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This post contains several great TV show suggestions.  For a newer, much longer list of movie and TV show recommendations, please see Wholesome, Uplifting and Clean Movies – The Master List! and Wholesome, Uplifting and Clean TV Shows – Huge List!  Both of these lists will be updated frequently, so check them often for new recommendations!

There are those moments in parenthood, when you just need the kids to sit still and be quiet.  In fact, this is a daily need in our house – for the sanity of my kids and myself.

But we all know kids won’t just sit and be quiet without a little help.  This is when I call upon my most favorite baby-sitter.

Thank you, Netflix.

Yes, I shamelessly let my kids watch some TV most every day.

However, I am very picky about what they can watch on Netflix and I monitor it very closely.  These are influential years, and I only want the best things entering into those little brains.

I want to provide you with a list of our top 10 favorite TV shows for kids, that teach good things – all to be found on instant streaming through Netflix (or some with your Amazon Prime membership).

The Top 10 TV Shows for Kids That Teach Good Things on Netflix

When the baby is napping, the kids pull out a device and we connect it to our chromecast and the kids spend some downtime watching TV while I get some work done.

Through the years of listening/watching these kid shows in the background I have determined there are ones I absolutely love the kids to watch based on what they teach and how they influence behavior.  I’ve also discovered the ones I simply make them turn off . . . but that is a discussion for another day.

Let me take you through the TV shows on Netflix that fill these little souls with education, inspiration, good values and appropriate life skills.

{These are all shows my kids ages 3-9 enjoy.  Some are more appealing to the younger and others to the older – but they have all watched and enjoyed each show at some point.  Each movie title is an affiliate link, which will take you to for the purpose of reading reviews, movie details/synopsis or purchase.  Otherwise, you may simply search the title while logged in to your Netflix Subscription}.

1.  Wild Kratts

Wild Kratts wildest animal adventures

All thanks to this wildlife adventure show, my oldest daughter became an animal enthusiast.  After making her way through every episode, she was checking out wildlife books from the library and wanting to look up animals on the computer.  She was sharing all sorts of fun facts about creatures of all kinds with me throughout her discoveries.  It was so enjoyable to watch.  Wild Kratts is about 2 brothers who start as real life characters and imagine “what if’s” about wildlife – which then takes you to their animated adventures.  It is all very educational and fascinating, but my favorite part about this show is the relationship expressed between the brothers.  So much I see on TV, especially with kid shows, is sarcasm and put-downs as humor.  These brothers find a way to add humor and entertainment without any of that negativism.  They encourage and support each other.  I could just hug the makers of Wild Kratts.  All my kids enjoy watching this together and I feel great turning it on for them.

2.  Signing Time

Signing Time

I literally did a victory dance when this popped up on Netflix recently.  We have bought some of these instructional sign language movies for kids and treasured them in our home.  My 1 year old asks to watch his baby signing time every single day – with the cutest darn sign he makes for his request.  My first child wasn’t talking when we felt she was ready to, but once she began watching these shows – her vocabulary took off.  The problem was, these great movies do get pricey and I wanted to, but couldn’t buy them all.  Now, we have access to many episodes all through our Netflix subscription, and I couldn’t be happier.  We love using sign language in our home from the signs taught in these shows.  They are very entertaining and the kids are actively engaged during the whole episode.  Of course, there are the numerous benefits to learning a different language and exposing our children to the variety of people in the world around them.  I am a HUGE Signing Time fan!

3.  VeggieTales

Veggie Tales

This is a show for the whole family!  I just have to be careful not to turn it on when I want my husband to be productive.  He’ll easily get glued to the TV with the kids, and giggling like a little school boy through the whole thing.  This talking vegetable show is quite humorous, but that is not even the best thing about it.  Pick any wonderful value you want to teach your children (slow to anger, honesty, loyalty, etc.), and there is sure to be an episode to suit your needs.  They are mostly based on scripture stories found in the Bible, which just thrills me.  My daughter gained a great love and respect for Esther after watching the VeggieTales show based on her, and then we read about her in the Bible.

