02 Oct Creating A Children’s Web Series
I grew up watching a lot of T.V. I would come home from school and watch TV instead of doing homework. I would watch TV on Friday and Saturday nights – SNICK on Nickelodeon was my favorite babysitter when I was a kid. However, as an adult who studies early childhood development, parenting, education, music and technology I am aware of the addictive qualities and developmental challenges that children’s media presents.
Personally I want my 14-month old child to watch as little TV as possible. I want him to get outside. I want him to move around. I want him to interact with other people. But I also want him to be creative or to at least appreciate creativity and creative problem solving. I also wanted to create a show that if my own son were to watch it he would enjoy it and I would enjoy it. I want to share with my son things that I am thinking about. Important ideas. Writers who he should read. Activities that he could do at home. I also want my son to understand that it’s okay to be weird. In our world weird is normal.
So I don’t want my son to get addicted to the tech. But I do want to share with him creatively. Ideally – I want the tech to be a “get in and get out” type of situation. You use the tech for 10-20 minutes. No more. Maybe even less. Maybe 4 minutes. And then you go do something in the real world with real people. Because tech is amazing. I love it. **I am addicted to the creative possibilities that the internet and technology present** I’m fascinated with it. It is where the world is going. And so many cultures and societies are developing within the tech world.
My wife and I were exploring bill wurtz and his channel of weird, abstract comedy music. My wife and I, beyond his viral videos of History of the World and History of Japan, were marveling at this little universe that he created through his music. We also love how his eccentric style comes through on his personal website. He’s created this whole universe and community around his strange, funny style of music.
My wife fell asleep and I started looking through pewdiepie’s video and his online feud with T-Series – one video has over 220 Million views. The kids, teens and families that we work with are viewing this content and it is a vernacular for them (and I’m now old and out of touch and not watching this content). Now, my son doesn’t have to watch any of this. We could move to the woods where there is no WiFi and be fine. I also don’t have to get Teddy an iPhone or iPad. My wife and I have discussed this point on several occasions. But I have a sneaking suspicion that he will ultimately end up using one of these or some variation of these for school or at a friends house, etc.
So my goal is that we want to be like bill wurtz. We want to create community. We want to inspire people to be creative. But after they view a clip or two of our content – we want them to get outside and make something with other people. And hopefully they won’t create fluff. We want to inspire the kids and parents to do important and meaningful work with their lives. All of us have strengths and it is important that we keep making things and sharing them with people. Why? Because that’s how you create community.