8 TV Shows for Baby & Toddler Development
Although screen time often gets a bad rap, for many busy parents sitting their child in front of the TV can be a saving grace when trying to check things off the to-do list. Ease your guilt by selecting shows that will be beneficial to your little one's independent learning and personal progression.
Often, young children have a hard time understanding that TV content can apply to the real world, so parents can really help in their development by pointing out connections or asking them to make their own - i.e. “they’re just like you and your friend Ben”.
Here are 8 of our favorite toddler and baby TV shows that are both educational and entertaining:
1. Sesame Street
Debuting in 1969, this beloved TV show has adapted with the times to encompass a wider range of audiences and issues. The program teaches preschool subjects through comedy, cartoons, games, and songs and is still entertaining enough for parents to love it too.
This 11-minute educational show follows a team of eight explorers who embark on underwater adventures and discover facts about the creatures they meet. The show encourages teamwork and empathy as well as an interest in the natural world.
3. Word Party
Aimed at helping young children to expand their vocabulary, this show follows a group of baby animals as they learn new words and how to use them.
4. Daniel Tiger’s Neighborhood
This animated show teaches little ones new words in the form of catchy jingles. It follows the life of Daniel, who with the help of his friends and family learns key social skills necessary for school and life, such as dealing with jealousy over the arrival of his new sister, and how to express emotions. The simple stories contain ‘strategy songs’ designed to equip toddlers with essential coping mechanisms to deal with negative emotions.
5. Dinosaur Train
Perfect for the little one who loves dinosaurs, this program follows a family of Pteranodons and their adopted T-Rex siblings as they hop on a train to visit other dinosaur species each episode and learn all about them. Every episode also features a real-life science segment with a paleontologist who discusses the species a little more.
6. Sid the Science Kid
Encourage your little one’s curious nature with this animated show. Each episode follows Sid as he tries to find the answer to everyday questions such as ‘“Why do bananas go mushy?” then comes home to share his knowledge with his family.
7. Let’s Go Luna!
Teach your child about the world with this fascinating show for preschoolers. It follows three friends who explore the globe with their parents’ traveling performance troupe with help from Luna the Moon. The group visits new cities to learn about their customs, languages, and plenty of other things that make the place distinctive.
8. Peg + Cat
Inspire your little one’s natural curiosity about math with Peg and her sidekick Cat. In each episode, they embark on exciting adventures and solve problems together using foundational math, concepts, and skills.