Kid Shows I Don’t Hate

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My children are 5 and almost 3. And I’m one of those Moms, you know, the ones that let their kids watch TV. Our television is on an embarrassing amount – but thankfully, mostly for background noise. Actually, I would say that I end up watching a lot more kid shows than my children do, because they like to put it on and then leave the room. But heaven forbid I turn it off. The instant I push the button, I can hear sobbing from the other end of the house “BUT I WAS WATCHING DORA!!”  I have no idea how they even know. It’s a sixth sense. They are so far away that I can only tell what kid it is by what show they are upset that I turned off. Dora, and it’s Redding. Wally or Fresh Beats or Ponies (shudder) and it’s Willa.

So since so much of my day is spent with these shows, it’s sort of important for them to not be migraine inducing. These are the ones I think you’ll like.

Five – The Cat in the Hat

What-the: Yep, just what you were thinking, Ben, Sally and the Cat and the Fish go on adventures together.

Why it’s good: packed with scientific learning from how to make wool, to photosynthesis, to how your body digests food. Characters are only mildly annoying – the Cat is voiced by Martin Short after all.

Four – Dinosaur Train

What-the: Buddy (a T-Rex) somehow ends up in a pteranodon nest and becomes part of the family. Buddy, and his siblings – Tiny, Shiny and Dawn ride a time travelling train through the various historical eras to learn all about different types of dinosaurs.

Why it’s good: The songs are a little much, but the art is good, the characters are sweet and well behaved, the story lines are different than every other kids show and the educational value is there. There is tons of information crammed into each episode, and unlike other “educational” shows it’s not abstract concepts – but facts. There is even a paleontologist who comes on to explain things.

Three – Peppa Pig

What-the: Peppa and her parents and her brother George, and various friends like Suzie Sheep, Pedro Pony and Danny the Dog live in a little town and basically do things that would be really boring if they weren’t so freaking funny.

Why it’s good: I don’t really know, it has no educational value, but it’s cute, and I die laughing – both at the situations and what the characters say and do. It’s hysterical. You’ll like it.

Two – Ben and Holly’s Little Kingdom

What-the: Ben, an Elf, and Holly, a fairy, live in a tiny kingdom where Holly’s Dad is the king. Along with their ladybird friend Gaston, and Nannie Plum they solve problems and have fun.

Why it’s good: It’s made by the Peppa Pig people. I like the art, although it’s pretty simple. I would say that it has no educational value unless you like your children speaking in a British accent, but it is very, very funny in a way that adults will get and kids won’t. There is also enough variety in the story lines that I’m not bored yet.

One – Wallykazam

What-the: It’s about a troll, named Wally Trollman who found a magic stick that he can use to make things appear – if they start with the letter or sound of the day. He’s joined by his trusty pet dragon Norville, and friends Gina Giant, Bob Goblin, Ogre Doug, Libby Light Sprite and Stan of the Swamp. They go on adventures and solve problems using the magic stick, (and sometimes songs) and teach your kids all sorts of reading and literacy skills in the process.

Why it’s good: The art is gorgeous. The characters are diverse and interesting. The educational value is there – it has really helped Willa with phonics and other reading theory like rhyming, opposites, and comprehension. And, the story lines are interesting and diverse enough that I don’t want to kill myself.

Bonus points: Spot the guest star voices – everyone from Jim Gaffigan to Ben Folds.

Honorable Mention:

  • Blaze and the Monster Machines – I find the stories super repetitive, but I do like that they teach math concepts.
  • Paw Patrol – again, the story lines are mind numbing, but I like how sweet and helpful the characters are.
  • Team Umizoomi – great math concepts. Characters are a little annoying. Art is very basic.

Shows that are to be avoided at all costs:

  • Caillou – oh the horror. That kid is a brat.
  • My Little Pony – the stories are so weird.
  • PJ Masks – BORING!
  • Fresh Beat Band of Spies – I don’t understand this show. They aren’t spies.
  • Dora/Mickey Mouse Club House/Diego/Super Why – I’m convinced these are the same show.

What about you? What do you like? Hate?