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Netflix for children: what to watch now

From the educational to the entertaining and everything in between, Netflix excels in the children’s department. Whether you...

3 years ago

From the educational to the entertaining and everything in between, Netflix excels in the children’s department. Whether you have 20 minutes to kill and would like your child to learn something in a new and fun way, or have simply sold a family movie night, our Netflix shortlist will help you cut through the dauntingly vast selection.

Wildlife

A Life on Our Planet

“I am David Attenborough and I am 93.” So begins an extraordinary tale that will take your child on a journey the like of which only this particular nonagenarian knows how to tell.
Age: 7+
Category: Science and nature
Watch here

Based on the book

A Series of Unfortunate Events

Based on Lemony Snicket’s classic children’s novel of the same name, A Series of Unfortunate events has been made into a Netflix original series. Follow the misfortunes of the three Baudelaire children, hunted down by Count Olaf who wants to steal their inheritance following the death of their parents in the opening episode. A cynical but classic tale.
Age: 7+
Category: Dark comedy
Watch here

Madeline

A heart-warming, coming-of-age film, Madeline tells the story of the eponymous protagonist who is an orphan trying to save her school from prospective buyers. Adapted from a children’s book, the mischievous, clever and adventurous Madeline is impossible not to love. A light-hearted Sunday afternoon film for all the family.
Age: 7+
Category: Family comedy
Watch here

Animation

Over the Moon

This Sino-American collaboration (yes, that can still exist…) recounts the journey of Fei Fei, an adventurous girl building a rocket to transport her to meet a mythical goddess on the moon. Musical genres vary from rap to romance.
Age: 7+
Category: Animation, Musical
Watch here

Hilda

Winner of the BAFTA Children’s Award for Best Children’s Animation in 2019, this Netflix original follows blue-haired Hilda as she moves to a new Scandinavian city and befriends many mysterious woodland creatures and spirits. A light hearted, beautiful animation with some important life lessons. .
Age: 7+
Category: Animation
Watch here

Educational

Ask The StoryBots

One of children’s favourite pastimes is to ask “why?”. This incredible series answers one question per episode in a fun and interactive way, sometimes with responses from celebrity guests. From questions which are incredibly important to answer, such as “Why do people look different?” to the silliest (but most common!) “Why can’t I eat dessert all the time?”, these short 20 minute episodes will certainly keep your child occupied and maybe even teach them a thing or two. 
Age: 3+
Category: Educational and goofy
Watch here

The Magic School Bus

Originally made in 1994, this cartoon had a successful reboot in 2018. Teacher Miss Frizzle takes her class on regular field trips aboard the Magic School Bus, and encourages children to learn about different animals and places. The aim of the show is to help children learn about science in a novel and fun way.
Age: 4+
Category: Educational and animated
Watch here

The Who Was? Show

This comedic, yet educational, show explores historical duos in a rather original way. With pairings such as Marie Curie and Harry Houdini or William Shakespeare and Tutankhamun, the light-heartedness is not to detract from the purpose of the sketches. Your children should certainly remember these famous characters when faced with them again in a classroom!
Age: 7+
Category: Educational comedy
Watch here

Take two

Charlie and the Chocolate Factory

The remake of the original Roald Dahl novel is an enticingly colourful star-studded version of the 1971 version with Gene Wilder. It can be incredibly rewarding for children to watch film versions of novels they have already read (or listened to). The colourful scenography will certainly encourage your child’s imagination to run wild in the best possible way.
Age: 7+
Category: Imaginative family film
Watch here

Mary Poppins Returns

There is always some reticence when such a successful classic is revisited but the general consensus seems to be that 54 years on, Mary comes through the process intact and unspoiled. With a cast that includes Emily Blunt, Julie Walters, Emily Mortimer, the wonderful Lin-Manuel Miranda and even Dick van Dyke, the much-loved tale of an impeccable nanny and her wayward wards is in very safe hands.
Age 7+
Category: Song and dance
Watch here

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