Thursday, 14 November 2013

My Top 15 - Best cartoon shows that kids can watch

Hi there... after the last heavy duty post on "World's worst mom", this one would seem lame. Not. Watching TV has become the way of life whether you like it or not and there is no escaping it. So, you could benefit from this post if you need more options of what your kid could watch.

Make no mistake, I am not advocating that children should watch TV. They should be in the grounds playing with friends. Parents should be reading books to them... etc etc.

BUT, kids are hooked onto TV. If you can't stop it, at least let them watch programs which teach them something good. Soap operas or cartoon shows brimming with violence, sexism, extremist behavior are influencing your kid. Beware! Wean them off to other programs which are not as damaging.

Here are my tried and tested list of cartoon shows which are not hazardous to kids :)
If they don't come on TV, I usually let my elder one watch it on Youtube (and you get the TV :P). Its very important for the parents to watch their favorite cartoon together with the children, at least for few mins. Just to make sure you are ok with the views conveyed. Some cartoon shows are indeed quite unbelievable toxic junk.

The headings are the search tags that you could use in Youtube to get episodes of those shows.

1) Mickey Mouse Clubhouse

This will be sure hit with your kids. Its also an ideal show to introduce kids to the world of Cartoon shows.
Please note that I am not talking about the Mickey mouse that you and me would have seen growing up. I love them, but sometimes think that the content are bit mature! The new clubhouse series is more responsible.
Learning: Numbers and math concepts, team work

2) Word World

This is another great show for learning English. The show teaches phonics and how to build the words. The act of building words is so very well woven into the story, that the kids would not know that they are learning. But it takes a bit of time getting used to this and start liking it.

Learning: English, Rhyming words, Phonics

3) Sofia the first

This is our current favourite! One show where parents too would not mind watching. A true fairytale where a commoner becomes a princess. There is lot of magic, fairies, dragons and humor. The step-father, step-sister stuff are handled beautifully. Btw, the step mother is not evil!

Learning: Values, Values Values!

4) Handy Manny
This is another good show which teaches a lot of things and is interesting. Boys are likely to enjoy it more? My girl loves this - she has picked up couple of spanish words from this.

Learning: Spanish, Life lessons on plumbing/carpentering/electrical 

5) Timmy Time

This series does not have any dialogue, so if your kid is not watching cartoon because of being not able to understand English, then series could be used for the transition. The main character Timmy is very cheeky, so I would suggest this with caution. Hope Your kid picks up just the 'right things' that Timmy does. Watch a couple of episodes together and then decide what you want to do.

Learning: Orientation for playschool, Sharing & Adjusting with friends

6) Doc McStuffins

This is a great series to watch if your kid is sick or if your kid is afraid of doctors/hospitals/needles. I like this too. There are episodes about why your battery goes down without sleep, Why its not a great idea to touch other kids if you have pox etc.

Learning: Medicine, Body, Reduce aversion to hospitals

7) Hi-5
Another show that my kids love. This is not a cartoon show, but the five adults sing and dance and entertain.
Your kids are likely to become their fans!

Learning: Cultural concepts, Lots of stuff that cannot be taught through cartoons

8) Captain Carlos
There are lot of shows emphasizing good eating habits in the passing, but this show only does that full time and nothing else. The episodes are very very short (upto 2 mins). Invoke Captain Carlos if your kid is his sister Maria (a junk loving, vegetable hating kid)

Learning: Eat healthy

9) Super Why!

A very well crafted show. I have just watched a couple of episodes, that's the reason they are this low in the order. But its highly likely that I would place them in top 3 after watching few mooore episodes.
Aarthi, my good friend introduced this to me and Arushi!

Learning: English, Problem solving, will update later ;)

10) Can you teach my Alligator manners?

The title says it all. This is also one of the shorter episodes (3 mins). Shows which is the right behaviour.. shouting and creating a ruckus in the restaurant or behaving well mannered.

Learning: Manners

11) Lou and Lou - Safety Patrol

Its important that kids see stuff like this.  These also come in small episodes (3 mins). This series talks about what young kid can and cannot do. Examples would be 1) What will you do when you get lost 2) Kitchen do's and dont's 3) About wearing seat belts etc.

Learning: Safety rules

12) Dora the explorer

The reason Dora is so low in my list is because we don't watch it much. But I am sure every little girl is crazy about Dora. The few episodes that we saw had the usual good triumphs over evil themes. Some counting was also involved and so I could term it interactive.

Learning: Values

13) Jake and the Never land Pirates

If you ask my little girl she would probably rate this within top 3. This too is the usual Good triumphs over Evil series, where Captain Hook is always stealing something or the other and the quest is to retrieve the item. Why have I not rated it high, because I am  not happy about the 'negative'  characters. But don't let this comment bother you much. Its a good show!

Learning: Team work, Values

14) Sid the Science Kid
Thanks to Aarthi again... This is a series where kids can learn concepts about Human body, Weather and other simple science concepts. But some how my kid is not into this show yet, guess she understands that I am asking her to watch this over others so that she could 'learn' something!

Learning: Science

15) Little Einsteins

The show is a bit dry compared to others, but the learning and exposure is awesome. There is some new piece of famous art incorporated in the show each episode. Western classical music concepts are part of the staple.
Learning: Music, Arts

Special Category

This post should have been over with the previous item... but my daughter insisted that 'Peppa Pig' was her top favourite.. and I was not so keen on giving Peppa that.So, had to include 'Special category' to play fair. My daughter is addicted to this show.  There are some episodes from every day life that just would happen to your kid. Guess kids enjoy watching shows about themselves.

Learning: Slice of life.


  1. Good prelude, Anu. We parents can definitely not ignore the fact that kids watch more tv than they should. We might as well do a quality check on what they see. This is a good list to have. Also, have you tried Cat in the hat - both book and tv versions are good.

    1. Quality check - such a correct word... thanks RT! Indeed Cat in the hat was such a rage during one period. So was "Bananas in pyjamas"

  2. Good one!!! We now live with these characters - in turn start liking them too!! Btw, does Arushi like Tinkerbell and Angelina - ballerina?? Beware - you might get hooked on to it slowly!!

    1. Very True Anu, first few episodes as a parent is trying and difficult. But then we get so used to them, it becomes the 'shows that we watch' too. Angelina Ballerina is the only reason why Arushi joined ballet class. I would rather have her learn barathanatiyam, but Angelia Ballerina apparently wields more power than me !!