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Alexander Residence: Olly, he's not your average white van

Monday, 11 July 2011

Olly, he's not your average white van

When I reigned in our cable package we 'lost' quite a few kid's channels.  There were tears at first, followed by a surprisingly easy reacceptance of C Beebies. But when we branched out beyond this, to avoid the 'baby' programmes, I discovered pretty much all that remained was Fireman Sam on loop.

My children are now seriously well versed in the main causes of fire and how to avoid them.  (Personally I think Norman Price is often the problem, his name crops up a lot, but that may be me half watching while trying to do something else).

Anyway I have been recently alerted to the educational possibilities of CiTV.  I had no idea they did pre school programmes, so that was an education in itself.  Their latest offering is Olly the Little White Van.  All the narratives centre around helping others, which sounds like a good substitute, now we have completed our extensive fire safety course courtesy of Fireman Sam.

Olly the little white van is based on research that suggests helping out has become a much bigger deal for pre schoolers. Child Psychologist Dr Richard C Woolfson's recent research revealed that more and more 2 and 3 year olds are taking on chores,  66% of kids as young as 2 and 3 are helping at home with tasks such as washing the car, making their bed and doing the laundry.

Woolfson explains increased responsibility in the home is less about parents reaping the benefits, and more because concepts such as social responsibility, awareness of the needs of others, and personal independence are seen as core values for children today.   

Bring on the child labour.  No seriously, I'm interested in this because since we encouraged 2yo Mr G to help out he has been a happier soul, both at home and at nursery.  Instead of running riot at nursery he is now in charge of serving breakfast to his friends (rather them than me though).  Instead of throwing dirty washing around the room, he likes to shove it, and anything shiny that catches his magpie eyes, in the machine, and press the go button. 

The voice of Olly the Little White Van is done by Justin Fletcher (of Mr Tumble fame), so guaranteed giggles there. I might have just fallen in love with the theme tune, it makes my heart sing, it makes everything groovy.
So Mr G.  Here's the deal.  We can watch Olly the Little White Van if you clear up the trail of trains, planes and automobiles littering the house, if you help me put on the washing and if you promise to wash my car.  Deal?

Olly The Little White Van launched on Sunday June 26th 2011 at 6.25am, we missed it because Mr G likes to lie in these days, but it can be seen through iplayer, and from September it will be shown at the more respectable times of  9.45am and 12.45pm each weekday.  Perfect bit of post lunch chill out for me and Mr G come September, when his big sis will have started school.

What sort of jobs do you get your little ones doing?   Do you think it has made a difference to them?

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At 12 July 2011 at 15:05 , Anonymous Honest Mum said...

Will look out for Olly The Little White Van although my own Olly's patience in front of the TV is questionable! Great Citv have pushed forward with fun and educational children's programming though.

Re: Chores: Oliver has always loved cleaning up and wiped down his highchair from 9 months so I'm with you on children starting young with helping around the house. It's integral and will make up for their teenage years of doing nothing!

At 12 July 2011 at 21:37 , Anonymous Kirsty said...

I've never seen that one - I avoid CITV as I hate the thought of the adverts. Although Cbeebies hardly even gets a look-in these days, it's all about the Pixar DVDs in our house. That and the Gruffalo. Sounds interesting though.

I do try to get the kids involved in housework, mainly because it's the best way to keep them out of mischief while I've got my head in the washing machine/dishwasher. D has liked taking the cutlery out of the dishwasher since he could walk and they're both keen on putting things in the washing machine. Given that I'm in a household with three males, I think it's really important to make sure they all understand that it's everybody's work (I must train myself to make sure they know it's 'family work' and not 'helping with Mummy's work').

At 18 July 2011 at 18:20 , Blogger The Alexander Residence said...

Honest Mum - Wow, you do start early, sounds brilliant to me.
Kirsty - Know what you mean although our DVD player broke recently :( Like it when I can limit them to a 30 min programme sometimes too! 'Family work' I like it!


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