April 28th, 2009

Curious George

Debuting on PBS kids in 2006, Curious George is the most requested TV show in our home. Actually, it is THE only requested TV show (others are voiced as options when Curious George is not available). It has become so popular, that it now occupies 50% of our DVR library. During a recent glitch with our cable system which caused the absence of the DVR capabilities—and therefore, the absence of George himself—I was actually driven to shouting at a customer service representative and his supervisor. (My follow-up act of kissing the repairman on the mouth is another story for another day.)

The episodic formula is the same with each half-hour show. There are always two adventures for George, the Man in the Yellow Hat, and their various friends to get into. Each adventure features a theme based on a mathematical or scientific premise that George goes at in a “try and fail” method (balance, shape matching, music scales, etc.). After the animated adventure, a short live-action piece features young children putting into action some of the themes.

Several shows have even had some sort of “green” theme, including recycling, working on a farm and mapping. George is a monkey, and by nature a tree hugger. Since watching the recycling show, our daughter will ask “trash?” “cyking?” when she has something to throw away. Granted, she has seen my husband and I recycle, but now, she seems to understand the concept a bit more.

At this point in my toddler’s development, the live-action segments are a juice or snack break before the next cartoon. But, for me, they become a helpful guide to fun projects that we can do when she is a few years older. The cartoons are adorably done, and very consistent in their quality.

George is produced by Universal Studios in association with WGBH in Boston. PBS stations run it as part of the PBS Kids line-up several times a day, so, check your listing, or just set your DVR for Curious George.

More from this Author

This Weeks Tip

You’ve actually managed to put on a skirt and keep the drool, paint and macaroni and cheese off of it for more than an hour—so you’re feeling pretty good about yourself. Until you notice the static cling. Easy fix: put a safety pin in your hem first thing, and stay static free all day.