Nearly every little kid longs to be a big kid and do Big Kid Things. And high on the list of Big Kid Things that younger children are wistfully watching the big kids do is watch videos on YouTube.
YouTube videos also are a fabulous way to help a young child to manage an unexpected wait, stay occupied on a long car ride, or to remain quiet while convalescing from any of those frequent minor illnesses only cured by time and rest.
It’s no wonder that parents of the young ones crave YouTube channels that are reliably kid-friendly and can be trusted to dish up tons of appropriate content with no objectionable aspects.
Here’s a list of some of the best YouTube celebrities and channels that families will find essential to grab for the approved list for young children. Of course, any channel can change abruptly, so even if a celeb or a channel made this list, parents will still need to do the occasional spot check and make sure it’s still on the up-and-up and meets your personal standards for your kids’ screen time diet.
For the Very, Very Young
Cocomelon is the new name for ABC Kids’ young child channel. Here you’ll find favorite characters from the network and tons of content that will happily occupy your toddler or preschooler with songs, stories, and games. The channel offers a selection of single, stand-alone songs that play for two or three minutes, as well as twenty to thirty-minute collections of musical fun.
Check them out and you will find dozens of selections, plus three subchannels featuring learning videos and children’s songs. Many are “hosted” by the same animated characters. With over 26 million subscribers, this popular set of channels has a lot to offer families looking for safe YouTube selections.
The Wiggles are a group of four sharp and snappy young adults who perform children’s songs. They are from Australia and for the past 26 years have been styling themselves as the Fab Four of Fun.
Most of the videos on this jam-packed site are musical in nature, and just as bright and bubbly as the hosts and hostesses in the group. Many videos are short and sweet – from 1 to 3 minutes – but there are some collections with a bit more length as they run through multiple songs in a set. Each of the group members also has a subchannel that features their “favorites” and is worth exploring.
Here’s a channel full of fun with a purpose for toddlers and preschoolers. The animated characters host and sing songs on videos designed for fun and learning. Kids can sing along with familiar songs, learn nursery rhymes, and develop an understanding of a host of readiness skills like learning the ABCs, the colors, and more. The videos range in length from a few short minutes to nearly an hour.
Nearly 21 million subscribers have found that the videos not only support fun and learning, but they also have a consistent undertone of positive character traits, as well. There are sixteen additional channels to explore, so you can fine-tune your child’s viewing preferences.
Follow young Emily as she plays and learns throughout the day. Preschoolers will enjoy watching the “hostess” play with her toys and might even learn a bit along the way. Emily demonstrates colors, pretend play, and more in this collection of dozens of three to five-minute videos, which are perfect for shorter attention spans.
The perky star with the ponytails has over 8 million subscribers. Kids can follow along as she reaches for dreams that most little girls treasure-things like dressing up as a princess or becoming a mermaid. It can get a bit “commercial,” but it’s fun and wholesome on the whole.
While it’s not always toy-focused, Evan and Jillian’s channel features loads of product challenges. Find out how things work, watch blindfolded cookie tastings, and see Evan tackle the world’s largest gummy worm. The videos are family-friendly and creative.
There are 18 subchannels to explore, well over 100 videos, and more to explore. With nearly 6 million subscribers and counting, Evan and Jillian are poised to become huge names on YouTube. Can’t wait to see what they come up with next!
What kid doesn’t dream of an endless supply of toys to try out and play with? Young Ryan is living the dream (with the help of his parents). YouTube viewers can watch the family visit familiar stores and purchase toys, play with them, and share running commentary. Ryan and his family also share family activities, visit family attractions, and much more.
The videos are five to twenty minutes long for the most part. There are six subchannels you might enjoy, as well. And you certainly won’t be alone – the tyke has over 17 million subscribers!
The six and seven-year-old hostesses, Naiah and Elli, have made a ton of videos with their Mom showing toy hacks, unboxings, and generally giving their opinions to the world. They also enjoy making silly parodies that kids will love.
With well over 100 videos at around fifteen minutes each, Naiah and Elli are nothing if not prolific. There’s a ton of kid-friendly content here that will tickle your child’s funny bone! New content is uploaded several times weekly, and it’s all good, clean fun for kids.
Looking for a nearly endless stream of activity ideas? WhizKidScience might be just the channel for you. The young host has already posted dozens and dozens of videos of science experiments and ideas for fun. They may require a few common or inexpensive supplies to duplicate, and parents will definitely need to supervise any experiments (at least to keep the mess to a minimum).
The young host has garnered several hundred thousand subscribers and millions of video views. There are two subchannels, as well, that explore math and play as well as the main science channel.
Join the family of six kids and their parents on daily adventures through life. Kids will recognize the situations and experiences that the family shares, like heading to the water park, visiting the doctor, and putting on a skit. It’s a great way to get ideas for your own family fun with lots of “Why don’t we…” moments, and also great to virtually get to know another family.
Each of the kids, including the youngest, has their own channel so your child can follow the family member that they relate to the most. There are nearly 8 million subscribers and well over 100 videos, ranging from a few minutes of short to nearly an hour. The videos are fast-paced and positive, so nearly everyone will enjoy!
This offering is perhaps best for elementary aged children and upwards. Host Dan plays video games and shares with a mix of live action and animated characters. If your child is an aspiring gamer, full of love for Pikachu and the other digital denizens, then DanTDM has loads of content that will put them right in the middle of the gaming world in ways that are likely more appropriate than some of the more mature gaming channels.
Videos mostly range from 10 to 60 minutes. There are over 20 million subscribers, new content posted frequently, including live videos, and three subchannels to explore.
Ever wonder what happens when you fill a swimming pool with cola, add Mentos and ice, then crash a drone into it? These are the kinds of stunts that the host delights in filming. Each one involves some sort of crazy way to destroy tech, and each is a spectacle unto itself.
Over 6 million subscribers enjoy videos that answer burning questions such as “Can you charge an iPhone with a taser?” This channel is a child’s garden of things they would never, ever be allowed to actually do, but would love to watch.