Kids love technology, don’t they? And while I believe our focus as early childhood educators should mostly be on hands-on learning, sometimes a great YouTube video is exactly what you need to help you teach a certain concept or give your preschoolers a little “brain break.”
It can be hard to know where to begin with so many videos out there. I’ve also learned the hard way that you can’t count on everything that looks appropriate and educational to actually be suitable for preschoolers. That’s why I’ve made a list of eight of my favorite YouTube channels for preschoolers to make it a little easier for you to find that perfect video.
1. Bounce Patrol
Bounce Patrol is a group of entertainers from Australia who make fun and silly songs for preschoolers! My preschoolers really love their Halloween songs–we played them over and over last October! I like them because their alphabet songs are so catchy, and the videos are visually stimulating. (For example, check out The Letter B Song.) I believe these videos really helped my preschoolers learn letter sounds.
2. Laurie Berkner
I first heard Laurie Berkner when my nieces were little, over a decade ago. Laurie has been entertaining young children with silly songs for a long time! I admire her for going live daily during the US’s shelter-in-place order last spring. She has videos on just about every topic. My favorites are the “We Are The Dinosaurs” song and “Look at All The Letters.”
3. PBS Kids
PBS Kids has a ton of free content on their YouTube page, including episodes of Daniel Tiger’s Neighborhood and other original shows. However, I love PBS Kids for their read-along videos with celebrities like Michelle Obama, Kristen Bell, and the Bush sisters.
4. The Learning Station
The Learning Station has a HUGE library of songs to get your preschoolers moving! Check out the Move and Freeze Song, which is a fun version of the freeze dance. They also have a lot of phonics songs to help you teach letter sounds, like this ABC Phonics Song.
I don’t think this list would be complete without Blippi. His videos are mesmerizing for preschoolers. However, I have to admit that I almost left him off this list for a few reasons. Not all of his content is educational. Blippi is a genius at marketing, and that means he mostly creates content to gain views and likes in order to sell more merch. I can’t deny that he’s great at captivating the attention of young children. I recommend choosing his short song videos rather than the ones where he plays with toys. A couple of my preschoolers’ favorites are the Fire Truck Song and the Tooth Brushing Song.
6. Dr. Jean
Dr. Jean Feldman is an entertainer, author, educational consultant, NAEYC member, and all-around expert in teaching children using engaging music. I had the opportunity to see her speak at a conference many years ago–she got a whole room full of adults to dance to “Tooty Ta.” I have made her songs part of my curriculum for years. Check out her rap (yes, she raps) about classroom rules here, and of course, everyone loves the Bear Hunt!
GoNoodle’s songs are sure to get your preschoolers moving! And their music will get stuck in your head, too. I personally love “Banana Banana Meatball,”, a song about patterns by BlazerFresh. My preschoolers have always loved the song “Purple Stew” too! GoNoodle has a lot of content on their YouTube channel, but there’s even more on their website. You can create a free account here.
8. Jack Hartmann
Get ready, get set, let’s learn about the alphabet! Jack Hartmann’s songs are not only catchy and engaging, they’re based on early childhood standards. I love using his videos to help preschoolers learn letters, numbers, and more. I often open up YouTube and search his name + the letter I’m currently teaching. Here’s his Letter A Song if you want to get started!
9. Bari Koral: Kids Yoga, Music, & Mindfulness
A mom in my Preschool At Home FB group recommend this channel to me–and I’m so glad she did, because Bari Koral’s channel was such a nice change of pace. Her calming yoga videos would be great to play just before naptime. Try the Star Energy Mindfulness video to help your little ones calm down. I think I’m ready for a nap myself!
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