IPTV’s new fall schedule

It’s no secret that I’m change-averse, right?

I really don’t like public tv’s new fall schedule.

At 7:30, which is generally when we’re waking up these days (holy early for us me), I can choose between Sid the Science Kid on 11 or Barney on 18. Clearly, I’m not choosing Barney, so we choose Sid. Wally loves Sid the Science Kid. Me? Not so much.

Here’s the thing. things. First, they’re all in school, which I know is the normal for our planet, but there’s only four kids in their class and they’re all best friends. Um, fantasy land? Yes. But whatever, Wally’s cool with the “some kids go away to school, and some kids go to homeschool” thing.

So, Second. Their voices! Argh. I really really really really hate adult imitations of kid voices, but some adults are much better at this than others. The Sid the Science Kid adults are not so good at it. (We’re listening to the Magic Treehouse series of books on CD in the car and the author, who reads the books, is also not talented in this area.) It just grates on the nerves.

Third, the show seems to be aimed at older kids. Topics this week have been estimating, nonstandard measurement, etc. I’m not about to limit the things that Wally’s exposed to, and the show certainly captures his interest, but I think it’ll be a while before the concepts really make sense to him. That’s not a huge deal, though.

Fourth, the kids, particularly Sid, all seem to be mentally retarded. I’m not saying this to be mean. Sid appears to have Down’s Syndrome. They all remind me so strongly of the kids in the special ed program when I was in school. (who I spent a lot of time with, first as a classroom volunteer helping them during particular times of the day, and second in high school, when my mom’s talented and gifted program got one half of a classroom and the special ed program got the other half. We did a lot of stuff together.) The kids on the show, it’s just the way they’re drawn and the way they talk, but their facial expressions particularly remind me of Down’s Syndrome kids. (It’s the adults trying to draw/voice kids but failing. The facial expressions might be appropriate for younger kids goofing around, but seems completely out of place on kids old enough to learn about estimating at school.)

I really actualy can’t figure out how old these kids are supposed to be. School seems to be just a half day, which would indicate preschool, but the concepts they’re learning aren’t preschool-level activities. A friend’s child is in kindergarten this year, and he is horribly bored because they’re learning letters, colors, and shapes. In kindergarten. So when will they get to concepts like estimating and nonstandard measurement?

Amazingly, though, nobody speaks Spanish on the show. But I’d really rather have Mr Rogers on, lol. I love that show.

Now, I know we don’t have to watch TV at all, but for whatever reason, we’ve fallen into the habit of snuggling in bed and watching a show before we get out of bed and start our day. I don’t mind. I need to remember to record some better shows on the DVR so we can watch those.

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28 responses to “IPTV’s new fall schedule

  1. I do not like Sid the Science kid and I LOVE all things science. But that show irritates me. Thankfully Liisi doesn’t really seem to care for it all that much. It is on at 8:30 here but she likes to watch Mickey Mouse club house (which I also can’t stand) at that time.

    I miss Mr. Rogers too. I love that show!

  2. I keep meaning to check the online schedule. I thought I remembered, during my insomniac days (early pregnancy, post-mom’s-death), watching Mr Rogers at something like 4:00 am.

  3. I don’t like the new schedule either. I don’t like Sid the Science Kid for many reasons and completely agree about the characters’ looking like they have Down Syndrome. It’s very strange.

    I also miss Mr. Rogers.

    Another show that bugs me is Super Y. It used to be on once a day and now is on twice. Ugh.

    I think I’m going to try watching Sprout to see what they have on instead.

  4. The reason I came across your blog was because I did the google search “Sid science kid down’s syndrome”.

    Because I hate the exact same thing. Each and every complaint of yours is also a complaint of mine!

    I love Mister Rogers. Have you seen the youtube video of him appealing to Congress to fund PBS? It’s so cool!

    Thanks for bitchin’ and moanin’ about the same stuff I am!

    Allison

  5. Yes! I thought from the first that Sid and the other kids on Sid the Science Kid looks like they have Down’s, but then again most of the adults on this show look like they have it too. But the way the kids walk look like they have it too. Maybe the creator is trying to show that down kids are not dumb, just slower then “normal” kids.

  6. Thank you thank you thank you. I was starting to feel really horrible about disliking little Sid and his buddies – but was also forced to watch it because of the time, and then before you know it I would have the song “I love my Mom uh-huh…..My mom is cool…” etched in brain for the day. Ughh!

