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Favorite Educational DVDs for Lower Elementary


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My kids loved the Magic Schoolbus and the National Geographic's "Really Wild Animals" DVDs. My older ds would watch almost any nature DVD as long as it wasn't too violent. Oh and they also liked the "Popular Mechanics for Kids" DVDs.


Hope this helps,


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Well, Magic Schoolbus is a pretty obvious choice. Charlie Brown's America, despite being cartoony, is a solid series. I noticed (I think I am remembering correctly) that the Pilgrims/Thanksgiving one was doe with input from Plimouth Plantation -- the video did mention that Pilgrims did not wear black clothes & shiny buckles, so I was happy.


I like the videos from Schlessinger Media -- they have a good website. Each video is about 20-25 min long and usually children are the main narrators. Libraries usually have some of these; Netflix doesn't. Also there is a series of history videos -- Animated Hero Classics -- that are appealing to young kids. I haven't seen Libert'y Kids, but it seems similar.


I am gradually acquiring David Attenborough's series. My dc age 8 love some of them, but are a little bored by others.



Thanks for the Popular Mechanics for Kids idea. I didn't know about these -- I just put some in my NF queue.

Edited by Alessandra
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I will put in another vote for Magic School Bus.


My kids also really like Bill Nye the Science Guy ... Not sure why, as I am positive that most of what he talks about is WAY above their heads, but he is funny. :tongue_smilie:


Not sure if this is considered educational, but they also love Sid the Science Kid on PBS.

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The Mathtacular dvds are by grade. The first one is recommended for K-2. I'm not sure about the exact grade rec's for the next two.


My 5 and 3 year olds LOVE Mathtacular. I got it on this board used but if I had to buy it again, I would consider it worth full price.

Edited by Einen
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Discover and Do science from Sonlight (especially great with the accompanying materials kits for recreating all of the experiments)


The Animated Shakespeare (12 plays using the original language but abridged to 30 minutes -- we usually watch these between reading a story version and seeing the full-length play)... Excellent actors doing the voices. The animation styles are each quite different, and some are obscure enough that my kids don't care for them much.


Jim Henson's The Storyteller and The Storyteller: Greek Myths (some of these -- both sets -- can be a little scary and dark)


I love, love, love Georgia Public Broadcasting's "Salsa" for beginning Spanish immersion for younger students (up through about 3rd grade), but the dvds are priced for schools, not individuals. People who can record from GA public television can gain access to them however...


HBO's "John Adams" last year was a huge hit with both of my kids. My husband found it a little slow, but the kids and I loved it. The dvd edition even includes a feature where you can have "pop-up" facts shown during viewing. Not a good way to watch the series the first time, but great for subsequent viewings. A few things to be aware of when watching with kids: a tarring and feathering (viewed from a distance, the victim is at one point naked and glimpsed so, the event is fairly brutal); small pox are rather gruesome (the most disturbing thing in the series to my dd); Ben Franklin makes some rather lewd remarks (went over my kids' heads); there's a rather lewd discussion at a court dinner in France (I ff'd for my kids -- Adams' discomfort is obvious, but I just didn't want to explain the entire discussion to young children); when J and A reunite after years apart, there's a scene where they, er, fall upon each other... It's fully clothed, but clear (at least to an adult) what's going on. Again, I fast-forwarded for the kids... I think that's everything I found objectionable to my kids. It's possible there's some language that might be offensive to some, though I don't remember anything that seemed out-of-character or out-of-time, so if there was something, it didn't register for me as offensive...


My kids enjoy Liberty's Kids as well...

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My boys watch these over and over again.


Liberty's Kids



Questar's Getting Ahead Mathematics



Questar's Getting Ahead Science (particularly Life Science)



The Way Things Work DVD Series



Scrambled States of America



Animated Hero Classics Series



Explore the Wildlife Kingdom Series



Planet Earth and Blue Planet



Animal Life for Children series



Magic School Bus

(We have all of the DVDs they made, and my boys watch the others on United Streaming)


Greek Mythology for Students series



Bill Nye the Science Guy



Scholastic and Weston Woods stories on DVD

These are essentially a book told with audio and video.


Beatrix Potter videos


How to Draw Spirit (from Spirit DVD)


How to Draw lessons on Veggie Tales movies


Art Guy DVD



Dream, Plan, Build

Model railroading videos.


Department 56

They also love watching the design of these layouts.


Reading Rainbow

They like the math, science and history ones. We avoid the newer ones because they don't stick to educational subjects.


Dangerous Journey


Retelling of Pilgrim's Progress for children.


The Story Keepers



Leap Frog Learning DVDs



March of the Penguins



Nathan also watches a lot of History Channel documentaries.

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