Western Animation: Timothy Goes to School

Timothy Goes to School main castnote 
Timothy Goes To School is a childrens' animated program that ran from 2000 to 2004. A Nelvana show, it follows the day-to-day life of Timothy, a 5-year-old raccoon who attends Kindergarten, and the rest of his classmates. Once seen on PBS Kids Bookworm Bunch, it later aired on Discovery Kids until sometime before it was replaced by The Hub. Most if not all installments of the series are available on DVD. Some were U.S. releases, others were in Canada, which makes them region 1, but potentially challenging to find. The series was later added to Qubo in the United States.

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This cartoon provides examples of:

  • Adapted Out: Hazel was one of the students in the "Yoko & Series" but she doesn't appear in the show at all.
  • Absentee Actor: Lilly is curiously absent in "The Treefort and the Sandcastle." In this story, the boys split into one club in a treefort, while the girls take over the sandbox and build a sandcastle, but Lilly is not part of the group of girls, nor is she even mentioned, despite the events of the story taking place over at least two days.
    • It also happens in "Paint by Numbers" in which Fritz doesn't appear at all, nor is he mentioned either but he appears in the episode afterward.
  • Aesop Amnesia: Generally averted. When the kids learned a lesson on the show, it tended to stick. For example, in "Fritz in the Mess Fairy," Fritz realized that there was no mess fairy and he needed to clean up after himself. Him being messy was never shown as an issue again in the series, despite the story's Here We Go Again ending with Fritz having made another mess with the cleaning supplies in the process of cleaning Timothy's seashells. In "Small Change," Nora learns to accept and even like change and she is never shown having an issue with it again. And if Lilly still sometimes forgets things, it can be forgiven, as it's difficult for her, and she does try very hard, sometimes succeeding.
  • Alpha Bitch: Grace can be this sometimes but she means well.
  • Alternate Continuity: The Yoko and Friends beginning reader books have many of the same characters, but cast Yoko in central role and eliminate at least a couple of the characters, including Lilly. Certain stories are versions of the TV episodes, but cast different characters in the main roles and have other variations. The Yoko picture books go even further. Mrs. Jenkins is still the teacher, but most of the other major characters from the TV series are absent and Yoko's mother is depicted differently. For example, in the TV show, she reluctantly allows Yoko to bring special toys to school, only for bad stuff to happen to them. In the Yoko's Show-and-Tell picture book, her mother disallows her to bring a special toy to school, but she disobeys and it gets wrecked and has to go to a doll hospital.
  • An Aesop: Every episode has one.
  • Anachronic Order: The show jumps from one season to another almost at random, but at least can be said that it's not always spring. A special note, though, goes to the fact that "The Big Snowfall," which featured Lilly having her first snow day was aired after "Lifesaver Lilly," in which Lilly rescued Goldie from the cold school building with no power after school was canceled due to a big snowfall.
  • Animated Adaptation: Of Rosemary Wells's Timothy Goes to School, and Yoko & Friends books, which cast Yoko as the main character. Additionally, at least two other stories, "The Mess Fairy" and "Shy Charles," are based directly on original Rosemary Wells books.
  • Argument of Contradictions: In "Rocky Friendship," Fritz and Charles have an argument that eventually descends into this when they each find a rock at the same time and are unsuccessful in sharing it.
    • Timothy and Fritz have one in "Abracadabra" after Fritz accuses Timothy of teaching Grace his magic trick, until Grace puts a stop to it by revealing that she peeked at Fritz's book.
  • Artistic License Paleontology: In "Scary Monsters," when Nora is afraid of dinosaurs because she thinks they're big and scary monsters, Timothy shows her a fossil of Megazostrodon at the museum, which, while having a big-sounding name is actually very small. It was a nice lesson, but Megazostrodon wasn't actually a type of dinosaur and basically resembled a modern-day shrew.
  • Birds of a Feather: Timothy & Yoko, Charles & Lilly, and Claude & Grace tend to hang around each other a lot.
  • The Bully: Claude is a much Lighter and Softer variant, especially in the first episode.
  • Call Back: When Fritz moves away, two of the characters give him artwork that match their art style displayed in "Paint by Numbers."
