Right about now you’re probably looking for a tantrum-free 30 minutes to make dinner, something you can all watch cuddled up on the couch together, or a good show your child might fall in love with. Well, there’s no shortage of content options for your kids on the internet.
With all those shows to sift through, it can be hard to find quality streaming videos or YouTube creators that will really be worth the screen time. From tried-and-true Netflix classics to Amazon Prime Kids Originals and creative YouTube sensations, here’s a sampling of some of the best kids’ programming available on the internet.
For Hands-On Fun: Nerdy Nummies on YouTube
If you’re looking for a hands-on activity that your child will get excited about, Rosanna Pansino’s Nerdy Nummies series on YouTube offers a treasure trove of creative, kid-friendly baking and cooking ideas.
Pansino’s step-by-step video tutorials are free to watch, short, and easy to follow. Each project is themed around a popular movie, video game, or show, from Star Wars-themed blue and green milk to Frozen 2 princess cakes and Nintendo Switch cookies. Kids of all ages will love getting involved in Pansino’s fun, bite-sized (see what we did there?) baking projects.
For Super-Chill Kids: Pete the Cat on Amazon Prime
Parents who like their kids to relax with a show that’s more easy-going than action-packed will appreciate Amazon Prime’s Pete the Cat series.
Pete the Cat is based on a New York Times-bestselling series of children’s books by James and Kimberly Dean. In the cartoon series, which appeals to preschoolers and kindergarteners as well as elementary-aged kids, a laid-back, ultra-groovy cat enjoys misadventures with his animal friends. Each episode is punctuated by singable, original rock and folk songs.
The Pete the Cat series and holiday specials have attracted some top voiceover talent, too, from Jacob Tremblay of Room to Jason Mraz, Elvis Costello, Dave Matthews, and Diana Krall.
For STEM Lovers: Ask the StoryBots on Netflix
A little weary of questions like “Why is the sky blue?” and “What makes music?” Let an animated robot quintet take over…at least for 20 minutes or so.
With STEM (Science, Technology, Engineering, and Mathematics) education becoming a cornerstone of our nation’s education strategy, Ask the StoryBots is a great option for children who express interest in these disciplines. The Emmy- and Annie Award-winning animated/live-action series focuses each episode around a classic “big question.” Robots Beep, Bing, Bang, Boop, and Bo, who hail from “Answer Team 341B,” scour the universe and consult a star-studded range of experts along the way (from John Legend to Ali Wong, Snoop Dogg, and Wanda Sykes) to find the answer to your child’s burning questions.
For the Littlest Littles: Super Simple Songs on YouTube
Younger music lovers sometimes just want the classics! And that’s exactly what you’ll get with the wildly popular and free to watchSuper Simple Songs channel on YouTube, which has garnered over 20 million subscribers.
This music video channel pairs cute, colorful animation with all your kids’ favorites, from “Head, Shoulders, Knees, and Toes” and “Baby Shark” to traditional nursery rhymes. The timestamps on each video will help you select the perfect video to entertain your little ones while you get a few minutes to yourself, doing whatever you might want to do when you have a few minutes to yourself.
For Long Car Rides: Gimlet Media’s Story Pirates Podcast
Podcasts are usually aimed squarely at adults and seem like they’d put kids right to sleep. Not so with the Story Pirates Podcast, a kids’ comedy podcast based on kid-written stories that’s even gotten praise from the likes of Jon Stewart.
Most episodes are around half an hour long and feature two funny stories written by children of various ages. Professional comedians and actors perform the interactive, kid-friendly sagas, interspersed with original music in every genre possible. These smart podcasts are perfect for kids who love to listen to storytime and for parents who want to be entertained along with the kids during a long road trip, let’s say. Find Story Pirates on Apple Podcasts or Spotify.
Whether you need help answering your child’s constant questions or want something viewers of all ages can enjoy together, there are plenty of programming resources out there to meet your needs. Now go find something for yourself. You earned it.