Join or Sign In

Sign in to customize your TV listings

Continue with Facebook Continue with email

By joining TV Guide, you agree to our Terms of Use and acknowledge the data practices in our Privacy Policy.

The Best Educational Kids Shows to Stream During School Closures

The parents of TV Guide are sharing their recs

Amanda Bell

Schools across the world are closing down right now in response to the coronavirus pandemic, which means for the next few weeks at least, families will have to help fill in the gaps for children to make sure those little ones don't get too unaccustomed to learning during this unexpected social distancing break (and, let's be honest, we don't want to go gray prematurely in the process, either).

There are a lot of companies and organizations which are stepping up to help offer parents guidance for how to keep their kids entertained and educated right now -- from Scholastic's digital learning center to the Cincinnati Zoo's daily hippo cam, we really are all in this together (also, as always, bless you teachers). In the spirit of solidarity, the parents of TV Guide are here to pitch into that effort as well. Read on to find out what educational kids shows we are leaning on during these trying times.

(Disclosure: Links to retailers may earn money to support our work.)

Babies and Toddlers

Watch it on: Amazon Prime
Even the littlest tykes can learn something during their time at home with this animated series which combines music and colors to create a soothing visual world for babies and toddlers alike. - Amanda Bell

Bubble Guppies
Watch it on: Amazon Prime (Seasons 1-3 included, later seasons paid), Fubo, Sling
Six adorable mer-babies in the underwater town of Bubbletucky go to preschool, where their teacher, Mr. Grouper, shares lessons about colors, seasons, pets, dinosaurs, music, holidays, and more. Be prepared for lots of singing. - Noelene Clark

Watch it on: Netflix and YouTube
Mila has what every child dreams of -- a magical pet who can morph into anything. This imaginative and fun-loving animated offering is perfect for 2-4 year-olds and follows Mila and Morphle as they set out on adventures, help those in need, and have a ton of giggles along the way. If your little one starts perfectly pronouncing words like "witch" "crocodile" and "vampire," you can thank Mila and Morphle for that. - Mekeisha Madden Toby

Sesame Street
Watch it on: Amazon Prime, Hulu, HBO, PBS Kids
OK, OK, so your generation was also obsessed with Elmo, but for good reason. The long-lasting PBS-to-HBO series is addictive and informative for even the youngest kids. Thanks to regular letter- and number-of-the-day segments, those pivotal lessons at Hooper's store, and more, the show makes good on its promise to make kids "stronger, kinder, smarter on Sesame Street." - Amanda Bell

​Grover, Sesame Street

Grover, Sesame Street


Pre-K and Kindergarten Age Kids

Ask the StoryBots
Watch it on: Netflix
Storybots is Bill Nye for the pre-school and elementary set. Cute robots launch investigations to find the answers to real kids' questions, like "How do computers work?" and "Where do planets come from?" Each episode contains celebrity cameos in funny sketches, catchy (and parent-friendly) songs, and easy-to-understand lessons about science, nature, and health. Season 2 includes the episode "How Do People Catch a Cold?" which features a fantastic explanation of viruses, how our immune systems work, and what we can do to stay healthy. - Noelene Clark

Creative Galaxy
Watch it on: Amazon Prime
Need some arts-and-crafts inspiration to combat your kids' cabin fever? Arty, his floating sidekick Epiphany, and his alien friends and family solve problems using art, visiting different art-themed planets along the way. The show includes step-by-step tutorials for preschoolers and elementary students to complete art projects at home. - Noelene Clark

Daniel Tiger's Neighborhood
Watch it on: Amazon Prime, PBS Kids
This grrr-iffic animated spin-off of Mister Rogers' Neighborhood centers on the title tiger who learns to control his roars during very difficult situations and shares his experiences with the fourth wall aka your pint-sized viewers at home. With earworm songs and a lot of heart, this show may be the ticket to helping your toddlers and preschoolers keep calm and content during these trying times. For those that want to revisit the American treasure that is the original series, head to PBS Kids. - Amanda Bell

Dino Girl Gauko
Watch it on: Netflix
Naoko (voiced by actress Naoko Matsui) seems like a typical tween. She loves poetry, hanging out with her friends and has a crush on an older boy who sells croquettes at the local market. But when she gets mad, watch out because she turns into a fire-breathing green dinosaur. Sort of like the tween girl version of the Incredible Hulk. Dino Girl Gauko is a strange but entertaining glimpse at Japanese culture and animated kaiju for kids of all ages, even those as young as three! - Mekeisha Madden Toby

