What If World
For: Curious minds
Every silly (but totally valid) question ever thought up turned into a captivating little story, What If World is a treasure-trove for tiny tots and their parents alike. What if a tiny dragon lived in my closet? What if there were a never-ending bowl of ice cream? What if cats ruled the world? No question is off the table for What If World and its enigmatic host Eric O’Keeffe. Listeners are also encouraged to call in with their own questions, which then gets turned into a story for the show.
The Alien Adventures of Finn Caspian
For: Sci-fi enthusiasts (ages five to 10)
Creator-writer-performer Jonathan Messinger describes this serialised sci-fi story as a “mystery gang story, sort of like Scooby-Doo meets Buffy the Vampire Slayer in space”. The story centres on Finn Caspian, an eight-year-old boy aboard The Famous Marlowe 280 Interplanetary Exploratory Space Station who explores uncharted planets, helps the occasional alien, and solves a mystery or two that threatens to destroy the Marlowe, all with the help of his friends Abigail, Elias and Vale and their pet robots. Young listeners can expect lots of action, suspense, zero violence and lots of absurd aliens.
For: Science lovers
Co-hosted by husband and wife duo Lindsay Patterson and Marshall Escamilla, who boast years of education and public radio experience between them, Tumble is ideal listening for little nerds with big questions. Lindsay and Marshall bring in scientists from various fields to explore science in a kid-friendly manner, but in a way that will also keep the adults hooked. The podcast covers delightful topics like dinosaur poop, robotic eels, why cats are the way they are, fireflies and invisibility cloaks.
Wow in the World
For: Science and tech geeks
From the wonders of space to the intricate depths of our brains, Wow in the World is an NPR classic, hosted by Guy Raz and Mindy Thomas. The two help kids understand topics like germs, artificial intelligence, the big bang, and everything about the animal and plant kingdoms. Recent episodes include The Very Hungry Black Hole, How to Talk to a Dog, and Where Did We Come From?
Too tired to read your kids a bedtime story? Gimlet Media’s Story Pirates will come to your rescue. The podcast is a collection of tales written by kids that are performed by actors, comedians and musicians, which are then presented as sketch comedy skits and musical performances. We highly recommend their crossover episode with fellow children’s podcast Wow in the World, where they explore what synaesthesia (when the senses get scrambled in the brain) is all about, complete with an interview with a real-life boy who experiences synaesthesia. Also, look out for guest stars like John Oliver, Conan O’Brien, Patton Oswalt and Aubrey Plaza.