I know, we don't want the kids to watch too much TV. Absolutely, I totally agree.
There are times when it's really handy to have something to keep the little guys occupied for a half an hour or so. Over the course of our ten years of having preschoolers, we have collected some really great DVDs. Most of them we bought on the recommendation of someone else, so I want to recommend them to you! (Affiliate links follow. Thank you for supporting this site through your purchases.)
- Signing Time - None of our children have been early talkers. After having a really hard time with our second daughter, I wanted to make it as easy as possible to communicate with any children that came after so we starting using American Sign Language. Along came #4, who has a speech disability, and we were really, really glad that we had started learning sign language with his brother! We now own about ten of these DVDs, including Potty Time, and they have all been a fantastic investment. The production quality is excellent, the signs being taught are useful, and the songs aren't annoying. That's a BIG plus with kid DVDs :)
- What's in the Bible – This is probably the best Christian DVD series made in years. Our family loves these. I actually have some of the songs on my playlist. It's like a completely seminary course on DVD. Made by the creator of Veggie Tales, the series takes you from the beginning of the Bible to the end, once the series is completed, including a special DVD about Christmas.
- Magic School Bus – I'm pretty sure these first came out in the 80s, but this is like a whole science curriculum! I feel no guilt whatsoever about sticking in one of these movies and calling it science for the day. We have the complete set. Recently, when my 6 year old got a deep cut on his thumb, he was telling me about the white blood cells that were fighting any germs that might be trying to get in through the cut. He learned that from the episode called Inside the Human Body !
- Karen Henley – She has made a few different videos and the DVDs seem to be sold in sets of two. We first bought these when our oldest daughter was two. They are incredibly dated, evidenced by the denim overalls and pink eyeshadow, but the message that they teach is eternal. We watched these over and over and over and are just now starting to introduce them to our next set of littles. The thing I love about these is they unabashedly teach the gospel – that we all sin; that we need a Savior; that God loved us so very much that He sent Jesus to be our Rescuer; that He wants to have a relationship with us. There are a few of the songs that actually bring me to tears because I am so moved.
- Leap Frog Letter Factory – People often ask me what curriculum they should use for four and five year olds. I normally say a library card and the Leap Frog DVDs! Seriously, I credit these DVDs with teaching my oldest daughter to read. They are fun, teach basic phonics, and don't make me want to poke out my eye. An important feature!
- And as an added bonus, I will include Miss Pattycake's Easter Eggstravaganza. This DVD uses the Resurrection Eggs from FamilyLife to tell the Easter story. Spot on, focusing on the amazing work that Jesus did dying on the cross, taking on the sin of the world, and the wonderful Easter morning discovering that He had risen again. But. Miss Pattycake could be considered a little over the top in the Peppy! And Happy! Department. I still bring it out every once in a while because the message is perfect. Just want you to be forewarned so I don't get hate mail. :)
So these are a few of our favorite things. Er, DVDs. As always, I'm always happy to answer specific questions if you want to know more about a title that I mentioned. Happy viewing!