I have a BIG confession!
Television is something that we let our toddler (3.5) watch.
We limit the time to 20-30 minutes and it gives us a much needed break from the hustle and bustle of the day. It’s often perfect right before dinner and when combing our toddlers hair.
Although we do allow our toddler watch television, it’s important that what’s she’s watching has some educational value and we’ve previewed it first. Since toddlers usually don’t mind watching the same show, we also often revisit episodes to discuss key points and ask questions about what’s happening with the plot.
Common Sense Media is another fantastic resource that provides reviews and age ratings ensure that children are having age-appropriate and valuable media experiences.
The following shows (in my opinion) best reinforce age- appropriate preschool social emotional growth and preschool/kindergarten readiness skills:
Daniel Tiger is hands down our favorite series and there’s even research that proves why this series is amazing for preschool aged children. Based on Mr. Roger’s Neighborhood, this show features several characters from the original land of Make-Believe. It focuses on social emotional skills such as empathy and self-regulation, as well as skills preschoolers find challenging such a potty training, body control and making new friends. Simple songs and catchy phrases help children tackle challenges in their everyday life, as they easily relate to the content and characters. It’s important to watch this show with your child to reinforce concepts and to have conversations about the topics presented in each episode.
If your preschooler loves adventure and sea creatures this show is perfect! The Octonauts are a team of animals that are always ready for aquatic adventures such as rescuing unique sea creatures and helping to keep our oceans clean. We’ve learned so many new facts about sea life through watching this show and our toddler has even become a little expert about the sea life whenever we visit the aquarium or the beach.
This show is just the sweetest! Puffin Rock expertly introduces children to ecosystems and science concepts, as they explore the island of Puffin Rock with the characters. As children watch the show, they learn a great deal about animal habitats, friendship, family, love and community.
With 37 seasons and going strong, Sesame Street is a classic! Big Bird, Oscar, Elmo and Cookie Monster still thrill and delight young children and find ways to make learning fun. The show still focuses on celebrating cultural differences, and preschool skills such as counting, singing, numbers, patterns etc. Celebrities also often make appearances on the show and as an adult it’s fun to see them engaging with the beloved puppets.
We can’t get enough of Doc McStuffins in our house! Doc McStuffins is a veterinarian who can treat her magical toy animals patients that come to life. It’s packed with lessons about safety, wellness, and kindness and makes trips to the doctors office much easier. Even more awesome, the series once featured Michelle Obama who names Doc McStuffins the “official toy doctor” for the White House!
An award winning show geared towards preschool aged children who love to use their imagination and adventure. Children will naturally be captivated by the main character a blue fox named Fig and his friends as they discover the joys of science on a magical island. The show also teaches important skills such as friendship, problem solving, rhyming and shape recognition.
It’s no secret that we LOVE Disney and Mickey Mouse Clubhouse is a fun show that features all of our beloved characters ( Mickey, Minnie, Goofy Pluto, Daisy, Donald). Each show features a different skills such as identifying numbers, shapes, colors, problem -solving and patterns etc. It also has super catchy songs and phrases that your toddler will be singing all day long!
Tell me about some of your favorite shows from preschoolers in the comments! I totally understand that watching television is not for every family, but hope this post helps parents who are looking for something fun and educational to watch with their children.
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