Ten Awesome Educational YouTube Channels for Your Kids

I’m not a huge fan of plopping the kids in front of a video regularly, but there are some awesome YouTube channels that can really help supplement your homeschool lessons or reinforce lessons learned at school.

best youtube educational channels

Here are our top ten favorite YouYube channels that encourage learning!

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Kahn Academy

If you haven’t subscribed to Kahn Academy, do it right this minute! If your child is struggling in math or science particularly, Kahn Academy has hundreds of videos and tutorials that explain almost everything.


They also have videos explaining personal finance, economics, history, civics, and SAT prep. Kahn Academy is an amazing free resource for older children and I highly recommend it.


 

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Socratica

Socratica makes high quality education videos for kids and adults. They have a great series on the 50 states (although it looks like they’ve only released about half of them at this point) which would go great with the United States notebook project.

They also have videos covering math, science, language, and the arts. Most of Socratica’s math and science videos are geared towards middle and high school, while their 50 states and grammar videos could be used for elementary lessons.


 

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National Geographic

It’s hard to beat the video quality of National Geographic Wild on YouYube.

They don’t have a ton of videos, but the few that they have are the same quality that is shown on TV.

These are not specifically for kids, but my children have always enjoyed these videos and remember an amazing amount of details.


 

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Kid’s Animal Channel

Whenever we study animals I find myself searching youtube for videos to help make the animals come alive for my kids. Sometimes we find good videos and sometimes we find some creepy reality TV video that I have to shut off halfway through.

The Kid’s Animal Channel has over 100 videos covering a variety of lessons and types of animals. It is a great supplement to any animal unit study. This channel is geared toward elementary aged kids.


 

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ELF Kids Videos

It seems like there are thousands of videos for kids who need to work on learning their letters and sounds. I like Elf Kids because their videos are more advanced.

The videos cover vocabulary, verbs, emotions, etc. They also have videos for younger kids, but they are one of the few channels I’ve found that have good videos for kids in first or second grade who need review.


 

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The Learning Station

The Learning Station is Cora’s favorite YouYube channel. Their days of the week video has over one million views and I’m sure half of them have come from her!

This channel includes tons of videos that encourage your kids to move around and participate while watching. They have tons of the classic preschool/ kindergarten songs as well as videos about the days of the week, alphabet, months of the year, etc.


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Busy Beavers

Busy Beavers is geared towards toddlers and preschoolers. Their videos include catchy songs about letters, shapes, numbers, and colors.

Busy Beavers is a fun way to reinforce lessons already taught at preschool or home.


 

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Kids TV123

Kids TV123 is another channel for preschool kids. The videos are simple, but they teach things like phonics, so they are great for review and reinforcing concepts.

Videos include phonics, specific letters, holidays, colors, counting, time, basic science and more.


 

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Cool School 

The Cool School is a fun channel which has an entire section for kid’s crafts. My kids love to make crafts and we’re always looking for new ideas.

Most of the crafts use items you probably already have in the house or can be found at your local craft store.


 

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 Make me Genius

The videos on Make me Genius are good (not amazing) but they do have a corresponding website which is why they made the list. You can download quizzes, tests, and questions that go with many of the videos. The website also has pages of fun facts.

This channel is geared toward elementary children. One strange thing about this channel is it seems like the voices of the kids on the animation are actually adults trying to sound like kids. Younger children probably won’t notice, but I find it a little annoying.

I love that there are so many free resources on the web, although it is sometimes hard to weed through the garbage to find quality resources. Bookmark these ten channels to help supplement your child’s education.

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Experience Science Outside the Textbook

Experience Science Outside the Textbook | The Happy Housewife

By contributing writer Marci

Science is everywhere. It’s in the cars we drive, food we eat, and air we breathe. Science is in video games, smartphones, and tablets. Science is exciting and ever changing.

It’s hard to convey that message to our kids using just a textbook. Textbooks present information available at a certain time, but they can’t give the experience. That experience is crucial in getting kids to love and/or appreciate science. We need to find ways to let kids experience science outside the textbook.

Ways to Experience Science Outside the Textbook

Do the experiments in your curriculum.

I know a lot of you skip the experiments. They take time and are messy. I know. There are times I don’t want to mess up my kitchen either, but you have to trust me. The time and mess is worth it when your child “gets it,” learns what science really is, and gets excited about it. Teaching science gets a lot easier at that point.  See all of The Happy Housewife projects and experiments for homeschooling here!

Experience Science Outside the Textbook | The Happy Housewife

Get outside.

Explore. Look. Listen. Touch. Smell. The natural world is full of things to experience and things to learn more about. Give your children the opportunity to find them. You never know where this might lead.

Follow their interests.

Are they always taking things apart to see how they work? Do they have a huge rock collection? Do they love animals? Find out what excites them and learn more about it. Do a unit study. You can let the kids take the lead and see where it goes.

Experience Science Outside the Textbook | The Happy Housewife

Go on field trips.

Check out science museums, nature centers, trails, and zoos. Go anywhere where science is presented and can be appreciated. New places and new people expand horizons and offer new insights and information.

What About You?

What are your favorite ways to take science out of the textbook? What about history or geography?

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Snow Learning Resources

Snow Learning Resources at The Happy Housewife

By contributing writer Tabitha

Recently we had a snowfall here in Missouri. One day the ground was dry and brown and cold and the next it was wet, slushy, icy, and cold, and had snow four inches deep.

