Ask the Storybots

Let’s learn with bots that know how to tell a story!

Through our latest tips we have been trying to make you smile in these times of uncertainty! To do so, we have invited you to share moments of fun with your families, engaging your children with activities that we consider to be pedagogically relevant and that can be carried out in an amusing environment.  

This week is no exception! So now we are going to invite you to travel with us and to join this curious adventure with five little creatures that will surely delight you with their intelligence, brightness and sensitivity! Do you know the “Ask the Storybots” animation? It is an educational series from Netflix that brings together five colourful creatures – Beep, Boop, Bing, Bang and Bo –, which will help us answer those difficult questions the little ones usually ask us: “How do computers work?”, “Why do people look different?”, “How do people catch a cold?”, “Why is the sky blue?” or even “Where do french fries come from?”.

“Ask the storybots” is a fun and enchanting series, which makes us sing, dance, smile and helps us in the dialogue with our little ones, in a very joyful and clear way. These creatures can easily capture the attention of children aged 3 to 7 years old, but, of course, it can be watched by any child above this. It will make parents and families come together, offering an educational stimulus for further communication about relevant themes and it can even lead to kids’ behaviour improvement to better fit different circumstances.

Targeting children, its episodes are very colourful and short, with an average duration of 25 minutes each. These episodes also have special guests that families may probably know (e.g., Jay Leno, John Legend, Kevin Smith and Whoopi Goldberg).

As it addresses questions that are not always so easy to answer to, it is certainly a good help! Given these times we all share, an episode that may be of special attention is “How do people catch a cold?”. This small movie takes us in a travel with these multi-coloured creatures to the Lymph Land, located inside our body, and it tells us about another creature – a virus –, evolving to themes like: how it infects people, how it spreads and what it can do to our health. It also explores why it is so important to correctly wash our hands (not to become contaminated!), what white blood cells and antibodies are (as if they were soldiers fighting for our health), their role and how do they protect the human body.

Since we are going through a situation of a virus fast spread, this episode may be of a special importance, helping to better understanding the big picture and take a positive action for change.

In order to put children’s learning into practice, we also propose you some family activities that integrate the concepts explored throughout the series. After watching an episode, you may ask children to retell the story asking them simple questions about the narrative, trying to understand what they have liked the most and what might have been unclear to them, promoting a fluid debate around each episode’s core subjects. This may be an opportunity not only to integrate the episodes’ nuclear concepts, but also for children to understand their interests, capabilities, and values.

Another nice activity to do together may comprise drawing the highlights of the episode that they have just watched (they should be encouraged to explore and use one or multiple techniques, e.g., coloured pencils, filter pens, watercolours, etc.).

And, finally, to stimulate children’s fine motor skills they are encouraged to create the five multi-coloured characters (Beep, Boop, Bing, Bang and Bo) in plasticine. If they show interest in creating other characters from a given episode, help them and enjoy a great family time.

So, join us on these wonderful adventures and have fun! Oh, and don’t forget it: when children have important or more complicated questions, Storybots go wherever needed to reach your doubts and most thrilling curiosities!

Contribution by:
Ana Mouta, Ana Paulino and Inês Sá Couto  are Pedagogy Specialists at jp.ik.