{Video Review} Signing Time and other favorite toddler shows

I used to be an anti-TV parent,

At about the age of  9 mos to 3 yo, baby's brain is rapidly developing more than any times in human life (here is a very good explanation) and there are lots of research that shows negative effects of screen time on young children :
here a study from urbanchildinstitute,
here from kidshealthorg,
- and here from PBS the broadcaster side, they even give warnings

But (so fast for the but.. heehee) .. as the baby grown, my schedule also grown, and TV was one of a great help when I needed to cook, take a shower, eat peacefully or doing some urgent work of my small online biz or Sunday School tasks.

Still, we are very selective about which shows that hungrybaby can watch, screen time (1 hour per day) and allowing her to watch TV when she turned 1. Up to now, we don't watch commercial and cable TV, and toddlerhood runs so fast, so we adults decided no to watch TV unless baby is sleeping.

And from the selection, this is our toddler's fave show:
Yes... its : Signing time! <3
Signing time is teaching babies& kids how to use American Sign Language (ASL) through easy to follow songs, interesting animation, and lovely characters (Leah -a hearing impaired girl, Rachel- Leah's mommy and creator of Signing time, and Alex- Leah's cousin) . From their official website, here are the advantages of teaching baby to sign, and here are our version of why we love it:

- Help to communicate and gave confidence

I started to sign to her long before i met Signing time. When she's round 6 mos old, i read books about baby sign language, and tried to sign milk, mama, and more. By the time she's 9 months, she can sign milk! I was totally amazed. But then that were her few vocab. When I started to borrow the videos at the library, her signing increasingly added since, she knows animal, colors, word around the house, transportation, etc

If compared to her same age friends, hungrybaby was a bit late in talking. Signing helped her to communicate confidently. We are using Bahasa Indonesia as daily language, and she started using English at the playgroup, it also helps because either Bahasa or English, the sign is the same.

I use it if she runs away too far, I called her name and sign "wait". Or when she's started to whine or cried if she wants something instantly, I sign "wait", it's easier to sign than to talk if we are in an emotional situation :)

- Bonding

We, mama, papa, baby love to watch and learn it together. It's like our secret language. Even her grandpa approved, by only watching a couple of times, he can sign together with baby.

- Interactive learning

Even though it's a TV show, it doesn't stop hungrybaby to jump, sing, dance and off course to sign. Through a brief examination, her dominant intelligences are bodyly/kinesthetic and musical/rythmic intelligence, maybe that's why she learns quickly through the videos.

Look how jumpy she is

- Duration

For 1 series, the video duration is about 23 minutes, just nice for one sit screen time, then she can continue with other activity, and if she wants, she can watch other videos later that day.

Now hungrybaby's started talking and still love to sign, if we continue to use it, hopefully we can use it to communicate with the hearing impaired in the future too. (Links to Signing time web and their youtube channel.)

And here are some other series that she loves to watch too:

1. Wonder pet
What's gonna work..team work
This series is also about singing, singing and a bit dancing :). And off course like other toddlers, baby likes animals, and now she started to like pretend play, she plays saving animal in trouble and ask me to help too.. team work!

2. Shaun the sheep

Ooh life's a treat with Shaun the Sheep

When we are outside the house, we are not too strict about screen time, she can watch TV at her friends or relative's house. On a staycation at her cousin's, she was introduced to Shaun the Sheep, a silent clay stop motion series, and she love it since, thanks to all the farm animals and catchy theme song. For 2nd birthday I made her Shaun the Sheep bday theme.

3. Monkey see monkey do

Another interactive TV show, she won't sit still, will jump, dance, and acting like the animals following the monkey's cue.

4. Pingu
She laughed at this cheeky and nosy pinguin.
Another silent clay stop motion, she loves these, maybe as she is getting older, she will like stories with more dialogue.

5. Sukey's Circle

At the public library, there are extensive baby interactive video collection, but this one is quite special, we borrowed multiple times (there are only 2 series of these) since she turned 1. Simple gymnastic movement and easy to follow songs that me and baby can do at home. Even when we were not watching, we still love to play those circle time bonding activities.

6. Elmo Singing with the Stars

Hungrybaby does not really interested in Sesame Street, only some of Elmo's world and this video that we repeatedly borrow. She could not even talk yet, but could sing "No Mo.. No Mo" referring to adaptation of I'm yours "I wont stay inside... no more, no more" (Outdoors by Jason Mraz). I was in tears :')

7. Aku anak berprestasi

One of Bahasa Indonesia video that we could find at the library. This DVD contains popular Indonesian songs from my childhood, really enjoy watching this with baby, she loves the song too.

8. Cedarmont kids 100 singalong bible songs for kids

Hungrybaby joining Sunday School since she's 6 months old. Some of the songs are familiar and she loves to watch and follow kakak or "bigger kids" who sings in this video.

9.  Shout praises! Kids ultimate praise party

This one is mommy's personal favorite, I am not sure why, but she won't last until the 4th song, and instantly asleep on the couch. It's odd, but i think it's a good thing to have a praise song as a lullaby *wink.

All of the videos mentioned above can be borrowed from the public library, if you click each link it will direct you to the library directory (except for number 3, 8, and 9 are personal collection)

Does your toddler likes the shows above? And what's your toddler's favorite?