Bob the Builder gently brings the preschooler into the world of STEM—science, technology, engineering, and math. Children see Bob's community come to life as he and his crew take on new building projects and improve existing structures.
Can we build it? Yes we can!™ But how? The "how" is the engineering—the planning, designing, and problem solving of a project. When Bob sketches out plans or alters an existing plan, he is an engineer.
Math and science content tied to the engineering themes are seamlessly embedded in each episode. Interwoven into the story lines are a mix of math skills, such as measuring for a build; comparing heights, weights, and sizes; visual and spatial reasoning; and science topics, like animal habitats, space, and archeological digs.
In addition, technology has many forms that are explored in Bob the Builder: communication, energy, construction, and transportation, to name just a few. Generally, technology refers to anything man-made or altered. Technology is the pivot between the natural world and the man-made one.
Bob and his team model STEM habits and practices while building on preschoolers' natural interests. Just as Bob and his team manipulate their environment, preschoolers like to explore and manipulate their environment. They are natural builders; blocks are meant to be stacked, blankets draped over furniture to make a fort, and a stream of water dammed and redirected. Children also like to solve problems. In each episode, Bob and his team demonstrate problem solving. They aren't defeated if something doesn't work out; instead they tackle the problem and fix it, modeling for preschoolers the importance of taking risks and trying again and again until they meet a challenge.
Bob and the team's adventures help promote vocabulary and language enrichment as preschoolers explore along with the characters the components of a build, the properties of building materials, and tools and safety procedures critical to getting the job done. BobtheBuilder is also rich with words used to compare, such as "heavy," "light," "high," "low," "front," "behind," "beside," "over," and "on." In addition, the series uses STEM vocabulary words like "foundation," "base," "support," and "atmosphere" that further enhance children's language development.
But Bob the Builder isn't just about STEM and language enrichment. The series fosters social and emotional development for preschoolers through the interaction of the characters and the activities in which they are involved. Social situations in the episodes resonate for kids as they learn about friendship, handling conflict, addressing fears, helping others, dealing with jealousy, sharing, teamwork, and more.
Central to Bob the Builder is the theme that all characters take responsibility for their actions. As the leader of the team, Bob provides a safe, nurturing environment for the characters so they are able to "fess up" to their "mess ups" and participate in fixing the problem.
Bob the Builder provides developmentally appropriate episodes to guide children into the world of STEM while establishing characters as positive role models.