The Ruff Ruffman Show

TV review by
Emily Ashby, Common Sense Media
The Ruff Ruffman Show TV Poster Image
Wacky canine host teaches kids about science concepts.

Parents say

age 15+
Based on 1 review

Kids say

age 15+
Based on 1 review

Did this review miss something on diversity?

Research shows a connection between kids' healthy self-esteem and positive, diverse representations in books, TV shows, and movies. Want to help us help them? Suggest a diversity update

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

Kids learn basic scientific concepts and will be inspired to ask questions of their own. All of the projects and experiments are easily replicated at home, so families can expand on the learning points from the show.


Positive Messages

Kids see Ruff and his human friends use critical-thinking skills and the scientific method to solve problems and answer questions. Curiosity and perseverance are shown to be positive attributes that help the characters learn new things, even when it takes a few tries. The queries and solutions are presented at a child's level of understanding but incorporate concepts like measurement and categorization in simple terms. Both boys and girls help Ruff with his projects and experiments, challenging traditional gender roles in STEM fields.


Positive Role Models & Representations

Ruff is insatiably curious and eager to find answers to his questions. It usually doesn't happen on the first try, but he sticks with it and adjusts his expectations when it's necessary. The kids who help him always have great ideas to share and much enthusiasm for the projects.


Violence & Scariness
Sexy Stuff

This series also has a related app as well as games that are available online. Ruff previously starred in Fetch! With Ruff Ruffman.


Drinking, Drugs & Smoking

What parents need to know

Parents need to know that The Ruff Ruffman Show is an animated short-form series that introduces kids to scientific concepts and methods in humorous, engaging ways. In each episode, Ruff and his human friends ponder a question using skills like sorting, categorizing, and measuring, then they form a conclusion based on what they learned. Concepts like making a hypothesis and using quantifiable data are presented in ways that young grade-schoolers can understand, and all of the experiments and hands-on projects can be done easily at home. This funny, fascinating show is a great pick for parents and kids to enjoy together.

User Reviews

  • Parents say
  • Kids say

There aren't any reviews yet. Be the first to review this title.

There aren't any reviews yet. Be the first to review this title.

What's the story?

Canine TV host Ruff Ruffman (voiced by Jim Conroy) returns to the screen in THE RUFF RUFFMAN SHOW, a science-based series in which he and his human friends solve problems and answer questions through inquiry and experimentation. Along with his animal assistants, Chet and Blossom (Conroy again), Ruff identifies a challenge or query of the day -- anything from finding material strong enough for a rhino leash to building an obstacle course for a hamster -- and collaborates with kid helpers via video chat to solve it.

Is it any good?

Ruff is his same silly, slightly neurotic self in this delightful, engaging cartoon that's packed with learning potential for young kids. Each episode shows him going about his day only to be stumped by a question that doesn't have an easy answer. Rather than pass it by, Ruff jumps at the chance to investigate, test, and question it some more until he arrives at a conclusion that works. Often that means the process of trial and error (and error and error), but he and his kid helpers stick with it to the end.

Parents will love The Ruff Ruffman Show for the creative way it teaches kids solid science concepts and processes at youngsters' learning level. Kids will love it because Ruff is a hilarious host with a treasury of stories about his past escapades and comical insights he's never shy to share. The end result is an exceptional series that's as educational as it is entertaining and a fantastic starting point for kids' exposure to scientific methods.

Talk to your kids about ...

  • Families can talk about how Ruff and his friends devise experiments and other testing methods to answer their questions in The Ruff Ruffman Show. What do they hope to learn from them? Do their methods always yield conclusive answers?

  • Why is being curious a good character strength? Do you ever hesitate to ask questions when you want to know more about something? What science concepts interest you the most?

  • How do we use science in our regular lives? In what ways does technology make things easier for us? What inventions or advances would you like to see in the future?

TV details

Our editors recommend

For kids who love PBS classics

Character Strengths

Find more TV shows that help kids build character.

Themes & Topics

Browse titles with similar subject matter.

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

Streaming options powered by JustWatch

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.

Learn how we rate