  • Comically Missing the Point: In "Red Thunder," Henry sets up a biking exercise in which the kids have to navigate through orange cones while also being graded on speed, accuracy, safety skills and overall bikemanship. When the Franks finish their turn, they tell him, "We're done, and we got them all," and Henry can only chuckle as he looks over and sees that they did indeed "get them all" - all of the cones have been knocked over.
    Henry: I-I think you missed the point of the exercise, boys.
  • Disappeared Dad: Yoko and Lilly.
  • Edutainment Show
  • Exactly What It Says on the Tin: It's about a raccoon named Timothy who goes to school. Averted, though, to the degree that at times it was about the activities of Timothy's friends/classmates, with Timothy only barely appearing in certain stories and said activities not always taking place at school either.
  • Expressive Ears: Certainly Timothy, his ears can go as far as pinning all the way down when he's really sad about something. Yoko exhibits them too, as well as both of the Franks, Lilly and possibly most of the others as well.
  • Fantasy Helmet Enforcement
  • Free Prize at the Bottom: In one episode, Nora decided to forego her normal breakfast cereal in favor of something called "Weeds and Seeds" so that she could get the prize of emerald slippers at the bottom as a birthday present for Yoko. And she was such a good little girl that she actually ate the stuff, only to find that to her disappointment, there was only one slipper, and it was some dinky little thing. Her mother suggested making a necklace out of it and she did, but thought her gift was lame and didn't want to give it to Yoko at first. When she finally did, Yoko was delighted, as the slipper was the mate to one that she already had.
  • Funny Animals
  • Furry Reminder: These are pretty rare, the cast generally behaves like humans. Frank and Frank, who are anthropomorphic dogs, are the only characters where this is treated a bit more loosely. They tend to be rather messy in eating their food, and in "Get Well, Soon," they try to drink water directly out of the faucet at school. When Mrs. Appleberry tells them not to, they tell her that "Mrs. Jenkins lets us do it", only for her to pull out a letter from Mrs. Jenkins— "Dear Frank and Frank, Please listen to Mrs. Appleberry and no drinking from the faucet. Signed, Mrs. Jenkins."
    • Doris will sometimes slap her tail against the ground when she's annoyed.
  • Half Dressed Cartoon Animals: The male cast, except Charles and Timothy when he wore suspenders in the first episode.
    • Yoko loves sushi, in the original 1998 version of "Yoko" one of the stuff contained inside her sushi is tuna. Which cats really love eating.
  • Here We Go Again: In "Fritz in the Mess Fairy", the episode has this kind of ending after Fritz realizes there is no Mess Fairy and learns to clean up after himself, the episode ends with him making another mess with the sink while cleaning up Timothy's seashells. Also, in the episode "Frankless Frank" when Frank 1 is sick for the whole episode and Frank 2 has to spend a few days in school without him and after he returns to school, Frank 2 gets sick with the same thing. It's even lampshaded by Timothy at the very end.
  • Huge Girl Tiny Guy: Doris and Charles in "Paint By Numbers" and "Measuring Up".
  • I Do Not Like Green Eggs and Ham: How the other kids felt about Yoko's oriental cuisine, such as sushi and red bean ice-cream.
  • Ironic Echo Cut: "Get Well Soon" opens with Timothy, Nora, Frank, and Frank all telling their parents that "Mrs. Jenkins is the best!"
  • Limited Wardrobe: With the exception of the stuff in the first episode with Claude and Timothy wearing special clothes for the first two days of school, and winter clothing / special events, the characters are always shown wearing the same clothes to school.
  • Missing Mom: Frank & Frank, and Claude.
  • Meaningful Name: Nora talks very loud which is reference to the book she debuted called Noisy Nora.
  • Mythology Gag: In the episode "The Music Tree" Nora can be seen wearing a pot on her heard. This is a reference to one of the ways of getting her mother's attention in the original book "Noisy Nora".
    • Fritz once refers to Nora as "Noisy Nora".
  • Never Say "Die": In "Lifesaver Lilly", Doris begins to suggest that Goldie the goldfish might be dead, but is interrupted by Lilly coming in with Goldie before she says it.
  • One Steve Limit: Averted: The Franks have the same name, as does their father.
  • The One Who Wears Shoes: Lilly and Mrs. Jenkins.
