Review of Audio Drama for Kids: The Brinkman Adventures
Audio stories are a fun way to pass time in the car, to share a story over a meal time, or to have something to play in the background as we do work. I've always enjoyed sharing audio dramas with my kids. So I was glad to have the opportunity to review audio dramas from The Brinkman Adventures. We received a digital download of The Brinkman Adventures Season 2: Episodes 13-24. The Brinkman Adventures operates on a donation basis. The set includes 4 CD's which includes 12 episodes and 5 + hours of listening pleasure. The suggested price is $25.00 or $17.00 for the digital downloads. The dramas are stories for all ages, so they can be enjoyed by the whole family together. I needed to download the digital files as either mp3s or mp4s to be able to play them over my computer or device. I just downloaded them to my computer and played them through my media player. So I only needed a computer and internet access.
The Brinkman family featured in the dramas is based on a real large family. Currently they have nine children. The family members are the speakers in the drama. This brings a real feel to the stories. The stories that are shared are missionary stories, stories of God at work in the lives of missionaries. We listened to Season 2 which contains 12 episodes. We enjoyed listening to The Brinkmans at lunch time as we sat around and ate lunch.
The Brinkman family in the stories meet up with modern day missionaries, and they hear stories from these missionaries about God at work in their lives. There are stories of God's miraculous protection and God's miraculous provision. And the Brinkman family learns more and more about missions as they hear the stories. Throughout these episodes the Brinkmans are headed to Belize as missionaries. The people they meet along the way share their stories, and the Brinkmans have their own adventures that make for some very interesting radio drama.
When we first began to listen, it was a little hard to get straight who all the characters were. We hadn't heard Season One, and there are many children and many little voices in the family, so we had some difficulty following along. As we listened, however, we got to "know" the family members. And it was much easier to follow along with the action.
There are some funny parts throughout the episodes. The Brinkman children enjoy chickens, and there are several funny things that happen with the chickens that they own in the stories. There are also some dramatic parts in the stories. In one episode, the Brinkmans travel in a bus across Mexico and have several adventures along the way. And there are some moving parts in the dramas. One of my very favorites was a two part episode- "How Big Is Your God?" A missionary friend of the Brinkmans was looking for a church to rent in Hong Kong and was challenged by a businessman to step outside his comfort zone and trust God for the funds they needed to rent the church building.
Each episode is about fifteen minutes long- making them perfect for our lunch time listening. Two of the episodes have two parts, a continuation in the following episode.
One of the neatest things we found about the episodes was a section on the Brinkman Adventures website that tells "The Stories Behind the Stories." In this section, you can click on each episode and read about the real missionary stories that episode was based on. (There are spoilers there if you haven't listened to the episode yet!) It was so neat to read the real stories, and know that even if all of the adventures didn't happen exactly as portrayed in the dramas, there are true stories of God at work in the lives of missionaries. By the way, my favorite- How Big Is Your God?"- really did happen just that way. The missionary to Hong Kong was challenged in just that way by the businessman who had a building for rent. And he really did learn to trust God in a very big way.
Throughout The Brinkman Adventures website there are all kinds of cool facts about the real Brinkman family, information about how the dramas are produced and why they were produced in the first place. And this page has a few printables that go along with some of the Season One episodes and some fun to watch "behind the scenes" videos of the making of the dramas. There is also a sample episode- Episode nine from Season One- to listen to.
We have really been enjoying the Brinkman's stories. They are filled with the real life happenings of a large, homeschooling family, so my kids can relate perfectly. They have adventure and action that keep the kids wanting to find out what happens next. And they have stories of God's protection and provision that happened to real people in missions all over the world.
You can connect with Brinkman Adventures here: