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17 Movies, Books & More About School

Whatever their thoughts on school, kids identify with these books, movies, apps, and TV shows about students learning life lessons in the classroom.

By the Kids’ Media Experts at SmartFeed

Education has long been a popular setting in mainstream media, both for inspiration and for entertainment. It has introduced us to famous teachers (Mr. Kotter, Mrs. Frizzle), famous schools (Ridgemont High, Rushmore, Wayside School, Hogwarts), and famous school-centric stories and shows (Wonder, South Park, Saved by the Bell). In each case, we watch with excitement, empathy, or humor, based on our own set of school experiences. And sometimes we get to relish the experience of seeing school (and the learning process) in a whole new light.

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Here, we have gathered a list of titles for families who want some academic role models or lessons for their children, as well as a couple selections that simply offer a little scholastic comic relief. Reflecting a broad mix of real-life and fictional stories, the listings here prove that there are many different ways to learn and many different ways to teach.

Great Books with a Schoolroom Setting

The Year of Miss Agnes book coverThe Year of Miss Agnes
Ages 6+
Schoolteachers don’t usually last very long at this one-room schoolhouse in Alaska. Miss Agnes is different. Not only does she stick around for a year, she also makes learning relatable and enjoyable to the citizens of the remote village.

 

 

Frindle Book CoverFrindle
Ages 8+
Adventures in vocabulary are in play in this story. A boy creates a new word for an ordinary object, and his creation catches on, much to the chagrin of his teacher and parents!

 

 

princess-academy-coverPrincess Academy
Ages 10+
Strong community and deep friendships form in this fantasy novel. Love of words and learning propel the heroine to become an invaluable resource within her community.

 

 

An App for Kids’ Academic Enrichment

wizard-school-cover


Wizard School

Ages 7+
This creative app taps into the user’s imagination and enthusiasm in true 21st century fashion. Videos, photos, drawings, and inventive challenges combine to inspire learning.

 

Kids’ Movies with Inspiring Academic Role Models

akeelah-and-the-bee
Akeelah and the Bee
Ages 7+
A girl’s journey to a big spelling bee is supported by her community. At times she struggles to embrace her own intelligence and worth.

 

 

spellbound


Spellbound

Ages 9+
This documentary follows several competitors for the National Spelling Bee. Hard work, family, and big dreams are part of the equation that helps get these kids on the big stage.

 

on-the-way-to-school
On the Way to School

Ages 9+
Most Americans have a simple way to get to school; a short walk, bike ride, or trip in a car or bus will get us there. For other kids around the world, it’s not easy, or comfortable, but it’s worth it because they desperately want an education.

 

the-miracle-workerThe Miracle Worker
Ages 9+
The story of Helen Keller and her teacher is beyond inspiring. Helen has no understanding of language or of interacting normally with family members. Through ingenuity, perseverance and patience, teacher Annie Sullivan opens up the world of words and language to her student. Annie is a testament to all teachers’ hard work. A must-see.

 

rudy
Rudy
Ages 10+
Determination and hard work are the life lessons strongly represented by the main character in this fine film. With the help of a kindly teacher, teammates and friends, the underdog Rudy fulfills his life’s dream. Definitely best for tweens and older, due to language, a death and sports violence.

 

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TV for Kids’ Academic Inspiration and Fun

little-house-on-the-prairie
Little House on the Prairie
Ages 7+
The one-room schoolhouse in this beloved series is not the only location where education takes place. Pioneer children living on a farm learn a variety of practical tasks and life skills every day. History and geography are natural discussion topics when watching as a family.

 

mythbustersMythbusters
Ages 8+
Exhibiting a strong level of curiosity, the crew of Mythbusters sets out in each episode to prove an idea, sometimes an urban legend, sometimes an idiom like “a bull in a china shop.” There are often explosions, items being thrown into walls, or things launched skyward, all in the name of science and discovery.

 

More Mature TV and Movies About Academics

These titles have more mature themes and language, so they’re recommended for older teen audiences.

dream-schoolDream School
Ages 14+
The mission at this school is to inspire and encourage teens at risk of dropping out. Celebrity mentors and teachers have their work cut out for them. Be aware: Strong language and personal circumstances mean this is best for teens and older.

dead-poets-society
Dead Poets Society

Ages 14+
This classic is an inspiring coming-of-age story that celebrates creativity and a free spirit. There are mature themes and activities, so this is best for older tweens and teens.

 

good-will-hunting
Good Will Hunting

Ages 14+ (rated R)
This Academy Award winner demonstrates that academics can open doors for people from all classes (e.g., a working-class Boston youth), but you have to believe in yourself and want to walk through those new doors.