  7. I too found your blog with a “sid the science kid downs syndrome” google… well, technically my husband did, but we had been talking about the subject prompted by an ad on the Science Channel for a show about how “Sid” is made. The speech patterns of these children are strange…the “asian” girl (not the “dancing” girl) has the strangest speech pattern of them all. Even my 5 and 3 year old have caught onto the oddness. FYI, all of the motion (from what we could see from the ad) is digitally transmitted by adults wearing suits walking, moving, etc…this may explain the clumsiness of the motion — adults CAN’T move like children do…we’re too creaky and old :)

    Nice blog, BTW…you have asked some questions that I have been asking myself lately (as a Christian Mom) on parenting by grace versus works, etc… Thanks for the Sunday Morning Think-Prompter :)

  8. my three year old sweetly says, “I lub sid, mama” and gives me a kiss on the cheek. I wish i could share his sentiments. I do not like Sid the Science Kid. He seems to have Downs Syndrome, but they don’t come out and state it. I dont’ think its right for them to hide behind that veil. Its not something that should be open for interpretation. And gerald? he must suffer from some sort of ADD or ADHD or something. I cna’t figure out what is Mae’s problem or the dancing girl….I can’t focus on the show because I am too busy trying to figure out what the angle is.

    what is the angle? this show should be yanked…and another one they are advertising something about dinasaurs and trains. It looks ridiculous. If jim Hensen were alive today i don’t think he would stand behind that show. Either one for that matter. I can’t afford cable tv….i get my television from an antenna and a converter box. I have cut down on EVERY expendable expense and thought I could look towards PBS for quality programming.

    I am just dissappointed in the whole programming.

    Since there seem to be so many people who miss MR Rogers, why doens’t someone start a petition to bring him back to a better time slot? I would sign it!

  9. So funny. Sid is on now and it really drives me crazy. They are carving pumpkins…the one girl when she talks drives me totally INSANE!!!! I do like however that they aren’t speaking spanish. Even Dragon Tales is starting spanish in their show. This is the United States after all. On reg air here we have a spanish pbs where they don’t speak any English at all. They should do the same on the reg PBS and keep it a spanish free zone. May (the blue haired girl) might have more issues than Sid! Hahahahahaha. Gabriella is a riot. We just have to laugh honestly. Kids like the show and the songs are annoying and catchy! LMAO

  10. Ok first of all I do agree sid looks and acts like a child with downs but that’s ok,my son likes the show. they are annoying but tolerable. the lady in between the shows annoys me,hooper is ok.
    Now the show dinosaur train is pretty cool. Mr rogers! Not, he annoyed the shit out of me.so glad they don’t show him on daytime anymore.
    Supper why is ok it can b annoying at times to.but come on these showa are meant for our children not us if they enjoy them and they learn something from them then its ok.
    There is enough stuff to complain about in this world,must we throw pbs under the bus to? Lol

  11. How funny, Sid was just on here and suddeny i decided that was enough tv. I don’t mind them watching it so much, because my kids enjoy it, but Mae’s voice just makes me angry. And yes, i have the same issue with the “magic treehouse” cd’s, my son has one but I have hidden it because the athor’s voice makes me want to kick and scream, especially when she does the girls voice. Arrggh!
    I’m just happy to see i’m not the only person who feels this way! :-D

  12. Sid, most definitely has some form of mild retardation. I never noticed the only 4 kids in the class thing but now I do.

    There is something about this show that makes me angry and disturbed.

  13. I’m so appreciative of this posting; Thank you soooo much for helping putting my concerns into perspective for me. My fiance’ and I have been tying to put our fingers on what “it” is so we Googled and alas stumbled upon your posting. I understand programming that ultimately is intended to familiarize school-aged children with their peers illnesses and impediments (i.e. Calliou, Max & Ruby, Sesame Street) however this seems just a little extreme. Especially when most children watching will mock character’s facial expressions, gestures and behavior. Sigh. Thanks for listening.

  14. how funny that a year and a half later i type “sid the science kid down syndrome” and here is this post. we have recently cut off cable in our home and now pbs is the kid’s morning ritual. I have said since the first day that Sid must be in a Special Ed class. At least a few people out there may agree.

  15. TO ALL OF YOU WHO LIKES TO TALK. JUST BECAUSE SID IS TALKING ABOUT SCIENCE THAT U (ADULTS) DONT EVEN UNDERSTAND, AND YOUR CHILDREN ARE SO DUMB (LIKE THEIR PARENTS) THAT THEY PROBALLY WONT GET IT EITHER DOESNT MEAN THE SHOW SUCKS. SO WHAT IF HE LOOKS DOWN SYNDROME? I HELP KIDS WHO HAVE IT! THE SO CALLED RETARDAS ARE YALL! STUPID IGNORANT PEOPLE GO COMPLAIN ABOUT SOMETHING ELSE THAT U HAVENT ALREADY! LIKE THE SKY! SO SHUT UP AND DO SOMETHING FOR YOUR SO CALLED LIFE!

  16. Wow, Stephanie. I can tell that people’s preferences in their television watching has really struck a nerve with you. I’m glad that my blog can serve as a platform for constructive, intelligent debate.

  17. I COMPLETLY AGREE WITH STEPHANIE…FIRST OF ALL THTS Y THEIR CALLED KID SHOWS NOT ADULTS WITH NO APPARANT LIFE SHOWS AND YES IT STRIKES A NERVE WHEN U IGNORANT PPL SAY A KID ON TV LOOKS “RETARDED”AS U STUPID PPL CALL IT..MY SISTER IS DOWN SYNDROME AND SHE IS BY NO MEANS RETARDED IF THTS THE WAY U IDIOTS LOOK AT DISABLED PPL U SHOULD BE EVALUATED YOURSELFS…AND FYI IF U DNT LIKE IT DNT WATCH!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!

