10 Lessons Kids Can Learn From Shaggy

Norville Rogers, better known to legions of dedicated fans as Shaggy, is one of the best-known and most easily recognized characters in cartoon history. Voiced by the great Casey Kasem and beloved by generations of viewers, Shaggy’s bottomless stomach and complete lack of bravery have become iconic in the almost forty years that he’s been appearing on television and in the movies. These ten timeless lessons are among those that can be learned from this easily-frightened hippie.

  1. We All Have Our Own Special Skills – Shaggy’s talent for ventriloquism is rivaled only by his mastery of costuming and disguise. He never hesitates to put these skills to use, teaching kids that we all have skills that set us apart, and it’s best to play to our own strengths.
  2. One Good Friend is Better Than a Dozen Acquaintances – Though Mystery Incorporated is a fairly tight-knit group, Shaggy and Scooby are a unit unto themselves. Very best friends, these two have each other’s backs through thick and thin, proving to kids that while it may be nice to have an army of fair-weather friends, it’s far better to have a single true one.
  3. A Sense of Humor is Essential – Though he’s often scared half out of his wits, Shaggy never loses his sense of humor. The ability to laugh, even in the face of great stress, is a skill that kids can take away from a morning of watching Scooby-Doo reruns.
  4. A Healthy Diet is Very Important – While he may have been known for eating anything and everything he could get his hands on during the early days of the series, Shaggy became a dedicated, if still voracious, vegetarian when the actor who provided his voice, Casey Kasem, made the same switch. Now, Shaggy might not be a poster child for portion control, but his food choices are much healthier.
  5. Treat Everyone With Respect – It’s proof of Shaggy’s strong character and good heart that he makes absolutely no differentiation between his best four-legged friend and those of the human variety. This lesson in treating everyone with respect and as equals is among the most important that children can learn.
  6. Athleticism Can Pay Off in a Big Way – Shaggy’s history as a track star is never more apparent than when he makes a quick and skillful getaway; in this case, Shaggy’s athletic abilities serve his less-than-brave tendencies. Kids can learn the importance of physical fitness from observing the apparent ease with which Shaggy competes physical tasks.
  7. A Creative Defense is the Best Offense – Another of Shaggy’s areas of expertise is the building of barricades, up to and including those of a collapsible variety that can protect from enemies, while still allowing use of the exit, should it prove necessary. This resourcefulness and ability to think defensively rather than aggressively sets a great example for kids.
  8. It’s Okay to Be a Sidekick – Perhaps a result of his willingness to be the sidekick to Scooby’s star, Shaggy is the only member of the original cast to star in every franchise effort. Seeing Shaggy rewarded for his lack of attention-hogging tendencies can send a strong message to kids.
  9. Think Outside the Box – Another of Shaggy’s irrefutable talents is the ability to come up with interesting and unexpected hiding places; this ability has helped Shaggy and his pal evade many  ill-intentioned villains over the years.
  10. Family Ties Make Us Who We Are – The theme of family importance is a strong thread throughout the Scooby-Doo franchise; Shaggy’s family is no exception. From look-alike uncles to rich, distant relations, Shaggy’s family presence is strong.

Though ‘shaggy’ in appearance, Shaggy provides many great lessons for kids who continue to enjoy his adventures with his pal Scooby.