While podcasts are currently all the rage for adults, this doesn’t mean that kids can’t get in on the fun. Kid friendly podcasts have risen in popularity as a fun, and often educational, way to engage children. Podcasts for kids can provide an added boost of entertainment and knowledge on all sorts of subjects. From science to social issues to stories to everything in between, there are all sorts of popular podcasts that both parents and children alike can enjoy.
Wow in the World (NPR)
Hosted by the endlessly charming Mindy Thomas and fellow podcast legend Guy Raz, NPR’s Wow in the World remains one of the most popular podcasts for kids, hands down. Thomas and Raz take a family friendly approach to the glorious wonders that await young minds all over the world. From exploring the inner workings of the brain to the unfathomable mystery of outer space and a whole slew of other topics along the way, the two help kids learn more about the most interesting stories in science and technology today. Plus, at over 200 episodes, there’s no shortage of content for families who feel like binging the show.
Stories Podcast: A Bedtime Show for Kids of All Ages (Stories Podcast/Wondery)
It’s a phenomenon no parent is stranger to: You’ve just finished reading the night’s bedtime story when your child pleads for one more story. That’s where Stories Podcast: A Bedtime Show for Kids of All Ages comes in. Co-produced by Stories Podcast and Wondery, the popular podcast provides a new bedtime story for kids each and every week. Read with the kind of gusto parents could only dream of emulating, Stories Podcast helps to give kids the extra story they so desperately want by retelling fairy tales and classic stories and offers parents the much-needed option to pass the responsibility of the bedtime story onto someone else every once in a while.
The Imagine Neighborhood
Many of the best podcasts for kids have been around for a couple of years or more, rising in popularity slowly but surely over the months on the air. Not The Imagine Neighborhood, though: Debuting in March of 2020, the show has skyrocketed to the top of the charts to become one of the most popular podcasts in a relatively short amount of time. The show is unique because, instead of focusing on hot topic geared toward kids or telling family friendly stories, The Imagine Neighborhood spends its time helping children process the vast range of emotions associated with growing up and being a kid. Despite its up-and-coming status, it’s an essential show.
Julie’s Library: Story Time with Julie Andrews (American Public Media)
While a child growing up in the 2020s might not yet be able to comprehend the star power behind a name like Julie Andrews, they will definitely be able to appreciate the legendary actress’s prowess for storytelling. The face behind such renowned roles as Mary Poppins and Maria Von Trapp, Andrews has decided to step back from the screen and turn to voice work with the podcast Julie’s Library: Story Time with Julie Andrews. Presented by American Public Media, the show sees the Hollywood icon teaming up with her daughter to deliver stories to kids. Each one is jam-packed with music, sound effects, and activities that help the story leap from the page into the real world.
Brains On! Science Podcast for Kids (American Public Media)
Of all the best family friendly podcasts, Brains On! Science Podcast for Kidsis easily one of the most popular podcasts for children eager to learn more about the physical and natural world. Co-hosted by different kid scientists and public radio personalities each week, Brains On! tackles the world’s biggest questions in such a comprehensible way that both children and adults alike can learn new things. From the study of feelings to the history of weather forecasts to an easy-to-understand breakdown of the corona virus, Brain On!‘s chart-topping status makes it the preeminent science podcast for kids.
Story Pirates (Gimlet)
Unlike the other story time podcasts out there, Gimlet’s Story Pirates distinguishes itself from the pack by only focusing on stories actually written by real kids. By recruiting some of the biggest names in comedy, music, acting, musical theater, and improv, Story Pirates takes the already hilarious listener-submitted stories and elevates them to a whole new level of entertaining. Kids will get a kick out of hearing people like Kristen Bell, a.k.a. the voice of Anna in Disney’s Frozen films, and parents will get just as much joy out of hearing the countless goofy tales come to life in such an original way. If you’re looking for laughs the whole family can enjoy, Story Pirates is absolutely the way to go.
Listen Out Loud with The Loud House (Nickelodeon)
Just like how us adults love to listen to podcasts about our favorite television shows, Nickelodeon has created a way for kids to enjoy a podcast based on one of the network’s most popular shows currently airing. Listen Out Loud with The Loud House is something of a supplement to Nick’s The Loud House, offering bite-sized slices of the cartoon in audio form to provide children with extra adventures they won’t find on the network. It’s a pretty ingenious way to keep up interest in the show in-between new episodes of the cartoon — plus, after nearly two years without a new podcast episode, Listen Out Loud just returned with brand-new episodes in May of 2020.
Greeking Out from National Geographic Kids
Kids can’t get enough of Rick Riordan’s Percy Jackson series for a reason: Greek gods and goddesses are endlessly fascinating to them, predating comic books about brave superheroes and evil super villains to tell tales of mythical powers and dastardly monsters and noble gods that roamed the Earth. National Geographic Kids’ Greeking Out recognizes the love children have for these stories and retells them in such a way that they can actually learn about ancient Greece in the process. It’s educational, it’s entertaining, and it’s exactly the kind of podcast for kids that parents can feel good about — not only are they getting to hear stories they’re actually interested in, but they’re also secretly absorbing new information without even realizing it.
But Why: A Podcast for Curious Kids (Vermont Public Radio)
If you’re a parent, there’s no doubt you’ve heard the question “But Why?” countless times before. Vermont Public Radio knows this all too well — in fact, it’s the very reason why they’ve created But Why: A Podcast for Curious Kids. The show confronts questions big and small from the get-go, exploring things like words and language, bats and beavers, sleep and nightmares, and a whole plethora of other fun topics geared toward the curious minds of children. To make things even more fun for kids and their families, listeners can actually send in their own questions in hopes of having the But Why team answer their inquiry on a future episode (as long as it hasn’t been answered already, that is!).
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