My kids have been mesmerized by the tv lately... and sometimes that's not a bad thing. Let me explain.
In the past, most spiritual education involved parents opening up a Bible storybook and reading the many, many different awe-inspiring, child-friendly accounts to their kids. They are popular with the young ones, but this system can also cause a couple of different problems: First, the little ones will tuck the stories into their minds the same as any other bedtime story, not realizing the Bible stories are a cohesive message of how God has a plan in rescuing His people. (Quick sidenote: As you read the many fun stories of God's power and provision to your young ones always, always tell them that this story is true, it really happened - this will help them start to see the Bible in it's proper perspective.) Secondly, many times it's difficult to help the kids progress past the storybook level of learning the Scriptures... the story of Jonah always ends with him preaching in Ninevah... the Israelites obediently followed Moses across the dry land of the Red Sea and live happily ever after... and once Jesus ascends back into heaven the whole Bible is pretty much over. That's what most storybook Bibles would have you believe anyway. There are few resources available to aid parents in moving their kids on to the next level spiritually.
Admittedly, the Bible is full of very abstract concepts - things that little guys just won't grasp - so there is definitely a time and place for such basic Bible story teachings. But as your little guy grows bigger, are you having trouble figuring out where you should even start in teaching your child about what the Bible is for and what it's message is all about?
Now to the point of worthy tv viewing... Phil Vischer, the creator of VeggieTales, has moved on to something I would deem as one of his more nobler pursuits. He has launched a new kids' series that can be described as the Muppet Show meets Biblical Studies 101 - a strange combination? Maybe. But my kids love it and they are learning a lot.
The show/dvds are entitled What's in the Bible? with Buck Denver... but you can preview many of the songs, sketches, bits, and pieces at JellyTelly.com. The dvds will take the kids through the Bible step by step - starting by answering the questions of where the Bible came from, who wrote it, and why it's important... and then walks them through each of the books, giving a synopsis of each of the books in a fun, creative, entertaining, and informative style while still pulling the kids back to give them the overall perspective of how each book fits into the big picture of God's plan of redemption. Parents, you will learn things too! (The shows even have a segment called Tricky Bits that will tackle the really hard questions the Bible presents...)
What's in the Bible, Vol. 1-4 are available for purchase, and Vol. 5 comes out in May... but you can view many parts of it for free at JellyTelly.com so go check it out. They hold Lillie's attention pretty well, Avery is grasping basic concepts from them, and Huston and Isaiah are being educated as to why this book we read is so very important. This is not a paid endorsement, this is an excited mom wanting to let others know of a great educational tool.
I'll leave you with a clip of one of their many silly songs... my kids laugh and learn all in one. Priceless.