Way back before Silas was born, I started thinking about letting Henry watch a little television here and there. You know, educational videos, to further his interests and supplement our homeschooling.
So when Silas arrived and we were desperate for Henry to be quietly occupied, he and his dad sat down together and pulled up a children's science show called Beakman's World on Netflix. For the first ten minutes it was nothing but camp: people in costumes, joke-telling, just plain silliness. Henry said, "Why aren't they trying to teach me anything?"
They shut it off and instead my husband introduced Henry to Carl Sagan's Cosmos. He.ate.it.up. God, I love that kid.
From there, though, it started to go downhill, particularly after my husband returned to work. Henry is very needy and fairly loud (we never realized how much he talks nor how loudly until we had a baby in the house). I could not get Silas settled down to sleep with Henry jumping around and making noise.
So...I introduced him to Kipper. And Dora the Explorer. And Blue's Clues. Essentially all the videos he would have been watching as a two-year old, had he watched TV then. He was still really sensitive to anything the least bit intense or scary so options were limited.
I'm happy to report, though, that Henry's viewing preferences have swung back around to documentaries -- anything by Nova or the History Channel or Discovery Channel or PBS. It's amazing to see him soaking up information from shows intended for someone much, much older. He really loves to learn.
Of course, he has also somehow (*cough* my husband *cough*) become interested in Godzilla and is working his way through every Godzilla movie ever made. I guess not everything has to be cerebral. Or good.