 

freedom-writers
Freedom Writers

Ages 13+
An idealistic high school teacher discovers the way to connect with her students is to help find their similarities. Her emphasis on really listening to her students is notable. The hip-hop soundtrack will appeal to teen viewers.

 

 

stand-and-deliver
Stand and Deliver
Ages 13+
Sacrifice and hard work are front-and-center in this inspiring movie. It is based on the story of a real math teacher who went to extreme lengths to teach his kids math, and eventually AP Calculus. The students struggle with life issues outside of school, but while in school they become driven and engaged. Real-life scenes can be rough, and the language is questionable at times, but relevant to the movie.

to-sir-with-love

 

To Sir, With Love
Ages 13+
This classic is another inspired teacher tale. Real-life issues such as class and race are addressed, while the teacher works hard to connect with and discipline his students so that they are ready and able to learn.

 

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World Holidays for Kids: Books, Movies & More

Are you interested in helping your children become “global citizens”? The holidays are a nice time to enjoy our own traditions while exploring others, too.

world holidays

By the Kids’ Media Experts at SmartFeed

The winter season offers the perfect backdrop for introducing your kids to holidays celebrated by different cultures, both in the United States and abroad. And media can provide us with a window into their varied and colorful traditions.

Here is a collection of books, along with a few other media treats (a movie, TV show, and app) that will help your children broaden their horizons and learn more about others who share our planet. Enjoy these titles with your kids, and you all may learn something new!

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Books About Favorite Holidays From Around the World

Let’s Celebrate Diwali
Ages 3+
Diwali, or the festival of lights, is celebrated around the world. This book explores the different traditions and customs of many different groups. The colorful illustrations make this an especially engaging read.

 

AmmaAmma, Tell Me About Holi!
Ages 4+
This colorful tale shares the story of the Hindu holiday of Holi, using colorful pictures and simple rhymes to make it easily understood by children.

 

CelebrateCelebrate: A Book of Jewish Holidays
Ages 4+
This book is a terrific introduction to the traditions and stories behind many of the Jewish holidays.

 

OskarOskar and the Eight Blessings
Ages 4+
As a refugee from Nazi Germany, Oskar finds the people of New York to be kind and giving on a day that is both the seventh night of Hanukkah and Christmas Eve. The people’s warm welcome shows Oskar that there is love and compassion in the world still.

RamadanUnder the Ramadan Moon
Ages 4+
In this picture book, a family’s month-long celebration of Ramadan is connected to the moon’s movement. The giving, sharing, praying, and caring for others that occurs during the month is beautifully conveyed.

 

Day-of-the-DeadDay of the Dead
Ages 5+
Brightly colored illustrations and detailed descriptions draw the reader into the preparations, foods, and celebration of the Day of the Dead.

 

Egg-TreeThe Egg Tree
Ages 5+
One grandmother’s childhood tradition of an Easter Egg tree is discovered by her grandchildren, who are quick to embrace the custom themselves. This winner of the Caldecott Medal is a true classic.

 

MarcoMarco’s Cinco de Mayo
Ages 5+
Narrated from the perspective of a young dancer in a Cinco de Mayo parade, this book brings the holiday and its history to life.

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holidays_around_the_worldHolidays Around the World: Celebrate Chinese New Year
Ages 6+
With over a billion people celebrating Chinese New Year worldwide, it’s a great idea to learn about the food, gifts, visiting, and celebration that are key to this holiday.

 

Seven_spoolsSeven Spools of Thread: A Kwanzaa Story
Ages 6+
The seven principles of Kwanzaa are brought to life through the story of seven brothers in an African village. When their father dies, they must cooperate and make gold from seven spools of thread. As they work together, they learn to value each other and their community.

A Movie About Favorite Holidays From Around the World

The_Black_CandleThe Black Candle: A Kwanzaa Celebration
Ages 9+
This documentary, filmed around the world, explores the African-American experience, both the triumphs and sorrows. Of particular focus is the Kwanzaa holiday, which now is celebrated by over 40 million people.

 

A TV Show About Favorite Holidays From Around the World

RugratsRugrats Holiday Collection
Ages 6+
Christmas, Kwanzaa, and Hanukkah get the Rugrats treatment in this holiday special.

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An App About Favorite Holidays From Around the World

My-MenorahMy Menorah
Ages 2+
A fully featured Hanukkah app with a menorah to light, a dreidel game, songs, and some foundational Hebrew. Included are “Eight Days of Happiness” tips for parents on teaching children about the meaning and traditions behind the holiday and expressing appreciation for the miracle of the oil lasting eight nights.

