As a parent of 2 young children I tend to hear a lot of other parents opinions on TV shows and which ones are allowed. I also hear about the shows they hate or can’t stand. I’ve had a few people tell me they can’t stand Dora the Explorer, Go Diego, Go, In the Night Garden and one I’m sure was written by drunk people…….Teletubbies. But the one that springs to mind the most is Peppa Pig.
Peppa Pig lives in a small community where everyone knows everyone. She has a mum, a dad and a little brother and her best friend is a rabbit. There’s a grown rabbit doing a different job in each episode, her sister rabbit popping out baby rabbits, a rhino working with heavy machinery, a clumsy daddy pig; the list goes on. There’s always the joke of telling children that the bacon they’re eating came from a pig, most likely a relative of Peppa Pig. I mean honestly, does Peppa Pig have any educational value or is it just one of those mindless shows that someone thought up to give children a bit of mindless enjoyment?
As a mother to 2 young children and someone who has spent a bit of time studying early childhood education; I can honestly say Peppa Pig has to be one of the best children’s shows I have ever seen. I watch this show and I link this little pigs’ development against something called the Early Years Learning Framework and the 5 outcomes identified in this interesting document. I can also honestly admit I have a lot of spare time on my hands while I wait to begin my bachelors in education (early childhood).
I have found this show to also give me handy little ideas on how I can entertain my children on cold and wet days. Until I watched this show I had never heard of thing called the rainy day game. Can you believe that there are actually parents out there are willing to put aside their phones and computers just so they can positively interact with their children? Especially on a rainy day when all you want to do is sit and watch TV, game or sleep.
After watching the show for a few weeks I thought it was interesting to see no meats to be consumed by these characters, but a lot of fruit and vegetables are eaten. I have come to the conclusion that maybe there is some subliminal messaging in this part. Try your fruits and vegetables. They can be eaten in many different ways; soups, smoothies, baked, fried. George doesn’t like his vegetables, but grandpa pig gets creative and turns his meal into a dinosaur. This doesn’t work for my children, but it might for some. I have to grate each vegetable into practically a powder before it can be eaten.
Have you noticed that even Peppa Pig has a night time routine? They have a bath, clean their teeth, have a bed time story then go to sleep at exactly 7pm every night. Allowing your child to have a simple routine like this gives them some peace of mind. They know what’s going to happen and in most cases will work with you instead of against you. It’s flexible and allows the child to know what’s going to happen next, such as when they can get some rest.
When it comes time to say goodbye, the parents don’t dawdle. The parent will talk to the person who will be caring for the child in a positive or happy tone then let the child know they are going. There’s none of this sneaking out while the child isn’t looking and causing some form anxiety in the child. It’s a straight forward “see you later”. My eldest daughter does not like it when I leave her at school. She will cling to me for what I feel is her life and then cry as I manage to loosen her grip and attach her to her teachers. I’ve read everything I could find on how to manage this situation.
I’ve reassured my child that it’s ok to be anxious or nervous. I’ve told her who will be there at the end of each day. I spent as much time as I could with her so she had that one on one time with me. I got to know her teachers and her classroom. I even know all of her friends. But a few weeks I decided that I’d had enough. Now some may think of this as a little mean, but I took a page out of mummy and daddy pigs book. I now go into the school with her, place her bag in the right spot, talk to her teacher for like a second then say “see you at 3” and walk away. After a week I discovered this technique to bloody work. Those tears are drying up and she no longer clings.
One of the nicest things about this show is how mummy pig can be a working stay at home mum who volunteers at the fire station with the other mummies. Daddy pig also knows how to cook, clean, do laundry and care for his children without complaint. There’s not just stay at home mums these days, it’s also dads. I like how this show informs children that even dads can do certain house hold chores while caring for his child/ren while mum is at work.
The most important thing for children to see in their home when both parents are together is how much each parent cares for each other.