  • Petting Zoo People: Pretty much. The characters really don't display much of anything in the way of animal traits other than having Expressive Ears, the only concession being that as mice, Charles and Nora are both rather smaller than the other characters. In "Taking the Plunge," Timothy is even reminded to put on sunscreen, but how does a raccoon covered in fur wear sunscreen?
  • Put on a Bus: Fritz, but the bus comes back.
  • The Rival: Claude can be this to Timothy until after "Taking the Plunge."
  • Recap Episode: "Many Happy Returns"
  • The Runt at the End: Charles in class; Doris at home.
  • School Play: Mrs. Jenkin's class did one about dental hygiene. Parts were assigned randomly— Yoko was chosen to a be a cavity, but didn't want to be. In the end, she found a way to enjoy the part when she used her violin to create a sound effect suitable for a cavity. This story was also adapted for the Yoko and Friends books.
    • Playing a Tree: Almost all of the characters play fictionalized, anthropomorphized versions of things like toothbrushes, toothpaste and teeth.
  • Puppy Love: It's been hinted that Yoko and Timothy have a crush on each other in the series.
  • Slice of Life
  • Slumber Party: Timothy and the Franks have one in "The Sleepover" because Big Frank had to use the bulldozer.
  • Start My Own: "The Treefort and the Sandcastle"
  • Stock Animal Name: The pet goldfish given to Mrs. Jenkins's class in "Lifesaver Lilly" is named Goldie. Averted though with Lilly's pet fish, Treasure.
  • Surprise Party: In "Mama, Don't Go," new girl Juanita at Hilltop School doesn't want her mama to leave. The surprise party is how Juanita is eventually convinced to let her mother leave— it's her mother's birthday and the class needs her to leave so that they can put together a surprise party for her. Juanita actually tells her mother straight-up that she needs to leave for a while and then come back so that they can surprise her.
  • Suspiciously Specific Denial: Happens when Frank and Frank try to avoid telling their father that they broke one of Yoko's toys.
  • Take a Third Option: Fritz and Charles find a strange rock at the same time; Fritz wants it for his collection, whilst Charles wants to build a castle with it. They spend most of the episode bickering about it, but they eventually decide to use it together.
  • Talent Contest: One is held in "Talent Show." Timothy is assigned to be the Master of Ceremonies and when Grace gets hurt, she becomes his assistant.
  • Talking Animal
  • That Cloud Looks Like: Timothy and Charles to do this in "Taking the Plunge" while relaxing in the swimming pool. They see one that reminds them of a cowboy hat, another of apple pie and one that looks like the school bus driver, Henry. Another sudden "cloud" actually turns out to be Doris doing a cannonball into the pool. It's reprised at the end of the episode.
  • Theme Tune Cameo: The show's theme tune is used for the "Welcome Song" performed in the show's premiere episode.
  • Title Theme Tune: "Anything can happen when Timothy goes to school!"
  • Tomboy and Girly Girl: Doris and Grace, when they go to dancing classes together.
  • Unmanly Secret: When Timothy has a sleepover with the Franks in "The Sleepover," he hides his stuffed penguin toy, Pengy under his bed. Frank 2 tries to get something under the bed at one point almost sees it only to be interrupted before he can. At the end of the story, Timothy sneaks out of bed and tries to get it back after lights out, only to find that Frank 2 had hidden his own stuffed bulldog toy, Bully, under the bed in their bag near the beginning of the episode which was what he was trying to get. Frank 1 complains that everyone at school is going to laugh at them, but Timothy brings out Pengy and they promise each other that they won't tell anyone. Both Timothy and Frank 2 are then shown sleeping soundly, but Frank 1 looks around, scared, apparently missing his own stuffed toy, whatever it might be.
  • World of Funny Animals
  • You, Get Me Coffee
    • When Timothy decides to work with Claude for a team project on the television series involving making a model space shuttle, Claude asks him to do the sweeping up and doesn't let him do any of the work on the project. The space shuttle turns out great and wins a star for the best class project, but Timothy doesn't take any joy from it, finding comfort instead in talking with his friend Yoko.
    • In Timothy Takes the Cake, a story from the book Timothy's Tales from Hilltop School, Claude pulls the same thing on Timothy, this time having him clean up muffin tins during a baking project. This time, however, Claude's attempt at baking alone fails and he wonders what he did wrong; what thing he left out of the recipe. Timothy tells him "Me!" and together they manage to do some good baking.

Alternative Title(s):

Timothy Goes To School