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14 Christmas Classics to Spark Kids’ Holiday Spirit

Are there any favorite titles from your childhood that you haven’t yet shared with your kids? Dip into this list for some old-fashioned holiday fun.

charlie_brown

By the Kids’ Media Experts at SmartFeed

Many of the following movies, books, and TV shows will be familiar to you, bringing back fond memories of Christmases gone by, but they may be “new” for your kids! Take some time this holiday season to introduce your family to a title that made you feel like you just couldn’t wait for the holidays. There might even be a few titles here that you missed out on when you were just a “tiny reindeer” yourself.

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Books to Spark Kids’ Holiday Spirit

Perfect_Tree
The Year of the Perfect Christmas Tree: An Appalachian Story

Ages 5+
A mother’s love for her child, memories of missing loved ones, and a Christmas tree are all important elements in this beautifully told and illustrated classic.

 

life_adventures_santa_claus

The Life and Adventures of Santa Claus
Ages 6+
Part mythology, part fantasy, this tale of Santa Claus growing up as an orphan is well told by L. Frank Baum, the creator of the Wizard of Oz. An excellent choice for reading to a child.

 

too_many_tamales

Too Many Tamales
Ages 4+
While helping with the annual Christmas Eve tradition of tamale-making, Maria finds herself giving into temptation. This is a funny, heartfelt story with lovely illustrations and strong messages about love and family and honesty.

 

Gift_Magi

The Gift of the Magi
Ages 10+
This classic O. Henry story is a bittersweet tale of a husband and wife who sacrifice in order to buy presents for each other. Love for each other becomes all they have, and all they need. A true lesson about the meaning of Christmas.

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Movies to Spark Kids’ Holiday Spirit

A_Charlie_Brown_ChristmasA Charlie Brown Christmas
Ages 3+
Charlie Brown finds that love and friendship can overcome his holiday blues. Bonus: Now your kids will understand what you mean when you talk about buying a “Charlie Brown tree”!

 

FrostyFrosty the Snowman
Ages 3+
This holiday favorite tells the story of Frosty, a snowman that magically comes to life on Christmas Eve.

 

grinchDr. Seuss’ How The Grinch Stole Christmas!
Ages 4+
The original animated movie from 1966 is always worth watching during the holiday season. Family, friends, and togetherness are what’s important, and even the Grinch finally learns that.

 

santa_claus_is_comin_to_townSanta Claus Is Comin’ to Town
Ages 4+
The story of Santa Claus is creatively told in this excellent special from the 1970s with guest appearances (and a catchy tune) by Heat Miser and Snow Miser!

 

christmas_carolA Christmas Carol (1951)
Ages 6+
Christmas Eve visits from three ghosts persuade miserly Mr. Scrooge to change his ways. Always a classic to watch during the holiday season.

 

year_without_a_santa_clausThe Year Without a Santa Claus
Ages 7+
Hard to imagine a holiday season without watching this stop-motion animation favorite.

wonderful_lifeIt’s a Wonderful Life
Ages 9+
This perennial classic is sure to remind you and yours what the holidays are about. George Bailey learns that he is, in fact, the luckiest man in the world because of the love of his family and community.

 

MillionsMillions
Ages 10+
This is a bit of an unusual choice for a holiday movie, but the messages of selflessness, giving, and kindness will resonate with the whole family. Note that this is best for ages 10 and up, as there is some language, along with a few iffy situations.

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TV Shows to Spark Kids’ Holiday Spirit

ArthurArthur’s Perfect Christmas
Ages 5+
In this special, all different ways of celebrating are explored by Arthur and his group of friends, including Francine, whose family celebrates Hanukkah. Everyone has a different idea of what makes a “perfect” holiday.

 

hanna_barbera_christmasHanna-Barbera Christmas
Ages 5+
Yogi Bear, the Flintstones, and the Smurfs celebrate Christmas in this fun and nostalgic collection of cartoons.

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14 Sure-to-Be-Classic Christmas & Winter Books, Movies & Shows

Get in the holiday spirit with these recently created books, movies, or TV shows. Who knows? Maybe your family will help them reach “classic” status.

christmas_blog

By the Kids’ Media Experts at SmartFeed

We all have favorite books and movies that we look forward to enjoying during the busy holiday season. This is a wonderful time to snuggle up under a blanket together and let your imagination whisk you away to a far-off land. Maybe your kids have outgrown some of the old favorites, or perhaps your family is ready to try something new-to-you. See if a few of the following titles warrant a spot on your holiday must-see list!

