Now that it's getting "mommy-my-face-is-cold" cold outside, we need to pack these kids' schedules so they don't get bored and run wild.
Plopping them down in front of Disney+ is always a win for a while, but I'm really not thrilled about them watching cartoons all the time.
So when I was complaining to my best friend that there was no middle ground between television and learning, she asked if I remembered Muzzy.
I remembered the commercials, and something with a green monster. She told me it was a language-learning program for kids and it was perfect for ours. We both have kids under 10, and apparently that's the perfect age to learn a second language. After 10, the window of opportunity closes, and it gets much more difficult for the mind to retain that kind of information.
Even though I wasn't thrilled about them watching more cartoons, after they turned the living room into a pillow fort and spilled juice on my favorite pillow, I decided to take a look.
Muzzy was developed by the BBC! Turns out it had a lot more credibility than I thought. The cartoons come in a DVD set you can buy, but they also have a website subscription that includes interactive bonus materials like games, songs, and worksheets.
The online subscription includes a recording studio that lets your kid practice pronunciation by hearing themselves aloud. The subscription started at just $5 a month so I figured there was nothing to lose and signed up.
We'd have access to all the languages, but I went with Spanish, since I've been told it's one of the easier languages to learn and also one of the more useful.
That Saturday afternoon, after they went on the swings for 5 minutes then came inside and threw all their dolls down the stairs (whyyyy), I sat them down to watch the first Muzzy cartoon.
The animation wasn't as good as Soul, but oh my goodness, they loved it! They thought it was so fun, and I liked that the characters only spoke in Spanish. Apparently, Muzzy can teach kids up to 1,200 new words and phrases. I'd be happy with 20, to be honest.
I set them up on the website to play the different games, and they were really having fun. My daughter was hogging the laptop, when it's usually my son and they were singing Spanish into the microphone, which wasn't really the point, but they were having a blast anyway.
It wasn't until a couple weeks later that I noticed them adding a few words and phrases into their vocabulary. An "hola!" in the morning, "Mom can I have a pera?" in the afternoon.
My goal had just been for the family to keep their sanity, but my kids were really retaining a good amount of Spanish!
Thankfully, Muzzy helps them channel their cooped-up energy into something productive. I'm happy to say, we'll be sticking with Muzzy even when they can run around outside again.
Update: Muzzy is offering a limited time sale: Save up to 67% off a subscription if you purchase today!