We had Fred & Faye, Gene's Junction, Noel & Andy, and a little before my time there was Sheriff Scottie. We had Blinky's Fun Club, and our Brownie troop got to visit for a taping one day. We had Romper Room. In Denver, our host was Miss Genie (deLuise)
I was glued to the TV every day when I was preschool age, dying to have Ms. Genie "see" me through her magic looking glass. I tried so hard to be good, to be a "Do-Bee," not a "Don't Bee." My sister Karen and I even flung our toys around the living room one day before the show so she could see us picking them up during the time when she used her magic looking glass. Then, one day she SAW me, and I was SO excited! My sister, however, was really pissed that Ms. Genie saw me, but didn't see her. She was, after all, in the room right next to me. That was the start of a long string of her feeling slighted. I totally blame Ms. Genie.
My cousin had a Gene's Junction songbook, and we used to get that out and sing when we visited her house. It was really no more than some mimeographed sheets that had the words to songs on them, and the binding was two sheets of colored construction paper. The whole thing was held together with three brass brads. We had a lot of fun with that. Gene's Junction had a lot of singing! You can find a Gene's Junction video on youtube if you want to see. I found one with video of trains from the Colorado Railroad Museum, but couldn't get it to embed here.
Fred and Faye was something we watched all the time. Here is a clip from that show (above).
As we got a little older (say, maybe 3rd and 4th grade), we watched Noel and Andy in the mornings. Noel was the hostess of the show, and Andy was her puppet. I think he was a dragon. They used to draw and they encouraged us to send in drawings that we did. They'd randomly draw an entry from each week's entries to win a prize. I won a giant Tootsie Roll once. I was really excited when we picked it up, 'cause it was about 10" long and 4" in diameter. But, it was too good to be true. The Giant Tootsie Roll was actually a tin canister full of regular-sized Tootsie Rolls. Still good, but to me it was as disappointing as the sea monkeys we ordered off the back cover of an Archie comic.
I guess Blinky's Fun Club was the longest lasting. We watched him when we were little, then our brothers and sisters who were 10 years younger saw him, too. I think every kid we knew was on the show at one point or another. I still know people who sing "Happy Birthday" the Blinky Way. Annoying, it is!
I don't know if there are kid shows like this on TV anymore. Romper Room had us say the Pledge of Allegiance every day, first thing. Gene's Junction taught us to be respectful. Noel and Andy taught us manners. Blinky taught us safety.
From what I've seen out in public lately, we could use more of all those things.