Teletubbies

Common Sense Media says

Fantastical, benign show meant for the very young.

Age(i)

2
3
4
5
6
7
8
9
10
11
12
13
14
15
16
17

Quality(i)

 

What parents need to know

Educational value

While not obviously educational, there are some bits that might introduce new ideas, especially the live-action segments that feature kids from different parts of the world showing a bit of their world -- like how they milk goats or bake muffins.

Positive messages

The series sends the most basic messages of harmony, friendship, and fun and introduces basic learning concepts, such as numbers and words.

Positive role models

The Teletubbies are pleasant and helpful to each other. The live-actions segments show a diverse group of kids doing interesting things.

Violence & scariness
Not applicable
Sexy stuff
Not applicable
Language

The teletubbies speak in a giggling baby language.

Consumerism

The Teletubbies have spawned a vast array of merchandise.

Drinking, drugs, & smoking
Not applicable

Parents Need to Know

Parents need to know that this show out of Great Britain is a big hit with toddlers and preschoolers. It's never explained exactly what the Teletubbies are, but they're ultimately cute and benign. But the question comes down to this: How old should children be before they are introduced to television? The American Academy of Pediatrics doesn't recommend any TV time for kids under 2; that said, there are no content concerns within this show for the youngest viewers.

Parents say

Kids say

What's the story?

First and foremost, the obvious question: What are these TELETUBBIES anyway? Aliens? Children? Nobody knows, and no explanation is offered. Dipsy, Laa-Laa, Tinky-Winky, and Po giggle like toddlers, speak in partially formed words, and apparently live together without parents in their mushroom-shaped cottage. They bounce around, playing and pantomiming, and plenty of kids are enthralled by them.

Is it any good?

QUALITY
 

Teletubbies, though gentle and mild in tone, might be confusing to the youngest viewers: It appeals to non-order just when kids most require order to organize their formative mind. On the other hand, the show is non-violent, multicultural, and curious. It embraces love and play. It's slow and gentle -- though its emphasis on watching the videos that play on the Tubbies' tummies is a bit redundant.

In the end, although Teletubbies is unique and fascinating, it's not necessarily educational or important. You may want to decide whether it serves as a treat -- or a distraction -- before letting your child watch more than twice a week.

Families can talk about...

  • Families can talk about why kids are so enthralled by the Teletubbies (and perhaps why a lot of parents aren't!). Is it the colorful characters? Their special language? Their bright, fantastical world? The fact that they repeat themselves so often? What do kids learn from these happy, giggly creatures?

TV details

Cast:John Simmit, Nikky Smedley, Pui Fan Lee
Network:PBS
Genre:Educational
Topics:Magic and fantasy
TV rating:TV-Y
Available on:DVD, Streaming

This review of Teletubbies was written by

About our rating system

  • ON: Content is age-appropriate for kids this age.
  • PAUSE: Know your child; some content may not be right for some kids.
  • OFF: Not age-appropriate for kids this age.
  • NOT FOR KIDS: Not appropriate for kids of any age.

Find out more

Quality

Our star rating assesses the media's overall quality.

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Learning ratings

  • Best: Really engaging, great learning approach.
  • Very Good: Engaging, good learning approach.
  • Good: Pretty engaging, good learning approach.
  • Fair: Somewhat engaging, okay learning approach.
  • Not for Learning: Not recommended for learning.
  • Not for Kids: Not age-appropriate for kids; not recommended for learning.

Find out more

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What parents and kids say

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Teen, 13 years old Written bywhaleoh4060 March 25, 2011
AGE
17
QUALITY
 

Eek!

Their pancake things look REALLY gross! Will scar kids for life!
Written byAnonymous September 3, 2010
AGE
2
QUALITY
 

Oh geez

This show scares me...... I used to love it as a toddler, but I'm now scared of it
Kid, 11 years old May 21, 2011
AGE
4
QUALITY
 
I used to love Teletubies when I was a little kid! They are so cool! Such a cool show, let your young children watch this!!

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