundamentals of the Arabic language in the younger generation.”


Sesame Street is one of the most celebrated American television series crafted for children’s learning and grooming. Iftah Ya Simsim is the first-ever global co-production of this show launched in 1979. It went off-air as its production studio in Kuwait destroyed in the course of Gulf War.

At the inauguration event, Dr Amal Al Qubaisi, DG of Adec (Abu Dhabi Education Council) stated, “During a time witnessing a scarcity in educational television shows for youngsters, we are in dire need of shows to fill the gap we currently face in this arena as it results in our children resorting to alternative methods for education and entertainment. This can prove harmful to them in the long run as it may expose them to violence and other negative ideals, as opposed to Iftah Ya Simsim which is sure to reinforce the same principles they learn at school and home.”

Dr. Ali Al Karni (DG Arab Bureau of Education for Gulf States) also accompanied Dr. Al Qubaisi and while talking to Gulf News correspondent he said, “It took us two years to put the curriculum in place. Additionally, the programme will deal with topics such as technology and the proper way to handle it and Iftah Ya Simsim will not just be a television show but a comprehensive learning experience as content will be available on social media as well.”

Dr Ali Al Karni is the man who initially brought Iftah Ya Simsim to life again. He also mentioned, ‘designing the ‘blueprints’ of the curriculum on which the show is based was done with the assistance of 100 experts in different fields related to child education and development.”

10 different TV channels will broadcast the first episode of Iftah ya Simsim on September, 04. The show will focus on Arabic dialect and varying subjects relatable to Arab kids of present era.