Kidoodle.TV

Website review by
Erin Brereton, Common Sense Media
Kidoodle.TV Website Poster Image
Safe videos kids should like; controls parents should love.

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A lot or a little?

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

Educational Value

Kids will learn about a variety of topics by watching shows for 1- to 12-year-olds. Some touch on math, animals, science, and other educational topics. Others focus on friendship, girl power, exploration, integrity, being active, and starting school. In one show, families use observation, teamwork, and communication skills in a game. Parents can set time limits for kids to watch the shows, which can also help kids learn about responsible media use. Content could use a little more oomph, but because controls help parents track their kids' TV time, many may be happy to pay the monthly fee.

Positive Messages

Many of the videos encourage treating others well, courage, and having positive self-esteem.

Violence & Scariness

At least one National Geographic video briefly shows an animal eating another animal but doesn't include blood or anything too graphic.

Sexy Stuff
Language
Consumerism

Site subscriptions cost $4.99 a month or $49.99 a year, but videos don't include ads. 

Drinking, Drugs & Smoking

What parents need to know

Parents need to know that they don't have to enter any personal info about their kids when signing up for this subscription-based video service featuring shows aimed toward kids 1 to 12. A code is required to access parents' account information, which should prevent kids from changing any of the settings. Parents can also deselect any videos the site suggests for their child's age group, if they'd like their child to focus on specific topics.

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What's it about?

Kidoodle.TV, launched in 2013 by the Alberta, Canada-based Parent Media Co., features more than 2,500 ad-free shows for kids 12 and under. Kids will recognize some familiar characters, like Super Mario Brothers and Strawberry Shortcake. Helpful controls let parents add up to five kids and select an age group for each, which automatically filters programs into age-specific lists. You can also manually select and deselect programs, set individual viewing limits for each child, and chat with site admins if you have questions.

Is it any good?

KIDOODLE.TV provides dozens of safe, fun videos featuring popular book, video game, and other characters. The content is coupled with effective controls that let parents easily customize the subject matter by age and limit the amount of time their kids can spend on the site. Kids will find plenty to watch, and videos vary in length, so they can choose from short clips to full half-hour episodes. Kidoodle.TV has a few drawbacks: livestreaming videos requires a decent Internet connection; kids can't download shows to watch them later. And while there are lots of episodes to watch, there don't seem to be that many shows to choose from; hopefully they're expanding the selection, some of which is learning-based (National Geographic specials) and some that's just for fun (Inspector Gadget). However, the majority of available videos do seem to have educational or ethical themes; characters stress integrity, self-respect, and other admirable traits (although the inclusion of GIJoe is questionable). Kidoodle.TV could also benefit from adding content that helps kids process the info they're getting on the site, such as discussion questions, worksheets, or activities. In its current format, the site lets parents control what children are watching -- but they can't necessarily guarantee their kids will learn from it.

Talk to your kids about ...

  • Families can talk about how much time you should spend watching TV, even if you're viewing something educational. What limits can you set to ensure your child is also enjoying other activities?

  • One video deals with getting ready to start school. What questions does your pre-school-aged child have? How can you help your child get excited about being in class?

  • Ask your child why a site like Kidoodle.TV, which doesn't let users post comments, would provide a safer experience than a website that allowed users to discuss what they're watching. What kind of information should your child never post online?

Website details

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