The Braincandy company was developed by a couple who wanted to allow their young children and others to learn in a way that is natural to them. They were discovering that many traditional learning methods were frustrating to young children and were sure there was a better way. The Braincandy 5 Senses series was the fruit of their labors.
This entertaining and educational series of DVDs teaches your children about their five senses (sight, hearing, smell, touch, and taste) using animation, puppets, live action sequences, and lots of music and color. They are recommended for ages 6 months up. My 4-year-old still enjoys watching them, meaning they are interesting to a wide age range of small children.
As a homeschooling family, we are very careful to limit television watching and electronics in general. It is all too easy to use these types of media as a babysitter without really reaping any benefit in return. I'm happy to say that the Braincandy 5 Senses series is one I feel comfortable allowing my young children to view, knowing that they will enjoy it and yet will be introduced to many important concepts at the same time.
As an example, the "Hear My World" DVD includes segments entitled "Ears," "Sound," "Music," and "Voices." As you can guess by the segment titles, many different aspects of hearing are introduced. Each DVD touches on topics related to that particular sense in a lighthearted, fun way.
At 40 minutes each, the DVDs are long enough to contain valuable educational information, yet not so long as to bore a young child. However, depending on the age of your child, he or she may be interested in watching only one or two segments at a time. Each segment can easily be watched independently without interfering with the integrity of the program as a whole.
This series has won an impressive 25 awards, including Top Toddler Toy of 2005 from About.com, Dr. Toy's 10 Best Audio/Video products of the Year, and Dr. Toy's 100 Best Children's Products. As an added bonus, the DVDs are packaged using 30% post-consumer recycled materials and soy-based inks. This is important to parents who are interested in protecting our environment.
I can comfortably say that this series would make a worthwhile addition to any homeschool with toddlers or young preschoolers. It introduces children to topics important to them and the world around them without being overbearing or silly. We have enjoyed this series in our household and intend to continue doing so.