YouTube Kidfluencers Educate Families About Healthy LivingAug 31, 2021 ● By Anna Marie Imbordino
Photos credits Jamie Martin
Parenting has never been so digital, especially post-pandemic, as families navigate safety boundaries. It would be almost impossible to be raising young children and have not been exposed to the explosion of kidfluencers and children’s musical shows like Blippi, Caitie’s Classroom, Super Simple Play and more taking to YouTube. The influx of kid-friendly content creators are responding to the unique needs and trends of millennial, and now Generation Z, parents whose own online scrolling habits are inspiring them to see YouTube as a resource for safe and healthy entertainment.
“As a parent on the go, I love YouTube channels like Blippi because I can set a video in a hurry for my kids right from my smartphone or tablet,” shares Ralph Wrona, father of two living in Carol Stream. Many parents are also finding that their children are requesting play with technology devices like smartphones and game consoles, hoping to share in the fun they see parents and older siblings having. “When it is time for their allowed screen time, having channels like Blippi helps my wife and I feel good that our kids are learning safe topics and watching programs developed for their learning level.” Parents like Ralph see the benefits of technology for children’s entertainment and education, and although aware of the risks of exposure to screens, with moderation they find the benefits outweigh the risks.
The Wrona family is not alone in finding a resource for entertainment and education on YouTube. Chicago families are taking up this trend, motivating local musical performers like beloved Batavia entertainer Miss Jamie’s Farm to join the YouTube arena. Teaming up with her music producer husband, professional vocalist Jamie Martin started the Miss Jamie’s Farm music show in 2013, inspired by the arrival of their first child. Although Miss Jamie’s Farm has maintained a YouTube presence for some time, pandemic safety needs and evolving parenting trends led Jamie and her team to develop even more online and virtual programming.
Miss Jamie’s Farm Miss-Jamie.com is a musical show and educational program series that aims to educate families about life down on the farm, addressing healthy living topics such as healthy eating, responsible farming and self-care habits for young children. Local families may recognize Miss Jamie’s Farm from community appearances at Mariano’s grocery chains, as well as schools, libraries and children’s community events.
Raised on her family’s goat and cattle ranch in the Texas hill country, Jamie fell in love with animals and nature, inspiring her to develop the farm-focused musical show. “I saw an opportunity to share information about sometimes scary and complicated topics like animal rights, food safety and conservation using music and play. It was about keeping the show fun, light and focused on healthy choices and appreciating animals,” Jamie, lead kidfluencer of Miss Jamie’s Farm, explains. Jamie encourages families to use her educational programming online and on YouTube to bridge the gap when addressing these issues with children. Parents can scroll through YouTube uploads like Happy Chickens Lay Yummy Eggs where they can find upbeat and positive lyrics around supporting cage-free practices, in addition to other musical videos.
“Pandemic safety concerns these past years have creatively pushed me to develop new music and program content that’s focused online. Staying home, I have been able to work with my illustrator, green screen backdrops and other technology that are helping my show come to life in a new way. I am excited to share all this new online content with families and hope they will subscribe.”
When looking for entertainment options for children, kidfluencers like Blippi, Caitie and Jamie bring a more interactive approach to children’s programming and online learning. Videos on these channels run from three minutes to 40 minutes and showcase a combination of curated and sponsored video content. Many of these children’s performers also offer live streaming programming designed to mimic the e-learning approaches seen in our public and private school systems post-pandemic.
Families can follow Miss Jamie’s Farm on major social media platforms at @missjamiesfarm.
Anna Marie Imbordino is a writer, award-winning publicist and environmentalist based in Chicago and Charleston, SC. Connect on social media by following @teawiththebee.