Editor’s note: this guest post was written by Tami, known as mummyoftwo on Babyhuddle. Tami is a mum to two beautiful children, 4 year old Little Mr A and 3 month old Little Miss A, and wife to the wonderful Big Mr A. She is currently on maternity leave from her job as a Law Costs Draftsman at a local firm of Solicitors and loving being a stay at home mum!
Thinking back to TV when I was a child I used to look back with rose tinted glasses, fondly remembering shows such as Fraggle Rock, Raggy Dolls, Rainbow and Button Moon. I thought they were amazing as a child and never imagined there would come a day where I though ‘what on earth is this!’.
Recently CITV had a weekend to look back at all of these ‘classic’ kids’s TV shows to celebrate their 30th anniversary. I recorded some of the shows to watch with Little Mr A and to reminisce and introduce him to ‘good’ kid’s TV. How wrong I was!
Watching Fraggle Rock I was quite disturbed! It made no sense whatsoever and was nothing like I remembered! Rainbow and Button Moon were no better, in fact some of the old children’s programmes I thought were quite scary! My childhood memories were shattered and we turned back to reliable old CBeebies and Disney Junior.
Watching these old programmes has made me realise just how good the new children’s TV programmes are (with the exception of some such as In The Night Garden – how the Pontipines survive with so many kids I’ll never know!).
Most of the programmes on CBeebies are educational as well as being fun and engaging. Shows such as Alphablocks have helped Little Mr A with his phonics and Numberjacks really helped him with his numbers! I think Mr Tumble/Justin is a great role model for all young children and all his shows are a hit in our house. It is also great that CBeebies shows a wide variety of different people of all ethnic backgrounds and disabilities. It is much easier to explain to a child about people being different in the comfort of your own home, rather than having them shouting something out in the street! For us, living in a small village with a very white population, and not many people with disabilities it is good to be able to explain these things properly to Little Mr A.
Another favourite channel in our house has always been Disney Junior. Mickey Mouse and Jake & the Neverland Pirates never failed to keep Little Mr A quiet (quite some feat!) whilst teaching him numbers, shapes and general life skills at the same time without him even noticing!
Since Little Mr A has started school he has become increasingly interested in the more ‘grown up’ children’s programmes such as Young Justice, Batman, Garfield and even the cartoon version of Mr Bean (which is just as horrendous as the TV show!). It is quite sad that he does not want to watch CBeebies and Disney much any more as we used to be able to sit down and enjoy those programmes together as a family. He still likes to watch them occasionally and, as his baby sister is growing, he will often use her as an excuse to put them on!
I am looking forward to re-discovering all of these programmes again as my little girl grows and also looking forward to the new shows that will inevitably be introduced as she grows.
I would say kids TV is definitely improving for the better and, if you still think back fondly to those old shows you used to watch, keep on doing just that, don’t go back and watch them now, you may just regret it!
(Disclaimer – I do not let my children sit in front of the TV all day but do think it can be useful when you need those 5 or 10 minutes to get a job done or at the end of the day when they need ‘chill out’ time!!)