4.  Ruff Ruff Man

Ruff Ruff Man

As far as reality game shows go, this one is a win for kids!  My kids are exposed to places, careers, sights and many other things that they would never get to see otherwise.  Even though it is a show filled with pre-teens (and a talking dog), my little ones really love it.  They are never inappropriate, and express a love for learning and discovery that excites my children.  I have even caught them in their play participating in a challenge they have seen from this show.  I LOVE it when that happens.  Go FETCH!

5.  Daniel Tiger

Daniel Tiger

Okay – I’ll be honest.  This show drives me nuts.  The repetitive songs that run through my head all day long can make me crazy – but . . . I cannot deny how helpful some episodes have been in my parenting attempts.  Pretty sure my youngest would still not be potty trained if Daniel Tiger hadn’t en-grained it in her head “If you gotta go potty – STOP – and go right away”.  Or with every cold she gets I remind her “When your sick, rest is best, rest is best.”  And I am always amazed that “You can take a turn, and then I’ll get it back”, works every time when my kids are fighting over a toy.  It’s like magic!  Daniel Tiger and I have somewhat of a love/hate relationship.

6.  Magic School Bus

The Magic School Bus

Yes, the same one you watched as a kid.  It’s an oldie, but goodie – and I was thrilled to introduce it to my kids when I saw it on Netflix.  I can still remember watching the episode as a kid, where the magic bus travels through a human body and it’s digestive functions.  And now my kids talk about it all the time.  Sweet nostalgia.

7.  Justin Time

Justin Time

All my kids will watch this adventure packed show, but my 4 year old daughter is OBSESSED with it.  It is the number one request she makes when it comes to quiet time.  It involves 3 loyal friends and their trips to the past, exploring places, culture, and landmarks – all while learning valuable life behavior skills.  Its fun and educational, but not annoyingly so like other preschool movies (cough . . . Dora . . . cough).

8.  Curious George

Curious George

Ah, a timeless classic.  This curious little monkey teaches so many good things to my kids.  Curiosity, learning, consideration for others, loyalty and love – to name a few.  I especially like the little blurps they do of real life kids exploring the world around them at the end of the episodes.  Brings the lessons taught by that monkey, right back home.

9.  Super Why

Super Why

Kids with super powers teaching my kids super skills.  This PBS show does a surprisingly good job at introducing my kids to the alphabet and reading.  I watched in amazement one time as my then 5 year old had this “ah ha” moment with the concept that letters come together to make words by watching Super Why.  Any show that can do that is worth my time.  Along with teaching the alphabet, I love how it shares classic storybook stories and values.  Wonderful educational flick for the kids.

10.  Sesame Street

Sesame Street

Netflix has probably had Sesame Street available for a long time, but it is a new discovery for us.  Did you know that it appears they have every episode ever made right at your fingertips?!  I can remember having to wake up really early just to catch Sesame Street as a kid on TV.  I think we are all aware of all the goodness those furry monsters share with our kids, and it is great to have it all available to us on our time.  Some of my kids have liked Sesame Street more than others, but if they let me choose the show this is generally the one I pick for them.  Whether they love it or not, they all seem to have their eyes and brains fixed on the screen.

11.  Caillou


I know – I said 10.  But I am throwing one in for good measure.  This bald little boy is just so stinkin’ adorable for preschool age children.  All my kids went through a Caillou phase.  My favorite thing about Caillou isn’t the education it offers, but the imagination.  Let them be little!

I hope you have enjoyed my suggestions and reviews and found them helpful.  Are any of these titles your favorites for your kids?  Did I miss any that everyone should know about?  Please feel free to share your thoughts in the comments below!

If you are looking for a show for yourself, head on over HERE to read my “Top 10 Clean Feel-Good TV Shows to Watch on Netflix”.  These are all films I can’t live without!

The top 10 clean, feel good TV shows to watch on NETFLIX.

If you like my reviews, you may want to read my personal experience with 6 subscription boxes for kids and a guide to choosing the best one for your child.  Go HERE.

