If I want my kids to celebrate Earth Day every day, it helps if they understand the little issues that all add up to make big changes. In other words: Why I screech when they forget to recycle a piece of paper. (I admit it. I screech.)
That’s why I applaud PBS for their new website that talks to kids about their choices and how they affect the environment–all with just the right dose of humor, no screeching, and without diluting the very important message behind each one. If you have school-age kids, you’ll want to check this out.
PBS’ new LOOP SCOOPS website includes several short, really entertaining cartoons that sucked my kids in immediately. Each colorful cartoon deals with something most kids use every day: an electronic toy, a juice box, or a magazine.
The cartoon kids have to either face a challenge from a Sphinx (who sounds like Ruff Ruffman for you Fetch! fans) or visit a testing facility in the hopes of becoming a video-game tester: I have no idea what the video-game element is doing here, but it works and probably will be explained as the site develops. These “tests” include things like “make this garbage pile smaller” or “why is fresh squeezed OJ more eco-friendly than single-serve bottles?”–nothing too cerebral, but even I learned a few things.
If your kid is the inquisitive sort, PBS even includes a page of footnotes”under each video. The factoid nerd in me found these to be sooooo interesting, and it’d be really helpful for kids who are doing school projects or papers on one of the topics. And while most of the videos definitely have a reduce, reuse, recycle undertone, this isn’t the sole focus as evidenced by one cartoon about how velcro was invented.
My only quibble is that I wish the videos would play in succession. Instead, if you leave one open, it’ll repeat, which made me a bit batty when the kids walk away from the laptop. Maybe this is the “loop” the name implies?
LOOP SCOOPS is going to become part of a larger PBS initiative–they call it a “Top-secret project”. Whatever this means, I know we’re hoping to see a lot more of it. -Christina