A lot or a little?
The parents' guide to what's in this movie.
What parents need to know
What's the story?
The well-known "Yankee Doodle" theme song plays as Barney and his friends Baby Bop and BJ visit the zoo. There isn't much of a plot but rather a list of animals that kids love to see, including flamingos, kangaroos, a koala, a lion, a tiger, a variety of apes and monkeys, a hippopotamus, a giraffe, an elephant, a buffalo, and a warthog. Some animals inspire Barney and his crew to burst into song. The lyrics aren't exactly complex. For example: "The tiger is an animal who walks around like a great big beautiful cat / He is orange and black with beautiful stripes / Now what do you think of that?" Edited into the action are sequences of toddlers happily roaring like lions, trumpeting like elephants, and opening their mouths wide like hippos.
Is it any good?
Preschoolers are likely to enjoy this DVD even if parents find it irritating; it could be useful viewing before a family trip to the zoo. Some parents and children love Barney, and others find him one-dimensional and sugary. In contrast, even Elmo and Big Bird, who seem to exist in a far more complex environment, have occasional bad days. But Barney is always unfailingly tee-riffic, optimistic, and super-dee-duper. As in most Barney tales, there are few, if any, references to unpleasant realities that children may face or how to deal with them. And that may be exactly what so many children and parents find so comforting about the big purple dinosaur.
Talk to your kids about ...
Families can talk about how many pounds of food a hippopotamus would eat every day. Would a hippo make a good pet? Why, or why not?
Why do you think tigers have stripes? How do kangaroos get around?
Have you ever been to the zoo? What was it like? If you haven't, would you like to go?
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Common Sense Media's unbiased ratings are created by expert reviewers and aren't influenced by the product's creators or by any of our funders, affiliates, or partners.
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