Your Guide to Choosing the Best Subscription Box for Your Child

Thanks for coming by!

*I have included affiliate links in this article.  But rest assured, I only recommend products I use and love!

**Linking up to these parties, HERE.

***All images were found on

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  1. I love showbox its not only free but also contain some of the biggest hit movies of all time. Showbox also feature some good web series and I want to say thank you for sharing this content but my showbox not working now days.

  2. Hi! I just found your list and sign time, Daniel tiger and wild kratts are no longer on Netflix! 🙁 I was wondering if you could update your list?? I have a one year old and am not sure where to start there seems to a lot of suggestions but I’d love to hear what works for kids now. I don’t want to get her hooked on something that isn’t good. Thanks!

  3. You have to include StoryBots on that list. It’s a fantastic educational tool on science and they make it incredibly fun with surprise celebrity guests, rap songs that stick with kids and adults alike! My 4 year old still raps the planets song and first time she watched it, was almost a year ago.

  4. I love how almost every show mentioned is a PBS show. M daughter loves the wild Kratts as much as I loved their original show zoobomafoo, when I was a kid. Those guys truely love animals and they are the reason I work in a veterinary field today. I’m glad you mentioned signing time. I’m seeing all these yonger children surpass my daughter with there vocabulary but she has always done well with what sign language we have taught her so I may see if we can’t kick start some vocabulary in a fun way.

  5. You might want to update this post. Netflix doesn’t have Daniel Tiger, Sesame Street or Signing Time. They do however have a Sesame Street knock off called Furchester Hotel

  6. Thanks for this post! Provides some good food for thought when looking at new options for my 13 month old son. We try not to rely heavily on TV but this past week have all been off sick so relying on the Wiggles to keep bub occupied while we suffer LOL! One of his all time favourites is Robocar Poli. I consider this an earlier version of Rescuebots.

  7. My four year old loves Bat Pat, a Netflix show about 3 school age children and their talking pet bat who live in a place called spooky hallow. It always brings a monster in at the beginning of of the show (for example, a werewolf is in one but then they meet him, and find out his dad ist the big bag wolf and wants him to be a bad wolf too, he wants to make floral arrangements or something like that. Anyways, the kids always help the “monster” and discover that they’re really very nice and just need some help. I think it teaches my son not to judge something/ someone based on appearance or first impressions; I also like how the siblings always work together and have strong family values.

    1. My son loooooves Word Party, super cute and teaches kids new words and uses songs to promote appropriate behavior.

  8. Peg+Cat is a great one on Pbs Kids. It’s a free app that my daughter watches if I’m not ready to wake up in the morning quite yet 🙂

  9. I have four boys and there isn’t much they ALL like to watch. But Wild Kratts is the thing I have to switch on and all together are sitting banned in front of the TV. And my two older boys ( 7 and 9 years old) gained so many knowledge about wildlife through this. Just love this show.
    During career week in school, they even said that if they are grown up they want to work as a Wild Kratts Brother. ?

  10. What a great list! My daughter is a big fan of Daniel Tiger … and used to love Sesame Street and Super Why a year or so ago. Maybe it’s time to bring them back into her life … while introducing some of the shows on your list. Thanks for sharing this list!

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  12. Thanks so much for writing this top 10 list and adding your own review in words. Helps us decide before we put on for kids. You validated my opinion about curious george and Calliou. Thanks! I am always looking for stuff that teaches good values to my kids and myself especially in terms of good manners and imagination. I never seen wildest animal adventures but will now check out based on your recommendation – good to write in detail about the humor. Thanks again!

