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Alma’s Way: New PBS animated series featuring Puerto Rican girl aims to promote diversity, empathy


TAMPA, Fla. (WFLA) — Move over Elena of Avalor and Dora, because a new animated Latin icon is paving her way into the hearts and homes of a newer generation!

Just three days into the start of December, PBS gifted the world with a new animated series called Alma’s Way. The show is set to debut nationwide on PBS stations, PBS KIDS and PBS KIDS digital platforms by fall 2021.  

The series is created – and inspired – by Lifetime Achievement Award-winning actor Sonia Manzano’s childhood. Many remember Manzano as “Maria” on Sesame Street.

“I am thrilled to return to public television and to work with PBS KIDS and Fred Rogers Productions on this project inspired by my own childhood,” Manzano said. “Alma’s way is to think things through and I hope by animating the thought process, kids will be inspired and excited about what goes on in their own minds. I want them to know we all have the power to think, regardless of who we are.”

Alma’s Way stars 6-year-old heroine Alma Rivera. She’s a proud, confident Puerto Rican girl who lives in the Bronx with her parents and younger brother Junior. The show also features a diverse group of close-knit and loving friends, family and community members. 

Through “Think-Through” moments, each 11-minute story aims to positively impact children by teaching model self-awareness, responsible decision making, empathy and encourage kids to generate and value their own ideas and questions.

“We can’t wait for kids to meet Alma. She’s an optimistic and confident Puerto Rican girl who models for viewers how to think their way through any dilemma,” said Ellen Doherty, the chief creative officer of Fred Rogers Productions. “The show is funny, warm and relatable. We love how it showcases the diversity of New York City too, and authentically reflects the cultures of all the characters.”

With 40 half-hour episodes in production, the team behind the series said it hopes to showcase different aspects of Latino culture through music, food, language and more.

PBS said it will also launch digital content in tandem with the show in both English and Spanish to further the messages and goals of Alma’s Way. Kids, parents and teachers can find interactive games and resources on to extend learning at home.

Copyright 2021 Nexstar Inc. All rights reserved. This material may not be published, broadcast, rewritten, or redistributed.

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