It’s no secret that I am mostly against electronics (read more about that here), but I do let my daughter watch about an hour of TV each day. Unfortunately, there are a lot of shows out there with questionable content. I always review the content before I decide to show her anything and Common Sense Media is really helpful for some preliminary guidance. I’m pretty tough when it comes to screening what my child watches, so here are my picks for shows that provide positive content either educationally or socially and sometimes both!
Curious George is a favorite in our house. While some might describe George as a bit mischievous, I tend to view him on the positive side. There are lots of educational concepts presented here. Most are STEM-based and there are still lots of problem-solving skills and critical thinking opportunities presented (more ideas for STEM activities here). The adults in George’s life can be silly and George almost always gets himself into some harmless “trouble” but he always learns something. There are no ominous figures or villains, and the interactions are always kind and respectful. There are also lots of silly moments for kids (and adults) to enjoy.
Daniel Tiger is a great show to help kids learn about their emotions. Both Daniel and his friends experience behaviors and feelings that are typical of toddler and preschooler. S even tackle some tough topics like potty time and pets dying. I love that there is always a little jingle that is easy for kids to remember. Again, there are no villains or dark creatures. Good clean fun for kids of all ages.
We recently started watching this show, and I was not disappointed. This show is a “reboot” of the original, so there are some slight changes. This show is filled with colorful “imagination” sequences where the characters take the viewer on fun-filled adventures. I love how each of the characters is spotlighted in different episodes. They all have struggles like learning to be patient, feeling left out, or being afraid. The issues are addressed in a gentle and fun way. There are lots of positive interactions that encourage social and emotional development.
This show is a little strange (talking puppies in a town that is home to an ocean liner but has a population of ten) but has some really great messages about being helpful and working together. Each episode has an “emergency” that the team of pups need to remedy. Like Muppet Babies, each of the pups has a chance in the spotlight. Since the pups are all different, it’s great to see how each of them brings their own unique skills to a problem. The mayor of the neighboring town is the “villain” but he isn’t frightening and is always outsmarted by the pups.
I absolutely love this show on PBS! In addition to being very engaging, the group of “super readers” encourages letter recognition throughout the show. They always solve the problem of the day through reading and spelling. My daughter loves watching it and guessing the super story answer. Parents of emerging readers will find this show helpful to reinforce what the kiddos are learning in school.
There are probably many more shows out there that fit the bill for wholesome and educational programming, but these are my favorites for kids six and under. What are some of your favorite children’s shows?
**You can see the new guidelines from the American Academy of Pediatrics here**
Mom, wife, educator, and loyal friend. Passionate about all things reading and writing. Sharing parenting tips with an educator’s lens.