UMIGO Launches to Teach Kids Math
October 23, 2012

Aiming to be a kind of updated Schoolhouse Rock, UMIGO uses animation and music to teach kids math. The name is a compression of “You Make It Go”, and the brand has launched programs in 10 cities. (See below for list.) Here’s a video explaining their goals:

Here’s one of their cartoons, “Rocketbox”, exploring time with contributions from Bootsy Collins:

You can see others at their YouTube channel. Here’s their press release:

DHX Media’s W!LDBRAIN Entertainment, together with outreach partners Children’s Museum of Manhattan (CMOM), WTTW Chicago Public Media, and research firm Michael Cohen Group, have introduced UMIGO, the first of its kind transmedia math property, to 10 markets across the U.S. through children’s museums and public television stations. They were joined on October 4 by Parliament funkadelic legend Bootsy Collins and the UMIGO characters at the UMIGO outreach kick-off event held at CMOM…. Together, CMOM and WTTW will continue to expand the program into additional markets over the next three years.

UMIGO is the first-of-its-kind transmedia property that is designed to engage today’s generation of children between the ages of six and eight in the exploration of mathematical concepts. UMIGO inspires kids to invent, build, and create through collaborative, interactive play. To date, the property consists of animated music videos, original music, and outreach materials such as a “Stack Attack” game that teaches math principles. These materials are currently available through outreach programs. DHX Media’s W!LDBRAIN Entertainment will be releasing a series of apps, games, and an online interactive community featuring characters Bit, the magical box who has the tools needed to build; Dizzy, the blue bundle of energy who provides inspiration; Bean, who helps learners create whatever they can dream; and the UMIs, who help learners understand weight, measurement, and volume.

“UMIGO has dual goals — to educate while it entertains. We know through extensive research that our tested curriculum-based UMIGO content is meeting both of these goals by engaging children in fun and interactive ways where they live, learn, and play,” said Michael Polis, creator of UMIGO. Polis, who shared with the group at the outreach event that the seed of the idea for UMIGO came from his three children, is also executive producer of the hit television series Yo Gabba Gabba! and serves as President of W!LDBRAIN Entertainment and Executive Vice President of Branded Entertainment and Consumer Products, DHX Media.

UMIGO outreach programs seek to foster greater student academic achievement for elementary school-aged children by working with organizations that target low-income children to promote school readiness. The UMIGO outreach program will begin immediately in 10 markets across the U.S., including New York City (Children’s Museum of Manhattan); Bangor, ME (Maine Discovery Museum); Bozeman, MT (Bozeman Children’s Museum); Oak Ridge, TN (Children’s Museum of Oak Ridge); New Orleans, LA (Louisiana Children’s Museum); San Jose, CA (Children’s Discovery Museum of San Jose); Chicago, Illinois (WTTW); Tacoma, WA (KBTC Public Television); Johnston, IA (Iowa Public Television); and Carbondale, IL (WSIU).

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