We don’t own a television and that works well for our family. We do use our computers to watch some shows and movies, but not having a television helps us to be more selective in our media choices and limit our screen time.
One of the few shows that my littlest one watches and loves is the PBS show Daniel Tiger’s Neighborhood, which is why I was more than happy to participate in a program with The Motherhood to learn more about the show from its creators and producers.
I fell in love with Daniel Tiger on an end-of-the day car ride home with three tired, grumpy kids in the backseat. My three-year old was having a melt down over a book that her sister would not hand over. She was yelling when my five year old reminded her what Daniel Tiger says about getting upset. She started to sing, “When you feel so mad that you want to roar, take a deep breath and count to four.” No joke, all three of the kids sang the song and counted to four! The crisis was averted and this mom became an instant lifelong Daniel Tiger devotee. (watch the song here)
- Pretend play is important! It is one of the first steps towards symbolic thinking, which is critical to reading and writing skills.
- Pretend play is at its peak during the preschool years.
- Children use play to help make sense of the world and test out scenarios.
- Before making each show, the producers take the script to a preschool audience to make sure they understand and grasp the stories and concepts.
- Music is an important part of the show, just as it was to Fred Rogers. They research strategies for songs that have a handle that are easy to grasp and hold on to for parents to use as tools to teach their children.
- Toys help children increase their emotional awareness by giving them materials with which to express their feelings.
- The Daniel Tiger toys are made to inspire creativity and imagination. They allow for a lot of open ended play.