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I recently had the chance to review Smart Kidz Radio, a Smart Kidz Media production. Smart Kidz Radio is an edutainment (education + entertainment) website designed for children, providing wholesome entertainment that promotes character development.
Accessing Smart Kidz Radio is easy. Just go to the website and create a free account. Then log in and hit the play button. At the time of this review this kids radio programming is only available through the website. There is a QR code that claims to send the songs to a mobile phone, but it did not work on my android phone. Technically I can open the website through the browser in my phone, but an app would be very handy, so I do hope one is developed soon.
Smart Kidz Radio
Smart Kidz Radio programming can be divided into three categories – radio, podcasts, and On-Demand.
My kids are 10 and 13 now and I don’t really sensor what they listen to on the radio. Instead, we discuss inappropriate language or themes if we hear them. Because of this, they are used to mainstream music. There is a huge difference between popular mainstream songs and songs that were created specifically to teach positive character traits. My kids both thought these songs were cheesy. They are just way too old for this style of music.
The songs have a jazzy feel to them and all of the lyrics relate to wholesome living topics. We heard songs about respecting your parents, the importance of physical fitness and proper nutrition, and managing feelings. Those are all great topics, but not everyone will agree with the specifics taught. I disagreed with one particular song about feeling sad. The message was to stop being sad and instead take action. However the examples given in the song were not to be sad when a friend moves away or when your dog runs away. I think those are legitimate reasons to be sad and I don’t want to teach my children to bury their feelings. Making new friends and looking for the dog is good advice, but feeling sad is still an appropriate response to those events.
Parents of toddlers and preschoolers might appreciate that they can play music for their children without needing to be present to monitor lyrics. I can see this feature being useful during quiet time.
To access the podcasts click on ‘menu’ and then select the icon with the microphone under the ‘streams’ heading. These kid-friendly podcasts are actually stories of classic children’s tales such as Alice in Wonderland, Cinderella, and Robin Hood. The running time is listed next to the title, which is handy if you have a limited amount of time. They have a classic old fashioned sound to them. My children enjoy listening to audio-books and thought these were okay. My children were already familiar with these stories, but younger children will likely enjoy hearing these tales.
Smart Kidz Radio will soon be offering an upgrade to include On-Demand programming. The On-Demand programming will include an additional 1,000 songs and stories. Members will have unlimited access to the On Demand programming each month. This feature was not available at the time of this review, so I have no direct experience with it.
Overall, my children were not fans of Smart Kidz Radio. Even though this is marketed up to age 10, I suspect that the ideal reader is much younger. If you have a toddler or preschooler, head over to Smart Kidz Radio to check it out yourself. Listening to the radio and podcasts is free so you have nothing to lose.
Follow Smart Kidz Radio online!