What TV Do You Allow?

Little Bear!

I think we all know that we should limit the amount of time that our kids spend in front of the TV. But do you think twice about the quality of TV they watch? I don’t know about you, but my kids and their media habits seem to be maturing much faster than I’d like! They’d watch all of the Star Wars and Harry Potter movies if I allowed it! If I had it my way, they’d watch only Little Bear. It’s such a sweet little show with absolutely zero negativity. Even all Disney movies have some sort of villain. There’s no villain in Little Bear!

Despite the infatuation I have for Little Bear, I realize that my kids have graduated beyond the Little Bear age. There are times that I can get them to watch it still, but they would always choose something else. But it means there’s a job for me in this. My job is to watch the various shows they would want to watch and decide whether I should allow them. I’m fairly strict with what I allow my kids to watch, which I think is a good thing. It’s far better to be too strict than not strict enough.

Here’s what I don’t allow:

  • Harry Potter movies after the third. We require that the books be read before the movies can be watched.
  • Star Wars movies. They’ve only seen the first, and that was a special birthday treat.
  • Anything on Cartoon Network. I hate this channel. All of the cartoons available on this channel are dark and violent.
  • Any movie that I haven’t previously reviewed and approved
  • Spongebob Squarepants. Super annoying and mindless.

Here’s what I do allow:

  • Phineas and Ferb. This is their favorite show. I try to look past the tattling aspect of the big sister.
  • Johnny Test. I’ll admit that this isn’t my favorite, but it’s not violent, and they really do like it.
  • Anything educational. Think Super Why, or even documentaries/biographies on history topics like the Paul Revere one William once watched.

There are just two shows that we watch as a family:

  • The Amazing Race. We all LOVE this show and it’s pretty benign. Great for the whole family.
  • America’s Funniest Videos. We watch this on Hulu and Netflix.

And there are a few movies that we own, that I always approve of. (We wouldn’t have purchased them if I didn’t approve.) They are:

  • How to Train Your Dragon (great movie!)
  • Cars 1 and 2
  • Toy Story 1, 2 and 3
  • Horton Hears a Who
  • Curious George
  • Wall-E (a few scary elements, but okay overall)
  • A Bee Movie
  • Ratatouille
  • Up

I’d love to hear if you have any great (and innocent!) TV shows or movies you would recommend!


  1. Thank you for your post! My boys love Phineas and Ferb too! Since you have Netflix, you should check out “God of Wonders.” We love watching it as a family and the kids never get tired of seeing all the amazing animals. :-)

  2. My daughter isn’t old enough for much (19 months) but she and Daddy enjoy watching some Veggie Tales silly songs before supper. When she’s older we’ll let her watch whole show and also listen to Adventures in Oddesey.

  3. Janice M says:

    We like Kipper for my 3-year-old on Netflix. Shawn the Sheep is ok too, but a little slapstick.

  4. Carolyn says:

    Our whole family likes Fraggle Rock, which we own on DVD.

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