Let's be honest, kids watch t.v. While I can list the studies, opinions etc. of effects of too much screen time it does not speak to the realities. What is a reality is the control of what kind of t.v. shows your child consumes. Here are some shows that are appropriate and educational.
1. ODD Squad
- A PBS show that follows kid detectives as they use math to explore incidents in their neighborhood. The majority of actors are children so kids can easily connect with the characters. Great for kids from first to third grade.
2. Wild Kratts
- Another PBS show that focuses on biology and zoology. Each episode the Kratt brothers are on a mission to save an animal. During the mission the kids learn about the animal and its environment. My kindergarten and first grade class loved this show.
3. Magic School Bus
- All seasons are on Netflix! Although this is a bit outdated (1990's) its definitely still relevant. Science teacher Ms. Fizzle and her magic school bus (get it) goes on science adventures. From becoming a bee and learning about beehives to traveling back in time to the dinosaurs. Netflix is doing a reboot of the show to be released in 2016. I would play episodes that related to a science theme in the class and asked follow up questions that connected the video and what we learned so far.
4. Good Eats
- You can get episodes on YouTube. This is a great science/history/cooking show for middle to high school kids. Alton Brown is the host and the show is a cross between Bill Nye and food. He tells the story behind the creation of the food in each episode (history), gives scientific facts of the different chemical components of the ingredients (science) and then cooks and taste the resulting product (cooking). The host is very entertaining and don't be surprised to see episodes in which he dresses in characters from different time periods. Interesting fact: my high school chemistry teacher used some of these episodes in my consumer chemistry course, which I loved!