When I was growing up, I would come home from school, and turn on PBS, and on there was Dragon Tales. But after Dragon Tales, a live-action children’s television program that was filled with skits, crafts, games, and more, Zoom. I would watch this show every day for years and years because I wanted to be one of those kids acting on the show, and there were a lot of kids from home on the show. It was something special.
Zoom was originally a show in the 1970s that had the same format and name as the revival in 1999. The show ran from 1999 to 2005 and featured a cast of diverse children of various ages working together to create skits, play games, cook, and make crafts.
Each of the seven seasons had a different cast, with some being on multiple seasons. Kids would eventually age out of being on the show, and then there would be new kids for the new seasons. Caroline Botelho, 4 seasons and Elena “Shing Ying” Shieh, 3 seasons are the two cast members acted in the most seasons.
The show ran in various segments, including ZOOMSci, ZOOMGame, Fannee Doolee, Cafe ZOOM, and Zmail, among others. Sometimes they were suggestions from kids at home, and other times they were new ideas that the kids showed step by step. The point of the show was to show different activities that a kid could do at home or at school with friends or by themselves.
One aspect of the show that made it unique was Ubbi Dubbi. It is a language the show made up. There was a segment in every show that featured it. The language was a bit like Pig Latin but was only a Zoom language.
The show was canceled because of a lower rating, with kids’ television being very competitive. You can watch episodes now on YouTube from Zoomfan1.
The show starts with a title sequence and a choreographed dance. It is the same song for most of the seasons. I am watching season 2 because that is what I remember most of all the seasons when I was researching. The cast comprises Kenny, Alisa, Caroline, Zoe, Ray, Jessie, and Claudio.
The show starts with a game sent in by a viewer called Fruit Tag. Zoe talked about the rules, and then they played the game. It is an enormous set and is very vibrant. You can tell that the kids are having fun and that they are trying to show how to play the game fairly with the cooperation of others. It is an excellent lesson for kids to see.
The next segment is a poem that is also sent in by a viewer and read by Jessie. Then, it was ZoomGuest, where a person from home sent in a video about something that they do that is unique. It is nice for kids to see other kids doing amazing things. This show really is by kids and for kids. Between segments, there are little skits and jokes from the cast to keep the show going.
Next was Cafe Zoom, where they were making a fun snack also sent in by a viewer. Then Claudio and Ray started doing math, which was a “challenge,” and I questioned why kids would want to see a math project done on television. It is good to show kids that even if things are hard, you can persevere through them.
After, they read a story also sent in by a viewer. Then, there were smaller segments that were brain teasers, jokes, and ads for their show. There was a funny segment of Zoom Playhouse, which is when viewers send in a play and the cast recreates it. It is very amusing always. Then, it ends with their pledge song because it is a public television channel. I knew all the words to the song, even after this long!
Overall, it was a really fun show. I think it is beneficial for kids, and I understand why it was popular and great for kids!
Does it hold up?
Yes, none of the things on here are things kids can’t do today. If anything this shows kids things they could do that don’t involve technology. People could still show their kids these activities today and kids wouldn’t bat an eye.
I knew all the words to the title song and the end song, so it was nostalgic. I loved every second. If you want to see more interviews and info on Zoom check out Zoom Fan 1’s Facebook Page. It’s great!
Post your thoughts in the comments below!
As always, Creating Nostalgia Millennial Style!