10 Reasons I Love Dora the Explorer

dora-doll

The first word out of Moxie in the morning is usually, “oooooo-RA!”; the last word from her is usually the same. Out of the 10 or so words that Moxie speaks, half are related to Dora the Explorer.

Moxie has it bad, really, reeeeeeeeeeeeeeeeeeeeeeeeeeeeeeeaaallly bad. And yet we don’t tune it down a notch; in fact, we bumped up her access to the shows, bought her a Dora doll, backpack and Boots. And yet Dora is second only to Caillou in annoyance-levels for us – hearing the questions Dora asks on repeat is like listening to a bad, broken record that mated with nails on chalkboard.

Here’s why I love Dora the Explorer:

1. Dora is interactive: Moxie cannot sit down and watch Dora – she jumps up and participates. She answers Dora when she is asked a question, she hand-stops Swiper from swiping, she cheers them on and “sings” along.

2. Dora is repetitive: Yeah, sure, it drives ME nuts and I think I’m going to tear my hair out if I hear those directions drawn out ONE. MORE. TIME, but this is perfect for Moxie. Lots of repetition helps her get it and helps her be confident and in charge. She knows what’s coming next.

3. She’s educational! I thought it was a crock but then I heard Moxie saying “- asssssH” and realized she was saying “gracias” – holy cow!

4. Dora is self-sufficient. She brings what she needs and she finds what she doesn’t have. I like Moxie having a role model that uses her head.

5. Dora is a practical problem-solver. Dora’s like the Spanish-speaking Nancy Drew for little kids – she has the inexhaustable backpack, she uses maps, she solves problems using logic. She approaches everything in a calm, level-headed way, and finds a way through obstacles. Sometimes the way through just happens to involve going through a volcano.

6. Dora celebrates accomplishments. That “We Did It” song and dance?! It’s actually pretty great – a recap of the adventure, celebrating what they did that was hard for them. We use that with other things at home now – when Moxie clears her plate, puts on her clothes by herself, makes her bed, “We did it, we did it, we did it, YAY! Moxie cleared her plate and put her dish away, YAY!” – she loves it.

7. Moxie’s Dora and Boots dolls provide her with an opportunity to role play. Which she does. She puts the Dora doll to bed, she “talks” to the doll, brushes her hair. (She also throws her out the window and out of the loft but that’s a different story.)

8. Dora’s clothes. Well, at least the original Dora was always wearing something simple and non-frilly. Just shorts and a t-shirt. Sensible shoes. She wasn’t trying to pander to anyone except the adventures she wanted to have and be prepared for.

9. Dora’s family family plays a small role in the series altogether, but her mom is pretty empowering – an archaeologist! Even though her parents let her wander around alone in a forest with a monkey, they seem to be solid and caring with wholesome values.

10. Dora is great bait for US. We use Dora shamelessly to get Moxie to come back, to turn around, to eat, to clean up – “Dora eats!”, “Want to watch Dora?”, “Hey Moxie! DORRRRAAAAA!” – it’s gold.

What’s not to love?!

Related post: 7 Things to Love About Caillou

About the writer

Meriah's a deaf third culture kid, married to another third culture kid and raising a new generation of third culture kids. She is currently traveling the Pan American Highway with her clan. You can follow their travels and stories on her blog, With a Little Moxie. You can probably also visit her – if you bring marshmallows with you.

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Erin 1 year ago

My three-year-old adores Dora and has since she was old enough to focus on the TV. The other day, we were walking into the grocery store. I’m trying to teach her the importance of looking both way before crossing the street. As we approached the “road” in front of the store, she said, “Mommy, when you see a car, say CAR!” Then a car started coming and she said “Say car, say car!!”

It was in that moment that I realized the huge impact Dora has had on my kid…and it’s not all bad!

Sammy Starr 1 year ago

I actually sat down today and tried watching the Nick channel… and there was nothing on but some stupid “Paw Patrol” show all the way from 8AM until 2PM!! There was NO Nick JR I was pissed :

Crystal 1 year ago

My oldest daughter is autistic and has been obsessed with Dora since the first time she ever saw the show. It’s getting harder and harder ti find dora stuff for her and replace her well loved items.

Jessica Q 1 year ago

My nephew told me “Come on, Aca [Aunt Jessica], vamanos!” at Target today…. He watches Dora at daycare quite a bit.

Amanda Hadder 1 year ago

my son watched blues clues his favorite also franklin & little bear

Jenn Pushkaric 1 year ago

This is why we LOVE Mickey Mouse Clubhouse!

Sherry Sembera Malone 1 year ago

My daughter is so into Dora right now, so I can understand this!