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  15. Super why is the best show I have ever come across for small children. My youngest just turned two and knows all of his letters, some numbers and can randomly point out and read small words. I wish my three year old would watch the show. He complains about how boring it is and leaves the room. He also cannot read and knows only knows about half of his letters. Dinosaur train and wild krats are also favorite that all my boys will watch (14, 6, 3 and 2). Yes, my 14 year old… No nothing is wrong with him. (Boring subjects dinosaurs and animals)

  16. We had to put a stop to our preschooler watching Caillou because he whines, throws tantrums and doesn’t share with his sister, etc. and his parents dont correct him. I understand that the show is just trying to show situations kids can relate to, but I disagree in the way the parents deal with his bad behavior.At least when Daniel Tiger doesnt want to share or whatever the parents teach him the appropriate way to deal with his feelings. I think its good because all kids get jealous etc and this show teaches positive ways to deal with those feelings.

  17. Thank you for this! As a new mother, I want my LO to be exposed to wholesome, biblically based, television – and with all of the blog posts/articles about subliminal messaging in Disney and Nick Jr. programming, this is an awesome list of shows I can put on during TV time, or mommy needs a second to get things done time 🙂

  18. Now many that on your favorites list are no longer on Netflix…….truly disappointed in the company. Seems they are slowly taking off the educational shows. Replacing with cartoon network style shows.

  19. Hi there Cami

    I think that you and your husband would enjoy OUTLANDER together, but not for the children. There are some gory bits that I look away from but it is a magical story and I am waiting on tenterhooks for the next season.


  20. All good choices. My almost 3 year old son loves oso. I as well will watch it with him. If also add Bill Nye the science guy. I watched that myself in school growing up. One that I’m upset with Netflix for not having is Mickey mouse clubhouse. They used to have one episode forever but now font even have the one.

  21. My son loves Rescue Bots. Its an awesome show. Hes been watching it for a year and hes about to turn 4. I have even found my 12 year old daughter glued to it too. It teaches about firemen, engineers, police men and different rescuers. It also teaches that even though technology is great and helpful, too much is a very bad thing and things go wrong. This is the only show that my son will watch over and over again. He has seen every episode 4 times. And it teaches team work. It has saved me on days when momma has a migraine and cannot get off the couch. He will sit and play with legos while watching Rescue Bots. (Dont judge, migraines make me very sick and i cant move when i get them, so thats a tv day).

    1. My 6yr old son loves this show too…Im syked because its a Transformers reboot…Transformers was one of my favs as a kid. This revamp however teaches more life lessons than its predicessor. He also loves Paw Patrol

  22. Odd Squad is terrific entertainment, and it gives a painless introduction to math basics. My 5-year-old loves it.

  23. I agree with some of these. My kids love Justin Time, LeapFrog, Magic School Bus and Octonauts – and they are 5 and 6! Looks like Signing Times is not offered on Netflix anymore. My daughter actually takes that class in our homeschool co-op and she loves the videos. Maybe they’ll return to Netflix some day! Thanks for the list.

  24. Great list. My 5 year old also loves Frannie’s Feet (which focuses on kindness/helpfulness) and Bo On The Go (which has her focusing on movement).

  25. For a cartoon show, I would also add Puffin Rock. I love that theme song! Sometimes you need a break from the cartoon shows and when that happens we turn to The Andy Griffith Show. Can’t beat the morals and values of Mayberry’s Sheriff Taylor, Barney, Opie and Aunt Bea.

  26. I noticed that nobody mentioned Monster Math Squad or Word World. My daughter LOVES these shows and I highly recommend them myself. Kids get to work with the monsters on math skills and in Word World, EVERYTHING is made up of the letters you use to spell it. Plus, the characters are cute to watch. I completely agree with someone’s recommendation about the Leap Frog shows, except for the earlier animated shows that had the characters saying that letters make the UH sound at the end (buh, cuh, duh, fuh, guh…).

  27. I also love Daniel Tiger, Wild Kratts, curious george, and Super Why. My kids, ages 3 and 6 have learned a lot from watching these shows. Both knew all their letters and their sounds by age 3. They know “bison” and lemur, and other less common animals. For older families I recommend episodes of Cosby Show, such a great family that emulates how do deal with everyday conflicts.

