Monday, February 16, 2009

Review: Global Wonders Mexico, Interactive DVD

A couple of weeks ago, I was asked if I would review an interactive DVD produced by "Global Wonders" that explores Mexican culture. While I do try to limit my toddler´s TV time, I tend to let him watch a bit while I´m nursing the baby so I figured I would give it a try. Unfortunately, I think my 18 month old was a little young for the video.

Instead of giving up then and there, I decided to bring it along to one of his playdates, where one of the boys is 3.

This DVD is one of a series of cultural videos--Global Wonders also has interactive DVDs for African American, Indian, and Italian culture, among others. In this video, there are 3 main characters: Marisa (from Mexico) and her friends Trey and Brianna. As they have a playdate at Marisa´s house, they help the viewer learn about Mexican culture.

The characters are cute and lovable and the animation is very well done. I also enjoyed the "language jams" (where Spanish vocabulary was reviewed) and songs. Preschool age is definitely the appropriate audience. The video was a good length--about 30 minutes.

While I am not, of course, as familiar with Latin America as I am with Spain, I do feel that the video tried to take on a bit much. Topics included the big sister´s Quinceniera, Mexican food, holidays such as The Day of the Dead, leaders and famous people, music and dances such as the Rumba, and more. I felt that it was a lot for a small child to absorb. On the other hand, it would be a great tool to use as an introduction to Mexican culture, followed by detailed lessons on each of the topics.

All in all, I think it was a very well made DVD, a lot of fun to watch and sing along with, and I would be interested in taking a peek at a Spanish Culture DVD if they decide to create one!

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