Review of “Word World”

There is a new show on PBS called Word World. Bren and I watched it for the first time today. Here are my thoughts about it.
Pros:
The concept is great. Never have I seen a more “Whole Language” approached tv show than that. There was very little phonics involved. I am for a balanced approach though so some whole language is good.
It was captivating to Brendan. He liked it a lot!
It is really beautifully done. I especially like attention to detail such as when something falls off a table it breaks into it’s letters. Cute and very original.
Cons:
As for how much material is in show… not so much. Hardly any, really. Take the “pot on the head” episode today… they spelled and sounded out out “pot” a few times and the rest of the episode was story. 1 word- 12 or so minutes. Not so good. I asked Brendan immediately after it was over to spell “pot” and he had no idea.
Also, I’m not sure how clear the “word pictures” are to kids. The letters take some concentration to puzzle out. To adults, it is obvious but I just don’t think kids concentrate on seeing the moving groups of letters as words. I think they graze over the educational part and just watch the cartoon.
I really wanted to like it more than I did.
I just glanced at their website and there is a free episode on there. What are your thoughts?

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