Thursday, February 01, 2007

What about Dora?

After many of my friends spoke about Dora in a positive way, I decided to watch 2 shows of it that we had on a DVD we got as a gift.

My kids were screaming at the screen, answering to Dora, kind of getting up to dance when they were supposed to (I had to encouragethem to get up).

I was first surprised by this "interactivity", with the arrow moving on the screen it felt more like a computer game to me in fact. Dora encourages children to repeat & participate in the show. Dora is always on a mission.

In many ways it reminded me of birthday party entertainment. Entertainers usually started by exciting the children, making them scream, feel as team, overcome obstacles, and it is a lot of fun!

In the show, everything has to be repeated over & over. At the end of each trip they shout We did it! We did it! Which is a little egobooster for the little ones.

I found the pace of the editing ok, not too fast. But at the end, I did not feel really comfortable with the show…

In fact, I did not like the show, the shouting, the repetition but most of all the storyline. It is so simplistic, basic. My children are far more intelligent than that!
I already exposed them to far more sophisticated programs with complex language and concept that they enjoyed and followed easily. In fact, I will use this program in my media education curriculum.

I would like to read your feeling and opinions about that show. Please do not hesitate to post your comment.


  1. Anonymous10:42 PM

    Well, it feels like a computer game because that is the premise. That is
    why you see a mouse arrow and click on choices (that you shout out) along the way. It is sort of training them to be able to play these games on the computer. I think Dora might be better for 2-3 year olds and Diego (animal rescuer) more for 3-4 year olds. The concepts introduced are simpler in Dora and the child is just asked to participate by learning the route on the map and watching out for swiper. The newer episodes have stars that the kids try and grab and my girls actually argue over who caught it. I tried to point out that they both caught it but they take the pretend very seriously. The other reason they repeat so much is because it is meant to
    teach Spanish and English to kids who don't have vocabulary in both
    languages. My 6 year old just took a Spanish class (weekly-6 weeks) and the teacher was impressed by her pronunciation and vocabulary. The teacher said that Dora and Diego were a great way to get exposure in that age range.

  2. Anonymous10:56 PM

    We used to watch Dora all the time until my two years old became afraid of monsters and crocodiles. There are crocodiles and snakes in almost every episodes and she started having "nightmares" about having them chase her. We stopped watching Dora now and we might go back at a later date because she still really likes the show but for now, we're skipping it.

  3. Anonymous11:00 PM

    I think that if you are a person who doesn't let your children watch
    any television, you probably won't find it acceptable, just like any
    other show. If you are a person who DOES let their children watch a
    little tv, then you will probably like it. It's definitely one of
    the more quality shows. My son was very into Dora and Diego last
    year. He would interact with Dora, learned a few Spanish words
    (which he still knows, by the way), and I felt like it gave him a
    positive impression that it was ok for a girl to be the hero, all by
    herself (well, with a monkey), with no boy coming to save her.

    He's 4 now and more interested in other shows, for the most part,
    but still likes to watch Dora now and then. Go Diego Go and Blues
    Clues seem to be a little more educational, but Dora definitely gets kids participating.

  4. Anonymous11:05 PM

    I have an extremely sensitive 4 year old-she cannot even watch Lazy
    Town because she is so scared of the "bad guy" I mean- she is
    SENSITIVE- anyway, Dora and Blues Clues are the only two shows she will watch.
    I really think Dora is fantastic for kids- I have a 2.5 year old who
    doesn't like to watch any T.V. at all and she also will watch Dora. I
    love that they interact with the T.V. but most of all I love the
    fact that Dora is a female character and solves her own problems and goes on her own adventures and does things without trying to kiss a prince at the end of the story- or try to get married- sure there is an episode or two where Dora dresses like a princess but SHE saves the prince and not the other way around. She is a modern day feminist :) My husband
    enjoys the message that Dora is not sitting in a tower awaiting her
    prince to come rescue her. It sends a great message and it is a bit
    educational- my girls have learned a dozen or so Spanish words which
    never hurts. Everything in moderation- they get to watch one a day- some days none- but I have a TON on Tivo so I figure 20 minutes a day is not too bad- on weekends maybe they get a Blues Clues too-
    It is always a Personal Choice what you think is best for your kid-
    but your asked our opinions on Dora.

