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Tweaky and Friends Teach Character Building Lessons

By Betty Ward Cain
Bedford Publications

2201 Heritage Place Drive, NW
Cleveland, TN 37312

This is a set of nine stories and guides that come in a two-disc set. One disc is a DVD that contains the stories; the other disk is a CD-rom that contains a teacher's manual, mp3 song files, and karaoke song tracks. Tweaky the hummingbird and his friends teach us nine different character traits in this set: respect, responsibility, perseverance, caring, self-discipline, citizenship, honesty, courage, and fairness.

This is not a typical DVD with animated characters. The pictures are done more as a video book slideshow, but there are spoken voices for each character. There is a song to go with each character trait, which is sung by one of Tweaky's friends.

The CD-rom has an mp3 track for each song and also a karaoke version that is just the music if your child wants to sing alone. The teacher's manual is 95 pages long and is designed to be used in a classroom, but it is easily adapted for homeschooling or individual use. Each trait is set up to be done as a "trait of the month," and each trait has a corresponding project. For each trait you can print the words of the song, including the music with guitar chords noted. There is a paper-bag puppet craft and a refrigerator magnet craft for each trait, as well as an award sheet that can be printed off for each student at the end of the month. There are also discussion questions to go with each lesson that will help your child think about what was taught in the story.

I was not sure I liked the slideshow style at first and did not think it would be very interesting to the children, but the story and songs are done in such a way that you are definitely drawn into the story. The teacher's manual is well laid out and includes lots of fun stuff to do. It is in PDF form, so you can print as many copies as you need of each item. After having time to look over this product, I do think it is a good value for the money and a simple way to incorporate character training into your child's day while having fun at the same time.

Product review by Nicole Teichroeb, The Old Schoolhouse Magazine, LLC, March 2010

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