We spent hours building snow forts and snow men and sledding (we’re lucky enough to have a steep hill in our backyard) and getting all wet and frozen. It was the first big snow of the season, and the kids had all sorts of questions for me.

  • “Why does it snow?”
  • “How is snow made?”
  • “What makes some snow powdery and some snow sticky?”
  • “Does it have to be cold to snow?”

One son was even adamant that all we need for snow was for the weather to get cold. So, we got into a discussion of precipitation and temperatures.

One way I love to answer questions is to have my kids use different kinds of media to learn for themselves. This can include books, websites, and movies. Here are some of our favorite snow learning resources.

Snow Learning Resources at The Happy Housewife

Two of my boys building a snow fort.

Snow Learning Resources

Youngest Kids (6 and younger)

Winnie the Pooh and Tigger discover that snow flakes are all different in an episode of My Friends Tigger and Pooh. This was just fascinating to my 2 year old. It’s found on their Christmas DVD.

Sid the Science kid is a preschooler who loves to learn about science. He learns about all kinds of weather in Sid the Science Kid Weather DVD, including snow and how it forms.

Our favorite science for my youngest bunch is often found in Blue’s Clues. In the Blue’s Clues Stormy Weather episode, they talk about the cycle of a rain drop and how snow can form.

There are also books which you can find, like The Snowy Day and others. All of it helps the smallest ones learn about snow.

Elementary School Age

Magic School Bus is great for ANYTHING science related. There’s always something we can learn. The episode where we learn about snow is all about how different kinds of weather form.

Another favorite science series in my family is DK’s Eyewitness DVDs. Their weather episode covers all kinds of weather phenomena, but it also includes snow.

There are many more books, such as The Story of Snow, geared towards this age group to help them learn about snow in greater depth.

There are also snow science kits where you can make your own snow, which is fun for kids.

High School Age and Beyond

For my oldest children and myself, we enjoyed all the resources we used for the younger kids and still learned a great deal. However, there is a lot more to be explored.

We found this website for the National Snow and Ice Data Center while searching for more information.

The National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration also has more information about snow.

We even found some youtube videos about how snowflakes form. The visuals are fascinating. Here is one from Byte Sized Science.

Good luck as you find your own additional ways to learn about snow and then go play in it! (Or switch those around–go play and then learn!)

Of course, there’s always Disney’s Frozen, too…for fun.

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The Winter Constellation Orion

Learning About the Winter Constellation Orion at The Happy Housewife

By contributing writer Marci

Winter is a great time for stargazing. The crisp, dry winter air makes the skies brilliantly clear, and the stars easy to see. It is a great time to learn about the night sky and the celestial bodies that roam them.

One of the most fun ways to learn about the night sky is to learn about the constellations. Orion is the perfect winter constellation to learn first.

Even a novice stargazer can pick out Orion. If you live in the Northern Hemisphere, the three stars of Orion’s belt are easy to see in the southeastern sky in the early evening hours. The stars that make up Orion’s shoulders and legs branch out above and below the belt in an hour glass shape.

Who was Orion?

The constellation Orion was named after a character in Greek mythology – Orion, the hunter. There are many versions of the Orion story.

Learning About the Winter Constellation Orion at The Happy Housewife

One tells the tale of a great hunter who let his ego get the best of him. He bragged that he could kill all the beasts of the Earth, so the Earth Goddess sent a lowly scorpion to bite and kill him. Zeus then placed him in the night sky to hunt and to run from the scorpion. (The constellation Scorpio can also be seen in the winter night sky.)

Another Orion story tells of his love for Artemis, the goddess of hunting. Her brother Apollo disapproved of this relationship. While Orion was swimming in the ocean, Apollo dared Artemis to hit a distant, small object in the ocean with her bow and arrow. Not knowing it was Orion, Artemis killed him with a single shot. Upon learning of Orion’s death, a devastated Artemis placed him among the stars.

Interesting Stars Found in Orion

The constellation of Orion contains some very interesting celestial bodies. Two of the brightest stars in the winter night sky and a star nursery of sorts are found in the Orion constellation.

Betelgeuse (pronounced Beetle-juice) is the brightest star in the constellation and is found in the upper left of the constellation (one of Orion’s shoulders). The other is Rigel. It is found opposite of Betelgeuse on Orion’s leg (lower right of the constellation).

Betelgeuse is a red supergiant, the largest classification of stars. According to Space.com, Betelgeuse’s size changes constantly. It measures anywhere between 550 to 920 times the sun’s diameter.

Rigel is a blue super giant. It is much larger than our sun and burns much hotter. This makes it up to 100,000 times brighter than our sun.

Learning About the Winter Constellation Orion at The Happy Housewife

photo courtesy of HubbleSite.org

If you look at the entire constellation of Orion, there is a glow in the center of the sword. This is not a star. This is the Great Orion Nebula, a cloud of glowing gas where stars are born.

Using Orion to Kick Start a Study

Take the kids out and let them gaze at the stars. Tell them the story of Orion, the hunter. Point out the super giant stars and the glowing nebula. See what sparks their interest.

Here are some directions you might take to study more after your winter stargazing:

  • Study Greek mythology
  • Learn more constellations
  • Learn about classifications of stars
  • Research how stars are formed
  • Look at the differences between planets and stars

Ready to stargaze with your kids?

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