MarshMedia is a producer of videos for public schools in grades K-8th. They make award winning videos concerning puberty, special needs, character, nutrition, and other topics. MarshMedia has been developing educational materials since 1969, which makes me wonder if I haven't seen some of their videos "from the olden days." They are excited to offer this Homeschool Special to Homeschool Review Crew readers and other homeschooling families.
MarshMedia features nearly two dozen character videos. The punks watched a few and thoroughly enjoyed watching them. They were laughing and discussing the stories for hours after viewing. The character videos are directed toward children in grades K-4. My bigger punks liked them, too.
In Aloha, Potter, a little fish is being teased by a crab. His friends offer a lot of advice to get the teasing to stop, but none of it seems to work. *SPOILER ALERT* the only thing that helps Potter is to ignore the teasing. Now, I have three boys. They tease each other sometimes and though I tell them to ignore it, I know that really isn't the ideal solution. The way to stop teasing is to get the child who is teasing to stop *doing it*. So, while the boys unanimously LOVED Aloha, Potter ("Let's watch it again!"), and I've sometimes used the "ignore it," advice, I felt like it was better used as a jumping off point for discussing that, first and foremost, teasing is wrong and we shouldn't do it. Then, follow up with ignoring it. Because, my goodness, so many issues can be avoided when we ignore minor irritations.
This is the Life is the story of a bear named Stanley who ends up falling asleep in a camper and being taken far from his forest home. When he wakes up, he is at a drive-in movie theater. He eats all of the standard movie junk foods and ends up overweight and lethargic. He is found by humans who chase him away and he realizes the real fun is back home where there are healthy foods for bears, and he heads back home. I'm always talking to the boys about making healthy choices, as we have a super picky eater and a couple of guys with a sweet tooth. Anything that reinforces what I'm already telling them sounds pretty good to me. :)
We also watched Bailey's Birthday which is the story of a dog who imagines receiving a bunch of wonderful birthday gifts, but only receives a bandana and a hug. Bailey was pretty disappointed until he learned that love from your family is better than physical gifts.
All of these little character stories are really cute. The punks have enjoyed each one we watched. As I said with Aloha, Potter, if the lesson isn't exactly like you would prefer to teach your kiddos, just use it as a jumping off point for deeper discussions. The art is eyecatching and there is so much to see in the lovely pictures, especially in Aloha, Potter where there are crabs and various kinds of fish to introduce to your children.
The chant, "You're Not a Little Kid Anymore," annoyed them all. Even the little kid. :D But the hygiene video did a very thorough job of explaining the ins and outs of the care and keeping of our bodies and clothing. If your kiddo enjoys musicals, they'll probably like this video as well. This video is intended for grades 3-5.
I admit, I was a little nervous about the puberty education videos. For one, I remember being completely mortified in school when all the girls were taken to the gym to watch our puberty video. *Everyone* (including the boys) knew what we were going for. At least, I was pretty sure the boys knew. Didn't they?
Not being a boy, I wasn't sure what to expect in the boys' version of the same type of video. I've browsed the shelves in bookstores multiple times, but it seems like the books, whether intended for boys or girls, always had a bit more about the opposite gender than I really felt they needed to know at a young age. We've just talked to them as things have come up. I tend to let Dad cover the bulk of the talking. *ahem*
For our first attempt at a lesson outside of our own efforts, I went to the tab labeled Puberty DVDs and selected videos for boys grade 3-5. (NOTE: While the website says DVD, the offered program is actually streaming videos.) It was titled Meet The New You - Boy. This was very clear and thorough information. It was *not* sex ed. I started the video for the boys and then sort of wandered out of the room. I didn't want them to think I was leaving for a reason, but I also didn't want them to feel uncomfortable because Mom was in the room. The video covered things like body changes and hygiene. I heard comments like:
"I'm creeped out right now. I might be sick."
and this discussion.
Child 1: How's my breath?
Child 2: Disgusting.
Child 1: Good!
There are puberty education videos for boys and girls for grades 3-8.
MarshMedia videos are all fairly short, around 15 minutes or so, though I never paid a lot of attention to the the time.
MarshMedia videos have been produced for schools, not families, and the prices reflect that. But they are offering a new service to homeschoolers that provides access to 59 of their videos for a single fee of $50, less than $1 each. If you would like to take advantage of the opportunity to introduce the MarshMedia curriculum to your children, click on this link for more information: https://marshmedia.com/pages/homeschool-offer
I would tell you about the ordering process for each video, but the way this new homeschool component works is completely different from the access I received. You must use the homeschool link directly above this paragraph to access the offer, it isn't found on the website, which is geared toward school systems. From the homeschool link, click on the words “Homeschool Special.” It might take a few seconds to load the page. After purchasing through this link, you'll have unlimited access to the MarshMedia film library until December 31, 2017.
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