When stay-at-home orders first went into place in our area and our kids were home all day, we struggled with how to regulate TV time and find educational shows that were fun. Fortunately, over the many months of quarantine life, we have learned a thing or two on how to navigate TV time! We found some great streaming shows for kids to help fill up some time in their at-home learning schedules which not only featured various STEM topics but were engaging as well. Here are some of our favorite educational kids’ streaming shows:
Emily’s Wonder Lab – My kids absolutely love this show! Emily, an aeronautical engineer, hosts this fun science exploration show where she uses everyday household items to teach kids the fundamentals of science. Our favorite family episodes are about non-Newtonian substances such as ‘oobleck’ and the physics of walking on eggs. I will also add that Emily was nearly 9 months pregnant (and positively glowing) when filming this show – a mark of progress on many fronts!
Magic School Bus Rides Again – I grew up watching Ms. Frizzle on-screen so imagine my delight that the show was rebooted! In this reboot, Ms. Frizzle is actually the sister of the original Dr. Valerie Frizzle, who still makes an appearance at the end of each episode. The noticeably more diverse cast of students go on epic adventures in their magical school bus, to places like outer space or even within a student’s cardiovascular system! Interestingly, even after watching so many episodes of the show, my kids seem to focus less on the magic of the actual school bus and more on the lessons of the episode!
Ask the StoryBots – If you have found yourself wishing that Snoop Dogg would explain the basics of computers to you, or Weird Al Yankovic would just tell you where french fries come from, then look no further! Celebrities and robotic animated characters team up to present, in a kid-friendly way, the answers to life’s most pressing questions, like ‘Why is the Sky Blue?’. During this pandemic, we have appreciated the episode in which Wanda Sykes and the StoryBots explain the science behind the transmission of the cold virus and how our bodies react to infection.
Octonauts – One day when my older daughter was explaining to me the impact of broken pipelines on sea life, undoubtedly some nuggets of information she picked up while watching the Octonauts, I knew I had made some smart parenting choices when I turned on the show for her. This show focuses on all aspects of marine life and features a ‘creature report’ towards the end of each episode to show the real-life creatures which were spotlighted in the episode. Even though there are some unrealistic elements to the show, namely the land mammals cruising around in the sea in submarines, I still find the content of the show engaging and educational for kids.
Justin Time Go – This year, we have longed for adventure and travel more than ever. We have always wanted to instill in our children a sense of adventure and wonder for new places, and this task has been challenging given the current state of the world. In trying to find new ways to teach our kids about different cultures and places, we stumbled upon this fantastic show! Justin, the main character, ends up in different parts of the world and finds himself on a mini-adventure where he learns about new languages, food, and more. The show has really helped to keep our sense of curiosity about the world alive and I highly recommend it for travel-enthusiast families!
We are always on the lookout for new educational TV shows that pique our children’s imagination. Please share with us your favorites below!
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