  28. Nobody talks about The Bubble Guppies! It’s my son’s favorite tv show of all time! It is funny, instructive, imaginative and there is always a music part (and my sos lovesssss that)! 😀

  29. Nice list, although we have banned both Caillou AND Daniel Tiger. Caillou for the same reason others have already mentioned – but Daniel Tiger was, shockingly, teaching my kid to be afraid, among other things. She would watch an episode and take the exact opposite stance. For example, she loved thunderstorms – until watching the episode saying there was nothing to be afraid of. She had previously had no concept she SHOULD be afraid. My daughter is 2 1/2 just for the comparison.

    The one that was recently added that we love though is Puffin Rock – and Little Einsteins has been a biggie for us for awhile. Even though it’s for older kids, we sometimes watch Phineas and Ferb too.

  30. Glad so many people are bigging up Octonauts!!! Lovely list and I’m so glad there is so much British TV across your watching habits. Makes us Brits very happy!

    Thanks for posting x

  31. I’m glad to hear about the signing show, thanks! My son is nearly 2 but hasn’t started talking at all. He’s getting a treatment with signing so I’m glad he’ll have reinforcement on that. He has a severe sensory disorder with an overlap of autism so noises from some shows will freak him out or have him giggling like crazy, sometimes both. He loves Mickey Mouse Clubhouse because of the music and colors. It makes me crazy after a while and I’ll just put on some movies instead once I reach that point. I’m disabled so we’re together 24/7 so anything that doesn’t make me nuts is a winner in my book. My sister told me about Phineas and Ferb, though I’ve never watched it myself, her son loves it. Thanks for sharing, I’m happy I found this.

  32. Hey Cami! I am a newer blogger and I was feeling a little stuck on creating images for my blog posts, so I figured I would browse Pinterest to see what intrigued me and I couldn’t help but to notice your post! And you made my day when I saw babysigning time is available!! I look forward to browsing through the rest of your site and getting a little more inspiration! Lisa @ wiggles and whimsy

    1. Thank you Lisa! Glad I could offer some inspiration. I often get stuck creating those images as well. Best of luck to you!

  33. i agree with all your shows except Caillou. That one is not allowed. For the same reasons as mentioned above. My kids also love the leapfrog series and mother goose club. Mother goose club is all nursery rhymes. They think it’s great. We used signing DVDs for my second son when he was speech delayed.. He would get so frustrated when we didn’t understand him. The videos gave us a new way to communicate with him.
    All in all a great list! I use TV during the day for quiet time. I have 4 kids between 4.5 years and 10 months. It’s a saving grace to get things done!!

  34. I love the list! If you haven’t connected it yet, Wild Krattz is an extention of Zaboomafoo. When Zaboomafoo died, as lemurs do, they didn’t just replace him which I love!
    Daniel Tiger is also an extention of Mr. Rogers Neighborhood, which is also a great show!

  35. We have found Netflix to be great for having lots of kid friendly documentaries. Around age 4, we moved our kids away from the animated shows and focused them on the documentaries. If your kids like Wild Kratts, they will probably like things like Life of Birds, Planet Earth, Walking with Dinosaurs. I am amazed at the facts my kids have now because of these type of shows.

  36. i’like have to check these out! I haven’t seen many at all, just a couple. My kids (6,4,2,and 3 months) that watch videos love Super Why. I tried a Magic Schoolbus one and while it was interesting it seemed really fast paced to me (similar to that horrible yellow sponge show). I’m not sure about Netflix because we don’t have it, but we watch videos on YouTube. Their favorites are Mighty Machines (highly recommend checking it out, they are some awesome shows and really teach real life stuff – how a semi is built, how cars are recycled, snow plows, deep sea machines, etc. love it!), Little Bear (nice relaxed ace, imagination, good morals), Franklin (a little turtle), and some Bob the Builder (though he isn’t quite such a favorite). My kids also love the Leap Frog dvd’s. I swear they really helped my kids learn their alphabet sounds with very little effort from me. They thought the show was a treat and it taught them too. Win win! Thank you for this list!

