OK, today I’m going to try my hand at a little bit of parenting. Rest assured all mums, it’s not going to be too ambitious and I promise I won’t criticize!
I’ve always been more of a reader than a TV-watcher but there were some really good children’s shows in my day (I think I can safely say ‘in my day’ now). I don’t really (need to) follow children’s television these days but I like to think that they have nothing on the stuff we had back in the 80′s! I used to live and breathe those shows for many, many years and some of the characters were dear friends to me.
Maybe some of you have grown up watching them like me. For others, I’d like to introduce them to you in the hope that you may pass them on to your kids. They are entertaining, educational and perfectly child-friendly. It took some time to dig up a few names but it was time well-spent!
So without further ado, let’s start. I’ve listed them in what I think is ascending order of maturity. I used to watch most of them between 5-10 years of age. This list is by no means extensive, just a few of the ones I could recollect. I’d be interested to know if you have any others to add! (I’ve deliberately left Sesame Street out because I don’t think you need me to tell you about it!)
The crème de la crème of children’s programs (at least I think so), Jim Henson gave us this gem. I still sing songs from the Muppet Show!
Another one of Jim Henson’s creations, Fraggle Rock was just plain silly and fun with lots of music.
This and the next one are not technically ‘shows’ but more like mini-films. In this one, Big Bird investigates the legend of the phoenix in China. I used to love mystery so this was quite magical.
Big Bird and friends get lost in the museum and try to solve an Egyptian riddle this time!
Faerie Tale Theatre with Shelly Duvall
As a little girl, fairy tales of princes and princesses, and witches and goblins came to life for me on this show. They’re quite humorous and still fun to watch as an adult. You’ll be surprised to find many Hollywood actors in here.
It was produced by the Children’s Television Workshop, the same company that produced Sesame Street, and was meant for kids who had progressed on from Big Bird and Elmo. Get a load of Morgan Freeman in his bell-bottom days!
Another educational program by the same company, it made math fun!
Another Children’s television Workshop program, 3-2-1 Contact, I like to think, encouraged the scientist in me.
This took a while finding because I remembered the story so well, but not the name! It was about wannabe secret agent kids who discovered all sorts of mysterious goings-on in an old antique shop. It was absolutely intriguing.
A grandmother with superpowers, out to fight crime. Cheesy stuff but as a kid I’d lap it up!
My sister and I used to beg our mum to let us have more telly time just to watch this. Secret islands and strange necklaces and and mystery abound!
This is a keeper if your kids like animals. It’s about a stray German Shepherd that wanders from town to town helping people in need. The theme song is really catchy and I remember crying often for the little hobo. But every story has a happy ending.
When you talk about dogs, how can you not think of Lassie, the girl who started it all!
Are little girls and horses ever inseparable?
I heard some of these theme songs after almost twenty years and I was surprised to find that I still remember every one, down to most of the words even. They were such a huge part of my childhood. I don’t mean to sound corny, but I’m sure they can be part of your children’s too!