Smart Kidz Media’s recently released Smart Kidz Radio. This is an online radio station for kids ages 3-10. They have live music and podcasts for a free membership. You can also add on demand to your membership for a small fee. Eventually, they will also produce an app for this so that you can also access it from a smart phone or tablet. They are branding it edutainment because they think it is both educational and entertaining.
The live music is interesting. It seems to be mostly songs to teach children a lesson about character or a life skill so I have not heard them before. They sing about feelings often. Clarissa doesn’t often listen to kid music unless it’s a Disney soundtrack, so she was not impressed with this part of the website.
The podcasts are mostly fairy tales with a few songs like the Itsy Bitsy Spider. The fairy tales are different than the typical stories though with a character emphasis. For example, the story of the Three Pigs talks about the character of each pig instead of what he built his house out of. I appreciate this as a mom, but this was very frustrating for my four year old who wanted to know why they told the story wrong. I think it would be beneficial for older kids to be able to compare and contrast the character version of the story to the more traditional version that they are used to hearing. I think it would also be beneficial for a child who just wanted to listen to a story in an audio book format because they would hear the story, but you wouldn’t have to sit with them to read a book.
Basically, Clarissa was not impressed with the free version of Smart Kidz Radio. If she doesn’t like it, we won’t be listening to it. Other families may have different tastes than we do though and enjoy it.
The On Demand portion of the website looks more interesting. For $3.99 per month or $39 per year, you can upgrade your free membership. They list several different categories of songs with recommended ages including Early Learning Radio Program (ages 2-4), Good Behavior Skills Radio Program (ages 3-6), and Living Skills Radio Program (ages 4-10). They also have several different categories of stories to listen to (think of it like audio books). There is a 14 day free trial that you could sign up for to see if you are interested in this content.