PBS Kids Sprout is the first 24 hour network dedicated entirely to preschoolers. Sprout is broken down into four viewing slots: 6am-9am (the Wiggly Waffle Show), 9am- 12pm (the Sunny Side Up Show), 3pm-6pm (the Sprout Sharing Show), and 6-9pm (The Good Night Show). Between 12pm and 3pm there are children’s shows playing, but they are not listed as a part of any of the titles “shows”. During the times not listed, re-runs of the days “shows” air.
Most shows have a host and co-host, and in between programming there is a focus on a weekly theme. In addition, child friendly recipes and craft activities are shared. Parents can send in birthday wishes or birthday cards to be read over the air on their preschooler’s birthday, and receive a personal happy birthday wish from the show’s host and co-host over the air.
Wiggly Waffle is the show in the early morning, from 6am to 9am. It is hosted by the Wiggles, those four guys that sing lots of songs that little kids love. Wiggly Waffle is designed to get kids up and moving in the morning, and thus is high energy. During this segment, the following shows can be seen: Barney & Friends, Play with Me Sesame, The Wiggles (of course!), The Mighty Jungle, Roary the Racing Car, Thomas and Friends, the Rubbadubbers, and Bob the Builder.
The Sunny Side Up Show
The Sunny Side Up Show airs from 9am- 12pm. Inside the Sunshine Barn, Kelly, Sean, and Dennisha rotate hosting the show each week, along with their co-host, Chica- a cute, squeaking chicken puppet. It is during this segment that birthday messages are shared, as well as the theme for the week. Weekly themes can be anything, from music, to animals, to holidays. Shows that may be seen during this show are: Barney & Friends, Play with Me Sesame, Roary the Racing Car, Thomas and Friends, The Berenstain Bears, Chloe’s Closet, Dive Olly, Dive!, Fifi & the Flowertots, Fireman Sam, The Many Adventures of Mr. Mailman, and Pic Me.
Afternoons on Sprout
While the Sprout website does not specifically name a title for the segment between 12pm- 3pm, children’s shows are still being aired. During this time frame, you will see: The Wiggles, Zoboomafoo, Sesame Street, Caillou, and Mama Mirabelle’s Home Movies.
The Sprout Sharing Show
The Sprout Sharing Show airs from 3pm- 6pm. This segment features photos, videos, and artwork submitted by sproutlets (children viewing at home), as well as ideas for other crafts and things to do with your kids at home. The Sprout Sharing Show does not have specific hosts; rather hosts from the other shows make guest appearances. During the Sprout Sharing Show, you can expect to see: Franny’s Feet, Angelina Ballerina, Dragon Tales, Thomas & Friends, The Wiggles, Zoboomafoo, dirtgirlworld, Bob the Builder, Pic Me, The Mighty Jungle, and Chloe’s Closet.
The Good Night Show
Last but not least is the Good Night Show. Hosted by Nina and Star (a stuffed, star shaped puppet), the Good Night Show features shows and activities of a more muted pace, intended to get kids ready for bed. Some of the activities include getting into your pajamas, and brushing your teeth. With Nina, kids also participate in stretching exercises, and sign language. There are also stories, crafts, and music, but the general idea is to slow things down to help kids wind down before bed. During this segment, viewers will see: The Berenstain Bears, Dragon Tales, Thomas & Friends, Kipper, Nina’s Little Fables, the Pajanimals, Caillou, Dragon Tales, the Rubbadubbers, and more birthdays interspersed between the shows.
The Let’s Go Show
Many of you may be wondering where the Let’s Go Show went! It still airs on weekend mornings, from 6am-9am and 9am- 12pm, with host Miles and co-host Chica. During this time, expect to see: Barney & Friends, Mr. Mailman, The Wiggles, Sesame Street, Dive Olly, Dive!, Bob the Builder, Dragon Tales, Mama Mirabelle’s Home Movies, Roary the Racing Car, Caillou, and of course, more birthdays. The rest of the day follows the viewing pattern described above.
Late Night Viewing
After the viewing lineup officially ends, the day’s shows air once again. It can be a little disconcerting to hear people talk about what a wonderful sunny morning it is at 11pm, but most kids are asleep by then anyway, and those that aren’t probably aren’t old enough to know the difference.
Overall, PBS Kids sprout is good viewing for kids- it offers plenty of opportunity for parents to engage with their kids during the shows, and is organized well enough that you can easily pick and choose which shows to view, without watching hours of TV waiting for your preschooler’s favorite show to come on. The website for the channel, sproutonline.com, lists all of the shows and the programs that air as well as the specific time that the show airs, which makes it easy to find what you are looking for. The site also offers games, activities, songs, and crafts, so you can continue the fun with your child’s favorite characters well after the show has ended!
To find viewing information for your area, please check out www.sproutonline.com.