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Sure-to-Be-Classic Christmas & Winter Books

Snow
Ages 3+
Perfect for the preschoolers in your family, this is a beautifully illustrated ode to snow and winter.

 

 

Miracle on 133rd Street
Ages 4+
A beautiful holiday story showing how important community, and a delicious meal, are for properly celebrating and giving thanks.

 

Mooseltoe
Ages 4+
Moose’s holiday preparations are perfect…except for one big thing! Follow along as Moose uses creativity and imagination to create a truly one-of-a-kind Christmas tree.

 

The Wild Christmas Reindeer
Ages 4+
Young reindeer herder Tekka learns that kindness is the key in this beautiful Christmas classic.

 

Olive, The Other Reindeer
Ages 4+
Olive is an imaginative little dog, and a simple misunderstanding sends her off on a Christmas adventure that is pure fun for kids and dogs alike.

 

Daddy Christmas and Hanukkah Mama
Ages 5+
Families that celebrate more than one December holiday will find a lot to like in this story. Respect for cultural differences is an important theme, and you’ll discover ways to share food, traditions, and songs.

A Christmas Memory
Ages 7+
This story evokes a time long ago, when the author baked fruitcakes with his elderly cousin. This is a touching, vivid glimpse of the past that will become a family favorite.

 

Helen Thayer’s Arctic Adventure
Ages 9+
This biography is an inspiring adventure story following a woman and her dog as they travel on foot to the magnetic North Pole. Along the way, they encounter wild animals and extreme weather, all while showing tremendous grit and fortitude.

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Sure-to-Be-Classic Christmas & Winter Movies

A Muppets Christmas: Letters to Santa
Ages 4+
Appropriate for the whole family, the Muppets once again combine hilarity, adventure, and strong positive messages in this holiday movie.

 

 

Arthur Christmas
Ages 4+
From the same animation studio that made the Wallace and Gromit movies, Arthur Christmas is great fun. It’s a film that will appeal to young and old alike, sharing important messages about family and caring for others.

 

Elf: Buddy’s Musical Christmas
Ages 5+
Crafted as an animated mashup of the movie and musical of Elf, this animated stop-motion film is quickly becoming a holiday classic. Musical numbers, love of family, and a healthy dose of true holiday spirit make this one a must-see.

 

Samantha: An America Girl Holiday
Ages 7+
If you prefer your holiday stories with an old-fashioned bent, this one is for you. Samantha, an orphan in early 1900s New York, lives with her grandmother and experiences the opening of the original subway and the women’s suffragette movement. She is a role model for others, thanks to her kind heart and spirit.

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A Sure-to-Be-Classic Christmas & Winter TV Show

Wild Kratts: A Creature Christmas
Ages 6+
Known for programs featuring love and enthusiasm for animals, the Kratt brothers offer this Christmas special that’s no exception. Along with learning about animals, you’ll also understand more about the joy of giving, especially around the holidays.

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Programming

11 Movies, Books, Shows & Apps for Kids Who Code

If your kids are interested in computer programming, here’s a list of books, movies, apps, and TV shows they might enjoy.

By the Kids’ Media Experts at SmartFeed

Would your child rather build their own game than play the ones they already have? Computer programming has become increasingly popular among today’s youngest generations. Even a kindergartner can start to learn how to code! Here are a variety of apps that not only explain what coding is, but they make it easy and fun to learn simple coding steps. More advanced concepts are also just a click away. Want your kids to step away from the nuts-and-bolts (or zeroes and ones) of coding for a while? Here are a few books, TV shows and movies that will engage your junior programmer!

Books for Kids Who Love Coding and Programming

Coding GamesCoding Games in Scratch
Ages 8+
If your child has ever wanted to learn to code and create their own game, this is a great resource. It’s filled with essential coding terminology and step-by-step instructions to code a variety of simple games. It also finishes up with extra projects for more advanced users.

 

Secret CodersSecret Coders
Ages 8+
This graphic novel, the first in a series, introduces the basics of coding and logic, combined with a mystery that takes place in a school. Solving puzzles and cracking school secrets are part of the fun.

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Apps for Kids Who Love Coding and Programming

LightbotLightbot Jr.
Ages 4+
Moving the robot through a puzzle using four different commands is the goal of this app. The colorful interface is appealing to younger kids, who will gain an understanding of basic programming logic as they play.

 

KodableKodable Pro
Ages 5+
This app is just right for slowly easing younger kids into programming concepts. It is easy to learn, with lots of fun visual effects.

 

ScratchScratchJr
Ages 6+
Developed for kindergarteners by a team at MIT, this app is a great introduction to visual programming. Adult help will be needed at first for explaining the instructions. After that, creating an animated story or game will be within reach.

