Non-cartoon TV shows for a 4-year-old and 6-year-old

What kind of non-cartoon TV shows would you say are age appropriate for a 4-year-old and a 6-year-old boy (or girl)?

I don’t like them watching anything violent and they have no interest in watching sports on TV, save for the occasional time I see that Linus has turned on fishing.  They don’t get much TV, they don’t need or have time for much TV, and my wife and I have always thought about what shows are age appropriate for the boys, so that 6-year-old Linus is not always watching shows for little kids, and 4-year-old Stewie can watch something he will enjoy.  Other than Treehouse, TVO kids or sometimes Teletoon. what is out there?

At this point in time, we pretty much agree that Full House is a wholesome, comedy that Linus could watch.   It’s not a cartoon, and since my 4-year-old can actually remove himself from the trance TV puts on his brother, I cannot see Stewie being ready for this show … yet, but if he watched it could do no harm.

My wife actually went ahead and set the PVR to capture a “few” episodes of Full House to show to Linus. I went to see if one of my shows had taped and it was at that point when I realized that Full House is on TV like, 15 times a day… Every day – so she filled the PVR in 2 weeks.  CRAP!

By total accident. however, I did find a couple of TV shows that 6-year-old Linus LOVES.

He was totally engaged in, and even cheered for the people on TV for the following two shows;

Wipeout and Man vs Food.

In Wipeout, for those of you who have not seen the show, is a race through a crazy obstacle course, in water, in which the participants get spun, flipped, punched, pushed and knocked off. The actual wipe-outs are awesome. The show makes me laugh and Linus thought it was the best. He sits on the edge of his seat, laughing and rooting for the participants. He actually thought the show was live, and queried why at 8pm it was light – and warm – on the TV but cold and snowy here.

He asks every night if we can watch Wipeout. He even knows it is on channel 54 on Rogers cable.

The other show him and I watched that he loved was Man Vs. Food. The premise of the show is that host Adam Richman travels across America sampling some of the best cuisine he can find. He also finds some of the biggest orders of food and tries to eat the entire dish.

In this one specific show that we watched the host went into the kitchen to see some of the fabulous meals cooked in a Hawaii restaurant which specializes in traditional cuisine.  One of the items they are famous for is blueberry pancakes – super-duper sized.  3 giant pancakes, each one the size of a large pizza, covered with a quart of blueberries on each level and 3 pats of butter and syrup.  Only 3 people have ever finished this meal.

Linus and I watched with intrigue at his attempt to eat the whole meal, including with shock and awe, when he ordered and ate an order of bacon to cut the repetitive taste. 

I thought he was going to eat the whole thing.

No way, said Linus.  He won’t even eat 3/4ers of it. 

He barely at 3/4ers of it.

Watching it with Linus was fun.  He rooted for the host, talked about eating pancakes himself, and was in awe that only 3 people had managed to eat that entire order.

What shows will you let your kids watch, and which shows do they have interest in?

It was a fun show.

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