Subscribe to these YouTube channels to ensure you always know your kid is watching safe, appropriate and high-quality videos online.
YouTube is a free, amazing resource for children to learn everything, from baking, singing and unboxings to nature, crafts and cartoons, and of course, English! Unfortunately, there’s a bunch of awful stuff that may happen on YouTube, everything from pedophile-approved videos of preteens to videos that promote self-harm. Of course, there are a few steps you should take before letting your little one loose on the Internet, like setting your parental controls and downloading a child-focused YouTube app for kids. (Check out our top internet safety advice for your kids.) With millions of channels available on YouTube, it’s important to set up the appropriate parental safeguards, filters and best practices to protect your kids. But it’s equally important to choose the best channels and content for them to watch. So what are the best channels? In this article, we compile a list of 7 great Youtube channels and playlists for kids that parents will love, based on recommendations from parents, educators and English teachers around the world. Best of all: All of these channels are available on YouTube Kids.
There is a reason that this YouTube channel has racked up millions of views. Super Simple Songs is a collection of original kids songs and classic nursery rhymes made simple for young learners. Combining captivating animation and puppetry with delightful music that kids love to sing along to, Super Simple Songs makes learning simple and fun! These animated videos are designed perfectly to help either keep your kid occupied with an afternoon of sing-alongs or sending them off to sleep with a lullaby like “Twinkle Twinkle Little Star”.
Nursery rhymes and children’s songs are just the beginning of what Super Simple Songs has to offer. You’ll also find a range of educational shows and videos featuring original music and animation. Smiley Little Monsters teaches kids about eating healthy and sharing, while the adorable animals of the Treetop Family shows kids the wonders of the animal world.
Each video is just three to four minutes long, so they are very bite-sized. Kids will want to watch their favorites again and again, so be prepared to bookmark their favorites
“Sesame Street” has long been used by the Japanese as a way to study English. Nearly 50 years strong, Sesame Street is a staple of children’s programming and, happily, its essence carries over to its YouTube channel too. The gang’s all here—Elmo, Big Bird, Abby, Oscar, Snuffy, Cookie, Bert & Ernie and all their famous friends—with new videos uploaded daily to teach kids many of the life lessons they’ll need, like Robin Williams helping the Two-Headed Monster understand conflict or Mark Ruffalo and Murray learning about empathy.
“Sesame Street” has been created to help children learn English in a fun and creative way. Each episode teaches expressions used in everyday conversation (e.g., “Good night” and “What’s this?”) as well as useful vocabulary. The show also introduces phrases and expressions that elicit a response, such as “Look at me” or “Put on your coat.” Simple grammar is taught, along with the alphabet and numbers from one to 20.
The curriculum uses themes that are familiar and interesting to children, including families, friends, pets, toys, food and weather. “Sesame Street” is now broadcasting in 148 countries with 20 international co-productions to suit local languages, customs and educational needs.
For Elementary students
Flocabulary is a learning program for all grades that uses educational hip-hop music to engage students and increase achievement across the curriculum. Founded in 2004 by Blake Harrison and Alex Rappaport, Flocabulary takes a nontraditional approach to teaching vocabulary, math, science and other subjects by integrating content into recorded raps. Flocabulary’s videos, which are organized by subject, use educational hip-hop songs and visual aids to teach specific lessons, like how to divide fractions. These lessons are designed to both introduce and review important topics, while also helping students to draw connections between different subjects.
Each video comes with a series of interactive activities intended to improve students’ retention of the lesson. Specifically, lessons include fill in the blank exercises, opportunities for students to write their own educational songs, and Common Core aligned activities and games. Flocabulary’s vocabulary program also includes assessment resources, which can be used to determine subject mastery. With all those amazing features, Flocabulary is definitely a creative teaching tool to captivate students, encourage them to think out of the box, and inspire them to create their own rhymes.
“Cool School is the school of every kid’s dreams, because it’s the COOLEST school ever!”. This wide-ranging Youtube channel has an outstanding collection of story-telling videos that teachers and parents can put to good use. Children can watch classic stories like Cinderella and Rapunzel, or even play “Spot the difference” on this channel. CoolSchool turns reading into an enjoyable journey that your kids will love to take on. Filled with a collection of digital books featuring read-along stories broken into easy reading chapters, children will love learning to read with their favorite Cool School friend, Ms. Booksy! Storyteller extraordinaire Ms. Booksy guides kids on literature adventures they will never forget. The videos are over thirty minutes in many cases, and kids get a great treatment of popular stories.
For middle and high school students
Probably best suited to kids at the top end of the school-aged range (9+), TED-Ed is an amazing resource for young thinkers in your family. As the name suggests, TED-Ed is the youth and education arm of the TED foundation. The original animated videos on the site are creative collaborations between TED-involved experts and speakers, TED Fellows and various educators, producers and directors.
The videos are beautifully animated and present kids and adults alike with thoughtful topics, riddles and tutorials that are sure to bake your noodle. Titles like “What’s So Great About the Great Lakes?” “How High Can You Count On Your Fingers?” and “Why Doesn’t Anything Stick to Teflon?” are just the tip of the iceberg.
Now your kids can enjoy the smart, informative, big thinking joys of TED Talks too. The TED foundation has created these educational editions of their highly popular lectures. Each video is born out of a collaboration between experts in various fields and creative animators who create visuals that are just as captivating as the content. They even take submissions for ideas if you have a particularly insightful kid.
National Geographic Kids is the online component to National Geographic Kids magazine. Among its educational games, kid-friendly information, and great footage, the site has many cool videos of awesome animals, fun science and colorful travel destinations. They don’t just limit themselves to the exotic either, there are plenty of programs that explore the wonders in your own backyard and even your own house pet, like one episode called “How to Speak Cat.”
There’s lots to explore on this animal- and geography-based site, thanks to its diverse array of activities. Younger kids should enjoy playing the games, which include clear instructions and multiple difficulty levels, and they often reinforce memory, logic, and other skills. The site’s videos are high-quality productions, and with many being only about a minute long, they’re perfectly timed for even the shortest of attention spans. National Geographic Kids have even created playlists depending on your kid’s interests so that they can binge-watch creature captures.
Brightstorm is an online learning platform that offers a wealth of subject-specific videos keyed to high school level classes. The channel provides short video lessons on various subjects that can complement and cement what your kid is learning in class. The lessons, which are offered in English, math, science, and test prep, are taught by seasoned teachers, who break the content into small pieces so kids don’t get overwhelmed. The videos are white-board driven lessons taught at the high school level.
They feature real teachers in classroom-like settings. The topics are explained clearly and concisely, and most are about five minutes in length. Their English grammar and writing sections, together with their SAT and ACT prep sections that cover language arts topics, number past a few dozen videos. With great quality video and well-taught lessons, this channel will give your teens the boost they need while staying at home.