Disclaimer: I received a FREE copy of this product through the HOMESCHOOL REVIEW CREW in exchange for my honest review. I was not required to write a positive review nor was I compensated in any other way.
Over the past month our family has been rocking to the sounds of Smart Kidz Radio: Member’s On-Demand Radio Program Library for the whole family. Music is a powerful force, and it’s nice to have a go-to that you can trust to be family-friendly with a wide range of programs for all ages.
We received a 6-month subscription to Smart Kidz Radio’s Member’s On-Demand Radio Program Library. It’s described as a music education and inspirational radio station for kids.
How Does Smart Kidz Radio Work?
There are several ‘Groupings:’
- Smart Kidz Radio Program Groupings
- Smart Kidz Totally Cool School Groupings
- Young People & Family Radio Program Groupings
- New Releases
- Recently Played
- Coming Soon
Within each of these groupings there are several ‘Programs.’ Click on one of them and you’ll find a few ‘Albums.’ Click on an album and you can start to listen to it. The first track is usually a brief introduction, given by the dj, about what you are about to listen to. For example, a little history about the time period, location, or style of music.
Some of the music is by the original artists, but most are done specifically for Smart Kidz Radio (I am assuming this particular piece of information).
This is an online program for which you need internet access. We used it primarily on my phone and bluetoothing it through a speaker. Using it this way, I wasn’t able to see the tracks that were currently being played, just the ‘album,’ however, this was the easiest way to connect it to a speaker so we could all listen to it.
The children couldn’t use it well on their kindle due to the way their device is set up to go into sleep mode if the screen isn’t touched in a certain length of time, which caused the music to stop as well.
For optimum use of seeing the full screen and choices available, using a pc or laptop works best.
How We Used It
We tended to listen to Smart Kidz Radio mid-morning while the children were in class, Phil was working from home, and I was tidying up. This way we could all listen to it in the background.
We first dove right into the the Nostalgic Music Programs and worked our way completely through the Golden Oldies: Fifties, Groov’n Hits: Sixties, and Rockin’ Hits: Seventies. We all loved these programs; many of the songs we were familiar with but maybe hadn’t heard in years, and others were new to us. These were a fun way to boogie through the morning break.
The children sometimes listened to Music to Study By while working on math and English, as it’s been proven that listening to the right music while studying can have a beneficial effect.
I played a variety of different genres from time to time during the day, from blues, reggae, classical, and Caribbean. Also in the mix, because we love culture, was music from Japan, India, Italy, and the Middle East.
Listening in to a few of the other programs, children learn about different types of weather, science, and in the affirmations, children will hear and can repeat several phrases such as “I accept and love myself,” “I always act responsibly,” and “I am brave.”
And at bedtime, Tristan and I were both happy for Kallista to listen Soothing Bedtime Songs or the Storytime Programs as a change from the same program she’s listened to every night for months. Sometimes change is good!
Smart Kidz Foundation
Taking their mission of being an educational and inspirational radio station seriously, 20% of every membership fee for Smart Kidz Radio goes to the Smart Kidz Foundation, which funds programs that help children follow their dreams and achieve their goals through self-confidence, understanding, and multicultural exploration.
Our Wish List
While we have enjoyed listening to the variety of programs on Smart Kidz Radio, there are a few things that would make for a better user experience. The mobile version is very awkward as you cannot use the drop-down menu because an overlay covers the screen and does not show the menu that’s available on laptop. Also, although I didn’t have this problem a month ago, now I am not able to see the music tracks on mobile (playing via the internet, not on an app – it would be wonderful to have this program available as an app!).
Smart Kidz Radio Conclusion
It’s interesting sometimes to revisit a program to see how either it’s changed over time, or how our use of it changes over time. We reviewed Smart Kidz Radio a couple of years ago and their format has changed somewhat. At that time, the majority of their programs were too young for my children. Now my children are 10 & 12, and yet it’s a better fit for them as there’s a much wider range of materials available.
We’re all looking forward to the upcoming music, such as Disco, Broadway Hits, and All-Time Favorite Movie Themes!
Smart Kidz Radio is a family-friendly way to introduce a wide-range of musical styles to children and open their minds to what the world holds. It isn’t often so much variety is found in one place, along with some background information on each genre as well. It’s great to have both pure music, as well as fun learning songs and stories at your fingertips.
Click here to read 49 more reviews about Smart Kidz Radio by the Homeschool Review Crew. If you’d like to know more or would like to follow Smart Kidz Radio, you can connect with them through their website, Facebook, Twitter, Instagram, and Pinterest.