Children's Television: The Magic School Bus

I realize this is an older show, but my kids love it. It's fun, it's educational—they come away from each episode with a bevy of facts they're dying to share with me. "Mom! Did you know . . .?"

But what I wonder is whether teachers ever got upset about The Magic School Bus. Because I can see how and why they might. I could imagine an educator arguing:
We've got to get kids off this Magic School Bus trip. It sets unreasonable expectations for teachers to be fun and inventive. I'm getting students who expect to go on field trips, for God's sake. I've been teaching for fifteen years, and I don't have that kind of energy. I want my kids to sit down and shut up, not be exploring topics and demanding hands-on experiences.
Or something to that effect.

I was lucky to have a Frizzle-like teacher from kindergarten through fourth grade (though some might have thought her taking us to pick cotton like field hands was going a bit far—but hey, we sure learned to appreciate the hardships of slave labor). Now my oldest has a science-minded teacher who encourages his natural curiosity as well. And for all those out there without such benefits, well, there's The Magic School Bus. It's education by proxy, but it's good stuff. Kids are natural learners, but they learn better through experience (think of the way infants learn—it's the ultimate in immersion, going from the womb to the world) than from having someone lecture them. Take them on a ride, even if only on an animated bus.

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