I had a big wish when I was little girl-- I wanted a pet. Not just any pet, I wanted a pet monkey just like "Curious George". I would sit for hours reading about all of his escapades and laugh and dream that I was right there with him, like when he painted animals on the wall of an apartment or when he helped a chef "cook" spaghetti.. he was one of my dearest childhood friends (along with Ramona Quimby .. but that is a story for another day).
That is why when I got the opportunity to write about the upcoming BRAND NEW season of Curious George that premieres on Labor Day (This Monday!!) I was very excited. I got the materials to review during the week but I have a very strict policy of no TV during the week (yes.. I know that sounds crazy .. but hey.. believe me it pays off) we hunkered down to watch the episodes yesterday.
You will not be disappointed as a parent because you already know that if it's on PBS it is educational but they have outdone themselves with these shows because they are not only educational they are exposing the children to the wonders of the arts.
He delves into an auction, goes to an opera, reads a map, becomes a detective, sculpts,and takes pictures. Also, George's Latino friend Marco is back! Those episodes are scheduled to re-air the week of September 19th in celebration of September being Hispanic Heritage Month.
Thankfully, my boys and I have always made it a point to go to museums, watched live performances online (we can't really afford to go to the opera at the moment) but man .. because we can't go to some of these things just seeing them and being exposed to them has made my kids think that they can create anything. They have some AMAZING imaginations (maybe I am bragging a little.. but I would say this even if they weren't my kids).. they have created spaceships, oceans, ships, and armies all with comforters and paper. I love shows that don't just entertain my children because I want the time that they do watch TV to feed them ideas not zap those ideas out of them.
I used to let them watch TV while I cooked and they would be like little zombies in front of the TV and when I would ask them what they just finished watching they would just talk about kids on TV hitting each other, or making jokes that I thought were kind of inappropriate, but when I drew the line was when my EIGHT YEAR OLD SON who weighs 40 pounds soaking wet said he didn't want to wear sweaters anymore because they made him look fat. I didn't want to just haul the TV out and leave it on our front door (okay.. maybe a little) but knew that I had to be more vigilant about what they were being exposed to and decided to limit the TV time they were having.
When I was growing up I loved all of the cartoons from PBS and that I learned a lot from their shows and so I had my kids watch all my old favorites. They were hesitant at first missing their old shows (I let them watch those every so often) but all in all they are in love with the PBS line up and I love that they are actually learning something.
The PBS family also wants our kids to be more involved in the arts and so sometime in February Curious George will be having their very first DANCE CONTEST!! Parents will be able to submit videos of our little ones dancing to the Curious George theme song and those videos will be posted on the Curious George website. One lucky monkey will be awarded a special prize (my boys are practicing now.. :-)
We had a ball watching the season yesterday and I believe that your kids will learn so much and maybe will be inspired to get out there and be creative just like our friend : Curious George!!
Here are some videos and links -- Enjoy!
Please visit the Curious George website for updates and more info: http://to.pbs.org/CG_thearts
All pictures and videos are courtesy of: Curious George® & © 2011 Universal Studios and/or HMH. ALL RIGHTS RESERVED. PBS KIDS (R) Public Broadcasting Services