Opposites, or antonyms, are word pairs that are adversly complementary - such as hot and cold, near and far, and up and down. Opposites are a common theme in eductional media, as they teach vocabulary, relationships and object properties. Sesame Street has featured opposites in many sketches, songs and books. Likewise, Bear in the Big Blue House has taught opposites to viewers.

Bear in the Big Blue House

The Bear in the Big Blue House episode "As Different as Day and Night" focuses on the concept of opposites. Bear decides betteen cold iced tea or hot tea. Tutter and Bear explore big and small. Pip and Pop show empty and full. Real kids discuss opposites they know - including hot and cold, left and right, day and light, hard and easy, and even apples and no apples. And in the Shadow segment, Shadow presents a feature called "Tales of Incredible Opposites," featuring a story about Jack Sprat and his wife. The episode also features the song "Opposites."

The episode was adapted into the book Bear Loves Opposites!.

Sesame Street Sketches

Picture Summary / EKA Description
More and Less
Episode 0004
Cookie Monster drinks Kermit's glass of milk, which he was going to use to explain "more" and "less". When Kermit insults Cookie Monster, several of Cookie Monster's monster pals gang up on Kermit, prompting him to point out that there are now more monsters and less frogs.
Bert Explains "Before" and "After."
Episode 0007
Ernie wants to have some cookies, which are on a covered plate. Bert asks Ernie if he knows the difference between "before" and "after." Ernie isn't sure. Bert explains that before Ernie can have the cookies, he has to lift the cover, and that after he lifts the cover, he can have the cookies. Ernie tries this a few times, until he loses his appetite for dinner.
Kermit and Snerfs

