Before my kids and I started our own podcast at the beginning of the year, I thought I was pretty connected to the podcast scene. I have dozens of podcasts in my library, and listen to many (many, many) hours of programming a week. My kids and I had a few favorites that we listened to a lot together—usually ones that I found by looking at the top charts on iTunes, or in kids’ podcasts roundup posts. (And we’ve found lots of great ones that way! Some of our favorites include What If World, This Podcast Has Fleas, Tumble, Circle Round, and Story Pirates.)
But I soon realized that there is a wealth of podcasts out there for kids that, perhaps because they’re not produced by a big studio, don’t make their way into those top 50 charts or posts. Here are some of our favorites that we’ve discovered.
The Tiny Potters. Do your kids love Harry Potter? They’re not alone. Kids and siblings Anderson and Addison created this podcast because they had seen a lot of adult podcasts about Harry Potter, but they couldn’t find one aimed at kids. The show is charming, including a self-sung intro to the podcast. They go chapter by chapter through each book, summarizing what happens, asking questions to each other, and being silly in a way that only kids can be.
The Show About Science. Another podcast hosted by a kid, this one is done by Nate, who was five when the show started. He has guests on to talk about scientific concepts—everything from climate change and evolution to cracking the genetic code. He interviews well-known scientists, professors, and researchers, tells adorable stories, and shares his effervescent love for science in an accessible and engaging way.
Cool Facts About Animals. Full disclosure. This is the podcast that my kids and I do. But I mean, how could I leave my kids off the list? Each episode, we research animals and share the coolest facts we can find about them. Animals range from the more common (like the cheetah) to the rarer (like the pangolin). In addition to sharing knowledge, we also laugh a lot and have a lot of fun.
A Year of Imaginary Accomplishments. Unfortunately, there are only seven episodes of this podcast, but each of the episodes is worth the listen. The podcast is in the style of a radio broadcast, and takes place on a rocket ship going through the galaxy. It features monsters, interviews, lots of funny voices, and more. It has a bit of a British comedy feel, and the humor can be a bit sophisticated, but your kids will likely still be captivated by the different voices and strangeness of it.
Story Spectacular. This podcast is made by children’s author and illustrator Angela Ferrari. Episodes range from just a few minutes to just under 15 minutes. The stories are originals, or adaptations of famous stories (for instance, Little Red Riding Scooter or Yak and the Beanstalk). The podcast is accompanied by music, and features lots of fun voices, sound effects, rhymes, and jokes.
Peace Out. This is one of our favorite podcasts for calming down and chilling out. Part meditation, part story time, it’s great for when you and your kids just need to take a breath. The episodes feature breathing exercises, visualization, and an ongoing story line featuring a snow leopard and a red panda. The stories are woven into the meditations to help illustrate tricky emotions, like jealousy or sadness.
Chloe’s Friendship Circle. Chloe is a six-year-old who loves music. The show focuses on kids’ musicians, but she throws in a healthy dash of “kid stuff,” like discussions of birthdays and sleepovers. She interviews kids’ musicians in most episodes, and plays some songs. (Be sure to check out the interview with local favorite Red Yarn!) Her interviews are charming, and she is able to get a lot of information out of the musicians she interviews.
Book Power for Kids. This is a great podcast for book-loving kids. Each episode features a review of a kid’s books, from Roald Dahl’s “The Witches” to Shannon and Dean Hale’s “The Princess in Black.” The reviews are done by the Power family, mostly by the young children in the family. They give a short synopsis of the book, then their opinion of it.
April Eight Songs and Stories Podcast. Hosted by the dulcet-toned April Eight, each episode features an original story or song, with a hefty dose of magic. Episodes feature pixies, fairies, and lots of imagination. She is a world-class storyteller, sure to engage both your kids and you. Note that many of the stories are told in multiple parts, so they’re better for longer car trips or to listen to in parts.
Species. Not technically for kids, but this is a great podcast for kids who are really interested in animals. Each episode is meticulously researched, and filled with a lot of really interesting facts about animals. Worth a listen with or without the kids.