10 Great Kids Podcasts for Drive-Time (or Anytime)

by Rebecca Highland
Nov 12, 2017 at 11:00 a.m. ET

I sometimes feel like my kids and I live in our car. Between drop-offs and pickups at two schools, shuttling to extracurricular activities, errands and just plain sitting in traffic, we log a lot of miles — and a lot of time — in our car each week. Keeping everyone happy and entertained is tough, but my girls and I love to listen together to music, audiobooks and podcasts.

Podcasts are a great medium for exploring new topics and interests, relaxing together and having a shared experience of learning. There are so many high-quality podcasts being produced for children right now, you can find a podcast for pretty much any topic your kids are into.

If you haven't experienced the wonderful world of podcasts, here's what you need to know: Podcasts are essentially on-demand radio programs. They can range in length from a few minutes to an hour or more, and they have multiple episodes organized around a topic or theme. Most podcasts are available for free via iTunes, GooglePlay or apps like My Podcasts or Stitcher.

Ahead, we’ve pulled together a rich and varied list of some of the awesome podcasts out there for kids of all ages — that even parents will enjoy.

See the whole Great Kids' Podcasts playlist and save to a free SmartFeed Library

1 /11: 'Sparkle Stories'

1/11 :'Sparkle Stories'

Sparkle Stories is a subscription-based storytelling website and app with a huge archive of gentle, beautifully narrated original stories with positive messages for kids. A variety of seasonal and topical episodes are available for free as part of the Sparkle Stories podcast, and new free episodes are added weekly.  (Ages 4 and up)

Sparkle Stories, free at iTunes

2 /11: 'Story Pirates'

2/11 :'Story Pirates'

Story Pirates is a group of actors, comedians, improvisers and musicians who adapt stories written by kids into sketch comedy and musical theater. This podcast is a recording of live Story Pirates performances. Funny, creative and wildly engaging — your child may be inspired to write and submit a story of their own. (Ages 6 and up)

Story Pirates, free at iTunes

3 /11: 'But Why? A Podcast for Curious Kids'

3/11 :'But Why? A Podcast for Curious Kids'

Why does popcorn pop? How do butterflies fly? Here's a great show that answers these questions and more from Vermont Public Radio. Each episode features an exploration of a different scientific question in an engaging and accessible format. It's great for the whole family. (Ages 6 and up)

But Why? A Podcast for Curious Kids, free at iTunes

4 /11: 'The Radio Adventures of Dr. Floyd'

4/11 :'The Radio Adventures of Dr. Floyd'

This family-friendly new twist on old-time radio features the adventures of the world's most brilliant scientist, Dr. Floyd, and his nemesis, Dr. Steve. Part history, part mystery, full of humor and wit — this one’s perfect for a family road trip. (Ages 8 and up)

The Radio Adventures of Dr. Floyd, free at iTunes

5 /11: 'Tumble'

5/11 :'Tumble'

Tumble is an award-winning science podcast for kids with engaging episodes on a variety of topics. Recent titles include "The Quest for the Hidden Planets," "The Call of the Antarctic Dinosaur" and — sure to be a kid favorite — "The Science of Poop." Each episode features a scientist who is an expert in the area being discussed. It's informative and entertaining. (Ages 8 and up)

Tumble, free at iTunes

6 /11: 'Peace Out: Relaxation & Mindfulness Stories for Kids'

6/11 :'Peace Out: Relaxation & Mindfulness Stories for Kids'

Need a little inner peace? Peace Out is a great podcast choice for teaching and promoting mindfulness and calm. Short stories include calming visualizations and meditations to help kids quiet their minds and relax. It's a great before-bedtime choice. (Ages 5 and up)

Peace Out: Relaxation & Mindfulness Stories for Kids, free at iTunes

7 /11: 'The Radio Adventures of Eleanor Amplified'

7/11 :'The Radio Adventures of Eleanor Amplified'

Eleanor Amplified feels like an old-time radio show with a modern twist. Lessons about journalism, media literacy and social responsibility are woven throughout action-packed stories that are clever and funny. Eleanor is a smart, insightful heroine, and her adventures are a delight to follow. (Ages 7 and up)

The Radio Adventures of Eleanor Amplified, free at iTunes

8 /11: 'The Unexplainable Disappearance of Mars Patel'

8/11 :'The Unexplainable Disappearance of Mars Patel'

This award-winning mystery podcast follows a group of 11-year-old detectives as they piece together clues to try to find their missing friends. Mars Patel is suspenseful but not scary; it's filled with surprises, fantasy and humor and performed by kids. (Ages 8 and up)

The Unexplainable Disappearance of Mars Patel, free at iTunes

9 /11: 'Brains On!'

9/11 :'Brains On!'

Brains On! is another great science podcast that answers high-interest scientific questions in an accessible way. From the straightforward (how to whales communicate?) to the whimsical (could it technically rain lemonade?), Brains On! has something for everyone and provides a great jumping-off point for kids’ own scientific inquiry. (Ages 6 and up)

Brains On!, free at iTunes

10 /11: 'Ear Snacks'

10/11 :'Ear Snacks'

Music from around the world, current events, educational content and fun are combined in this informative and entertaining podcast that breaks down big ideas so even the youngest listeners can understand and connect. Ear Snacks is a delightful mix of original and classic songs, favorite stories read aloud to music and interviews with kids. It's a great choice for preschool and younger elementary-age kids. (Ages 2 and up)

Ear Snacks, free at iTunes

11 /11: What is SmartFeed?

11/11 :What is SmartFeed?

SmartFeed is a free family media resource to help parents find and organize books, movies, TV, podcasts and apps that are just right for each member of the family through an easy-to-use app and website. Our mission is to help parents access inspiring educational media their kids will love. 
We offer savable, shareable playlists for families and communities. Titles are easily sortable by provider (e.g., Netflix, iTunes, Amazon, etc.), age and topic.