If you have little ones in your life, you’re probably very familiar with shows like Peppa Pig, Cocomelon, Bluey and The Wiggles. But if you’re looking for something a little more faith-based, and without the risks involved in letting your kids browse YouTube unsupervised, Yippee might be the streaming service for you.
Perfect for children aged two to 10, Yippee is a kid-focused, faith-based, ad-free streaming service for Christian children’s content. It was founded in 2019 in Los Angeles, aiming to provide a way for children to engage in screen time safely, in a way that parents and families can support.
The content is a mix of original productions, familiar favourites and curated YouTube content. Its most recognisable offering is VeggieTales, which many parents will remember fondly from their own childhoods. With so many unhelpful – and sometimes even dangerous – videos and shows available on streaming services and YouTube, it is reassuring to know that there is a service providing entertainment that seeks to serve young minds.
Although Government recommendations around screen time encourage families to watch along with young children and supervise their consumption, the reality is that many families (including my own) will use screens to occupy kids and keep them from being underfoot for various reasons. It’s also impossible to implement the same ideals for screen time when our children are in the care of grandparents or other trusted adults. Yippee provides reassurance that even when you can’t observe screen time, kids won’t be exposed to undesirable content.
One of the downfalls of the app is its user experience, which is clunky and difficult to navigate. Initially, its home screen feels very much like loading Netflix, however with so many new and unfamiliar programs, it’s hard to know where to begin. There are no “trending now” or recommended lists for age groups to give you a starting point, and I found it hard to sift through all the unusual show titles to figure out what might be suitable for my three-year-old.
The quality varies, with some produced well and others a little below average. Any parent who has spent time watching ABC Kids knows that not all children’s television is created equal, and the programs on Yippee are no different. The majority of shows are American-made, with the exception of the Hillsong Kids content.
Yippee makes a good addition to a family’s subscription services but doesn’t offer enough in quality or quantity to be a viable replacement for other popular platforms. However, for parents who want a safer alternative to streaming services, Yippee not only provides peace of mind but also presents content with a conscience for the same price as a Netflix subscription. See www.yippeekids.com.au
Shows to check out
VeggieTales – Larry and Bob are back with a whole host of silly adventures and Bible story retellings featuring your favorite fresh produce. Broccoli, pickles, French peas, silly songs and LarryBoy. There are nine different VeggieTales programs available to choose from, including all new episodes only available on Yippee. Some families may feel VeggieTales’ messaging tends to be more moralistic than biblical.
Theo – Dive deep into biblical theology with Theo, an elderly man who, with his two mice friends Belfry and Luther, learns all about adoption, redemption, salvation and other key concepts of the Reformation. In under 10 minutes each episode shares a Bible story that shows a core component of Christian belief. Best suited for upper primary school students.
Max Lucado’s Hermie & Friends – Fans of Max Lucado’s children’s books will be drawn to the adventures of Hermie the caterpillar, as he and his friends learn about Christian virtues in a fun and magical way. The 3D animation is a bit clunky, but the morals of each episode are admirable.