Welcome to our KidDesktop blog!

KidDesktop is a kid friendly Windows desktop alternative providing a safe PC learning experience without allowing access to inappropriate files, programs, or Internet content. This blog provides information parents and teachers can use to help children get the most out of their computer experience, including updated information about KidDesktop and reviews of kids’ websites and kid friendly YouTube videos.

Archive for September, 2010

Today’s a rainy day here in Washington DC, and I can’t stop thinking how happy everything that grows must be about all this moisture.  (We’ve had a hot, dry summer!)  This made me think how cool it would be if the kids and I could actually SEE the plants growing amid all this wet stuff coming down.  And that led me to the miracle of time-lapse videos and YouTube.

Here‘s one of fast-growing corn plants:

And another one of fast-growing bush beans.  Also cool, but lacking the fun music of the corn plants.

Last one for now is here.  Few kids would say that radishes are their fave foods, but the music is back and it’s really hypnotic to watch these roots grow, even after the stems and leaves have slowed down.

There’s some very cool time-lapse videos out there (as well as a lot of meh ones).  They make a great teaching tool, in addition to a fun way to keep the little guys entertained on a rainy day!

OK Go! (Some More!)

We love OK Go, and the new OK Go video is another wonderful one for adults and kids alike!

Like their previous videos — including Here It Goes Again and This Too Shall PassWhite Knuckles includes catchy music and deceivingly simple visuals.  But this one also features a classic kid-favorite addition: cute animals.  These dogs* are absolutely adorable, from the way they jump, run, and walk around the set to the way they bob their heads in perfect rhythm with one another and the musicians.  If your children haven’t seen this video yet, trust me, they’ll love it!

Oh, and for anyone who’s wondering: yes, OK Go did make this video with their trademark “one take.”  No pieces of film sliced and diced together here.  And, yes, it was verrrryyy challenging!  Gizmodo did a great piece on the problems the musicians, trainers, and animals faced, and the excitement of knowing that it all came together perfectly.

* PS Did you see the goat around 2:50?!?!?

Keep ‘em Coming Back…

I’ve written before (here and here) about some of the great Muppet videos that are available on YouTube.

Then, yesterday my 2nd grader came home talking about how they learned “The Cat Came Back” in music class.  His singing and humming naturally took me back to the Muppets skit of that song, and I just had to add it to my kids’ YouTube playlists.

Apparently versions of this song are often used to teach children about rhythm and tempo.  It has a strong, well-defined beat pattern: one weak beat, one strong beat.  Plus, the silly words make it fun for kids and anyone else to sign along.  Still amusing — and educational! — after all these years!