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Podcasts For Kids Are Booming—Here Are 8 To Know


Kid-friendly podcasts are a booming market. Here are eight attempting to reach Millennial parents and their kids…


TL;DR:

  • The majority of Millennial parents tell us they listen to podcasts
  • Podcasts aimed at kids have been getting more popular as a result
  • From Disney to Netflix, companies are developing and launching kid-friendly podcasts to reach children and their families

We’ve told you for some time how Gen Z and Millennials have been fueling the podcast industry. YPulse’s recent TV and Entertainment report found that the majority of Millennial parents listen to podcasts—and we told you about some of the parenting podcasts they’ve been tuning into that gives advice on topics of co-parenting, parallel parenting, how they teach their kids to be more resilient, and how to handle awkward playdates with other kids and families. And it seems they’re also turning to podcasts to entertain their own kids. According to NPR and Edison Research’s 2021 Spoken Word Audio Report, podcasts aimed at children / families have experienced a 20% increase in listenership since 2019. It makes sense, as the majority of Millennial parents tell YPulse they’re worried about their kids having too much screen time, entertainment that cuts out screens entirely has been increasing in appeal.

Major corporations are already getting in on the burgeoning industry: Common Sense Network’s Sensical recently acquired a slate of new kid-focused podcasts aimed at two-10-year-olds. Last fall, Amazon’s podcast network Wondery launched Wondery + Kids, a podcast subscription for families and their kids, on Apple Podcasts, while PBS KIDS, PRX, and the Corporation for Public Broadcasting (CPB) are working together for an accelerator program to fund and support five new podcasts aimed at kids. The CEO of Tinkercast, which produces audio content for kids, told The Hollywood Reporter: “[A few years ago] people didn’t really think about whether there was audio content for kids available. It has absolutely exploded since then, and a lot of bigger companies are taking an interest and seeing this as a white space that has a lot more potential.”

YPulse told you how kids’ content boomed last year, and now podcasts aimed at young ones are becoming popular. From adaptations of popular TV shows to original programming, there’s already been plenty of kid-focused podcasts that have launched in the last year. Here are eight to know:


Disney Channel’s This Duckburg Life
Last spring, Disney Channel launched This Duckburg Life, its first original scripted podcast inspired by Disney XD’s DuckTales series. The seven-part podcast is hosted by Huey Duck who shares stories about his friends and community—and the episodes are available on Disney XD’s official YouTube channel (which currently has 3.25 million subscribers), DisneyNOW, and the Disney XD VOD app. The podcast is produced by Disney Television Animation’s multi-platform content team, led by executive director Gino Guzzardo, while Daniel Siegel serves as the story editor, overseeing writers Megan Gonzalez, Ben Siemon, and Ben Acker. Other Disney brands including National Geographic Kids and Disney Magic of Storytelling already have podcasts, so we can expect to see the House of Mouse develop more in the future.

Sesame Workshop x Headspace’s Goodnight, World!
Last summer, Sesame Workshop and Headspace released their new podcast Goodnight, World!, an audio series that helps kids prepare for bed with mediation exercises. Each of the 11 episodes features relaxing sounds inspired by Sesame Street and a calming story narrated by a beloved character. The partnership also includes a new line of books inspired by the brands’ popular Sesame Street Monster Meditation YouTube series. According to YPulse’s State of Mind research, 86% of Millennial parents want their kids to learn about mindfulness and meditation, and major brands are providing the resources they want.

Netflix’s Bedtime Stories
But Sesame Workshop and Headspace aren’t the only companies releasing a podcast to help kids sleep at bedtime. Netflix already has its share of TV shows for kids, and at the beginning of the year, the streaming service launched its first-ever kids’ podcast bringing new life to the stories of popular characters from its children’s series. Bedtime Stories premiered at the end of January on Netflix Jr.’s YouTube channel featuring eight, 10-15-minute episodes following characters from Netflix’s kids’ content including Ada Twist, Scientist, StoryBots, Ridley Jones, Go! Go! Cory Carson, and Chip & Potato. The series is appropriately named as it’s meant to help children get ready for bed by focusing on topics like dreaming and the importance of getting a good night’s rest, and Netflix worked with childhood development expert and author Dr. Tina Bryson to ensure the podcast promoted healthy night-time routines. The cast is also available on Apple Podcasts, Spotify, and Stitcher for families to enjoy.


