Four Ways Caillou Helped Us Learn and Grow

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Raising five kids as a work-at-home, homeschooling mom means that I have seen more than my fair share of children’s programming. And there are levels, my friends, oh yes. But sometimes a show surprises me and endears itself to me through its sweet programming and beneficial themes. Caillou is one of those shows, and you can now catch all the videos on WildBrain’s YouTube Network – for FREE!

Once I got past his high-pitched voice, I realized how much the adorable preschooler resonated with my children and opened up some fabulous conversations with them. Caillou is four years old, and he and his little sister Rosie have quite the adventurous spirit. And more than that, their adventures set the stage for incredible conversations and learning experiences for our children.

Relatable Experiences for Preschoolers

I love that Caillou shows my children experiences they relate to within their own lives. They aren’t flying on dragons or transforming into super-heroes in real life, but they still have struggles and stressful situations to endure. We’ve used Caillou and his life to jumpstart many discussions with our children about challenges in their lives that real-life difficulties like sharing, tag-along siblings, following rules and responsibility like taking care of pets. When it comes to talking to children, communicating at their level is crucial, and Caillou excels at that.

Imagination Galore

Don’t think for a minute that being relatable means being boring! One of the hallmarks of the stories of the Caillou show is the vivid imagination he uses as he explores his neighborhood and plays with his friends. Sometimes his imagination gets the better of him (Surely, I’m not the only one who dealt with monsters under the bed?), but his parents logically deal with things when needed. I love that children can learn to have a good balance.

Consistently Positive Messaging

Given the number of ambiguous situations portrayed on television, even in supposedly children’s programming, it is refreshing to have a show for preschoolers that consistently gives a positive message. The children aren’t perfect – no one’s children are – but they portray positivity and respect in situations where the kids have gotten themselves into a pickle. The diversity of Caillou’s friends is refreshing as well, and something I always want my children to embrace.

Four Ways Caillou Helped Us Learn and Grow

Role-Playing You Won’t Cringe Over

Common Sense Media gives Caillou a rating of acceptable for ages 3 and up which means there is NO questionable content in the episodes at all. No violence, no cussing, no sexy-stuff, and, something some parents don’t think is important until they hit the toy aisle, no consumerism. If your children pretend to be Caillou and his friends, you won’t be humiliated by their behavior at your next play-day.

As my preschoolers were developing new active play, skills for school readiness, and social interaction skills, their screen time was naturally limited. So, I was always careful to make sure that any program we watched with them and introduced them to was reinforcing the positive views we wanted them to develop. Excellent language skills, positive relationships, imaginative play, and realistic experiences we could use to have meaningful conversations with our kids were all essential to us. And Caillou meets all those benchmarks for preschool children!

Find out more about how to watch all the episodes of Caillou, and other worthwhile programs, on WildBrain’s extensive YouTube network and Caillou Kids TV app which is now available globally in 87 countries for Android and 100 countries for iOS!

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About Author

Angela England

Mother of five living in rural Oklahoma with her husband and children, Angela is the Founder of Untrained Housewife, co-founder of the Homestead Bloggers Network and Organic Gardening expert at About.com. She is the author of Backyard Farming on an Acre (More or Less), as well as several other books, all with the common theme of helping people embrace the journey towards self-sufficiency.

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