Through the parenting grapevine, I had heard about Mother Goose Club. Mother Goose Club is available on Netflix and is very much toddler crack, featuring a group of children in bright costumes who dance and sing both classic nursery rhymes and a few original songs in colorful CG landscapes. Ian, like many of his peers, loves Mother Goose Club, but after a (short) while, it starts to make me want to pierce my eardrums with a skewer.
Luckily, I have a found two alternatives to Mother Goose Club that my son loves! Both are YouTube channels that feature cheerful children’s music and real people in colorful worlds. Both channels feature individual songs to play and longer videos for 12-60 minutes of continuous music.
Pancake Manor features three puppets, Zach, Reggie, and Lulu, along with several real live human beings (its creators along with other guests, both children and adults). The music is a mix of original tunes and children’s classics with a pop sound that is actually enjoyable to my 30-something ears. Ian loves to get up and dance to several of the tunes, especially their (awesome) version of “If You’re Happy and You Know It”, which singlehandedly taught him to do the robot at 18 months old. As with Mother Goose Club, I do find myself walking around singing these songs, but, unlike with Mother Goose Club, with these songs, I don’t really mind.
Bounce Patrol is an Australian group whose songs are cheerful and sweet. The videos typically only feature the adult group members, but a few feature children and other guests. The lack of puppets is made up for by the colorful costumes and energetic dancing, and Ian really enjoys chiming in with animal sounds during the Animal Sounds Song and participating in the movements during To the Music. There are a few classic nursery rhymes here, but, as with Pancake Manor, Bounce Patrol puts their own flavor and energy into each song to preserve parental sanity.
One thing that sets Bounce Patrol apart is its obvious love of holidays. They several songs for Halloween, Easter, and Christmas, which do make their way into the longer multiple-song playlists, so you may find yourself inadvertently listening to Halloween Rules in March. That said, Ian doesn’t care, and it doesn’t detract from the fun he gets from the other tunes.