BabyFirstTV

Helping Parents Bond With Their Infants

This is a logo for BabyFirstTV.
Theo's Little Bot/Wikimedia Commons/Fair use

The BabyFirstTV channel, established in 2006, provides 24-hour programming created specifically for babies and toddlers, ages 6 months to 3 years, with no commercials, no violence, no inappropriate content, and no sensory overload.

It is available on the American satellite stations DirectTV and Dish Network, as well as Sky in Latin America, Digiturk in Turkey, and Dish Home in Nepal. It is also broadcast on a variety of cable channels throughout the world, in 13 languages as well as English, and is available as an app for smartphones and tablets.

Origins

BabyFirst TV is a subsidiary of BabyFirst, a media company launched in 2004 by Guy Oranim and Sharon Rechter with the purpose of distributing baby-oriented content via mobile apps, the internet, and television. About 80 percent of its programming—over 90 programs in all—is original, created by a group of authorities in child psychology and development, early childhood education, and children’s programming. The channel also features content from several baby DVD brands, including Brainy Baby, First Impressions, So Smart, and Baby Songs. The company has an agreement with Sterling Publishing to incorporate many children’s books into its “Story Time” program.

Controversy

Some people believe that infants and toddlers should not be exposed to television. After all, too many parents use the medium, along with smartphones and tablets, as babysitters for their children. But the reality is that children are attracted to flickering screens. Why not make it good for them, an educational way for parents to bond with their babies? And while there have always been a number of television programs aimed at young children, BabyFirst TV is, well, a first, providing childrearing tips (nutrition and safety are just two topics) and educational content designed to enhance baby’s development. Far from being isolating, the experience is positive and interactive.

How It Works

The content on BabyFirst TV is designed to offer elements that appeal to babies and toddlers of all ages simultaneously, so children at different levels can learn from the same programming. Programs are kept short (under 15 minutes) and include bright colors and upbeat music. Daytime programming focuses on delighting and stimulating babies, while evening programming features content that is soothing and calming.

The BabyFirst flower logo changes color so that parents can determine the educational content of the current show:

  • Yellow Flower - Thinking Journey (creative thinking): Engages children in identifying patterns of thinking and developing creative ways of viewing the world.
  • Blue Flower - Numbers Parade (math): Introduces children to the concepts of numbers and counting in different settings and situations.
  • Green Flower - Sensory Wonderland (sensory): Develops children’s ability to identify the five senses in the world around them.
  • Red Flower - Language Playground (language): Encourages children to develop language through an introduction to words, signs, and languages from around the world.
  • Orange Flower - Feelings Garden (social skills): Exposes children to basic social skills and how to relate to others.
  • Pink Flower - Imagination Lane (creative play): Inspires creativity through cultural and multi-sensory experiences for children, including music and art.
  • Multi-Colored Flower - Rainbow Dreams (soothing lullabies): Showcases a rainbow of programs, lullaby music and soothing images for children for evening or nap time.