There’s a new bear on the block in Revelstoke.
Not to worry you won’t need to call the conservation officer or clean up garbage that has been scattered and he is unlikely to wander into a liquor store. This bear would rather challenge your kids to push up competitions, follow along with a yoga class or talk to about poop.
You and your kids can find Koda the grizzly bear (puppet) on a new video podcast for kids filmed right here in Revelstoke–The Cubs Club.
As the pandemic raged on, longtime early childhood educator Meaghan DaDalt and new day-home owner Pam Jensen were trying to think of a way they could help families and build community while COVID-19 keeps us apart.
They decided on a video podcast and because it was based in Revelstoke, it had to feature a bear.
“This officially means that you are now a lifetime member and that you can come and find us, or hang out, any time you ever need a friend. Ever,” said Jensen in their very first episode, which was uploaded on Dec. 14, 2020.
The 10-15 minute episodes, are lighthearted and fun, sharing relevant information, age-appropriate humour and encouraging kids to get up and move.
“Everything is so serious right now and we just wanted to offer something to laugh with, to have fun with,” DaDalt said.
Another goal was to create guilt-free screen time so parents can get stuff done.
“You’re welcome,” Jensen and DaDalt say with a laugh in the For The Parents & Caregivers introduction video. “This is for you, as much as it is for your children.”
The two film in Jensen’s day home, using a backdrop that was painted by the kids and put together by local artist Isaac Becker. Rather than a tight script, the show hosts write talking points on an out-of-frame washing machine using a whiteboard marker.
The show often features their two families and video submissions from other kids asking questions that are then answered on the show.
Jensen watches the episodes with her daycare kids, making notes on what keeps them engaged and what makes them laugh.
“If they are getting up to do something else then you have failed,” she said.
Though they were originally looking for an entrepreneurial idea for added income, instead they found a way to share their passion for teaching and learning from children.
“It’s by no means a get-rich project but it’s a creative project that we are having a really great time doing and we will see how it goes,” DaDalt said. “There is no plan, we are just trying it out, having fun with it, doing it and hopefully we can keep it going for a while, we will see.”