Co-Viewing: Like Co-Sleeping But With Theme Songs

Heather Chaet

kid watching tvLast night, I dreamt I was living in Tinga Tinga. I was hanging out with Lion and Tortoise, chillin' out by the water hole, singing, "The Land of Why! Tin-ga, Tin-ga Tin-gaaaaaa!" You don't know what I'm talking about? Tinga Tinga Tales? It's the new show on Disney Junior (the channel formerly know as Playhouse Disney). It's on right after Chuggington and splits the half-hour with Timmy Time.

Yes, I am a co-viewer. I watch my daughter's shows with her. Sometimes I use the TV as a "babysitter" while I do the dishes or get ready for work, but at least 70% of the time, I watch TV with her.

And not for the reason you may think.

I could say it's because I engage her, ask her questions, create "teachable moments" as we sit on the couch. Nope. I just like the shows.

I like them. I can sing almost every theme song. I know almost every character. Now, we don't watch every show on Nickelodeon or Disney Junior or PBS Kids. We have our roster of shows -- Dinosaur Train and Super Why, Team Umizoomi and the new Bubble Guppies.

Why do I like them? They are easy. Unlike most everything else in my life, they don't demand that I think too hard. They are fun and lively and sometimes really funny -- if you don't believe me, just check out Phineas and Ferb (whose theme song is sung by Bowling for Soup), which has a pet platypus who leads a double life as a secret agent. Seriously funny stuff.

These kids' shows give me a break, they lighten me up, and of course, I talk about them with my kid. When she hurt her foot the other day, she said, "Maybe I will need to have a picture taken of my bones like on Bubble Guppies." The most recent episode was about skeletons (one of the little fishies got a cast on his tail). If I hadn't watched the show, I wouldn't have known she was talking about an x-ray, not a regular picture. So, yeah, it helps foster learning and blah blah blah and so on.

But mainly, I just like them. Maybe I want to recapture my childhood, maybe I need to discuss it further with my therapist, but I'll do that later. It's time for Imagination Movers.

Do you watch TV with your kids? Do you like the shows?


Image via {N}Duran/Flickr

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