TV and Radio

2nd December 2005 at 00:00
Robin Buss's pick of the week

Watch: Faith Stories. BBC2, Fridays, December 6 and 13, 1-1.30pm

These four programmes for five to seven-year-olds use stories to illustrate different faiths: Sikhism, Judaism, Islam and Christianity, with animation and documentary footage. The series is available in a Video Plus pack (tel: 0870 830 8000) and there is a website on religious festivals at

Children in Victorian Britain

BBC2, Fridays, December 2-16, 10.30-10.50am

This series has three programmes for primary history (ages 7 to 11) about 19th-century children. The emphasis is on finding and using historical sources: each episode includes visits to buildings and museums that help us understand Victorian society. The first film, Children at Work, shows life was not all hobbyhorses and gingerbread men, although there was some improvement as the century progressed. Education is the subject of the second film.

The Magic Pencil

BBC2, Thursdays, December 8 and 15, 10.30-10.45am, and Monday, December 12, 11.15-11.45am

An introduction to the alphabet for five and six-year-olds: forming letters and voicing the initial sounds. Printable worksheets at

Biology 1 and 2

BBC2, Wednesday, December 7, 2-4am

AS Guru turns to biology, with two programmes on molecules, organs, ecology, cells, genetics and biotech. Later in the week, at the same time, we have science curriculum bites (Friday, December 9) for 11 to 16-year-olds, with topics broken into four to five-minute chunks. Between the two, also overnight, the Science Zone (Thursday, December 8) shows 10 to 14-year-olds how science operates in the world beyond the classroom.

The Snow Queen

CBBC, Sunday, December 4, 6-6.55pm

A tale for Christmas and a chilling one. Hans Christian Andersen's story tells how Gerda travels through the northlands to find Kay, her friend who has been captured by the evil Snow Queen.

Peter and the Wolf

BBC Radio 4, Saturday, December 3, 10.30-11am

Not a performance of Prokofiev's 1936 orchestral piece, but an exploration of its meanings with the help of those who have played the part of the Narrator, including Richard Baker, Terry Wogan and Floella Benjamin.

Bigger Than Jesus

BBC Radio 2, Saturday, December 3, 8.30-9.30pm

BBC Radio is devoting several programmes this week to John Lennon, including this documentary about the fuss over the 1966 interview in which he said: "We're more popular than Jesus now."

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