We know no greater monkey than Curious George…not that we’re friends with too many monkeys (wait, we actually are). This is one primate who knows how to have fun, no matter what he’s doing. Starting today, fans of his PBS Kids show will be treated to out-of-this-world series of adventures as George heads to outer space during “Curious George Goes to Mars” week. From now until May 23rd, this little monkey has his hands full: from making tortillas, to chasing stars and stripes and, of course, checking out none other than the Red Planet. A must-see week of kids’ programming, this is one show that has plenty of appeal!
In a Nutshell: Quit monkeying around and set your DVR to record Curious George, with new episodes all this week on PBS Kids.
My kindergartner has found her latest heroine: PBS Kids’ Peg+Cat. If you’re not already familiar with the precocious preschooler, she and her sidekick kitty are often on the quest to solve the problem du jour–and with a sense of humor intact. Beginning this week, four new episodes will air that feature the dynamic duo on their latest problem-solving adventures. Because Peg+Cat finds creative ways to make math more engaging for its young viewers, you can expect plenty of problem-solving puzzlers in these episodes. Highlights include “The Arch Villain Problem,” during which alter egos Super Peg and Cat Guy must defend the make-belief city of Mathtropolis, and “The Long Line Problem,” one that envisions the joy being first in line (every parent’s dream!). No matter what Peg and her crazy kitty are up to, she’s found a few followers in this house.
In a Nutshell: DVR alert: new adventures of Peg+Cat to air all week. Nothing new to watch? Problem solved.
How will you and your family be celebrating Earth Day? For starters, we’ll be filling up on water from the tap instead of stocking up on those fancy-schmancy bottles that come in super packs bigger than our car. We’re also gearing up to plant our annual garden, one that’s been on hiatus in the last few years but that we’re determined to start up again (can’t wait for that fresh mint scent that wafts through the open windows…). And naturally, we’ll be tuning into a special episode of WordGirl airing on PBS Kids, April 22nd (check your local listings for times). We like this show in general because it proves that reading is cool, even for superheroes. In honor of Earth Day, the show’s monthly edition of WordGirl News is featuring “recycle” as its word of the month. Viewers will be able to watch WordGirl foil an enraged Birthday Girl who refuses to share her big day with a celebration for the Earth. Let’s just say that our heroine saves the day, not to mention the planet.
In a Nutshell Saving the planet, one word at a time. WordGirl packs a mean punch in her crime-fighting, vocabulary-building ways.
They say that cats have nine lives, but if there’s one kitty who’s exceeded all expectations, it’s The Cat in the Hat. The famous feline is, of course, the brainchild of Dr. Seuss who would have turned 110 year old this coming Sunday (now that’s a lot of birthday candles!). In honor of his special day, PBS Kids is airing an all-new, one-hour The Cat in the Hat Knows A Lot About That! special on Monday, March 3rd, followed by new half-hour episodes for the remainder of the week. My 5-year-old loves to start her day being entertained by the Cat’s clever antics. It doesn’t hurt that she learns a thing or two along the way. This coming week, viewers will be treated to different episodes about balancing, making marbles from sand and how cotton is made into clothes. Check your local listings for times, and be sure to set your DVR. And the party doesn’t stop once the new episodes have aired: PBS Kids has launched a new mobile-friendly game for Cat in the Hat fans. Marblelous Marvel Coaster lets kids create their own Seussian roller coasters, and is available for download.
Happy Valentine’s Day! There’s so much love in our house today, I can hardly stand it! And that’s just from my kids (wink, wink). Maybe some of that warmth can help melt the 14 some-odd inches of snow just outside our doors. Can you guess what we’ll be doing over winter break? (Hint: the answer isn’t shoveling…). Well, if the weather continues to remain frightful and the kiddies have had their fill of sledding, snowman-building and the like, it never hurts to hunker down and tune into a new show. Lucky for us, PBS Kids is airing an entire new week of Daniel Tiger’s Neighborhood starting on Monday. Dubbed “Daniel’s Big Feelings Week”, each episode will tackle a different emotion–like frustration and jealousy–and help Daniel and viewers work through them together. My girls love Daniel for different reasons: my 9-year-old thinks it’s funny to see what bothers little kids (now that she has perspective, wise old woman that she is), while my 5-year-old has a thing for talking animals. No matter their reasons for watching, overall messages of kindness and empathy are subtly woven into the story lines, which make an impact no matter how old you are. Personally, I think the “Line Leader Daniel” episode will really hit home in our house, as both my girls have coveted this special classroom role and know how important it made them feel. A great excuse to extend this feeling of being appreciated beyond February 14th.
In a Nutshell: A beloved kids’ TV series expands its storylines with a brand new week of episodes…just in time for winter break.
Ever wonder what it’s like to zip-line through a rainforest? Or hike down a canyon? Kids will be able to find out for themselves on Monday–or, at least live vicariously through PBS Kids’ Dinosaur Train Nature Trackers Adventure Camp. This one-hour television special will take viewers along for a journey with the entire Pteranadon posse as they travel various terrains, from canyons to mountains, learning about geography and paleontology along the way. The show is divided into four nature-themed segments–rafting, mountain climbing, zip-lining and canyon hiking–with plenty of adventure to get kids interested in the great outdoors. It’s the perfect antidote to the winter blues, and proof-positive that there’s a great big world out there to explore.