 

GoldibloxGoldieblox: Adventures in Coding – The Rocket Cupcake Co.
Ages 7+
This visual coding game, aimed especially at girls, uses an adventure story to drive the coding process. There are also puzzles and videos to further the learning and creativity that really enhance the app.

 

SwiftSwift Playgrounds
Ages 10+
This new iPad-only app is a great introduction to coding in the Swift language. As kids work through the exercises and challenges, they can even learn enough to build their own app!

 

Cargo-BotCargo-Bot
Ages 10+
This programming app is designed to be a bit more challenging. It encourages logical thinking by awarding more points for the most direct solution to each puzzle. There are several levels, and unlimited tries to solve a puzzle.

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A Movie for Kids Who Love Coding and Programming

CodeGirlCodeGirl
Ages 10+
An international technology competition for teen girls is the focus of this documentary. The challenge: identifying a social problem, developing a business plan, and then coding an app to help solve that problem. Girls work hard to compete, better themselves, and in turn, improve the world they live in.

 

TV Shows for Kids Who Love Coding and Programming

AnnedroidsAnnedroids
Ages 5+
Anne, a tween science genius whose specialties are robotics and programming, is the heart of this excellent show. In each episode, she and her friends wonder, test, and yes, make mistakes, while exploring new discoveries surrounding a particular scientific concept.

Project Mc2Project Mc2
Ages 7+
This Netflix series imagines four teen girls as secret agents, each equipped with special science knowledge, including chemistry and programming. They use their intelligence, gadgets, and teamwork to problem-solve and change the world for the better.

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Guest Posts Preschool

14 Books, Movies & Apps That Teach Toddlers About Friendship

Toddlers learn how to be a good friend by watching and imitating others. They’ll find an assortment of positive examples in these books, shows, and more.

By the Kids’ Media Experts at SmartFeed

toddlers_main
When you’re ready for your preschooler to unwind with a show, movie, book, or app, why not share some positive media that can help them foster better face-to-face relationships with their peers? The following friendship-themed choices show youngsters how friends interact, centering on themes like sharing, teamwork, inclusion, and generosity. Whether the best friend in these stories is a duck, a pirate, a dump truck, or a ballerina, these worthwhile role models will be a big hit with your kids.

Books That Teach Toddlers About Friendship

Little Blue TruckLittle Blue Truck
Ages 2+
This fun story will appeal to most toddlers, starting with the first pages filled with truck sounds and animal noises. The title character is kind and generous so he has plenty of friends to help when he gets in a bit of a mess. Everyone needs friends … even a little blue truck.

Sandwich SwapThe Sandwich Swap
Ages 3+
A fight over “whose sandwich is better” comes between two best friends. This story is about much more than a sandwich, of course. It addresses differences, tolerance, and the importance of friends.

 

Frog and ToadFrog and Toad Are Friends
Ages 4+
Frog and Toad are the best of friends. They have different temperaments and opinions, but they always respect each other and are excellent role models for how friends should treat each other.

 

 

Little ElliotLittle Elliot, Big City
Ages 4+
Beautifully illustrated, this book tells the story of Elliot, a lonely elephant in the big city. Finding a friend and doing things together makes everything right in Elliot’s world.

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Apps That Teach Toddlers About Friendship

Sago MiniSago Mini Friends
Ages 2+
Virtual playdates are a fun activity in this app. Numerous activities and a variety of different friends make for lots of choices. Fine motor skills get a workout during game play.

 

DoraDora’s Enchanted Forest Adventures
Ages 4+
This interactive book tells a sweet story of kindness and friendship. There are some Spanish words to learn, and a sticker page at the end adds some interactive fun.

 

Movies That Teach Toddlers About Friendship

AngelinaAngelina Ballerina: Dreams Do Come True
Ages 3+
Angelina Ballerina has big dreams. When she has a chance to realize one of them, she has to decide — with the help of her family and friends — what to do. Enhanced by music and positive characters, this movie is sure to charm.

 

JakeJake and the Never Land Pirates: Jake Saves Bucky
Ages 3+
This feature-length movie (based on the popular TV show) is a great adventure for preschoolers. Jake and his crew work together and problem-solve to save a dear friend. Kids are engaged when Jake speaks directly to viewers and involves them in the quest.

 

Lost and FoundLost and Found
Ages 3+
In this gentle and colorful film, a young boy finds a penguin on his doorstep. In their journey together back to the penguin’s home, they find a way to communicate and become true friends.

