Someone, give that woman the microphone. Now.

From today’s Age:

‘Nothing on air produced in Australia measures up to the standard it should be for preschoolers,” she (Dr Patricia Edgar) said.

Play School, and this is not a popular view, I know, but it is one I deeply believe, is out of date, nostalgic chalk-and-talk television held in place by parents’ nostalgia for what they saw themselves.”

Dr Edgar also targeted programs that she said used the marketing of soft toys and fashion to pay for their production.

Bananas in Pyjamas is merely a marketing vehicle and Hi-5 is no more a preschool program than Britney Spears with a backing group.” ‘

And as for film…don’t get me started.

PS Tho I do love Play School. Don’t get me wrong

0 thoughts on “Someone, give that woman the microphone. Now.”

  1. I love Play School too, but she’s probably right … nostalgia. Though I do think the whole making things out of scraps aspect is genius and they do that brilliantly. Nice quote. But what IS quality TV for pre-schoolers? (I’m sure I’ve read that by rights, preschoolers shouldn’t REALLY be watching TV anyway, as it’s a passive activity. It’s the electronic babysitter. And YES, my pre-schooler watched it.) I think programs need to promote/espouse good values, don’t sell to the kids, entertain them and are age-appropriate in terms of themes and language. So … on those terms, she’s still right.

  2. I’m especially bothered by the placement of a Hi-5 magazine in the servo where I filled up today. Right next to a girly mag. Nice, Servo People, nice.

  3. Yeah, it does. I wasn’t trying to say Play School doesn’t meet those criteria – just acknowledging she may be right that the prime appeal of Play School these days is nostalgia by parents who grew up with it (I love it for those reasons) – it is great programming in terms of all the criteria I outlined, except (possibly) one – the entertaining aspect. I can’t really say, as my son is way past Play School age, but it’s possible that it’s a bit too retro in style to appeal to the kids of today. As I recall, my son wasn’t a big fan, though I plonked him in front of it because I liked it.

    Redcap, that’s terrible.

  4. Well, no, as you say Ariel, television isn’t great for preschoolers, but the odd piece of quality television would be good to have available. And I’d love to take my children to a movie which had a good plot and interesting characters which didn’t scare the pants off them (the children I mean). I can’t tell you how much I dislike Hi5, and I have quite a bit to say about the wi**les (especially since they had B** I** on stage with them in New York). Needless to say, I’m one of those uptight parents who ‘limits’ my childrens’ television viewing. While at the same time watching all manner of crap myself.

    Actually, I do like Play School…more I’d agree with her comments about the other programs than what she says about Play School.

  5. Oh yeah, I totally agree re. quality TV. And even more so about film – I think it’s awful that these days all movies aimed at kids are aimed at adults first and foremost, ruining it for kids’ viewing. Actually, the merchandising is aimed at kids, more like it. It’s so annoying to buy the toys and not be able to take the kid to see the movie (ie. Batman Begins, the last Star Wars movie). Looking back over what I originally wrote, I was a bit more pernickety (jetlag!) than I thought. F is actually reading this over my shoulder and he asked me to add Ghostrider to the list of movies he can’t see. I have no problem with Play School at all btw – just saying I can’t really judge the entertainment bit without a test audience anymore. Sorry – this is getting wordy – but F just asked to add Fantastic Four 2 to his list. (‘It’s so annoying’ he says.)

  6. i love playschool. my kids love it too. they’re 5 and 7 now (wow…actually, almost 6 and almost 8. when did *that* happen?) and the 5 year old still asks if playschool is on. the 7 year old? makes a face, yet sits through the dvd and sings along.
    when my boys were younger i liked the wiggles too, but now? yeah, not so much. same with hi-5. as both my kids are quite musical, they really enjoyed those shows. but in the last few years they have become a half hour advertisement for clothes, dvds and theme parks. no thanks.
    although, im probably not the best person to be commenting about this. before school this morning my kids watched ferris buellers day off.

  7. I don’t know what her problem with Play School is. ‘Out of date’? Children’s developmental needs don’t change. Children do like Play School, it’s not just parents who like it.
    We have some old Andy Pandy videos (early 60s) and some Hammy the Hamster from England and I have to say I did like the original Teletubbies and also the Tweenies, which was incredibly well targeted towards four year olds.
    Basically, programs which are slow, use music and focus on the small things which make up a toddler’s life are the go – just like the best picture books.

  8. I’m with you Suz. And yes, Hi5 is beyond horrible – it just shows such a depth of ignorance as to what kids should be watching. We’re regressing back to the eighteenth century, when kids were just mini-adults. but with exposed navels.

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