Guilt Free Screen Time for Kids: 12 Free Educational YouTube Channels for Kids


I don’t know about you but my kids love their screens, and there are times when I have to push past the mom guilt and embrace the screen time. For example when I have been laid up with one of those nasty illnesses my sweet little babies bring home from school (and the fact that they literally touch every surface in a public bathroom).  

For those days when screens become my very best friend I want to make sure that those sweet little babies are watching something that is both entertaining and stimulating for their brains in a positive way.  YouTube can fit all of those needs if you know what you are looking for.  

Babies and toddlers

Little Baby Bum these animated nursery rhymes are full of sweet characters that teach your littles colors, letters, shapes, and animals.  

Mother Goose Club also focuses on nursery rhymes and fun songs your children will love these videos that often also incorporate movement.  

Sesame Street this is a classic and is the same Sesame Street you grew up with, but their YouTube channel offers even more made for YouTube content.  

Young children

PBS Kids If you haven’t checked out Xavier Riddle and the Secret Museum you must.  Xavier is a curious young man that through his adventures in his secret museum is able to time travel and meet historical figures from Florence Nightingale to the Wright Brothers.  

Cosmic Kids Yoga after a long day of being locked up inside I love being able to turn on Cosmic Kids Yoga to get my littles to incorporate movement, but also focus on mindfulness.  

Australia Zoo If you loved watching the Crocadile hunter Steve Irwin you will love watching what his family has created in the Australia Zoo.  This channel features tours of the zoo as well as meeting some of the unique animals that call it home.  

Super Simple Draw! The Super Simple team has a lot of really great content for young children, but their Super Simple Draw! channel lets kids learn how to draw through step by step instructions.  Set up your art station, tune in to Super Simple Draw! and be amazed by all the wonderful things your children can create.

Older children

SoulPancake describes itself as a place that “was created to explore what it means to be human.”  Created by Rainn Willson (yes that is Dwight from the office) brings content to children that help them explore humanity and asks questions about culture and religion of people in those communities. And who can forget Kid President and all of his uplifting and inspiring messages.   

The Brain Scoop featuring Emily, the Chief Curiosity Correspondent for the Field Museum in Chicago the Brain Scoop takes you behind the scenes of the Field Museum, interviews experts, takes you on adventures around the world, and so much more.  Emily is quirky, but really fun to watch and makes learning so much fun.  

National Geographic this is the same Nat Geo that you know and love, but with content specially curated for children.  WIth videos about interesting careers, amazing animals, explorer Barbie, and so much more there is sure to be something for even the most curious kid.  

Tweens and teens

TED-Ed These animated videos embrace the same philosophy of your traditional TED videos of sharing great ideas.  Covering topics such as historical figures, technology, science, philosophy and so much more. My favorite playlist is Well-behaved Women Rarely Make History.  

Amy Poehler’s Smart Girls in my drive to raise a empowered, well educated and ambitious woman I could not love anything more than Smart Girls.  Covering topics such as STEM, life hacks, modern manners, and women we love Smart Girls is a safe place for girls to learn what it means to be a woman and embrace what makes women so special.  

Big Think describes itself as “expert-driven, actionable, educational content.” With content from experts such as Bill Nye and Neil deGrasse Tyson and videos covering everything from politics, to science, and psychology the Big Think will keep your teens mind engaged and learning.  

What are your go to YouTube Channels to engage your children’s mind while still allowing you to have a break from providing every moments entertainment?

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Samantha Jacob
Samantha is a Kansas girl through and through. Born and raised in a rural community near Topeka, KS, she moved to Wichita in 2002 to attend WSU. Obtaining her graduate degree from the Wichita State School of Social Work, she loves her job as a pediatric medical social worker. Samantha calls East Wichita home with her husband, two beautiful children, and dog. Having lived in Wichita for over a decade she has enjoyed rediscovering Wichita through the eyes of her children. When time allows Samantha enjoys spending time with friends, trying new restaurants, and re-watching episodes of the West Wing.