Why We’re a Cbeebies Household!

*Warning* This post may turn out to be a bit ranty  . . .

Ben didn’t really start to watch TV until he was about two – he had never shown any interest. Luckily for me just as I went on maternity leave and was exhausted he discovered the joy of Postman Pat.  He would watch the same few episodes over and over again (and I can’t say I didn’t fall asleep once or twice while he was watching it!)  Postman Pat saved my bacon when it came to keeping him entertained while I was feeding a newborn Chloe or was just too tired to speak – we’ve all been there!  For quite a while it was only Postman Pat that would hold his attention but he did branch out after a while.  Chloe is considerably more of a telly addict but I suppose she has been exposed to it much more – she loves Postman Pat and asks for “Pat” but her firm favourite is Peter Rabbit (she has recently graduated from calling him  “Pete” to “Pete Rabbit”).  She likes to tell me what’s happening eg “Lily burp” or “Tod, Tod!” when Mr Tod is trying to catch Peter and his friends.

Although it didn’t start out that way, it has become a concious decision in our house that Ben and Chloe only watch Cbeebies.  There’s a number of reasons for this:

1. There’s No Adverts!  When I first started to put the tv on for Ben, I put Cbeebies on automatically as I suppose it was the only channel I was really aware of that I knew was appropriate for his age.  As I started to explore more I suddenly noticed the adverts that littered every other channel – adverts for toys, for rubbish food, for other naff programmes. I didn’t want him exposed to that and decided to avoid it as much as possible. Of course I know they watch other channels when they are with other people but at least I minimise the impact of it this way.

2. Age Appropriate Programming – I know that if I put Cbeebies on, the programmes are going to be entirely suitable for both children to watch.  They’re not going to come across things they shouldn’t be watching and the programmes have been scheduled with under 5s in mind. I worry with other more cartoon based channels that there will be more violence, poor behaviour or inappropriate language (by which I don’t mean swearing just word choices I wouldn’t want Ben and Chloe to be uttering at their age).  Ben is really getting into his superheroes at the moment and I’m sure he would love to watch Batman and so forth but right now I think they are just too grown up for him.

3. Educational – For the most part I would say that just about everything we watch on Cbeebies has some sort of educational undercurrent – be it the obvious Maths learning in Numberjacks, the sharing of experiences in Dr Ranj or the more social themes in Postman Pat or Mike the Knight – you can see a point to watching them.  If they are going to be glued to a screen I’d like to think there was going to be some benefit from it!  We have often referred back to an episode of Dr Ranj for example when it was time for them both to have immunisations or when we’re trying to get Ben out of his typical little boy habit of picking his nose!

So you can see that I’m generally a big fan of Cbeebies but if there’s one programme that really does wind me up it’s Woolly and Tig – please tell me I’m not the only one who thinks that little girl is a badly behaved spoilt little brat?!   Oh and I’m not keen on Postman Pat SDS – all the voices are wrong and I don’t like the extra tech, I much prefer the slightly older ones (we have even been known to watch some proper vintage Postman Pat on youtube – from the days of Granny Dryden!)

I realise I’ve now turned into my Mum – do you remember the programme Your Mother Wouldn’t Like It? Well she didn’t, we only got away with watching it with Dad! More significantly though I learned as an adult that we hadn’t been allowed to watch Grange Hill as children as Mum and Dad didn’t like the way the characters behaved and didn’t want us to think it was acceptable.

Do you have programmes you won’t let your children watch?  I’d love to know what you think!

11 Comments

  1. November 6, 2013 / 9:46 am

    I've never let my kids watch teletubbies, awful programme that teaches them nothing. We watch a mixture of channels because all my children are at different ages they all like different things #MMWBH

  2. November 6, 2013 / 10:40 am

    interesting! Being in the digital era, we can fake milkshake which happens to be the channel of choice in the morning. Yes it has adverts for stupid shoes, but it has some great stuff for kids, such as ben and holly elf kingdom, city of friends the list goes on. Anyway, to avoid the ads just takes a little bit of preparation time, you might already be able to do this if you have apple TV. Anyway, we use a raspberry pi, anything I want them to watch, I download for playback later. Only trouble is it's very much on demand, so half way through something, livi can chose and probably will chose to watch something else. But guess what, no flaming adverts lol. We try doing the same with our DVD's, so they're as much on a hard disk as possible, this has two win scenarios, the kids won't scratch up the DVD's, and they can watch any appropriate film they chose, because we have parent lock :). What generally happens is they want to watch the first film that pops up on the screen lol and boy do you know it if you skip ahead to show them something else, so it's I wanna watch that one and that one and that one daddy, no go back that one…… I'll be honest, although we've downloaded a few programs, it does take a bit to keep on top of it, but you know kids, they'll just watch the same tripe over and over till your ears bleed, or you fall asleep lol.

  3. November 6, 2013 / 11:30 am

    How can the Post Office justify the cost of that SDS?! It's outrageous! I don't like Baby Jake or Rastamouse, though the kids seem happy enough with them!

    • November 7, 2013 / 9:24 am

      Ah yes I don't like Baby Jake either! Had forgotten about that one!

  4. November 6, 2013 / 12:40 pm

    When I was growing up, it'd always be Children's BBC rather than Children's ITV that wold be put on (…due to the commercials). As our son is currently only six months old, he hasn't really started watching TV yet but I'll keep an eye out for the shows that you mentioned.

    Jonathan

    • November 7, 2013 / 9:25 am

      We were always a BBC household too 🙂

  5. AK Templer
    November 6, 2013 / 10:17 pm

    oh i so can get what you mean with wolly and tig i feel the same! although we love Cbebbies Finn is very keen on all his Thomas DVDs which i dont mind him watching instead of the TV. Rastamouse is my nono program i dont want my child ending up talking like them its not that educational i think.

  6. Sara Murray
    November 6, 2013 / 11:06 pm

    Oh, I miss CBeebies! Disney Junior has some CBeebies programmes over here (e.g. Octonauts – with different accents?! Charlie & Lola – which I love – and Third & Bird, which I can't stand!). But with a seven year old in the mix, it's harder now…

  7. November 7, 2013 / 5:01 am

    I used to love kids TV.

  8. November 7, 2013 / 11:58 am

    I agree with you on everything. My youngest watches it. We miss Blue Cow!

  9. February 1, 2014 / 8:24 am

    I agree with you that CBeebies have some fab programmes. I think the Octonauts are great and my daughter loves Charlie and Lola and Tilly. There are some programmes she likes on Milkshake but I often don't tell her they're on as I don't like her watching the adverts. I'm also likely to choose programmes on YouTube – Old Bear is a huge favourite 🙂

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