In a Nutshell: PBS Kids’ Dinosaur Train Nature Trackers Adventure Camp airs this Monday, January 20th. Check your local listings for broadcast times.
What do you get when you cross a precocious preschooler with a singing kitty sidekick? The makings of a hit kids’ TV show that will have your resident kiddie learning about math, music and even outer space in one sitting. We had a chance to check out Peg + Cat, the new PBS Kids animated series about an adorable young girl and her cat who find themselves caught up in adventures that are anything but everyday, and applying their new-found knowledge to problem-solve their way out of any jam. In the first episode, Peg and Cat journey to outer space where, despite gravity, they must think on their feet. Before long, they are counting by 10s, and even up to 100, made easy by clever, catchy little ditties (“100 is one-zero-zero”) with lots of repetition. Each episode moves at a good clip (great for short attention spans), without making them digest too much info at once. My kids’ favorite part, of course, was the silly tidbits tucked into each episode, like Peg imagining 100 chickens in her bathroom! Somehow, these writers know how to tap right into a 5-year-old’s sense of humor. Just remember to call up those moments when you’re defusing a tantrum…Peg + Cat airs daily on PBS Kids; check for local listings.
In a Nutshell: Looking for a new show to satisfy your favorite preschooler’s craving for engaging entertainment? As Peg would say, “Problem solved.”
My 8-year-old’s school has reduced its recess from two periods to one–and believe me when I say how much this bums her–and me–out. After sitting in class through math, reading, science and all those other learning-intensive subjects, she is more than ready for a break. Too bad it’s so short; she tells me that sometimes it feels like they have just bundled up and headed outdoors…only to be told to “line up” again and head back into the classroom. I’m sure that’s why SteveSongs can relate to this childhood woe in “Recess Rocks,” the first track off his new CD, Orangutan Van. No stranger to the kids’ music scene (this marks his 8th CD of the guy who’s alter ego Mr. Steve is a mainstay on PBS Kids), Steve acknowledges these profound kiddie moments that let listeners feel comforted in that “yeah, he gets me” kind of way. The cheeky ” ‘A’ is for Silly” will have the most astute pleased as punch for their keen listening ears, while “Flat Stanley” plays homage to the everyday elementary hero. As my daughter’s school gears up for its annual literacy program, the “Soaring with Reading” track takes on even greater significance. A winning release, Orangutan Van proves that with age comes great wisdom, and so SteveSongs can rest assured that yes, he definitely “gets us.”
In a Nutshell: Tons of fun, this latest release from SteveSongs continues to delight with catchy tunes that resonate with young listeners.
From the looks of things around Walnut Land, we need a little Christmas…right this very minute. Yup, you heard me right–I’m rushing the season, only because the last few weeks of dealing with the residual effects of Hurricane Sandy have put the little Walnuts in a rather bah-hug mood. Lucky for us, just in time to banish those blues comes a new holiday special that we’re sure to set our DVR for. PBS Kids’ “The Cat in the Hat Knows a Lot About Christmas” will have preschoolers on the edge of their seats as the infamous feline, along with Nick, Sally and the rest of the gang, set out to help a little lost reindeer find his way home in time for Christmas. Along the way, their otherwise trusty Thinga-ma-jigger breaks down, but the helpful of some knowledgeable creatures, they aim to get things back up and running. Will they make it to December 25th in time? Well, you’ll just have to tune in to find out. (We’re rooting for a happy ending!)
In a Nutshell: Christmas comes a little early this year with a delightful TV special that’s DVR-worthy. “The Cat in the Hat Knows a Lot About Christmas” airs on PBS Kids on Wednesday, November 21. Check your local listings for times. If you miss the premiere broadcasting, you’ll be able to catch encore presentations throughout Thanksgiving weekend and in December.
If you think you’re the only one in your family psyched for the new fall TV line-up, you’re dead wrong. My 4-year-old has been watching and waiting for this Monday’s premiere of “Daniel Tiger’s Neighborhood” ever since she saw the promo earlier this summer. If the title alone conjures up memories from your childhood TV watching days, then you’re in good company. Turns out the PBS Kids’ animated series was indeed inspired by “Mr. Roger’s Neighborhood.” But this time, it’s a tame feline who’s leading the pack–and donning a fetching cardigan as an endearing nod to his predecessor. As Daniel begins each episode by tying his sneakers and inviting viewers to join him on his journey with his animal friends, we can’t help but think this show will have universal preschool appeal. And we’ve no doubt Mr. Rogers would approve, too.
In a Nutshell: “Nashville” and “Park Avenue” may be your top TV picks this fall, but for kids ages 2-4, “Daniel Tiger’s Neighborhood” is the place to be. The show premieres on PBS Kids on Monday, September 3. Check local listings for times.