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Tuesday, October 28 2014 10:35

PBS KIDS launches an early digital rollout for new math series, ODD SQUAD

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PBS KIDS VIPAs of today, kids can meet the ODD SQUAD and start getting a jump on those math skills. Previewed this past May at the PBS Annual Meeting in San Francisco (I was there) ODD SQUAD will premiere November 26 on PBS stations, but families can now enjoy six full-length 11-minute “Case Files” from the series, as well as many additional clips that include profiles of the agents, agent training videos, recruitment videos and more, are now available for free on pbskids.org, the PBS KIDS Video App, and PBS KIDS on Roku, Apple TV, Chromecast and Amazon Fire. In addition, two games and parent resources are now available on the series’ website

 ODD SQUAD focuses on two young agents, Olive and Otto, who are part of Odd Squad, an agency whose mission is to save the day whenever something unusual happens in their town. A math concept is embedded in each of their cases, as Olive and Otto work together to problem-solve and set things right. Each episode of ODD SQUAD will consist of two 11-minute stories as well as interstitial content. ODD SQUAD, aimed at kids ages 5-8, premieres on Wednesday, November 26, 2014, on PBS KIDS with a special one-hour broadcast of two back-to-back episodes: “Zero Effect/Bad Luck Bears” and “Soundcheck/Double Trouble.” The series will air weekdays following its premiere on PBS stations (check local listings).

ODD SQUAD “Case Files” Descriptions – Now Available on PBS KIDS Digital Platforms
  • Bad Luck Bears: When odd things start happening to the Bears basketball team, Olive and Otto must set things straight before the big game.
  • Soundcheck: Olive and Otto must figure out how and why things are disappearing around town when all Otto wants to do is listen to a song by his favorite band, Soundcheck.
  • My Better Half: When symmetrical objects become vandalized, Olive and Otto must figure out why.
  • The Confalones: Olive and Otto are called in to help when objects and, eventually, people start disappearing inside an Italian restaurant.
  • Oscar and the Oscarbots: When several of Oscar’s Oscarbots (robots made in his own image) become lost in town, Olive and Otto must help him find them.
  • Picture Day: Otto and Olive must figure out why people in town are becoming plaid and striped. 

ODD SQUAD’s website offers a variety of engaging games, activities and videos for kids, as well as parent and caregiver resources. Children can sign up to become Odd Squad agents online and earn rewards as they play math games inspired by the series. Online games include “Down the Tubes,” where children can discover the vast network of tubes that serve as the main method of transportation for all Odd Squad agents. Players use their mathematical savvy to repair the tubes using pieces of different lengths and shapes. Also available on pbskids.org/oddsquad, “Catch the Centigurps” is a side-view arcade-style game in which players use gadgets to collect Centigurps (fuzzy creatures that are drawn to spherical objects) as they bounce wildly around the room. New content, including additional games and parent resources, will continually be added to the website following the November 26 premiere of ODD SQUAD.

THE ROCK FATHER is a PBS KIDS VIP (Very Involved Parent), and works regularly to spread the word on great PBS KIDS programming and educational initiatives.
James Zahn

James Zahn is best-known as The Rock Father™, a media personality, commentator, adventurer and raconteur. He is the Owner, Publisher, and Editor-in-Chief of THE ROCK FATHER™ Magazine. In January, 2019, after nearly a decade of publishing The Rock Father™ Magazine, he joined Adventure Media and Events as Senior Editor of The Toy Book—the leading trade publication for the toy industry since 1984, as well as The Pop Insider — a destination for all things pop culture, and The Toy Insider — the leading consumer guide for toys and games. He is also editor of The Toy Report, a weekly newsletter published by The Toy Book each Thursday. Zahn has over 27 years of experience in the entertainment, retail and publishing industries.

He regularly serves as a Brand Ambassador and spokesperson for several Globally-recognized pop culture and lifestyle brands in addition to consulting for a number of toy manufacturers. 

Creatively, James has directed/edited music videos, lyric videos, and album trailers for bands such as FEAR FACTORY, has appeared as an actor in feature films and commercials, written comic books, and performed in bands. He currently serves as an artist manager and video director for PRODUCT OF HATE, whose debut album was released by Napalm Records in 2016, distributed by ADA/Warner Music in the U.S. with Universal Music handling global. A new album has been completed and is set for release this year.

Zahn and/or his work have been featured in/on CNN, NBC, ABC, WGN, CBS, GCTN, G4, The Chicago Tribune, Forbes, MarketWatch, Reuters, BusinessWire, Fangoria, Starlog and more. He's appeared as a music expert on CNN's AC360 alongside Anderson Cooper, and has been interviewed by Larry King. In the past he served as a writer for the Netflix Stream Team,  Fandango Family and PBS KIDS, penned articles for Sprout and PopSugar, and was a contributor to Chicago Parent.

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