  5. Anonymous11:08 PM

    Dora. . .it's still TV to me. It's not the content so much that
    bothers me. It's the autistic relationship formed with children seeking attachment and
    receiving only stimulation in return. A little TV is fine, but I do wonder about the brain rewiring itself to seek out relationships that provide stimulation as opposed to attachment.

  6. Anonymous11:15 PM

    my girl used to love Dora, now she's into Diego. I like that they are Latin characters, but really, I didn't notice how much she yells
    until my brother pointed it out. Yeah, I figured the repetiveness is
    to get kids to follow along, etc. Even though there is a cursor
    running around the screen, I'm not sure what that has to do with the
    show at all. It's not like she "goes into" a computer or anything.
    Dora also plays on Noggin, which does not have commercials like

  7. Anonymous11:22 PM

    My girls have all enjoyed Dora videos. She used to bug me, but I
    think I got used to her. My oldest DD (now 10yo) would never do the
    interactive parts - wouldn't sing, repeat or whatever, until she was older (technically past the "Dora age") and watching with her sisters. Both of my younger two
    like doing the interactive stuff. I don't think we've seen too much
    Hmm, the yelling. My middle DD can be loud without Dora, so Dora
    never seemed over the top with that. DD actually yells quieter with Dora than in real life.

    There are SO MANY characters out there that are all about the
    And I think there are a lot of kid cartoons out there that can be
    annoying to adults, but the kids can get stuff out of. No one here likes Sponge Bob
    - he annoyed me the one time I watched and my oldest thought he was
    too weird. But someone got me curious about it when they described all
    this stuff their kid knew (interesting things, true facts) that the kid learned from watching sponge bob. It's all a matter of taste? :-)

  8. Anonymous11:24 PM

    I'm not a big fan of Dora. She bugs me. lol I hate how she YELLS
    everything and repeats everything. Neither of my kids do the
    interactive stuff. I've heard complaints about how she is a kid out on adventures w/o her parents, but I think most kid shows don't show the parents much. So that part doesn't bug me. I really dislike the
    Swiper character. I don't like kid shows where there is a component
    of "evil." Now I don't really think Swiper is "evil" but he IS
    portrayed as the "bad guy" who is always trying to ruin Dora and
    Boots' fun. My older son used to play Swiper and snatch things away
    from my younger son. He thought that was great fun while the younger
    one would cry.

  9. Anonymous11:28 PM

    My kids love Dora and Diego. I don't like the decibel of her voice
    and I can't wait for this phase to go away. The repetitiveness does not
    seem to be necessary for my kids (3.5 and 5) but they don't seem to mind it either.
    They play D & D all day long and it can make me mad (crazy-not angry)
    sometimes but imaginary play is something that they all need to
    We don't watch it as much any more, trying to stay away from TV these
    The Spanish is good, my kids have learned lots of words from the
    I do believe that it is a big marketing thing, since we have just
    about everything there is out there with Dora on it. sigh. Not my fault, it was her birthday and she told everyone that she loves Dora and then they remembered and got her everything else for Christmas.
    Anyway, those are some of my thoughts...

  10. Anonymous11:33 PM

    Dora is one show I feel is more about the marketing of the product
    than what is healthiest for my child. So, for those reasons I have not chosen to watch it. My child, possibly because of what I do or don't like seems to prefer Curious George, Charlie and Lola, Caillou and some animated movies like the Little Polar Bear, Beatrix Potter, Iron Giant (which deals with
    guns and violence) and actually the first Harry Potter movie. These
    are watched together with comments made like, oooh, that wasn't nice, was that nice? That was really good, do you do that?

    I'm also not one for TV commercials, so either it's PBS or I tape numerous episodes and run a tape vs allow more marketing access to my child.

    We also decorate our own bags and things with Üla's name or paint
    images on it in order to compete with all the trinkety stuff out there with Dora and the newly converted princesses of Disney. Now the mermaid is a princess, not just a rebellious girl who followed her drive.

  11. Anonymous9:53 AM


  12. Anonymous7:53 PM

    i dont think its right to let our kids think its ok to speak two languages in the same sentence. it is wrong and confuses them. this is America and we speak english. dora needs to be taken out of our nations along with other spanish speaking people

  13. Anonymous11:05 AM

    I think its bad that they are teaching our kids Spanish. If you're going to teach them a language, teach them a better language like German or French.