With the long Memorial Day Weekend coming up, and summer vacation on the horizon, perhaps you’re going to be taking a long car trip. Podcasts are great for that time, or any time! Here’s a selection of excellent podcasts for kids and families selected by Josh Carlson, Manager of Youth Services.
All of these should be available on any service you use to listen to podcasts, such as Apple Podcasts, Apple Music, Spotify, Stitcher, Google Podcasts, etc.
If you have some additional great podcast recommendations, leave them in the comments below!
Saturday Morning Cereal Bowl
Forget the annoying, saccharine, overproduced stuff you think of when you hear the term “kids music.” Saturday Morning Cereal Bowl is a “radio show” of curated “kindie” music. These are talented, award-winning musicians, that just happen to make family friendly music. I can’t recommend this weekly podcast highly enough. Great for the whole family!
Smash Boom Best
Which is better: Mermaids or Bigfoot (Bigfeet?)? In Smash Boom Best, participants use facts, opinions, and craft an argument allowing kids to learn about opinions and how to support them in this debate/discussion podcast from American Public Media.
Forever Ago is a history podcast for the whole family! Learn about the origins of a different thing each episode! Emojis, umbrellas, skateboards, video games, and more!
Be Calm on Ahway Island
Short stories and guided meditations for kids that teach mindfulness, relaxation techniques, and breathing exercises, Be Calm on Ahway Island is good for before bedtime, or anytime.
But Why? A Podcast for Curious Kids
A product of Vermont Public Radio and NPR, But Why? is one of my daughter’s favorite things to listen to. Covering a HUGE variety of topics, with talented and educated guests, But Why? is awesome. I regularly learn new things. Kids can even send in their own questions to ask for future episodes. Recommended for younger kids (with adult supervision) through Grade 3.
Wow in the World
Wow in the World is the podcast part of the Tinkercast family of programs. Wonderfully produced, each episode introduces STEM concepts, explores and helps to explain the science of the world, and walks listeners through projects and experiments. Like But Why? you will likely learn a ton listening to this, as well! Recommended for elementary – middle school kids.
Brains On! is an award-winning podcast produced by American Public Media. Awesome science learning in every episode. Especially cool is that it also has a Spanish language version.
Books & Reading Podcasts
Kids Ask Authors
A project of celebrated author Grace Lin, each 5-10 minute episode of Kids Ask Authors features Lin interviewing another author, and posing them a question submitted by a child. These are fun, interesting, and a great way to expand upon books your child is reading. Recommended ages/grades vary based on the author being interviewed or which book they are discussing. Overall, the books and authors tend to focus on the Grades K-6 range.
Modern day fables for older kids and tweens. Beautifully written and told stories deal with, at times, heavy topics. Recommended for listening together, as these stories can be great conversation starters for families, as well as longer listens for car trips!
Billed as “bedtime stories for kids of all ages,” this long-running podcast leans heavily into podcasts as a storytelling format. There are new stories twice weekly, and most run 15-30 minutes in length, though there are occasionally longer, book-length, stories.