A lot or a little?
The parents' guide to what's in this TV show.
What parents need to know
Parents need to know that this educational series tackles some weighty, potentially scary topics. In an episode on diamonds, for example, "conflict diamonds" and the current African civil wars were mentioned, while another episode focused on sharks. Parents might want to preview episodes to make sure that the topics are OK for their kids.
What's the story?
Every episode of EVERYTHING YOU NEED TO KNOW offers viewers a master class on subjects from hurricanes and poison to junk food and fireworks. In each installment -- which is illustrated by both still photos and live shots -- narrator Matt Liston explains the history of the subject being explored and its relevance to our lives today, including fast facts sure to satisfy trivia buffs. In an episode on diamonds, for example, viewers found out how the gems go from mine to market and how diamond engagement rings became de rigueur. They also learned about conflict diamonds, the rise of the De Beers company, and a more recent discovery called synthetic diamonds.
Is it any good?
There's very little to dislike about Everything You Need to Know. While viewers used to fluffier fare might not find it their cup of tea, curious minds will be entertained, and parents can rest assured that their kids are getting a nutritious half-hour of television. Just be sure to scan the listings for any episode topics that might upset or scare younger viewers.
Talk to your kids about ...
Families can talk about using TV and the Internet for learning. What Web sites can kids go to when it's time for homework? Which TV shows can be trusted to give good information? This might be a good opportunity to go over which shows kids can watch (and which sites they can visit) and which are off-limits.