WordGirl

TV review by
Emily Ashby, Common Sense Media
WordGirl TV Poster Image
Popular with kidsParents recommend
Brainy heroine uses vocab to outwit bad guys.

Parents say

age 6+
Based on 38 reviews

Kids say

age 6+
Based on 44 reviews

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

The series exposes grade-schoolers to sophisticated words and their definitions, and word games woven into the plot encourage viewers to generate their own synonyms for the featured vocabulary lists.

Positive Messages

WordGirl and her friends fight crime and spread vocabulary lessons to those who need a little help. Themes of curiosity, courage, and other positive character strengths are addressed, and kids can learn that knowledge is a powerful tool. 

Positive Role Models & Representations

Wordgirl is a confident female heroine who's undaunted by her enemies, relying on her smarts and grasp of vocabulary to overcome challenges. The bad guys are all very silly and never seem truly evil.

Violence & Scariness

Each episode contains some cartoon violence of the "wham! bang!" variety -- with lots of flashy backgrounds to emphasize impact as WordGirl knocks out mostly robotic enemies.

Sexy Stuff

A few very mild allusions to grade-school crushes.

Language
Consumerism
Drinking, Drugs & Smoking

What parents need to know

Parents need to know that WordGirl is an entertaining animated series that introduces grade-schoolers to the pronunciations and definitions of advanced vocabulary words like "temptation," "gigantic," and "vegetarian." There's a little bit of cartoon violence, but that pales in comparison to the fact that kid viewers will unknowingly expand their literary repertoire while enjoying the empowered young superheroine's adventures.

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User Reviews

  • Parents say
  • Kids say
Adult Written byJaydogZackery May 11, 2020

The uncensored version is not for little ones

Parents need to know that WordGirl does have two versions; and both were targeted toward third and fourth grade students during the show's airing from 2007... Continue reading
Parent of a 4-year-old Written byDaddy Cares October 5, 2010

Child Identifies Race Issue

Hi, Parents. My daughter is age 4. She pointed out to me that almost everytime the "brown boy" gives an answer on Can I Have A Word, he gets it wrong.... Continue reading
Teen, 15 years old Written byVoracious Reader March 8, 2009

Believe it or Not

Believe it or not, this show is hillarious and funny. It's great to watch just for fun, even if you're not 5 years old. I'm 15. XD
Teen, 13 years old Written by1irfanomer March 28, 2015

Awesome

I love word girl its funny and teaches kids vocabulary, but I dont find this show realistic (the bad guys are really stupid) and I also find wordgirl a party po... Continue reading

What's the story?

In WORDGIRL, a heroic grade-schooler uses her proficiency with the English language to rid her hometown of nefarious intruders. To any onlooker, spunky girl next door Becky Botsford (voiced by Dannah Feinglass) seems no different from her fifth-grade peers. But when trouble strikes, Becky's caped alter ego WordGirl zooms off her monkey sidekick, Captain Huggy Face, to oust the bad guys with her double whammy of brawns and brain. Though she does employ her super strength at times (after all, what else is a girl with a leveling left hook to do?), WordGirl relies more on her grasp of the English language to outwit her vocabulary-challenged opponents.

Is it any good?

Engaging and well crafted, this series combines fun stories, zany characters, and important literacy skills into a 30-minute package that kids will love and parents will applaud. As superhero stories go, this one comes up short on violence (what little there is is of the exaggerated WHAM! BANG! variety). Even better, it revolves around a brainy, well-spoken female heroine.

WordGirl mimics the well-trodden path of most superhero cartoons. But the notable difference here is that, instead of firepower, WordGirl's most trusted weapons are entries on advanced vocabulary lists, which she uses to trip up her enemies. She'll often befuddle them with challenges to name synonyms or definitions for the words she uses, or they'll get distracted by their unfamiliarity with her word choice. Not only will her zany adventures entertain young viewers, but they'll also increase kids' vocabulary skills and improve their reading comprehension. All in all, WordGirl is an excellent (superb, first-rate, stupendous, etc.) choice for young grade-schoolers.

Talk to your kids about ...

  • Families can talk about literacy skills. Kids: How does being familiar with more words help you in school? Does not knowing a particular word ever trip you up? What do you do then?What new words did you learn from WordGirl?  

  • Talk about Word Girl. Do you think she's a good role model? Are there other powerful and positive girl characters on TV and in the movies? Who are your favorites?

  • Parents can also talk to kids about the power of words. What types of words can hurt other people? What types can help? Is it possible to resolve differences with words alone?

  • How does Wordgirl demonstrate curiosity and courage? Why are these important character strengths

TV details

Character Strengths

Find more TV shows that help kids build character.

Themes & Topics

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For kids who love playing with words

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