By ‘our’ I mean shows my kids will ask for and that I condone. There are some shows I try get them to watch that they are not interested in and then shows they beg for that I don’t agree with.
- Doc McStuffins. Who doesn’t love Doc McStuffins, with her stay at home dad, working mom and supporting characters who have their own personalities. In case you haven’t seen it before, it’s an animated show about a little girl who fixes her toys in each episode one of the toys needs her assistance. I love that there is a princess who wants to save the knight and a big lamb who just wants to be a girly princess. Each episode has a good lesson to learn about interacting with others or understanding your feelings.
- The Wiggles. We may have just immigrated to Australia but my kids already think Sydney is their home. With four lead characters, three males and one female, a dinosaur, octopus and pirate who all sing and dance it’s musically orientated with a story line which runs through the episode. It’s a great show for little kids, my one year old stands and dances on the lounge floor throughout. There are lessons in each episode too, hand washing, teeth brushing etc. My three year old has just decided he doesn’t mind it.
- Superwhy is all about a reading. It features a little boy superhero who, together with some friends, fixes classic stories to deliver child friendly / happy endings. It is animated and good for pre-schoolers.
- Magic School Bus is old school animation. In each episode Miss Frizzle shrinks the school bus so that the kids can go on an interactive learning experience, in one episode they go into a classmates body to see why he has the flu. It’s a lovely show focused on learning.
- Leap Frog: Let’s go to school is very simple in terms of animation and it’s lead characters – two twin frogs – but it’s tops when it comes to teaching and education. It focuses on educating the kids with numbers, letters aznd also helping address issues they may have eg fear of going to school, sharing. The only downside is that this is 30 minutes which is quite long.
- Sophia The First. For those who have never watched Sophia, a little girl from the village becomes a princess when her mom marries the King. In each episode she learns a new lesson based on common virtues eg helping others and being humble. She’s kind, polite and helpful, all in all a good character.
- Sid the Science Kid is a Jim Henson animated show (digital puppetry). While Sid must be in school his inquisitiveness appeals to my 3 year old – like my son, Sid has lots of questions, what things are, how they work, where things are, why things do what they do… You know the questions you get asked a million times a day.
Other shows my kids love which are okay conceptually and which are non-frightening for under 4s are:
– Jake and the neverland pirates
– Puffin Rock
– Sarah and Duck
– Masha and Bear (dubbed from Russian I think)
– Dinosaur train
– Curious George
– Ben and Holly’s Little Kingdom
– Paw Patrol
– Blaze and the Monster Machines
Most shows nowadays have educational consultants on board to make sure there is good content so anything in the above list should add some value to your child’s life, aside from just letting you get the washing folded or dishwasher packed. And… To be honest, you can’t discount that these shows help develop their imagination and vocabulary.