The amount of TV shows and movies that kids have access to has dramatically increased since the discovery of streaming services, such as Netflix and Hulu. While this can sometimes be a bad thing, it can also be a beneficial tool in getting kids curious about learning if they’re watching the right things. These are the best educational TV shows for kids that are guaranteed to get kids interested in various topics.
This list of series has a lot of different shows with an extensive range of focus on educational topics such as science, art, music, animals and nature, culture, emotion regulation, reading and writing, and so much more.
11 Top Educational Television Shows for Kids of All Ages
1. Daniel Tiger’s Neighborhood
Daniel Tiger’s Neighborhood is one of the best kid shows out there. It’s a spin-off of the show Mr. Roger’s Neighborhood, from the 1960s. But this show is fully animated, whereas the original was not.
Daniel Tiger’s Neighborhood is a unique children’s show. The characters vary in species, race, and family home life, including single-parents, mixed-race families, and kids who live with family members other than parents. They also have characters with physical disabilities.
The show focuses heavily on emotional regulation, using real-life scenarios that young kids often experience. Each episode focuses on one topic and creates a little song about what they learn to help kids remember. For example, there are episodes on using the potty, starting school, bringing in a new sibling, sharing, kindness, healthy discipline & consequences, etc.
Ages: Toddlers, Preschoolers & Kindergarteners.
2. Magic Schoolbus
The Magic Schoolbus is an animated children’s show based on a book series in the 1990s. You can still watch the older episodes, but they have also remade the show with more modern animation, calling it The Magic Schoolbus Rides Again.
The Magic Schoolbus is great for learning about a wide variety of topics. The school takes trips to space to learn about the solar system, inside the body to learn about anatomy, and so much more! The bus can transform into just about anything.
Ages: School-Aged Kids, 6-9 years old.
3. Emily’s Wonderlab
Emily’s Wonderlab is a new series that started in 2020. This is not an animated film. Emily is a scientist who has children come to her lab, and they do fun science experiments together.
At the end of each episode, she gives specific instructions for how you can do the science experiment yourself at home. They learn all about the science involving each experiment. A few of their experiments are making slime, egg in a bottle, and solar-powered oven.
Ages: School-Aged Kids, 5+ years old.
4. Wild Kratts
Wild Kratts is a combination of animated and live-action characters. Two brothers go around the world to learn about animals in their specific habitats. The show offers mystery, rescue, and adventure.
This show combines wildlife’s fun and exciting qualities with their existence’s science. It’s a great way to get kids engaged in learning about different areas of the world and other species.
Ages: School-Aged Kids, 6-8 years old.
5. Dinosaur Train
Dinosaur Train is an animated tv series all about dinosaurs. There’s a family of Pteranodons, who ends up adopting a T-Rex, and they travel all over on the dinosaur train to learn all about the other types of dinosaurs.
While there is a lot of information on dinosaurs, the focus is also on a family, so there is a lot to learn about family relationships.
Ages: Toddlers, Preschoolers & Kindergarteners.
6. Sid the Science Kid
Sid, the Science Kid, is another animated series that teaches kids about science, using topics children often ask about. For instance, there are episodes about allergies, the sun and why you need to wear sunblock, life cycles of plants, gravity and motion, and taking care of pets.
Sid and his friends are of different genders and personality types, making it easy for all kinds of children to relate to. Each day they attend school and learn about a specific topic by finding examples and experimenting. It’s very informative and holds the attention of children well.
Ages: Toddlers, Preschoolers & Kindergarteners, 3-6 years old.
7. Word World
Word World is a unique animated tv series. It helps teach children the alphabet, the sounds each letter makes, and how to put them together to make words. Each character is made out of the letters that make them up. For example, Pig is made up of the letters P I and G. It’s very clever.
In each episode, they create things by using letters to spell them. For instance, they make a cake by finding C, A, K, and E. When they put them together, it turns into a cake. This is a great show for any child starting to learn their ABCs or reading and writing. This show has won quite a few awards.
Ages: Toddlers, Preschoolers & Kindergarteners, 2-6 years old.
Brainchild is not an animated series. It is another live-action involving children doing various science experiments on germs, social media, dreams, gravity, and emotions.
Brainchild is a very modern show that focuses on contemporary topics, such as the dangers of social media and germs, discussing the famous 5-second rule! Because this show is so new, it’s relatable to children of this generation.
Ages: Older School-Aged Children, Tweens & Teens.
9. If I Were An Animal
If I Were An Animal is a reality tv series that follows different species from birth into adulthood. Each animal has a name, and you become invested and attached in learning about them and watching them grow.
This is an excellent show for kids interested and who love learning about different animals. A brother and sister narrate the show, and kids enjoy learning from kids! The part that helps children stay engaged is the voiceovers.
Ages: Toddlers to School-Aged Kids, 3+ years old.
Octanauts is an animated tv series about eight animals that make up a team of underwater rescuers. They live in the ocean in their pod, and they travel in submarines around the sea, helping different animals and learning about the animals simultaneously.
This is a great show to learn about marine life, teamwork, and problem-solving. It’s full of adventure and curiosity.
Ages: Toddlers to Younger School Aged Kids, 3-7 years old.
11. Little Einsteins
Little Einsteins is an animated tv series that shows children going on adventures, learning about different cultures. This show is unique because the characters are all ethnically diverse, musically inclined children. The show aims to include a lot of classical music and focus on art of different kinds.
The children use teamwork to work together and go on missions to solve problems while focusing on world arts and music. There are not many shows out there now with these areas of focus.
Ages: Toddlers, 2-5 years old.
The bottom line
While too much screen time isn’t necessarily a good thing for kids, there’s no denying that these educational tv shows for kids are beneficial! Kids thrive from learning in a variety of different ways. They know a lot from their parents, siblings, friends, teachers, and they learn through self-discovery. Television can be another helpful tool in teaching children and getting them interested in various topics. It’s never too early to develop a love for learning.