I am a podcast loving mother. My good friend once told me, “Your house will never be cleaner than when you find a podcast you love.” She’s right. I will think of chores to do so I can listen to my current obsession.
If you’re reading this and wondering “What in the world is a podcast?,” you’re not alone. Many of my friends didn’t know until I introduced them. Podcasts are a free medium for audio entertainment, education and journalism. If you have an iPhone, you already have a podcast application and you need only locate it and search according to your interest. For an Android, launch the Google Play Music App, select the menu button, then select Podcasts.
While they’re a favorite of mine, I didn’t feel right subjecting my kids to “This American Life” or “Oprah’s Super Soul Conversations,” so I looked for kid-friendly options. To their delight, (and mine) I was able to find fun, engaging and sometimes educational options for them! Here’s our top 3:
- “WOW in the World” – This is an NPR podcast for kids that is super fun and educational. Hosts Mindy Thomas and Guy Raz explore different learning topics each week in a fun and silly way. My daughter’s favorite episode is “Why Horses Can’t Wear Flip-Flops.”
- “Stories Podcast” – Of the three, this is the one I like best. It tells stories while including songs and above par voice acting. They have told some original stories but they also cover the classics like “The Little Dutch Boy,” “David and Goliath,” and my kid’s favorite, “Rapunzel.”
- “Little Stories for Tiny People” – I don’t often suffer from insomnia, but if I did, I would listen to this podcast to lull me to sleep. The narrator, Rhea, has a very soothing voice and speech pattern. I put this one on when I’m hoping the kids will catch a car nap. If they aren’t lulled to sleep, they enjoy her stories because they are adorable, original, and age appropriate for preschoolers.
While these are the best that I’ve found for children ages 2 to 5, there are many more options for big kids too. I find these to be perfect for longer car rides where the Disney Pandora Station starts to repeat itself. The episodes are short enough to maintain their interest, with the added bonus of entertaining me too. I also hope that listening and learning in ways that are fun and different further promotes their interest in reading and science.