Search It Up!

TV review by
Ashley Moulton, Common Sense Media
Search It Up! TV Poster Image
Real kids explain how they use tech in light web series.

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A lot or a little?

The parents' guide to what's in this movie.

Educational Value

Series teaches basics of how different types of technology works. There is some media literacy education, though series mostly focuses on the positives of technology.

Positive Messages

Kids can gain an understanding of the powerful benefits of technology, as well as why it's important to use it safely. 

Positive Role Models

Diverse cast of kids are friendly with one another and model responsible technology use.

Violence & Scariness
Sexy Stuff

The logo of the series' sponsor (Comcast's Internet Essentials) flashes briefly on screen at the end of every episode.

Drinking, Drugs & Smoking

What parents need to know

Parents need to know that Search It Up! is a PBS series of short web videos that teach kids the basics about technology. It's appropriate for preschoolers and up, though the concepts will probably be most relevant for kids who already have some familiarity with the internet. 

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What's the story?

SEARCH IT UP! is a series of short videos that each explain a different aspect of modern technology. It features interviews with real kids being asked about tech like phones, GPS, the internet, and more. They give a definition of what the technology is, a basic explanation about how it works, and talk about how they use it in their own lives. Some episodes have mini skits about the topic, like kids pretending to video call each other or making a pretend ad for online streaming videos.

Is it any good?

This webseries is fun to watch, as the kids being interviewed give charming thoughts about technology (a la Kids Say the Darndest Things or the Kids React YouTube Series). From an educational perspective though, Search It Up! is a bit of a missed opportunity. The kids are about six to 10 years old and are talking about technologies that are relevant to kids their own age, but the definitions are so basic it's hard to imagine that kids that age don't know the information already. Some episodes touch on media literacy topics -- like how to decide if information you find on the Internet is trustworthy, or why there are advertisements before streaming videos -- but they just barely scratch the surface. Kids will enjoy watching these fun and cute videos, but will probably not learn a ton of new information. Parents could use them as a jumping off point though, to discuss how technology impacts kids' everyday lives.

Talk to your kids about ...

  • Families can talk about how they use technology in their lives. What are some of the benefits of technology? What are some of the challenges around using technology? Did you learn anything interesting about technology in Search It Up! ?

  • Let's try searching an animal to see if it's real or not. Give me the name of an animal, and let's do a search for it. I'll show you how I figure out if something's real or not.

  • How do you think people accessed information before the internet? And today, what else can you use in addition to, or instead of, the internet to learn something about a particular topic? 

TV details

Our editors recommend

For kids who love educational telvevision

Themes & Topics

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