The TV can be an idiot box teaching the wrong things and fostering the wrong ideals if your kids are watching the wrong thing. On the other hand it can be a tremendous educative resource if your kids are watching the right things. Here are some options that are largely good for children:
Nick Junior has a number of shows that are age appropriate for younger kids and which are fairly educative as well. The added benefit is that the channel is commercial free so that you don’t have to deal with plethora of commercial related demands that children have.
The shows and characters on there are likeable and age appropriate. Dora the Explorer for instance promotes logical thinking and your kids may even pick up a smattering of Spanish here! Blue is the animated dog who has the human friend, and together they go on exciting adventures in Blue’s Clues.
These are the kinds of shows that are interactive and make kids participate. Also, if you let the child watch TV for a while you don’t have to feel guilty about what negative impact it may have.
The Nick Junior website has many resources such as games and activities, recipes, videos and lesson plans. Kids can also learn to make art and can watch online videos as well.