Audrey 1 year ago

not*

Audrey 1 year ago

My only issue with Dora (and it’s totally now *her* fault) is the lack of Dora merchandise for boys. My ds3 loves Dora, and Diego just doesn’t cut it. Sooo, he’s got the backpack, but I had to make him a pajama set (after a particularly bad meltdown during pj shopping over a pink, ruffle nightgown ) with iron-ons because the swag only exists with ruffles. :/

Why aren’t boys allowed to have female role models? This is the 21st century!

Felicia Hitch 1 year ago

Dora has been my daughter’s favorite since she was learning to talk and she’s almost 4 now. I love Dora and miss it being on Netflix because we don’t have cable and the only time she gets to watch it is at mamaw’s house. When we was very young and we would pick her, she would say “abajo” to get down. She would pick up things very quickly watching Dora.

Stephanie F-s 1 year ago

My son loves Dora and Diego. He is not even 2 yet and can count to 10 in Spanish (we are not Spanish, so who else taught him that?).

Leslie Sansom 1 year ago

I can’t imagine for the life of me why I would ever miss Dora. I hated how she was allowed to travel around and “explore” at such a young age but couldn’t remember how to get anywhere. It also bothered me when they had to move around a scary sleeping animal and she always felt the need to explain that they needed to be quiet and sing a song when cleary just being quiet would have been the best course of action.

Bethany 1 year ago

I will always love Dora for the reasons above and more. My now 4 year old was non-verbal and progressing slowly through speech therapy at 2 1/2, when a friend who knew her love for the show, gave us a Dora CD. One day driving in the car and listening to those songs, I heard “doo-do-doo-da-Dora” coming from the backseat. First time my girl ever sang! Dora will always hold a special place in my heart.

Jessica Burns 1 year ago

And Thomas… and Caliou! (hee hee)

Christina Scalise 1 year ago

This was one of my kids favorite shows when they were little; along with Blues Clues and The Wiggles. As an adult…..ugh! But, at least they were a bit educational and will never EVER be as bad as “Barney” was! That song of his still haunts me! LOL

Sarah Flagler 1 year ago

Love Dora!

Nichole Ferello 1 year ago

All good reasons, yes, but her off key singing grinds on my nerves lol and always has. I first started watching Dora when I watched my niece when she was a baby ten years ago!

Tut TheSphynx 1 year ago

Caillou was banned in my home.

Tut TheSphynx 1 year ago

I miss Arthur and Scooby Doo.

Trish Newell 1 year ago

Dora needs better volume control, but is way better than a lot of the junk out there for kids.

Kelly Beninghove 1 year ago

Agree!

Kodi McCleary 1 year ago

Yes! Yes! Yes! We shamelessly use Dora in the house too!!

Sonia Maher 1 year ago

We watch Octonauts and Jake & the Neverland Pirates…no Dora in this house!

Fiona 1 year ago

My (now 10 year old) son’s first words were map and backpack (or ma’ and ba’pa’). He was only 7months old yet Dora was intriguing and repetitive enough to make him speak.

However, by 18 months he still wouldn’t call me “mama” – I too was Dada. We were looking at a Dora book and he said “who dat?”. I replied “That’s Dora’s Mami.” He looked confused so I explained that she was Dora’s Mami just like I was his Mama. “Ooooh!” He exclaimed and called me Mama from that point on :)

Kendra Fritz 1 year ago

Hahaha I thought i was the only one who noticed that!

Sandy 1 year ago

I’d rather listen to Elmo laugh for a hundred years than go back to listening to the very loud and (to my ears) unmusical Dora. We had a really fun Dora bingo game that we enjoyed playing with the kids, but I had to grit my teeth when anyone won, because we had to hear the Dora victory song.

My favorite kid’s cartoon show is Madeline, based on the books by Ludwig Bemelmans. It’s not on television regularly, but it will live forever on DVD. Madeline is brave, she’s honest, she’s polite, she rescues dogs — and the music is a pleasure to listen to. We also enjoyed the Scholastic series of videos based on award-winning children’s books.

Maria Kristal Latterman 1 year ago

In a world that’s not so far away…

Maria Kristal Latterman 1 year ago

The only problem is when your daughter wants to be Swiper and take toys away from others kids, throws them down the stairs, over the baby gate, down the hall etc and yells, ” you’ll never find it now!” With an evil laugh. True story. Lol

Jennifer Coates-Midtgard 1 year ago

HI, I’M DORA AND THIS IS MY IDEA OF A NORMAL SPEAKING VOICE!!!

Connie Eberly-Bartoo 1 year ago

Didn’t mind Dora and love Doc McStuffins. Caillou? That whiny little brat with the mother who is clearly too sedated to deal with him need to GO.

