Saturday, March 1, 2014

Our 7 Favorite Youtube Channels for Kids!

Youtube for Children

It is no secret that I absoloutely love Youtube, a site that I once only utilized to watch music videos or random videos my friends sent me has become a part of my daily life in ways that I never would of imagined. Let's set something straight here. I'm a social media junkie, as a pre-teen I was on Myspace, by high school I was all over Facebook & by the time college rolled around I was checking in on every social media platform while sipping on my over priced White Chocolate Starbucks Mocha. 
Now, social media from Twitter to Instagram are an integral part of my every day life. I've been blogging on Tumblr for almost 5 years & in 2013 I commited myself to becoming a blogger/Youtuber full-time. While I'm a lover of all things #hashtag & the genius ladies behind Camp Takota I have realized that there is a gap between adult friendly content and things I feel comfortable allowing my children to view. 
The children of today's generation are experiencing something new, innovative and exciting. Technology is making leaps & bounds beyond the simplistic platforms that existed when I was growing up. There are dozens of arguments about how too much technology is negatively affecting our children and of course how too many hours are being spent playing video games or watching TV. 
These arguments are valid. I can tell you that the worst days with my children when it comes to behavior & attitudes are the ones where an hour or more of Netflix movies have streamed into their brains or where one too many Mario Kart race circuits have been driven.
Lately, I've been trying to find a balance between appropriate content that is engaging, fun & exciting for the kids instead of just allowing them to watch another Lego Cartoon episode or My Little Pony. Over the last couple of months I've searched for Youtube Channels that my kids love & today I'm going to share them with all of you! Whether it is something to get your kids up & moving during these long winter months or just a little educational cartoon to give you 15 minutes to go to the bathroom & brush your teeth in peace it is on this list. (My kids are 6, 6, & 5-so this list is based on their likes & loves!)

This is the most recent discovery & easily the kids favorite. I was a little skeptical about the kids wanting to do yoga & was seriously considering if I had lost my marbles with trying to get 3 young kids to attempt to follow a 15 minute video. Apparently, some of my marbles are still intact because they love it! We started with Squish the Fish & the kids ask to do another episode every day. Currently we do one video together in the morning before the twins go off to school & another before bedtime. Each of the episodes has a funny story line that often takes the kids on adventure & has them doing yoga poses without them having to acknowledge that they are doing yoga. 

If you are looking for short, fun, upbeat videos than Hoopla Kidz is perfect! From the ABC's to traditional nursery rhymes there are so many options on the Hoopla Kidz Channel. Since the twins have gone to kindergarten they LOVE nursery rhymes & quick little songs, so this channel allows them to just have some fun while singing & jumping around the living room. I like to let them watch these videos on the weekends when they just need to get their wiggles out & the weather doesn't really permit for them to be outside. Sometimes they will just ask to watch the Five Little Monkeys video & I can't say that I say no all too often.

This is a channel that the kids prefer only certain videos, like Shake Your Body Down, Bumblebee & We are the Dinosaurs. Some of the other videos are a totally flop with the kids & they just end up standing there watching the video without any movement. But when we bust out We are the Dinosaurs some serious stomping goes down. You might luck out better than I have with your kids on this one, it is a great channel & I'm quite bummed that it seems that as of a year ago they are no longer uploading new content. All of the previously uploaded videos are available though.

When it comes to nap time around here for Danielle & even bedtime for all 3 kids music is pretty crucial to ensuring that they fall asleep within a timely manner with a low amount of bedtime resistance or playing. I love this particular Bedtime Playlist, just turn it on & there you have 16 minutes of age appropriate nursery songs. No commercials, no random Elmo song that totally throws off the mood for sleepy-time (I hate you Pandora) & once the play list ends my kids are usually sound asleep, accompanied by snores. I do have to switch it up once & a while, so I turn to the Peace playlist on Spotify or the Soothing Nature Sounds on Pandora.

Cool School is a total power house when it comes to kid friendly content on Youtube. From their Story Time series to the Letters of the Alphabet with Class Pets this channel has a bit of everything. This is a channel that I utilize on a regular basis with Danielle during out preschool time at home. The truth is that I'm a preschool instructor training-dropout & while I can whip up some fun crafts or a random science based project, I'm really not great at making music or giving history lessons that my kids actually listen too. Unfortunately, I was subjected to too many Ken Burns documentaries for my history lessons to be fun & upbeat. Cool School has me covered though, with totally rad history lessons from Mr. History.

TuTiTu is geared towards a younger age set, at 2-3 years. Although my kids are a bit older they still love all of the animation series on Youtube. There is a reason this channel has over a billion views & it is continuing to grow. The original sing a longs are really great for growing little ones vocabularies while helping teach them the concept of rhyming. Each video is extremely colorful & my kids still love all of the songs featured on the channel. TuTiTu seems to have channels in multiple languages as well, from Russian to French, Italian & Chinese.

I found this channel randomly one night when I just needed the kids to settle down so I could get dinner made. Instead of mediating the usual battle about whose turn it is to pick a cartoon on Netflix I  just did a quick search for educational material for kids on Youtube & this was the first thing I clicked on. This channel has the longest videos out of all of the ones I featured, with the average being about 20 minutes. It is an actual cartoon series that is about a Raindrop & his friends. It's educational & teaches the kids some environmental impact material as well as some good science fun. I would check out the Motion Pictures channel as well, as they are the ones behind Raindrop & there are about 8 or 9 other kid friendly cartoons they have created. 

There is my current list of favorite Youtube channels for kids! As a technology loving mama I have really tried to find a balance for not only myself in this technological age, but one for my kids as well.  While we do utilize at least one or more of these channels daily we still spend as much time outside as we can, as well as reading stories & creating together. 
Please let me know what you & your kids favorite Youtube Channels are! I will be putting together of my favorite channels for Moms sometime soon as well! I hope you are all enjoying your weekend, I'm off to join the kids outside & take a little walk around our neighborhood.

Until next time...