 

 

Ruby’s StudioRuby’s Studio: The Friendship Show
Ages 4+
Using music, animation, and a friendly cast, this show is truly effective at discussing the ups and downs of friendship for young children. From starting a conversation … to finding common interests … to coping with a mean friend, all topics are thoughtfully covered. Parents can also tune in to gather ideas for further discussion.

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TV Shows That Teach Toddlers About Friendship

Sarah DuckSarah & Duck
Ages 2+
This sweet animated series follows Sarah and Duck as they explore their neighborhood with curiosity and enthusiasm. The duo is always learning new things, with counting and picture identification as other positive aspects of this series.

Stinky DirtyThe Stinky & Dirty Show
Ages 3+
Based on the book series by Jim and Kate McMullan, Stinky and Dirty are best friends who use creativity and teamwork to solve problems.

 

 

Tumble LeafTumble Leaf
Ages 3+
Simple science concepts are explored in this fun animated series. Animal friends make up the cast, and they work together to learn and share with each other.

 

ArthurArthur
Ages 4+
There’s a reason this show is currently in its 19th season. Arthur and his friends and family experience true-to-life scenarios and work through social and emotional issues in thoughtful ways. A true classic that all ages will enjoy.

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Martial Arts Sports

11 Martial Arts Movies, Books & Shows for Kids

Your Karate Kid will get a kick out of these movies, shows, and books. Even the funny ones deliver key messages on building self-esteem and standing up to bullies.

By the Kids’ Media Experts at SmartFeed

martial_arts

Imagine this rainy-day scenario: Your lovable, active child, who is normally bouncing off the walls when cooped up indoors, instead is dressed in a crisp, belted uniform, standing tall on a mat, in a straight line, with a dozen other boys and girls their age. Your child proceeds through the class exercises with focus, enthusiasm, and discipline. Not there yet? Here’s another scenario for your next rainy day: Your lovable, active child cozies up on the couch to read a good book or watch a movie or TV show about kids like these. Kids who are martial artists and use their skills to overcome evil in the form of bullies, bad guys, or simply self-doubt.

Below is a hand-picked list of movies, TV shows, and books about martial arts that may inspire kids to give this popular activity a try … and that will endlessly entertain students who already are working on earning their next belt or sash.

Martial Arts Books for Kids

Bunjitsu BunnyTales of Bunjitsu Bunny
Ages 6+
This beginners’ chapter book shares stories of a bunny martial arts student. She is strong and good at solving problems.

 

 

 

PhoenixPhoenix: The Five Ancestors Out of the Ashes, Book 1
Ages 9+
The unusual combination of martial arts, bicycle racing, and Chinese mythology come together in this book — the first installment in a new adventure series featuring well-balanced characters and strong life lessons.

 

 

GildedGilded
Ages 12+
The heroine of this fantasy is a Korean-American girl uprooted to and transplanted in Korea. She battles mythical beings with martial arts and archery. This first book in a series is sure to leave readers wanting more.

 

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Martial Arts Movies for Kids

Kung Fu Panda 2Kung Fu Panda 2
Ages 6+
Filled with its familiar entertaining cast of characters, this sequel is top notch. Kids will be mesmerized by all of the martial arts action supplied by this well-trained team, and parents will appreciate the added notes of emotion and history.

 

 

Wendy WuWendy Wu: Homecoming Warrior
Ages 8+
While running for homecoming queen, Wendy learns of her legacy as a warrior against evil spirits. Wendy shows that balancing demands of the present along with her heritage is a worthy pursuit.

 

 

Shaolin SoccerShaolin Soccer
Ages 8+
This enjoyable, funny film offers a delightful mashup of martial arts and soccer in a format that’s fun for the whole family.

 

 

Karate KidThe Karate Kid
Ages 11+
This classic original film is still the best of its series. In this coming-of-age tale, teenager Daniel learns how to mature, make friends, and defend himself thanks to the discipline of karate and the guidance of a demanding and eccentric (but endearing) instructor.

 

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Martial Arts TV Shows for Kids

Kung Fu PandaKung Fu Panda: Legends of Awesomeness
Ages 6+
Po and his crew are back, waging martial arts battles with villains … and prevailing. Po is a great role model, showing that his uniqueness also makes him both heroic and worthy of respect.

 

AvatarAvatar: The Last Airbender
Ages 9+
This terrific animated martial arts/fantasy/mythology series is entertaining for the whole family.

 

The Legend of Korra
Ages 9+
An inspiring heroine is at the heart of this excellent animated sequel to Avatar: The Last Airbender. As she trains for an important role, she learns important lessons about herself and her family’s history.

