I'm a a part-time vocal coach and a mom of three lovely kids. I have a passion in writing besides music and languages.
Published October 12th 2012
Moms like me are usually hesitant to put our children in front of a TV to watch some kiddie shows. I, for instance, would prefer them to play outside, get some fresh air, or play their dollies and leggo blocks when inside the house. But hey, let's be real. It doesn't always work! Let me put this into perspective. The time of day when I need to prepare the dinner while tidying up the house, I just want my 2 and 5 year old kids to be in one part of the house where they would not mess up while I try to clean and where they won't quarrel for toys. Dinner has to be served soon so I need to do what I need to do, preferably in a kids-free atmosphere for a little while. So, on goes the TV!
Their favourite TV show (and now my favourite, too) is from Nick Jr.'s show called "Nihao, Kai-lan". For me, this is another version of "Dora, the Explorer" but instead of introducing Spanish language to the children viewers, Kai-lan who is the main character in the show, introduces Mandarin. The program is inter-active and centers on emotional behaviors and how to deal intelligently with emotional difficulties. In a child-friendly presentation, the show tackles problem, observation, and solution to the problem. The setting is in China which then imparts Chinese culture. In addition, the music appeals to the children.
Ok, so I don't particularly think that my children will learn or speak Chinese fluently in the future. Nor, do I have any inclination for my kids to learn the language at this time. But, my observation is that, my 5 year old child has all of a sudden become interested in a place called China. She started to ask where is China, what the people are like in China. Even my 2 years old know that there are pandas in China. In short, Nihao, Kai-lan has sparked curiosity from my kids.
And I also now have a compromise with my 5 years old that we learnt from Kai-lan: when I am mad, I will try to calm down!
To find out more about Nihao, Kai-lan and its showtime , visit this website.