  37. Learned a few new ideas from your list! Thank you! I use the TV way too much, but got into the habit when I had two 15 months apart, and it’s hard to entertain a 15 month old while nursing a newborn. We haven’t watched Calliou bc I have heard the negative things stated above. Daniel Tiger, sadly, has caused us a few issues, too…like introducing fear of the dark when that had not been an issue for us before. And the newest “stomp three times” episode is basically feeding into throwing a fit. But the songs and parental responses on the show are super helpful! Basically, we watch PBS mostly, and an occasional movie.

    1. Daniel Tiger= how to throw a fit! Yes my husband saw that episode with our 3yr old one day. He was very upset. Our boy definitely does Not need any encouragement in tantrums. It is now banned from our house. Also banned is Cat in the Hat, pbs cartoon. It had an episode encouraging dancing with rattling snakes because they just want to find a friend. I would not have believed it if I hadn’t seen it for myself.

      1. Whats wrong with snakes? Rattle Snakes are actually quite shy. I do apologize, but I cannot stand the bad rep snakes get. All creatures, even…ugh…spiders! Are wonderful and fascinating in their own way.

        1. You have got to be joking. I didn’t take away from Mamaweston’ comment that snakes were horrible and that she was contributing to the bad rep snakes get. It’s a children’s show encouraging children to dance with rattle snakes.

  38. Our kids LOVED all the LeapFrog movies on Netflix. They are so educational and they’ve all the songs.

  39. This is a great list, though I disagree with Calliou. We actually banned the show because my kids became increasingly whiny when they were watching it. However….I second (or third) Octonauts. It’s a HUGE favorite in this house. Netflix has also started running Little Einsteins.

    1. Ya know, I can totally see what you mean about Calliou. I guess I just didn’t connect the whining from my kids with the show before but I truly see it now. I wish these show makers would consider these things, don’t you? My kids tried Octonauts but weren’t huge fans, but we are excited about little Einsteins. Thanks for stopping by and commenting for me!

      1. There are so many shows out there that glorify bad behavior. … allowing children to become the decision makers and parents look like spinless fools. I too wish that show makers would recognize that but it’s all about what will sell unfortunately.
        Isn’t it funny how kids will take to different things! I have a 3 year old who is in love with octonauts.. we have seen just about every episode at least 3 times! Fortunately, Little Einsteins has given us an Octonauts repreave!

        1. U r right . I am shocked that some shows that are supposidly ” for kids” but they r selling bad behavior, foul language, bad attitude u name it . It is a crime against the innocence if childhood . How do they call themselves in the business of kids shows !

  40. I agree with all except Calliou. I’d replace that with Octonauts. If you haven’t seen it, it’s amazing! I find my pre-k girl acting a lot more whiny when we watch Caillou! No thanks!

    1. I was going to add Octonauts! I’m glad it was mentioned. A new favorite of my boys is also Oso- my 4 year old loves when I put his “assignments” into 3 special steps (things like doing chores or getting dressed). It’s helpful!

    2. Octonauts 4evah! My little girl knows to say “Orca” or “sperm whale” and that they are air-breathing mammals instead of just saying “fish”. Plus, the problem solving is very innocent (no fighting/bad guys).

    3. Caillou is totally banned in our house. He’s so whiny and annoying and I don’t want my kids to act like that. Whining gets you nowhere in our house!
      I was on board with this list until I saw Caillou listed and all I could think was “really?!?!” No way

    4. I agree! My three year old loves Calliou but, I find him terribly whiny. And in turn, have noticed her picking that up a lot more, lately. My favorite show for her to watch, though, is Little Einsteins.

    5. I agree, the list was great sans Calliou – he is to whiny for me to even listen to as background noise! I would add Martha Speaks to the list but I think it’s no longer available on Netflix ???

  41. We also love Curious George, Super Why, Justin Time, and Magic School Bus in my house. One that’s a huge favorite here but isn’t on your list is Octonauts. My kids love it because it’s fun and entertaining and I love it because it’s clean and educational.

  42. Kipper is wonderful. My grandson loves it and has memorized some of the episodes. Kipper is a gentle soul and it is great for little ones I think