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Entries in PBS Kids (2)


Learn Math with PBS' PEG and CAT

PBS KIDS is debuting a brand new series on October 7 "peg and cat" that teaches preschoolers about problem-solving, basic math, and persistence! I'm grateful for PBS KIDS programming, which gave my son Jake a boost in his reading skills early on. But most of their shows focus on the alphabet, language and reading, so I was glad to see them change it up with an early childhood math show. The PBS KIDS Team sent over a preview packet in partnership with Whole Foods Market including a DVD of two episodes, a book The Chicken Problem, a graph notebook, and calendar sheets to track weekly healthy meals and physical activities. 

In The Chicken Problem, Cat mistakenly leaves the chicken coop door open, which wreaks instant mayhem as 100 chicks happily skip and leap throughout the farm.

Peg tries and tries again to carry all the chicks back to their coop, counting to make sure she has all 100...

...without success.

She is "TOTALLY FREAKING OUT!" In fact it seems that once Peg thinks of one solution, another problem pops up. Does she finally give up? You'll have to check out the show Monday Smiley. It's a cute series that uses the perfect language and presentation (with fun songs) for 3-5 year-olds, which Jake enjoyed watching even though he's now a "big boy" 6 years old. Actually I lied...I double-checked the site and you can now view the full episode here!

Disclosure: I received a PBS preview packet and $35 Whole Foods gift card for my honest review of this program.


New Healthy Eating Apps for Kids

PBS KIDS has come out with some cool new apps for kids ages 3 to 8 that feature healthful foods as a backdrop for awesome learning games. What's even better is that several of them are free. Perfect to have handy for holiday vacation week! I tested out two of them with my son (honestly I couldn't say who had more fun). The first is called D.W.'s Unicorn Adventure, which is fast-paced but easy to learn. D.W., sister of Arthur, rides a lost unicorn in purple sneakers to help guide it safely home. To do that, they need to fuel up with healthful snacks of fruits and vegetables from all colors of the rainbow. There are 12 levels of difficulty that progress through the six rainbow colors as D.W. and the unicorn "leap" to catch 12 different fruits and veggies: strawberries and apples; oranges and carrots; bananas and pineapples; bell peppers and broccoli; blueberries and plums; and grapes and eggplant. They have to avoid the energy-zapping junk food though like soda, chips, donuts, and candy bars crossing their path that could drain their energy levels before they finish the course! This app is compatible with iPhone and iPod touch and available through the iTunes store for $1.99.

The second app we played is called Fizzy's Lunch Lab: Fresh Pick, which has Professor Fizzy guiding slightly older kids (6-8) through eight different challenges, some of which take place in a supermarket. The games are so fun that kids won't realize they're also developing skills in how to count money, follow detailed directions, and tackle problem-solving. A detail I appreciated with this app is that the games allow for endless second chances if the child makes a wrong choice, rather than, say, blocking out after three tries (which has frustrated my son with other games so that he gives up too easily). This app is compatible with most tablets and is available for free download through the iTunes store.

Be sure to check out all of PBS KIDS educational apps that are categorized by age, show and cost!