Disney, ‘The Roots’ Partner for Cartoon Teaching Toddlers About Racism, Social Justice

Rap group The Roots are partnering with Disney Junior for several short cartoons to teach kids aged 2 to 7 about race, racism, and social justice issues, Breitbart reports.

The show, entitled Rise Up, Sing Out, is designed for children ages 2-7-years-old and their families. It will present the “concepts of race, racism and social justice to young viewers and will air on Disney Junior,” according to Rolling Stone.

The series is set to be executive produced by The Roots members Ahmir “Questlove” Thompson and Tariq “Black Thought” Trotter.

“We hope these shorts will encourage the young audience to recognize and celebrate our differences as human beings while learning the tools to navigate real-world issues of racial injustice,” Trotter and Thompson explained in a statement to The Associated Press.

The group wants to “empower and uplift the future generations in the way we know best, through music.”

Joe D’Ambrosia, Disney Junior’s general manager and senior vice president said in the statement “Disney Junior recognizes that children are experiencing a multitude of feelings around what’s happening in our world today and that families are struggling to discuss sensitive issues around race,”

D’Ambrosia also said that the series of short cartoons will give parents “the tools and knowledge to address these important topics with their preschoolers in an age-appropriate manner through music and relatable kid experiences,” Breitbart reported.

A viewing guide for parents is also being developed for parents by an activist group called The Conscious Kid, Disney Junior said. The organization’s website states that they are “dedicated to equity and promoting healthy racial identity development in youth.”

Rise Up, Sing Out may debut across all Disney Junior platforms as early as the end of this year.

About Catherine Smith

Catherine Smith is a newcomer to Washington D.C. She met and married an American journalist and moved to D.C. from the U.K. She graduated with a B.A. in Graphics, Media, and Communications and worked in design and retail in the U.K.

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