Ronnie 1 year ago

I see a certain educational level with Dora… but PLEASSSSSSSSSSEEEEEEE make her stop screaming! This girl can’t just talk– she YELLLLLLLSSSSSS all the time! Even my 3 y.o. tells her (the t.v.) to stop that. “DoYa– stop skeeming at me, me be nice!”
:)

Liz Wittkamper 1 year ago

I like Umizoomi over Dora.. Still educational and way more entertaining!

Rodney-Carrie Wilson 1 year ago

We liked little Einstein’s, little bear, I don’t allow asked with rude or selfish behavior, the kids coot what they see. We read daily, amazing that they laden all those things from BOOKS

Lindsay Wilson 1 year ago

What I didn’t love about Dora is that swiper the Fox constantly steals her shit but she still doesn’t learn her lesson. I don’t want my kids to be walked all over. Screw you swiper… Next time I’m telling my mom and she is gonna have a chat with your parents. Also… (at the risk of sounding racist… I’m not) I didn’t like that there was no diversity… Everyone was the same and all spoke Spanish… Santa is Mexican, the tooth fairy is Mexican…. Ect… Ect…. I love the concept of the show… But I just can’t….

Bonny Capps 1 year ago

No.

Jessika Mason 1 year ago

Hate Dora. She teaches kids to yell for what they want. She’s banned in our house along with Spongebob and all things Cartoon Network.

Maricela 1 year ago

I LOVE DORA TOO! She has helped me parent in even more meaningful ways that this blog explains. Dora repeats the sequence of what is about to happen. It occurred to me to borrow that idea when my 2 year old was having a hard time transitioning. “First leave park, then eat, then play with truck “, it worked like magic. I used it when he hated to go into the bathtub, get out of the bathtub, change, eat, leave the park…I also currently use “don’t swipey” to remind him to not take away toys from others. Most importantly “you did it!” Is often used to celebrate accomplishments.

Dora continued to help our family as I discovered my baby girl saying “gracias” at 10 months.

We visited my husband’s work recently and my now 3 year old said “first we went on the roller coaster (highway), then the toll way, then big building!” I love Dora!

Leslie Bailey 1 year ago

Way better than the self indulgent, full of himself toopy!!! Shoot me in the face I hate that show and my 3year old loves it! Running around saying ‘I’m so fabulous and I’m the best’ ugh!

Vicky Kenaga Hinz 1 year ago

Her cousin Diego taught my kids more about the flora and fauna than I ever realized. They haven’t watched the show in years but still will say we learned that on Diego.

Jessica Maka Rhodes 1 year ago

We miss Between the Lions!

Lauren Michelle Harris 1 year ago

We see lots of Curious George at our house. I feel he has some of the same good qualities Dora does :)

Danielle Matthews 1 year ago

My kid learned to count in Spanish from Dora.

Tammy Webb McKinnie 1 year ago

I have teenagers and someone in the van randomly yells “where are we going” and another answers “to the beach” quite often! Loved that show!

Kieshia Cranor 1 year ago

I will never miss Dora or Thomas the train.

Colleen Hildebrand Schneider 1 year ago

We miss Steve on Blues Clues!

Dora Hunt 1 year ago

I hate Dora the Explorer because everyone calls me Dora the Explorer. :/

Christina D Corcorran 1 year ago

The Dora on adult swim is amusing, and disturbing.

Emily Hein Warren 1 year ago

Ya because Sponge Bob and the Fairly Odd Parents suck! Why do they have to grow up?

Trish Kernen 1 year ago

My 11 month old LOVES Dora and he gets so excited when it comes on the TV or if I pretend to talk like her. It’s what we use to get him to smile for pictures…Dora replaces “Say Cheese”.

Beth Lourie 1 year ago

We love Dora for the exact same reasons. Dora has had a big impact on our daughters counting, listening etc she gets a big thumbs up from us

PuddlesCollection.com 1 year ago

My little girl really loved Dora the Explorer. I even bought her bed sheets and Dora toys for her to play. The program is also fun and educational!

Mari Loya Shwe 1 year ago

I hate that little bitch Dora.

Ashley Marie Aleshire 1 year ago

I don’t think I’ll ever miss dora. I miss little bear, franklin etc. Dora makes me want to throw out the tv.

Becky Hart-Furner 1 year ago

My son loves his Dora!!!

Lisa Katz 1 year ago

My older boys ask me all the time when I watch Dora with my youngest son “Mommy, do you REALLY like Dora?” :)

Breah 1 year ago

I do not like Dora, but she has taught me more Spanish then high school did.

Kari Adams 1 year ago

I’d still take Daniel Tiger over Dora any day. At least Daniel doesn’t constantly say “LOUDER!”