5 guilt-free educational programs to stream for your kids in quarantine
Growing up, I found creative ways to occupy myself.
I played “school” with my collection of stuffed animals. I taught myself the piano. I wrote stories. Very rarely did I rely on television to keep me entertained. Even when we finally got a TV, I would just watch my Disney tapes over and over again.
Maybe that’s why I’m basically anti-screen time.
If we could get away with no television, I totally would. My husband says I need to chill on that — and I feel it.
I have two girls who are 3-years-old and 7 months. We started watching TV with my oldest around a year and a half. I’d put on a DVD of Baby’s First TV or an episode of Sesame Street, mostly when I was preparing dinner.
Now that we’re all sheltering in place, it’s hard to get away with so little screen time. I even resorted to the free trial of ABC Mouse.
Still, there are times during the day that I can’t entertain my preschooler. I have to get work done, but she also needs enrichment. There are days when I’m at my wit’s end and no amount of Google or Pinterest can help me come up with a fun activity.
As a result, we may watch more television than I’d prefer.
If you’re gonna do it, here are some guilt-free, educational options for your little ones:
Little Einsteins 🚀
Hoorah-rah-rah for rocket!
Little Einsteins is a fantastic educational program for us. The group of friends take you through magical adventures courtesy of their spaceship named Rocket.
The show teaches science, history, art, geography and of course music. The kids in the show introduce classic songs and works of art or structures.
YooHoo to the Rescue
Take us around the word, but make it fun.
That’s exactly what YooHoo and his cute, furry animal friends do.
My daughter loves animals, so she was immediately drawn to this program when we found it.
Every episode, they help an animal out of a pickle. The friends travel to different countries and inform our young viewers every step of the way.
The Magic School Bus 🚌
Our childhood classic got a makeover. Professor Frizzle’s little sister now holds the reigns to the Magic School Bus.
The show, based in science, explores prehistoric animals, wildlife, space, geometry and much more. Each character has a unique personality and interest.
The Magic School Bus taught my kid about fossils and the life cycles of plants and animals.
Doc McStuffins 🥼
The doc is in, and she’s absolutely adorable.
The main character and her friends fix toys, teaching our young viewers a little about medicine and science.
And how about she came up: the Doc is now working in a hospital instead of out of her adorable bedroom clinic (just found newer episodes on Disney+)
Disney+ and Hulu
Leap Frog Series 🐸
Netflix recently released three 30-minute Leap Frog programs, and they’re awesome.
I was trying to come up with a math lesson and thought, you know what, Leap Frog would be great way to take us into lunch.
It helps preschoolers refresh on the basics: letters, letter sounds and numbers.
You may recognize a few characters from toys lying around the house, too.
Here is some bonus material that isn’t necessarily streamable. I’ve listed a few DVDs we have, but some of that material is available online:
Disney+’s Dolphin Reef
Sight Words DVD
Dinosaur Train DVD 🦕
Sign Language DVD 🤟🏾
ABC Mouse app
Scratch Jr. app (helps little ones learn coding basics!)
Some of the fun shows in our rotation are Vamprina, Elena, Llama Llama, Powerpuff Girls and Little Baby Bum. We also watch a family movie every Friday night.