Monday, August 9, 2010

Thank You, Pinky Dinky Doo!

First, I'm going to preface this post by saying I've got a four-year-old son. Second, his favorite channel to watch during breakfast is Nick, Jr. With those two things in mind, please read on.

This morning as I watched Pinky Dinky Doo with my son, I realized how incredible the show is for developing early literacy skills. If you've never seen the show before, it's about a girl, Pinky Dinky Doo, who uses stories to explain concepts or meanings of big words to her little brother, Tyler Dinky Doo. For example, in today's episode, she explained to Tyler the meaning of the word impetuous with a silly story. Introducing kids to new words would be enough to make me thankful for the show, but its benefits don't stop there.

At the end of each story, Pinky Dinky Doo does a review of the story for her younger brother (or, in reality, for the young viewers). She'll ask retention questions like "Which of these three events happened first?" or "Who said this line?" But she'll also ask broader questions like "What title would best go with the story I just told?" When she asks her questions, my son yells out the answers and laughs when Pinky shows something silly (like when she said, "Should this story be called 'The Underwater Underwear'?" he got a case of the giggles).

If you don't have a young child in your life, I wouldn't necessarily recommend that you run out and watch the show. But if you do have a young child in your life, I highly recommend that you watch this show with him or her. I have to say that this is my favorite story-focused show since Reading Rainbow.

Happy reading and sharing the joys of reading with a young reader!

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