If you like the "Hey Wordy!" episodes on PBS, you will also enjoy this DVD and audio CD program. Subtitled “Celebrate the World!”, it is presented in that same fun-via-song format. These original, animated and fully-orchestrated songs are professionally created, imaginative and engaging. You’ll enjoy hearing your young ones replay and sing these repeatedly. In just a few moments, I found myself singing right along. Serving as an exposure to other languages rather than pure instruction, the songs introduce some basic words (mostly nouns and short phrases) in 6 different languages: French (2 songs), Italian, Japanese, Chinese, Korean, and Arabic.
The Hey Wordy! DVD includes a bonus episode, celebrating Cloudy’s birthday in multiple languages. The remaining DVD components introduce mini episodes. The vibe reminds me of the “Blues Clues” series my children once enjoyed: fast-paced, educational, significant amount of lyric repetition, and exaggerated accents, facial and body expressions--no matter the language or accent. It is typical, for example, to see David Burke as Dabblebee become a French man wearing a beret or a Japanese man in kimono and sandals. Dabblebee is accompanied in his adventures by animated creatures: Wordy (the talking book who adds new vocabulary to his inside pages), Cloudy, the bird who delivers the words, and others. While a large percentage of the lyrics is in English (providing some great exposure to English vocabulary for your preschoolers), listeners will be introduced to some specific vocabulary: for example, how to greet someone in French, count in Korean, or cockadoodle doo in other languages. The Soundtrack CD plays the same songs (with a wee bit of introduction) from the DVD, while adding instrumental versions of Bonjour, Makes Me Felice, and The Best Umniah. Parents’ Choice recommended. ~ Ruth