Friday, January 28, 2011

"I learned it from Sponge Bob."

Okay, so I do let my kids watch TV. I truly think there are a lot of great educational shows out there that are also fun to watch. I know my kids pick up lessons from them, whether it be letters, shapes, colors, etc... But I never expected my daughter to learn something from Sponge Bob.

Now, I am not a fan of Bobby. I remember years ago when it first came out, I was childless at the time. A coworker was telling me about it. I was like, "Seriously, a show about a talking kitchen sponge?" I'd seen it a few times after that and the voice just grated at my ear drums. So when my daughter was born, I swore, no Sponge Bob.

But it's been almost 8 years since her birth, and I don't know, maybe I'm worn down. Maybe I've decided it's more important to hold my ground on more important topics. But she is now allowed to watch it.

Yesterday we were driving in the car and my daughter asked if we can regrow fingers if they get cut off. I think this came from a few days before when I told her she had to wear gloves or she would get frostbite and if it was bad, they'd have to amputate her fingers (I am not above worst case scenario stories if it helps keep her gloves on!) So we said no, that only some animals can regrow limbs, like a lizard's tail. She then tells us that lizards can only regrow their tails if just the tip is cut off, not the whole thing. I then told her that I thought starfish could regrow their arms if one is cut off. She says "Oh, yeah, they can. Patrick (from Sponge Bob) got his arm cut off and he grew a new one." maybe she is learning something from Sponge Bob.

She continued, "And his arm grew a new body!"

Well, it can't be all educational, I guess.

I look back at the silly stuff I watched as a kid- You Can't Do That on Television, Ren and Stimpy, Smurfs...etc. There was nothing educational about those shows and I grew up to be a normal, well-educated member of society.


  1. This is one of my greatest concerns. I don't have kids yet, but it will be happening in the next few years. I'm worried that if I let them watch any television they will turn into zombies (not literally). My little cousin was raised watching all the tv and playing all the games he wanted and it didn't turn out so well.

  2. One of my absolute favorites is Avatar: The Last Airbender. I can watch it with my kids and I love the values it teaches. Check it out, if you haven't already!

  3. I just realized I remember when Spongebob first aired...and suddenly, I feel old.

    But it's cool that you're daughter picked up something. I just hope she realizes you can't build campfires underwater.

  4. I took my daughter on a sea educational day trip on a research boat, and one of the marine biologists said that she knew the artist that created Sponge Bob and they were actually pretty accurate. Who would have thought?

  5. So funny that you posted this, because my younger daughter went on a field trip to an aquarium last week and came home with a fairly ocean-vocabulary rich book. I took one look when she announced it as her bedtime story and my stomach dropped ... but imagine my surprise to hear her reading "tentacles" and "starfish" and so on like a champ. Turns out she has a fairly extensive ocean vocabulary from watching "Spongebob", and she knew what the context of the book was, so ...

    Anyway, it was cool : )

  6. I started watching Spongebob in 2000 when I was home on maternity leave with my second child -- therefore crediting myself with enjoying the show before it became popular.

    Over the years, I have been surprised at how my fifth grade students have credited this show with little tidbits of knowledge. They know what plankton is ... and who Leif Erickson is ... and they know the Flying Dutchman is a ghost ship.

    Can you learn from Spongebob? Yea, verily. ;)

  7. I think kids NEED silly. I know I did. It's a break from everything educational always shoved down their throats. Now, I'm all for educational, but there's a time for everything.. and kids need to learn how and when to be laidback and laugh as much as how and when to be motivated and focused.

    so, yes, I let my kids watch Spongebob too. We watch it together sometimes and we all laugh. And honestly, I think you can learn something from everything. (within reason of course) and starfish really do grow their arms back... lol!! :)

  8. I always said I didn't get Spongebob...too complicated...but then one day I sat down and watched an episode and it was great! I found it's like anything else -- until you sit your booty down and really pay attention, you don't really get what it's all about.

  9. I think the main problem with TV is the amount of TV and screen time some kids are getting. According to a seminar I attended recently less than an hour a day doesn't have any affect on a kid, an hour or more does though. This apparently doesn't count sports for some reason :)

  10. It's neat when children get little spoonfuls of knowledge along with the laughter of cartoons. I don't think THE THREE STOOGES or Wiley E. Coyote taught me anything! Maybe Wiley taught me persistence. LOL.

  11. I had to come back and post again, because Spongebob is on in the house right now, and he just said, "Mayhap ..."

    I love his occasional diversion into archaic language! Hee, hee, hee.

  12. Wow! So many comments!!!!! Thanks so much everyone!!!!!

    PK, so true!! I think these days kids are expected to grow up too fast!! I want my kid to enjoy being a kid...that time is so short. And then you're an adult and you have so many responsibilities.