Kid Correspondent

TV review by
Marina Gordon, Common Sense Media
Kid Correspondent TV Poster Image
Warm, fast-paced news show promotes empathy, activism.

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Educational Value

Kids and families can learn about civic engagement and how elections can affect kids' lives. 

Positive Messages

Encourages kids to be engaged in civic discourse, speak up for themselves and others, listen to others' perspectives, and compromise. 

Positive Role Models

All the kids in the show are enthusiastic, inquisitive, and respectful of others' perspectives (or quickly learn to be). The show depicts young journalist Riah positively, as she gathers information and perspectives and has fun in the process.

Violence & Scariness
Sexy Stuff
Drinking, Drugs & Smoking

What parents need to know

Parents need to know that Kid Correspondent is a YouTube series that focuses on the 2020 U.S. election, civic engagement, and such questions as "Are kids too young to have their voices heard?" The show features a racially diverse cast of kids in the 6-12 age range, and is hosted by "Kid Correspondent" 8-year-old Riah from a set fashioned to look like a DIY news studio. The focus is extremely positive, covering empathy, healthy disagreement, and listening. No politicians' names are mentioned, and there's no discussion of political stances -- instead disagreements are more cat vs. dog or summer vs. winter and are quickly resolved. Children as young as preschool will enjoy seeing all the correspondents who appear in remote videos, just like so many classes and gatherings take place in 2020. Sprinkled in the episodes are "Ask a Grownup" segments, in which Riah chats about the themes in the show with such celebrities as Mandy Moore, Robin Roberts, and Rainn Wilson (whose media company Soul Pancake produced Kid Correspondent and previously made the YouTube show Kid President). 

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What's the story?

KID CORRESPONDENT is a four-episode pre-election YouTube show that's structured like a newscast, in which 8-year-old host Riah quips and introduces the theme of the week and various segments -- "Ask a Grownup" (celebrity guests), "ad" breaks, dance party, etc. It's fun, colorful, fast-paced, and features a racially diverse set of kid correspondents who are all appropriately socially distanced (it was produced during the Covid era) and remote but edited to appear they're interacting in real time. In addition to such celebrity guests as Mandy Moore and Rainn Wilson, Riah interviews kids who are speaking up (by phone banking, protesting, and more).

Is it any good?

In a year when everyone seems to be talking about politics, families with young children will welcome this positive, inspirational antidote to the often combative rhetoric around the 2020 election. Kid Correspondent may remind parents of a similar TV show from another era; think of it as Zoom for the Zoom generation. In four brief episodes, relatable host Riah presents a fun, friendly, kid-empowering world in which big ideas (empathy, healthy disagreement, cats vs. dogs) can be explored in a supportive way. The kid correspondents have a "let's put on a show!" vibe, as though a production from your local elementary school made its way to the big YouTube stage. The celebrity guests who appear in "Ask a Grownup" segments (Mandy Moore, Rainn Wilson, Robin Roberts, and Lisa Loeb are in the first two episodes) are warm and earnest, and the "Kid of the Week" segments will encourage elementary-age viewers to think about what they believe and how to make their voices heard.

Talk to your kids about ...

  • Families can talk about whose advice about interacting with others in Kid Correspondent is most meaningful to you? Did you find the kid correspondents more helpful or the celebrities featured in "Ask a Grownup"? 

  • What issue are you most passionate about? Why is it important to you? What's something you can do about it?

  • What kinds of questions would you want to "Ask a Grownup?" What do grownups know that kids don't? And what do kids know that grownups don't? 

  • Families can talk about communication and empathy. Why are these important character strengths? How does Riah communicate with guests on the show? How does hearing other people's thoughts and ideas help with feeling empathy towards them?

  • Kid activists like Greta Thunberg and Malala Yousafzai have made a big impact on the world. When do you think kids should start learning about the world around them? What about becoming activists for causes they care about? 

TV details

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