Spotify x Moonbug’s CoComelon Story Time
By now, you’re probably familiar with the strange, whimsical world of CoComelon, which centers on toddler JJ who sings nursery rhymes with his friends, and how it started out as a YouTube channel that grew during the pandemic, and received even more attention when it was brought to Netflix. In fact, it’s become so popular that toys and merch from the show were some of the most in-demand children’s gifts during the holiday season. To build on its massive popularity, Moonbug collaborated with Spotify on CoComelon Story Time, a podcast featuring 42 classic storybook tales that impart positive life lessons, that premiered at the end of January. But this isn’t the only kid-focused podcast up Spotify’s sleeve: Following the launch of CoComelon Story Time, the streaming service also produced three original preschool series including Gardenkeeper Gus, which follows the titular six year old and his squirrel best friend as they explore the mysterious garden behind his family home; 100 Cinderellas, an anthology series comprising a collection of Cinderella bedtime stories from all over the world; and Deep Blue Sea which takes young listeners into an underwater lab. All the podcasts are available on the kids and family section of Spotify’s app, as well as on the Spotify Kids app.


Nickelodeon x iHeartRadio’s Avatar: Braving The Elements & SpongeBob BingePants
From SpongeBob Squareparents to Avatar: The Last Airbender, Nickelodeon has a slate of animated TV classes beloved by kids and families all over the world. And to keep its loyal fans engaged, Nickelodeon teamed up with iHeartRadio to reach the youngest podcast listeners and their families. The first podcast from the two companies was Avatar: Braving the Elements, which consists of 40 episodes, and features voice actors Dante Basco (who voices Prince Zuko) and Janet Varney (who voiced Korra) as they rewatch the animated fantasy series and explore its different themes and participate in trivia. Special guests include producers and other cast members from the series who shared behind-the-scenes tea. We told you how anime has been surging in popularity in recent years, and that “rewatch” podcasts with celebrities is really trendy right now, and this podcast leans into that trend through a kid-friendly lens. Their second podcast is SpongeBob BingePants, which also has 40 episodes, and shares recaps and new trivia about the show. However, Nickelodeon isn’t a stranger to making podcasts for little ones: The network previously produced Listen Out Loud with The Loud House, Blue’s Clues & You!: Bedtime Stories, and the Nickelodeon Animation Podcast.


PBS x Gen-Z Media’s Arthur Spinoff
We told you that Millennials were emotional during the Arthur finale last month. The show has been beloved by a generation of kids for over a decade—and to keep the magic alive among Millennials (and their kids) in other ways, the network is currently developing  a slate of Arthur digital spinoffs planned to keep the beloved children’s show around. PBS is teaming up with Gen-Z Media for the podcast that will tie in Arthur’s library of stories, characters, moments, and new interactive Arthur games. Arthur is the longest-running children’s animated series in American TV history, and PBS’ plans to continue the show’s legacy signals how they’re adapting the kids’ content for a new generation.


Warner Bros. Animation’s Looney Tunes Presents: Bugs & Daffy’s Thanksgiving Road Trip
Ahead of Thanksgiving last year, Warner Bros. Animation worked with Story Pirates Studios to release Looney Tunes Presents: Bugs & Daffy’s Thanksgiving Road Trip , a four-part original comedy series following Bugs Bunny and Daffy Duck through “a pitfall-laden roadtrip mission to make ducks the official bird of Thanksgiving.” While this is Warner Bros. Animation’s first-ever children’s podcast, its parent company WarnerMedia is familiar with the podcast space, launching several HBO Max/DC Comics titles earlier this year, including Batman: The Audio Adventures.

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