Raising kids is TOUGH. And yes there is lots of mommy guilt, especially if you have a preschooler who is only in school two hours a day and then spends the bulk of the day home, parked in front of a Television set because most of us parents do not have the luxury of NOT working- even if we are home and so- we fall into the TV as babysitter trap.
It starts easy enough- we give our kids a snack, we play a game and then we say,”Honey you can watch one episode on the Disney Channel and then we will read together!” And then one half hour program turns into THREE hours of programming as you end up returning work calls, folding the mound of laundry on your kid's bed and steaming veggies for dinner. And of course after those three hours you feel incredibly guilty…like THE.WORST.Parent.EVER….
Well what if I told you there was a way to curb your mommy guilt, find a way to keep your kid busy and have him/her learning at the very same time?!! In recent years, edutaining apps have become more popular among parents and teachers because these apps are more interactive than the traditional edutainment products. There are various apps in the market catering to the needs of children of different age groups. Apple’s “Kids” section and Google’s “Designed for Family” show how much these kids apps are in demand. Developers who target kids, such as Disney and Nickelodeon, have designed many fun apps for kids to learn together with their favorite cartoon characters. However, would your kids enjoy learning more if they see their family in the app?
I recently came across an intelligent app that customizes animation series for preschoolers: ToonYou ToonYou’s first series, My Dream Jobs, offers 70 episodes of original cartoons portraying various occupations: chef, pilot, astronaut and many more. Through the app, your kids can explore different jobs, discover every fun part of each profession and be inspired to pursue their dream jobs. Different from other educational cartoon series, My Dream Jobs shows your kids familiar faces in the animations.
You may be curious: Who are the familiar faces? Is it Spongebob? Or Elsa? No… you will not find any Nickelodeon or Disney characters in the cartoon series, but YOU and YOUR KID! One of the amazing features of ToonYou is that you can customize the series by uploading your pictures. Your faces will appear on the paper toys, and then your episode is ready to go. Your kid will see YOU being doctors, fishermen or even Christmas elves. Through these customized animations, your preschooler will have more understanding about different jobs and feel engaged because dad, mom and him/herself are “starring” in the episodes!
Family Fun Time!
ToonYou allows your family to have fun anytime, anywhere and on any device. The app is available on iOS, Android and Windows Phone. It works on smartphones and tablets, both online and offline. All you have to do is upload 3 pictures and fit them into the head of the paper toys (or you can take pictures with your device camera). We tried the “hairdresser” episode, which began with our 4-year-old telling us about the dream she had. In her dream, I was the hairdresser who had a struggling day. We all burst into laughter when the customers (a pretty lady, an old woman, and a hairy monster) showed up because they were all played by my husband! We did not expect that our paper toys could look so alive, with more than 90 expressions generated from only one picture! Our family also had much fun watching the free, uncustomized episodes together. Most importantly, our kid enjoyed learning about different jobs through the engaging cartoon series. My son now asks me every morning: “Mommy, which job are we going to explore today?”
The Right Choice for Your Preschooler
Stop-motion cartoon is not something new, but the one with your family in it definitely is! My husband and I feel like a kid again when watching My Dream Jobs with our son. We shared our episode with family and friends and they all had a good laugh! We also recommended them to watch My Dream Jobs with their preschoolers because it is safe, educational and helps connect kids with their families.
Are your kids already curious about different jobs? If you want to experience the app and have some family fun time, visit ToonYou’s website and let your preschooler explore his/her dream jobs!
This post is part of a sponsored conversation with ToonYou’s website but as is always the case all opinions expressed are my own.