Tall and Short / Big and Little
Episode 0015
Two Snerfs help Kermit teach the difference between tall and short, until they keep changing sizes.Kermit then changes the lecture about little and big with different-sized monsters: Frank and Harold... but he also meets Splurge.
Same and Different
Episode 0018
Kermit talks about "same" by showing two identical rectangles. Cookie Monster takes a bite from one of them, making them different.
Loud and Soft
Episode 0039
Kermit uses a radio to demonstrate "soft". Grover shows up and wants to talk about loud, turning the radio up. After the two demonstrate soft and loud a few times, Big V appears and eats the radio.
Forwards and Backwards
Episode 0069
An Anything Muppet boy teaches "forward" and "backward" with a group of Muppet kids, hippies, and Grover who keep running over the boy when his back is turned.
First and Last
Episode 0116
A group of Monsters, led by a hippie, play a game where they march in a line and then switch direction. Grover wants to be first and not last, but can't keep up with the ever switching directions. This sketch was later remade, with the blue version of Grover and with the monsters being replaced.
Here and There
Episode 0127
Kermit and Brian discuss here and there.
Beginning, Middle, and End
Episode 0138
Betty Lou introduces three characters named Beginning, Middle, and End. At first she only talks with Beginning and End, who attempt to tell a story, but without a middle their story ends up becoming very dull. Ater getting Middle to join them, the story becomes much more interesting... too interesting, as Middle can't stop reciting the story. End must cut him off, and the three end up quarreling with each other.
Full/Empty Room
Episode 0148
An Anything Muppet demonstrates empty by leaving his room, soon Grover and his friends including Cookie Monster occupy the room making it full. The Anything Muppet comes in and scares the monsters away leaving it empty.
Above and Below
Episode 0149
Grover uses his airplane to demonstrate "above" and "below".
Quiet and Loud
Episode 0150
Bert says that he's going to demonstrate quiet by talking quietly to Ernie. But when he tries, Ernie claims that he can't hear what Bert is saying. Finally, Bert gets frustrated and shouts at Ernie; Ernie tells Bert not to be so loud.
Over and Under
Episode 0198
Herbert Birdsfoot demonstrates "over" and "under" by having Grover lie over a mattress. Then Grover lies under the mattress, and Herbert drives the point home by adding more objects over Grover.
Up and Down
Episode 0239
Professor Hastings uses a pogo stick to demonstrate up and down, and ends up jumping into a pond.
Long and Short Ladders
Episode 0276
Kermit has Grover show the difference between short and long with ladders. He is amazed that Grover can carry the long ladder by himself, but then learns that Grover is on both ends.
Here and There
Episode 0292
Kermit and Grover demonstrate "here" and "there".
Empty and Full
Episode 0322
The Amazing Mumford waves his magic wand over a transparent glass cookie jar and makes the jar become full of cookies and then empty (over and over) as an anxious Cookie Monster watches.
Heavy and Light
Episode 0406
Grover demonstrates heavy and light. First, he picks up a heavy barbell. Then he tries to pick up a light feather, but he can't move it. It turns out that the feather is attached to the top of Big Bird's head.
RF loudsoft
Loud and Soft
Episode 0510
Roosevelt Franklin makes sure his class knows the difference between loud and soft.
Heavy and Light
Episode 0549
Ernie, Bert and Shola discuss the difference between "heavy" and "light".
Short and Long
Episode 0560
Grover does things for a long time while Kermit does things for a short time. Grover gets worn out and asks to switch places, and then they demonstrate by tickling each other.
Bert's brother Bart visits
Episode 0594
Bert expects a visit from his identical twin brother Bart. Ernie notes that they're alike in many ways, but their major difference is that Bart has a sense of humor.
Up and Down
Episode 0693
Kermit has Grover help him demonstrate up and down by having Grover climb UP a sky-high flight of stairs -- while Kermit takes the elevator to the top. Exhausted, Grover faints and rolls DOWN the staircase.
Long and Short
Episode 0750
An Anything Muppet man arrives at a gas station, hoping to be filled in a short time. Instead, his car takes a long time to fill while the attendant fills other cars in a short time.
HerryJohnJohn loudsoft
Loud and Soft
Episode 0774
Herry and John-John demonstrate loud and soft.
Up and Down
Episode 0784
Herry asks John-John if he knows the difference between up and down.
Sesame Street 2 Near and Far
Near and Far
Episode 0787
A remake of a first season sketch.
Light and Heavy
Episode 0900
Kermit has Grover help him demonstrate light and heavy. Kermit carries a feather and a ping-pong ball, while Grover has to carry a piano and a boulder. Grover then asks if he can carry something light (a balloon which carries him away!) and Kermit gets the heavy thing (a submarine sandwich).
Identity crisis
Episode 0952
Ernie and Cookie Monster note that they're the same in a lot of ways, and then become paranoid that they can't tell each other apart. An Anything Muppet tells them how they are different, which relieves them of their stress.
Fast and Slow Cookies
Episode 0989
Ernie promises Cookie Monster that he's not going to be tricked out of his plate of cookies this time. Cookie Monster asks Ernie if he's going to eat his cookies fast or slow and demonstrates by eating the plate of cookies, and in the process finishes the entire plate.
Near and Far (on Ice Skates)
Episode 1040
A full-body walk-around version of Grover demonstrates near and far by ice skating, with Kermit the Frog giving commands in voice-over.
"The Opposite Song"
Episode 1111
The Opposite Song is Little Chrissy and the Alphabeats' ode to antonyms and the difficulties they present in relationships, as when one person goes up and the other down, and one is false, while the other is true. On the show, Little Chrissy danced with a long-armed long-haired woman who did the exact opposite of everything he did.
Upstairs, Downstairs
Episode 1271
Grover runs up and down a flight of stairs.
First and Last
Episode 1327
Kermit talks to people waiting in line for a game being held at the SuperGame Stadium. One lady is quick to point out that Kermit is last in line, and when he goes to the front of the line to talk to someone else, he is recognized as being first in line.
Up and Down
Episode 1449
Grover asks Lisa about the difference between up and down.
Frog on the Street - Loud and Soft
Loud and Soft
Episode 1452
Kermit asks a man (Jim Thurman) on the street if he can help demonstrate the difference between loud and soft.
Same and Different
Episode 1453
Kermit and Kimberly talk about how they're different and the same.