 

Samurai Girl
Ages 13+
Here is a great action-packed series, led by a fierce female warrior defending her family from evil. Each episode culminates in sword battles and martial arts fighting, so keep that in mind before sharing this series with younger viewers.

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Soccer Sports

For Kids Who Love Soccer: 9 Books, Movies, Shows & Apps

After the cleats come off, your soccer-playing kids can keep their head in the game with these expert-approved watchables, readables, and soccer apps.

By the Kids’ Media Experts at SmartFeed

With soccer a worldwide phenomenon, Carli Lloyd, Alex Morgan, Lionel Messi, and Neymar aren’t just some of the most well-known stars in women’s and men’s soccer … they are also heroes to young athletes. Kids love books, apps, movies, and TV shows that feature relatable heroes too: particularly heroes who love the same things they do and who face some of the same challenges, both on the field and on the sidelines.

The following soccer-themed games and stories range from soccer simulation apps for grade schoolers to more mature novels that reinforce the importance of perseverance and teamwork. All have been rated by SmartFeed’s media experts and critics based upon their inclusion of positive role models and messages, and their avoidance of negative themes, foul language, and violence.

Soccer Books for Kids

Ellie McDoodles DiariesThe Ellie McDoodle Diaries: Most Valuable Player
By Ruth McNally Barshaw
Ages 7+
Having to choose between a soccer tournament and an academic competition is a tough dilemma for Ellie McDoodle. Her teamwork, dedication, and friendship help her succeed at both!

 

 

BookedBooked
By Kwame Alexander
Ages 10+
A soccer-obsessed middle schooler copes with his parents’ divorce, a bully, and typical school struggles in this unique novel, composed entirely in verse. (Think: Hamilton with shin guards.) It also offers its share of heart-warming scenes, including those featuring friendship and young love. Yes, it discusses serious issues; however, this book is also fun, energetic, and relatable to teens. It’s a sequel to the Newberry-winning novel The Crossover.

 

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Soccer Game Apps for Kids

Soccer Kick 2Soccer Kick 2
Ages 6+
This simple app is a fun diversion for younger soccer fans.

 

 

Score! HeroScore! Hero
Ages 9+
This soccer simulation game has great graphics and easy-to-learn swipe-based play. Be aware there are in-app purchases available, as well as ads.

 

 

Soccer Movies for Kids

Air BudAir Bud: World Pup
Ages 5+
The sports-loving golden retriever Buddy is back, this time starring on the soccer field.

 

 

 

Shaolin SoccerShaolin Soccer
Ages 8+
This enjoyable, funny film offers a martial arts and soccer mashup for kids (or families) who get a kick out of both of these sports. Underdogs rule!

 

 

 

GracieGracie
Ages 13+
Based on a true story, this movie shares the story of a girl who shows grit and determination as she fights to compete on a boys-only soccer team. Gracie rebels and faces down discrimination in this thought-provoking soccer movie.

 

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Soccer TV Shows for Kids

The KicksThe Kicks
Ages 6+
This Amazon TV series follows Devin as she adjusts to life in a new state, new school, and new soccer team. This self-proclaimed “Soccer Beast” teen sets out to prove her worth as a player and a leader on her new team.

 

 

 

Inazuma Eleven
Ages 8+
Adapted from a video game, Inazuma Eleven features a group of misfits who join together to form a soccer team. In the process, they learn to work together at the game they all love.

 

 

 

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Categories
Ballet Ballroom Belly Dance Bollywood Breakdance Contemporary Dance Hip Hop Indian Classical Irish Jazz Latin Lyrical Modern Pointe Tap

9 Movies, Books, Apps & Shows for Kids Who Love to Dance

Every dance tells a story. And everything reviewed here — books, shows, movies, and apps alike — shares a story about dance for boys and girls.

By the Kids’ Media Experts at SmartFeed

One thing is certain: Dancing and media are ingrained in our culture. In the ’70s, everybody learned to disco, thanks to Saturday Night Fever. The movie Animal House reintroduced the dance-floor classic “Shout.” Music videos from Michael Jackson taught Gen Xers to break dance and moon walk. And today, kids learn dances from their favorite music videos such as “Watch me Whip (Nae Nae)” or from TV shows like “Dancing with the Stars.”

When your kids are in the mood for some dance-related media, here are some ideas for your playlist.  These tales range from an animated dancing mouse to real-life dance competitions and the challenging journeys some dancers have taken in pursuit of their dreams.

Books for Kids Who Love to Dance

dance
Tallulah’s Tap Shoes
Ages 4+
Tallulah is really good at ballet. When she tries tap in summer camp, she’s insecure about being a beginner. Patience when trying new things is a great message in this story.

