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TV review by
Tara Swords, Common Sense Media
Caillou TV Poster Image
Kids can relate to this sweet, curious explorer.

Parents say

age 7+
Based on 113 reviews

Kids say

age 6+
Based on 129 reviews

We think this TV show stands out for:

A lot or a little?

The parents' guide to what's in this TV show.

Educational Value

The show helps teach young kids how to deal with their sometimes-strong emotions.

Positive Messages

The show promotes curiosity and empathy and sometimes tackles strong emotions (fear, anger, etc.) in a way that will help kids deal with them.

Positive Role Models & Representations

The program is full of diverse characters who exhibit positive behavior. Caillou himself sometimes acts like a real-life 4-year-old, which turns some viewers -- particularly adults -- off, but it's relatable for kids.

Violence & Scariness
Sexy Stuff
Drinking, Drugs & Smoking

What parents need to know

Parents need to know that Caillou is about a sweet, curious child who loves to explore the world. The program sometimes deals with intense emotions such as fear, anger, loneliness, anxiety, and empathy, but they're presented in a straightforward manner that will help kids, not frighten them. The character sometimes exhibits realistic behavior typical of a 4-year-old.

User Reviews

  • Parents say
  • Kids say
Parent of a 2 and 4 year old Written byamandasdaddy December 3, 2009

No, No, No, No, No!!!!!

Wouldn't you know it! The one thing my daughter learned from Caillou was how to whine! While there is always a positive message at the end, it is lost in a... Continue reading
Adult Written byKaren1969 July 20, 2009

How do I loathe thee? Let me count the ways....

Aahgh. I agree with other reviewers who complain that their children have begun to whine and be afraid of monsters after watching this show. Mine has done the s... Continue reading
Kid, 11 years old August 19, 2011

Bald headed brat teaches kids the wrong lesson- not mature, it's IMmature!

Caillou is a whiney kid with bad parents. They let him get away with everything! My brother used to be banned from this show for catching Caillou the pebble... Continue reading
Kid, 10 years old April 17, 2010

caillou teaches kids to be bratty and whiny!

caillou is a big brat and he is whiny!

What's the story?

CAILLOU is an enjoyable cartoon about a 4-year-old boy who lives with his parents and little sister, Rosie. Each program has a theme and is divided into several short, attention-holding sections that mix animation, puppet skits, and video of kids in real-life situations. It's a colorful program, sometimes quiet and sometimes lively, and it captivates kids. In four animated stories, Caillou learns lessons about the day's theme and solves problems, often with some adult guidance. He talks and acts like a 4-year-old, which offers parents good talking points after the show.

Is it any good?

Some of Caillou's reactions to situations are quite realistic: When he breaks a friend's bucket in the sandbox, the friend tells him that she doesn't want to play with him anymore. Caillou sulks, and when his mother asks him what's wrong, he doesn't at first 'fess up to breaking his friend's toy. A narrator explains Caillou's true intentions to viewers: He's embarrassed. Caillou might also make a sour face or protest if asked to do something he doesn't want to do, but the narrator usually explains his motives. Overall, he displays realistic reactions -- which might make Caillou more companion than role model. But he always gets the life lesson -- and viewers will, too.

Talk to your kids about ...

  • Families can talk about Caillou's various themes: welcoming a new sibling, learning how to make and keep friends, the importance of caring for pets and the environment, and so on.

  • Young kids might see similarities between their actions and Caillou's. How do kids feel about the way the character behaves? What section of the show does your child respond to the most?

  • How do the characters in Caillou demonstrate curiosity and empathy? Why are those important character strengths?

TV details

Character Strengths

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Themes & Topics

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Our editors recommend

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