Dora the Explorer

TV review by
Joly Herman, Common Sense Media
Dora the Explorer TV Poster Image
Preschoolers will love Dora's ongoing adventures.

Parents say

age 6+
Based on 74 reviews

Kids say

age 5+
Based on 167 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

Dora, who's bilingual, translates Spanish phrases into English and vice-versa. With all of the repetition, kids are bound to pick some of it up. Kids will also learn about culture.

Positive Messages

The show focuses on cooperation and working together with others to achieve goals. Major themes include communication, curiosity, and perseverance.

Positive Role Models & Representations

Dora is a spunky, determined girl who approaches problems with a can-do attitude.

Violence & Scariness
Sexy Stuff
Language
Consumerism

The Dora franchise boasts a decade's worth of marketing, resulting in a recognizable brand name and a bunch of toys, books, games, videos, and clothing.

Drinking, Drugs & Smoking

What parents need to know

Parents need to know that Dora the Explorer is a show about a bilingual communicator who can speak with all of the critters and humans in her vicinity. Some of the language lessons may rub off on kids -- but other viewers might get bored. Since phrases are constantly repeated, parents may want to consider whether they want their kids to be repeating the same episodes all day. The series offers good exposure to language, culture, and creativity.

User Reviews

Parent of an infant and 2 year old Written byshamrockgrl74 April 9, 2008
I will not let my 3 year old watch this show. There are much better educational shows on TV. Dora has horrible manners - Yelling, telling others what to do. SH... Continue reading
Parent Written byMomma_2_3Boys January 31, 2013

Stickin up for kids

The bad reviews are pretty hilarious. Saying it's not educational, it teaches witchcraft? Really?! Come on people! It's DORA geez. Not SPONGEBOB! Comp... Continue reading
Kid, 8 years old September 18, 2010
Once kids are 6, they will start to hate Dora, but perfect for 2-5 year olds! Nice animation for babies, but sometimes Swiper steals stuff, which is innapropria... Continue reading
Kid, 11 years old April 9, 2008

Bad Show!

Here are reasons you shoudent let ur children watch this show- 1. Dora screams at people, and tells people what to do. Exact opposite of what you want a young... Continue reading

What's the story?

DORA THE EXPLORER is about a young girl and her companion, a monkey named Boots, who are always on the go. They travel over rivers and mountains to reach whatever goal has been set for a particular episode. Dora gets help from her trusty talking backpack full of necessary items and her map, which illustrates the obstacles between Dora and her goal. When Dora reaches her destination, she and Boots break out in song and dance, exclaiming "We did it, we did it!"

Is it any good?

On one hand, Dora is an admirable character with a can-do attitude, but on the other hand, the show can seem simplistic -- even for young viewers. Challenges are often similar, which may get a bit monotonous.

Still, the bilingual and cultural aspects of Dora the Explorer are right on target, featuring music, holidays, and plants and animals relevant to Central and South American culture. And Dora often decides to "stop and think" about a problem when she can't immediately solve it, proving her to be a thoughtful, patient heroine.

Talk to your kids about ...

  • Families can talk about Dora the Explorer's repetition -- is it a good learning tool, or does it make the program seem like virtual brainwashing?

  • What do kids think about the show's lessons about language and culture?

  • Is Dora a good role model?

  • How do Dora and her friends demonstrate communication, curiosity, and perseverance in Dora the Explorer. Why are these important character strengths?

TV details

Character Strengths

Find more TV shows that help kids build character.

Themes & Topics

Browse titles with similar subject matter.

For kids who love learning

Our editors recommend

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.

See how we rate

About these links

Common Sense Media, a nonprofit organization, earns a small affiliate fee from Amazon or iTunes when you use our links to make a purchase. Thank you for your support.

Read more

Our ratings are based on child development best practices. We display the minimum age for which content is developmentally appropriate. The star rating reflects overall quality and learning potential.

Learn how we rate