Peg and Cat
Watch it on: PBS Kids, Amazon Prime
Keep your kids' math skills honed with this adorable cartoon about a young girl and her pet cat who encounter challenges that require arithmetic and problem-solving. Plus, Peg plays a ukelele and the theme song is a straight jam. - Tim Surette

Super Why!
Watch it on: PBS Kids, YouTubeTV
Your Pre-K kids and toddlers will develop some alphabet and maybe even spelling skills as they follow this show's characters through fairy tale land as they revisit classic tales through an educational lens while being the hero of their own stories, too. - Amanda Bell

Team Umizoomi
Watch it on: Amazon Prime, Nick Jr.
If you want to sneak some math into your preschoolers' entertainment, look no further than Milli, Geo, and Bot! This Nick Jr. series invites kids to play along as its trio of tiny wanderers explore patterns and problem-solving situations throughout Umi City. - Amanda Bell

​The Magic School Bus Rides Again

The Magic School Bus Rides Again


Bigger Kids

Archibald's Next Big Thing
Watch it on: Netflix
Follow the adventures of the oh-so-silly Archibald. When things are getting a little too serious and you need to loosen up with a laugh, nothing is better then following the ridiculous situations Archibald gets himself into and out of. - Jessie Cowan

Watch it on: Netflix
This series is fun and educational for both kids of all ages and parents. Even parents' brains will be wowed. You'll definitely want Season 2! - Jessie Cowan

Dino Dana and Dino Dan
Watch it on: Amazon
This show brings dinos to life in our modern world. Kids will have wide eyes as their imaginations take off with Dana or Dan. - Jessie Cowan

Watch it on: Netflix
Have fun being detectives and solving mysteries, with a very cool team of tween investigators. - Jessie Cowan

Kipo and the Age of Wonderbeasts
Watch it on: Netflix
Radford Sechrist created this surreal animated offering, which he adapted from his webcomic Kipo. Full of out-of-this-world creatures and scenarios, the series follows a girl named Kipo searching for her father in a strange and unknown world. Along the way, Kipo befriends a group of diverse and quirky friends of all colors, shapes and sexual orientations. She's also constantly surrounded by a wide array of music from every genre including bluegrass, gospel, jazz, rock and hip hop. Kipo and the Age of Wonderbeasts is the music appreciation class every child should have in school. - Mekeisha Madden Toby

Lost Cities hosted by Arnold Lin
Watch it on: Nat Geo Disney +
Your kids will learn what happens when archaeologists meet modern day technology. This is adventure, science, social studies all in one. - Jessie Cowan

Lunch Doodles with Mo Willems
Watch it on: YouTube
Mo Willems, the author and illustrator of the very rad best-selling Elephant & Piggie books, is helping kids home from school closures by hosting a series of videos over the next few weeks to teach your children to draw. The program, a joint venture with the Kennedy Center, will air a new episode at 1 p.m. ET/10 a.m. PT each weekday. Maybe your kid can be the next hip children's book author. - Tim Surette

The Magic School Bus Rides Again
Watch it on: Netflix
Miss Frizzle's younger sister (portrayed bySNL's Kate McKinnon) invites the next generation of young school-aged kids to experience all of the scientific, geographic, and anthropologic wonders they can possibly imagine. And for fans of the OG Magic School Bus, that is also available on Netflix. - Amanda Bell

Odd Squad
Watch it on: PBS
One of the few live-action series on this list features one my favorite gags that I will never tire of, ever: Kids pretending to be adults. These kids are part of Odd Squad, a top-secret agency that solves weird problems that arise through math and logic, helping out their town and its eccentric citizens. It's a great watch for parents, too. The show is flat-out hilarious, showing off a wacky imagination from its kids-at-heart creators. - Tim Surette

Wild Kratts
Watch it on: PBS
Nature show hosts Chris and Martin Kratt bring an infectious passion for wildlife to this animated series that highlights all the cool things animals can do. Each episode focuses on a different animal, and the brothers' animated avatars harness the animal's powers to become semi-superheroes while preaching nature conservation. - Tim Surette

Watch it on: PBS
This kids show is perfect for the animal lover in your home. Not only is it educational, but it's also just silly enough to keep 'em entertained, too. - Jessie Cowan