Weekend Fun and Games

Filed under: Books for Kids, Music, Movies, New In Pop Culture



Just in case your long weekend isn't already booked up, here is a look at what's new in kids' entertainment as adapted from reviews and ratings by Common Sense Media. To read the reviews in full, click on the links.

At the Movies
When the lights go off the battle is on in "Night at the Museum: Battle of the Smithsonian." Ben Stiller and Owen Wilson are joined by Amy Adams as Amelia Earhart in this fun followup to "Night at the Museum." Fast paced with plenty of action and peril, the film's message is one of being true to yourself and following your dreams to happiness. Rated PG, OK for Ages 7+

On DVD
dr. doolittle million dollar muttsWho doesn't love a movie with talking animals? In the straight-to-DVD "Dr. Dolittle: Million Dollar Mutts", Maya Dolittle has inherited her father's ability to speak to animals and now must decide how best to use her gift. It's not all about wisecracking animals -- the film conveys a positive message about the importance of education and standing up for oneself. Rated PG, OK for Kids 5+

TV
Superhero storybook characters save the day in PBS Kids' educational and entertaining "Super WHY!" Viewers help Red, Littlest Pig, Princess Pea and Whyatt Beanstalk solve problems in Storybrook Village through interactive reading, word games, and spelling challenges. Each story has a moral and, of course, a happy ending. Rated TV-Y, OK for Kids 3+

Books
Fancy Namcy Explorer ExtraordinaireNot just a story, "Fancy Nancy: Explorer Extraordinaire" by Jane O'Connor takes readers on a learning adventure as Fancy Nancy and her friend Bree organize a nature club. Through the girls' exploration, information about insects, birds and plants is shared as well as recipes, drawings, and maps. OK for Kids 5+

Music
Singer/songwriter Jewel has turned her attention to children's music on her latest record, "Lullaby." With traditional lullabies and some sweet original love songs, the music is soothing and peaceful and bed-time appropriate for little ones. OK for Ages 2+

Web
"Bathroom Wall" is Facebook application that is about a pleasing as it sounds. Users anonymously post comments about other users on a virtual bathroom wall. As you can imagine, innocent secret-telling can quickly devolve into nastiness. How bad is it? At one point, Facebook threatened to shut it down over the trash talk. Might appeal to Kids 13+, but it is hardly appropriate for anyone.

Games
pictobitsPart of the Art Style series, "Pictobits" is a downloadable DSi puzzle game that starts out pretty simple but levels up to greater difficulty rather quickly. Colorful puzzle pieces float down from the top of the screen and must be shifted to create cubes or squares. Experts can earn virtual coins that unlock even tougher levels. Rated E, OK for Kids 8+


Common Sense Media

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Start by teaching him that it is safe to do so.