Hands up if you suffer "Mummy Guilt" over TV.
Hand's up if you wish you could boost your kids learning during restful times.
*Both hands up*
I used to spend at least a portion of the week imploring my child to make better viewing choices, trying to regulate or manage time spent in front of the box versus time in book or activities, or feeling at least semi guilty and simultaneously grateful that we're able to plug kiddo in to get other things done (or run to the kitchen and hide behind a pantry door to eat chocolate by the fistful and pray for stamina.)
I summon to thee, a magnificent list of TV shows your kids will fall in love with and you feel they might just obsorb something mentally nutritious from.
This is my gateway to TV peace. Digital well being. If I need an hour (or two, or three, or truthfully sometimes more) or even if it's simply a TV time of the day, then this is my go to list for him to pick from.
There's plenty out there that kids love which is less fulfilling. There's some which I'd prefer him not to watch. That's not a snobby motion, it's just a choice that I feel my child shouldn't be exposed to certain things, even if they're U or PG ratings.
We tend to stick to either Cbeebies or Disney Junior at the moment for channels (as in, actual tellybox channel, complete with adverts as apposed to Netflix and series linked shows) as I trust those producers on the whole for what they select. But even CBBC and the other children's channels have shows I'm either not confident in, or I haven't seen before myself, so we go with caution. That's just me. You do you.
I tend to go for a ratio of 1 third 2 thirds for viewing over a day or a week, which ever is more realistic.
Think of it like food.
Sweet, lovely, gently nurturing and covering anything from healthy social development, to STEM learning, to zoology and beyond. Get it in there.
Banana Pancakes With Chocolate Chips And Syrup
Fun and harmless, creative play boosting but wouldn't-want-to-eat-too-much-or-you're-going-to-get-serious-tummy-ache type choices.
Sugar With A Spoon Right Out Of The Canister
Fun, challenging, hyperactivity inducing but dangerously close to headaches and cavities. Fun stuff with little agenda other than to simply keep kids hooked and often aimed for older kids.
Sometimes Leo wants to get a good fix of something which is less 'learny/healthy' but still not pure sugar in my books.
I'm happy with 1 third of the time spent on that. For us that tends to be How To Train Your Dragon series, Pokémon, Steven Universe, PJ Masks, Lion Guard, Disney movies, very select Minecraft channels and toy youtube channels, etc.
The other 2 thirds would be from the Blueberry Smoothie menu! These are all choices he absolutely loves so consider these kid recommendations too! All of these choices can be found either on Netflix, Hopster, Youtube or TV channels set to record or series link.
Don't think there isn't pushback from Leo, as there often is, but at the end of the day, he loves these shows, they feed him, and sometimes as parents we have to find creative ways of breaking the cycle. Often i'll sit and watch an episode of something from the list with him and share a little treat together, or get out a blanket, something to divert that change, to get him back into it after something a little less healthy.
These all have dynamic and engaging story telling, beautiful characters with generously kind interactions and relationship exploration, or in the case of non-fictional based programmes, are appropriate and/or fun in their unpacking of their field or topic!
LITERACY & LANGUAGE
Geraldine The Giraffe / Mr Thorne
SCIENCE, TECHNOLOGY, ENGINEERING & MATHEMATICS
Sid The Science Kid - Hopster/PBS
Peg + Cat - Netflix/Tiny Pop/Hopster
Earth To Luna - Netflix/Tiny Pop
Storybots - Netflix/Hopster
Curious George - Disney Jr/PBS
Numberblocks - Cbeebies
Andy's Dinosaur Adventures - Cbeebies
Magic School Bus - Netflix
Magic School Bus Rides Again - Netflix
Doctor Binoc - Youtube
SciKids Show - Hopster/Youtube
Blaze And The Monster Machines - Nick Jr/Netflix
Maddie Moates - Youtube
Monster Math Squad - Netflix/Hopster
Team Umizoomi - Netflix/Nick Jr
Justin Time - History/Geography - Netflix
Octonauts - Marine Biology - Cbeebies/Netflix/Hopster
Wild Kratts - Zoology - Netflix/Youtube/PBS
Zoboomafoo - Zoology - Youtube
Go Jetters - Geography - Cbeebies/Netflix/Hopster
Dinosaur Train - Palaeontology - PBS/Youtube/Nick Jr?
Little Einsteins - The Arts - Youtube/DVD
Blue Planet - Marine Biology - Netflix
Walking With Dinosaurs - Palaeontology - Netflix
Planet Earth - Zoology/Ecology - Netflix
(Note, other animal documentaries, mostly produced by the BBC on Netflix include Frozen Planet, Wild Caribbean, Wild Alaska, Africa, The Hunt, Life, and Shark)
Peep And The Big Wide World - Youtube
Hey Duggee! - Netflix/Hopster/Cbeebies
Arthur - Hopster/PBS
Doc McStuffins -Disney Junior
Get Well Soon - Cbeebies
Sarah & Duck - Cbeebies/Netflix
I Can Cook - Cbeebies
Something Special - Cbeebies
Bindi's Bootcamp - Netflix
Luna Petunia - Netflix/Tiny Pop?
Tinga Tinga Tales - Cbeebies
So this is often how i navigate my "it's already been a Minecraft video heavy week, let's top up the Brain Game!" veins of thought. I hope it helps to inspire you!
Feel free to add other suggestions in the comments!