Quiet and Loud
Episode 1858
In a subway station, two Anything Muppets observe how loud and quiet it is.
Grover at the Supermarket
First and Last
Episode 1939
Grover waits in line at a supermarket. He generously lets two people go in front of him, but then explains that you can't always let everyone go before you, or else you'll always be last in line. When he finally gets to the register and is first in line, the cashier says the register is closed. Grover considers following a customer to a pickle party...
Beginning, Middle, End
Episode 1974
In an attempt to bring culture to an educational concept, Maurice performs a dramatic number about “beginning”, “middle”, and “end” , with Bruce supplying piano accompaniment.
Ernie and Ernestine's differences
Episode 2123
Ernie talks about the differences between himself and his cousin, Ernestine.
First and Last
Episode 2226
Grover the lumberjack thinks he is the first to arrive for supper, but he gets trampled by a gang of French-Canadian lumberjacks who get to the food table before he has a chance to get his snow boots off. By the time he finally gets them off, a grizzly bear grabs the last plate of food.
Front and Behind
Episode 2233
Sesame Street News Flash: Kermit encounters a distressed Little Bo Peep, whose sheep is missing. They both observe every sheep that walks by - the first sheep has its tail in front (on its face); the second one has its tail in the middle (on its back), and the third one has no tail. The fourth one has a tail where it should be: behind. However, it claims to be Mary's little lamb.
Happy and Sad
Happy and Sad
Episode 2290
Kermit talks about Happy and Sad with help from Elmo. Elmo wants to play tag with Kermit but he can't not until he's done explaining happy and sad.
Loud and Soft
Episode 2375
The Professor (Sid Caesar) explains the laws of physics, which begin with soft and loud (as demonstrated by Fluffy).
Loud and Quiet
Episode 2529
Elmo loudly interrupts Kermit's demonstration of "quiet" and "loud". Elmo loudly insists on helping Kermit demonstrate the difference, and Kermit manages to get Elmo to whisper as they talk about being quiet.
Fast and Slow
Episode 2582
Grover is the newest employee at a fast food franchise that serves such delicacies as O'Fish, O'Salad, O'Rye Bread, and O'Milk. However, this is a different kind of "fast food" restaurant: the food zips by the customer on trays across the counter, and falls to the floor if it's not caught in time. Mr. Johnson is not ready for this, so he asks if there's any "slow food." There is, but it's served by a turtle, who takes longer than Mr. Johnson wants to wait.
Front and Back
Episode 2588
Grover shows Torian the difference between front and back.
First and Last
Episode 2607
In an episode of Sneak Peek Previews, Oscar and Telly watch The Last Emperor.
Above and Below
Episode 2615
Grover and Zelda look above and below.
Up and Down
Episode 2617
Kermit climbs the famous beanstalk and, on the way, passes Jack, who warns him not to go up. He breaches the clouds and meets a giant, and goes down the beanstalk.
"Opposite Stuff"
Episode 2630
Bip Bippadotta sings a song about opposites, including such demonstrations as "up" and "down", and "near" and "far", in front of a black background.
Heavy and Light
Episode 2650
Ernie wants to play a game with Bert about heavy and light. Bert surprisingly wants to play. Ernie shows the audience all the light objects including a tissue, cotton candy and a feather. Bert has to bring in all the heavy objects including a barbell, a boulder and the piano.
The Opposite Game
Episode 2675
Against Bert's will, Ernie plays a game with him in which he says a word which is the opposite of every word Bert emphasizes. When Bert finally agrees to PLAY, Ernie becomes stumped, since he can't figure out of the opposite of the word PLAY.
Fast and Slow
Episode 2690
The hare challenges the tortoise to a rematch: this time, the slow tortoise comes equipped with a jet-pack so he can go fast.
In and Out
Episode 2696
Kermit describes the times it is appropriate to use the in and out doors. To his dismay, a group of monsters keeps going out the in door.
Near and Far
Episode 2859
Grover demonstrates near and far on a surfboard.
Front and Back
Episode 2878
Big Bird recites a poem about front and back.
Here and There
Episode 3130
Grover gives a brief explanation of here and there.
The First and Last Cookie
Episode 3224
Cookie Monster is about to eat cookies when Prairie Dawn asks him which cookie he will eat first. He then panics when he's about to eat the last cookie, thinking that that will be the last cookie forever.
Above and Below
Episode 3367
Elmo and Zoe demonstrate above and below with a cloud.
Elmo and Zoe's Opposites
Episode 3370
Elmo shows Zoe how to play the opposite game.
Near and Far
Episode 3392
Zoe uses Wolfgang to demonstrate near and far.
Front and Back
Episode 3411
Zoe demonstrates front and back using Wolfgang and a fish.

Episode 3492
Ernie tries to do everything quietly while Bert is reading. Bert gets annoyed and shouts at Ernie, so Ernie thinks it's okay to make loud noise again.
Forward and Backward
Episode 3493
Elmo and Telly show "forward" and "backward".
Ernie Walks Forwards and Backwards
Episode 3534
While Bert is trying to read a book about pigeons, Ernie practices walking backwards and always bumps into Bert when he does. To solve this problem, Ernie pushes Bert's chair (with Bert in it) out of the apartment.
Light and Dark
Episode 3784
Kermit intends to talk about light and dark, so he turns his living room lamp off. Grover enters, leaving the door open so that the room doesn't stay dark. He tries to help by eliminating all light in the room so neither of them can see.
"Near Far Monsters" A song performed by four monsters about being near and being far.
In and Out When Bert reads a book called "In and Out", Ernie comes up with an "In and Out" game, where he keeps running in and out through the front door.

Sesame Street Books