 

 

 

Taking_flight
Taking Flight: From War Orphan to Star Ballerina
Ages 12+
At times sad, scary, and hopeful, this amazing story of an African orphan becoming a ballerina in New York is always inspiring. Her young life started in a war zone, so there are details not meant for younger or more sensitive readers.

 

 

 

An App for Kids Who Love to Dance

Toca
Toca Dance
Ages 5+
Creativity and activity come together nicely in this app. Choose your dancers, costumes, and music, and then make everyone move to the beat.

 

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Movies for Kids Who Love to Dance

Ballroom
Mad Hot Ballroom
Ages 8+
Fifth-grade New York students prepare to compete in a ballroom dancing competition in this terrific documentary. We see their confidence and self-respect grow as they learn.

 

 

First_Position
First Position
Ages 9+
Boys and girls compete in this documentary that stars hard work and great desire.

 

 

 

Ballerina
A Ballerina’s Tale
Ages 9+
As a role model for young dancers, you can’t get much better than Misty Copeland. Her perseverance and hard work paid off, and she is an inspiration. This movie showcases her rise in the American ballet world, and it also offers a look behind the scenes of a major ballet company.

 

 

billy_elliot

Billy Elliot
Ages 13+
A young boy discovers ballet in 1980s England. He is teased and told to stop, but the drive and desire to dance won’t go away. Be aware that there is strong language throughout this movie.

 

 

 

 

TV Shows for Kids Who Love to Dance

YoGabbaGabba
Yo Gabba Gabba!
Ages 2+
Life lessons are taught with a musical beat in this colorful show. Dancing and singing along with the characters promotes movement, as well as sharing, friendship, and good decision-making for the preschool crowd.

 

Angelina
Angelina Ballerina: The Nutcracker Sweet
Ages 4+
A collection of episodes from the popular series, this title encourages friendship, all under the umbrella of ballet class and the friends made there.

 

 

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Categories
Cooking

8 Movies, Books, Shows & Apps for Kids Who Love to Cook

Learning to cook can help picky eaters branch out — and teach all kids some key life skills. Whet your kids’ appetite with these books, apps, and shows.

By the Kids’ Media Experts at SmartFeed

what to watch with a child who loves cookingHave a budding chef in your house? Or maybe you’re a foodie who would love to impart your knowledge of unique cuisines to your kids? Letting kids sample some cooking-themed media will provide them with information on kitchen gadgets and techniques that can prep them for one day donning the chef’s hat (or at least the sous chef’s hat) in your kitchen. Below is a list of kids’ cooking TV shows, apps, movies, and books that are wholesome and delicious.

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A Book for Kids Who Love to Cook

bakingkids
Baking with Kids: Make Breads, Muffins, Cookies, Pies, Pizza Dough, and More!
Ages 7+
Step-by-step instructions, photos, and special steps for younger bakers make this cookbook exceptionally kid-friendly.

 

Apps for Kids Who Love to Cook

cookie_doodle
Cookie Doodle
Ages 4+
This popular app combines creativity, fine motor skills, and lots of sugar! Kids mix dough, roll it out, then cut out cookies, and finally, decorate them.

 

drpanda
Dr. Panda Restaurant Asia
Ages 5+
Role playing as chef in their own restaurant is great fun for children using this app. Kids choose their kitchen tools and food. No keeping score; just fun and creativity in the virtual kitchen.

 

Movies for Kids Who Love to Cook

Ratatouille
Ratatouille
Ages 6+
“Friendly rat as high-end French chef” is this Pixar gem in a nutshell. As a bonus, parents and kids alike will enjoy this film.

 

 

 

Pressure_Cooker
Pressure Cooker
Ages 10+
Hard work and a positive attitude are served up in this fascinating documentary about a group of Philadelphia high school students who are challenged all year in a high-end cooking class. The ultimate reward is competing for a culinary scholarship and a chance for a college education.

 

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TV Shows for Kids Who Love to Cook

GoodEats
Good Eats
Ages 8+
Food-meets-science-meets-humor in this kid-friendly series. A different technique or ingredient is showcased each episode, with food facts, history, and general goofiness in equal parts.

 

MasterChef_Junior
MasterChef Junior
Ages 10+
Creative competition is the focus in this series. Talented kid chefs inspire, create, and ultimately impress.

 

NoKitchenRequired
No Kitchen Required
Ages 10+
World-class chefs compete in foreign locales, featuring native ingredients, traditional recipes, and a tough set of critics … the local residents.

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