Olive the Ostrich

Common Sense Media says

Bird's imaginary adventures celebrate friendship, curiosity.

Age(i)

2
3
4
5
6
7
8
9
10
11
12
13
14
15
16
17

Quality(i)

 

What parents need to know

Educational value

Positive social messages about embracing new things and helping friends, plus the show incorporates basic pre-reading skills like colors and counting in some of the stories.

Positive messages

The series celebrates imagination and curiosity, two qualities to which preschoolers will relate. Olive's adventures offer her many opportunities to make new friends, and she welcomes the chance to help them in any way she can.

Positive role models

Olive has a generous, caring nature that endears her to everyone she meets. She proves to be a good solver of problems and is willing to try just about anything to help a friend. At the end of each episode, her family laughs off what she tells them of her adventures, though, which seems to contribute to her feeling different from them.

Violence & scariness
Not applicable
Sexy stuff
Not applicable
Language
Not applicable
Consumerism
Not applicable
Drinking, drugs, & smoking
Not applicable

Parents Need to Know

Parents need to know that Olive the Ostrich is a preschool series that celebrates imagination, adventure, curiosity, and friendship. The title character is a young bird who feels different from all of her family members and so spends much of her time with her head underground thinking up exciting places to visit and people to meet. In her own imagination, Olive can solve any problem and unlock any clue, sentiments of self-esteem that will appeal to her young audience. The show also incorporates some basic pre-reading skills like counting and color recognition, and it's set to original artwork from kid contributors, so it could inspire your own young artists to try their hand at designing a scene.

Parents say

Kids say

What's the story?

OLIVE THE OSTRICH is a British animated series that uses kids' artwork submissions to set the background for the adventures of an inquisitive ostrich named Olive (voiced by Laura Ellison), who spends much of her time with her head buried in the sand seeking out imaginary people and places. Whether she's in the library or in a far-off planet, personable Olive has little trouble making friends, and she's always eager to lend a hand when they're in a tight spot.

Is it any good?

QUALITY
 

Narrated by Rolf Harris and designed to sound like a read-aloud book, Olive the Ostrich appeals to preschoolers' natural curiosity about the world around them and beyond. The use of children's art in the series authenticates its sense of make-believe, since the stories reflect the unique places and characters that come straight from real kids' imaginations. Olive's wide-eyed approach to every new experience validates tots' wonder about places and things they've never seen. The show also offers some happy messages beyond those of the imagination, especially when it comes to Olive's friendly, helpful nature, which often contributes to a turning point in each of her adventures.

On a surprising note, the series seems to play up Olive's sense of distance from her family by wrapping up each episode with an exchange between her and her parents and brother, all of whom get a good chuckle over her retelling of her imaginative adventures of the day. It's subtly implied that this contributes to her plans for a similar escape another day. Ultimately, though, this isn't something that will affect the intended preschool audience, all of whom will be otherwise occupied by Olive's unpredictable escapades, but it may be worth encouraging your kids to experience some real-life adventures with you rather than just make-believe ones on their own.

Families can talk about...

  • Families can talk about feeling different. Why do you think Olive feels unique in her family? Does it seem to bother her? What makes you different from everyone else? How is being different a good thing?

  • Kids: What are some real-life adventures you and your family can find in and around your hometown? How will you plan for the trip? What supplies will you need?

  • Did you learn anything from this show? What did Olive learn today? Do you watch other shows that help teach you things like numbers, letters, and colors?

TV details

Cast:Laura Ellison, Rolf Harris
Network:Sprout
Genre:Kids' Animation
Topics:Adventures, Friendship, Great girl role models, Wild animals
TV rating:NR
Available on:Streaming

This review of Olive the Ostrich was written by

About our rating system

  • ON: Content is age-appropriate for kids this age.
  • PAUSE: Know your child; some content may not be right for some kids.
  • OFF: Not age-appropriate for kids this age.
  • NOT FOR KIDS: Not appropriate for kids of any age.

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Quality

Our star rating assesses the media's overall quality.

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Learning ratings

  • Best: Really engaging, great learning approach.
  • Very Good: Engaging, good learning approach.
  • Good: Pretty engaging, good learning approach.
  • Fair: Somewhat engaging, okay learning approach.
  • Not for Learning: Not recommended for learning.
  • Not for Kids: Not age-appropriate for kids; not recommended for learning.

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What parents and kids say

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Kid, 11 years old January 1, 2013
AGE
3
QUALITY
 

Perhaps the worst educational show of all time.

First, let me say that this isn't iffy for 2 year olds. This is designed for all ages. This is a terrible show in my opinion. The only educational value you get is to be very creative, and there's nothing wrong with that. The only positive role model in this is Olive, an ostrich with a big imagination. First of all, this show lasts only for a couple of minutes, which is way too short. Also, the animation sucks. Some people in the show are pieces of paper colored in as if a 5-year old was doing the animation. The voice acting is horrendous. In the airplane episode, Nancy the flight attendant sounded like a guy (It's a girl.) The theme song is extremely annoying. The narrator talks way too much. It's as if he is the main character. Also, Olive always says the names of objects and says she may have an idea in every episode. It is repetitive. This is so bad it makes Caillou look like Sesame Street, which is awesome. When I said awesome, I meant Sesame Street.

What other families should know
Educational value
Great role models
Parent of a 1 and 5 year old Written byWilko10 March 13, 2013
AGE
2
QUALITY
 

By kids, for kids

"Also, the animation sucks. Some people in the show are pieces of paper colored in as if a 5-year old was doing the animation."

Uh, yeah. Kids did much of the art, as explained here in "what parents need to know."

A fine, colorful show that speaks at children, not down to them.

What other families should know
Educational value
Great messages

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