  18. Wow, Laura. I can tell that people’s preferences in their television watching has really struck a nerve with you. I’m glad that my blog can serve as a platform for constructive, intelligent debate. From now on, however, any comment posted in all caps will be deleted.

  19. My son likes the show and I tolerate it for the most part. I didn’t connect Sid with DS but something is NOT right with the movement/speech of the characters.

    Laura/Stephanie, while these are kids shows as parents we still have to tolerate and approve of what our children see. I don’t let my son watch Sesame Street because of the agenda they press upon children. I don’t let him watch Caillou because that little SOB can’t talk without whining and that’s not something I want him to imitate. Some people don’t let their kids watch shows with violence or bad language. It’s called prerogative. .

  20. Okay so what would be wrong with a cartoon if it didn’t openly state the characters had down syndrome and other handicaps? When showing a child these differences without putting a label on them might help them to accept other children who are differently abled. I do think that the show’s topics are quite advanced for a younger child….and yeah I am not a big fan of the show. I do think that if the creators of this show are trying to show handicapped children without labeling them as that….that it isn’t a problem at all. I hate to sound rude but go and evaluate some of the comments left on this blog….they are very judgemental, politically incorrect and just plain ignorant. If you don’t like a show because the characters look like they have down syndrome or a mental handicap, then I feel very sorry for your children. Acceptance of differentlty abled children is very important, whether you want to admit it or not. Keep on living in that small sheltered closed mind….continue the hate and prejudices around the world!

    • I think you echo the basic misunderstanding of everyone who wants to come here and tell others how judgemental they are. (and – oh no! politically incorrect? Say it ain’t so!) I don’t see anyone who’s saying that they don’t like the show BECAUSE the children appear to have Down’s Syndrome.

      I see many people saying what you just said. The show is ANNOYING. The characters are weird. They don’t move right, or act right. The closest description many have been able to come up with is that they are similar to DS children – but, the thing is – they’re NOT DS kids. They’re meant to be REGULAR preschool kids. But the creators of the show completely missed the mark in terms of the animation of the characters. It doesn’t ring true. It’s off.

      Nobody’s saying anything about handicapped children, and I feel sorry for all those who seem so ready and willing (almost desiring) to read that into the comments. What a world when everyone’s so quick to jump to odd and erroneous conclusions not supported by the discussion just to they can be offended.

  21. I agree with the previous post. My son has a syndrome (not Downs) and so I am perfectly attune to not wanting to put kids down who have learning disabilities. But I feel the same way, the kids faces reminded me of the shape of Down Syndrome kids. And apparently it is not just me. I don’t actually think they are trying to portray DS kids at all, it is just the way the cartoonist made the characters, but it is strange. I would be very happy actually to have a cartoon that is about kids with learning differences or syndromes, that my son who is four years old but probably developmentally in many ways that of a two year, could relate too. But actually he relates well to Curious George ;o)

    • I think it’s somewhat strange that we don’t see more of that, actually. (Cartoons with kids who have disabilities OTHER THAN physical disabilities.) There are so many shows that take care to include kids of different colors, nationalities, languages, religions, and to include kids in wheelchairs, deaf kids, blind kids, etc. but you don’t see much with kids with mental challenges…

  22. Has anyone noticed that Sid’s show is a Jim Henson production? This seems to be the result of computer generating a muppet- note the bug eyes, no lips, weird hair, even the adult voice overs. I too feel however that this is a special ed class, private pre-school perhaps. It does teach moderately advanced science concepts in a non-threatening way. Private school teachers often are called Miss So-and-So, so that’s not odd. Mae does annoy me though- I agree that she must come from a hippie family. Not sure why they’d choose that characterization. BTW- Miss Suzie has an hispanic accent, so she’s another ethnic contribution to the program without being blatantly ‘Spanish’.

  23. Its a social lesson for kids, it teaches them different roles in life, for ex, Sid is the alpha male and vice versa for Gabriella. The show is teaching kids to accept others for there personalities and there disabilities. Gerald has some sort of adhd, which is a type of kid that goes to school with your child, same classroom and everything. The characters never bad mouth him, they just agree, laugh even though they are not feeling it, and change the subject. Sid is the obvious leader, you have to make sure you kid tries to imitate Sid, if they go the other way they will grow up to be boring. Also look at how everyone in Sids family is really close and never really fights. This gives Sid great confidence, which he started unconsciously using when he started school, making him more appealing to the his teacher, the girls and Gerald. Basically, he is be a well liked guy, very cool. If your child follows Sids steps, he/she would have the up most confidence, leading him/her to have an enjoyable life. Confidence sets them up to do better in school, become an alpha male meaning they will be greatly liked by the opposite sex, and basically feel good about themselves. I do not know if my child should be invaded by this shows teaching without experiencing in real life. I would instill confidence in them, so my child lives on the alpha male side of life.

    • So our daughters should be the alpha males or they’re not living the best life they can? (Or our sons, for that matter?)

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