If you’re housebound with kids then a TV can be your friend, especially if you’re trying to work from home at the same time. It’s one of the tools in my arsenal for when I need to get some uninterrupted time or for a mental break (for everyone).
The #TOTSquad has also asked for recommendations of ABC shows for kids via Facebook – so here's my roundup of the best ABC Kids TV shows on ABC Kids (Channel ABC For Kids 22) in no particular order.
Read this if you're looking for the best shows on ABC ME/ABC 3 (Channel ABC 23) for school-age children.
As of June 2021 these were all current children's programming on ABC television and the ABC Kids app (although some are only available on ABC iview). Over time it's possible that some will become old ABC kids shows as they are retired from the programming schedule, but many are still available on ABC iview so I have continued to list them here.
If you have any favourite ABC children's TV shows please drop a comment below!
Note I'm referring to ABC Australia children's shows only, not ABC TV children's programs in other countries.
Best ABC for Kids Shows
For the best of Australian kids TV for preschoolers look no further than ABC For Kids.
New to the channel is ABC Kids Puggles. These shows are best suited to the littlest members of your family.
Also visit ABC Kids Early Education for extension ideas and resources to support some of the shows below in early childhood teaching and learning.
Bluey is a much-loved Australian cartoon on ABC TV Kids about a feisty 6-year-old blue heeler (Bluey) and her family. There really aren't any kids TV shows like Bluey at the moment with the same universal, multi-age appeal!
2. Play School
Play School helped me to learn English as a non-English speaking 6-year-old Chinese immigrant. I had no idea it was marketed as an ABC baby show!
My kids 7yo and 9yo still enjoy watching Play School, such is the power of this long-running TV show. As a parent, I love the diversity of its presenters – in gender, cultural background and disability.
It really is one of the best TV shows ABC produces for kids and the closest TV shows to Play School include the long-running Sesame Street. As you'd expect, it is one of the highest rating ABC children's shows.
Related: Play School Live review
3. Andy Day
Andy Day sure gets around! He stars in numerous kids shows ABC Kids broadcasts from time to time. You can watch Andy's Dinosaur Adventures, Andy's Safari Adventures, Andy's Secret Hideout and Andy's Wild Adventures – newest on the list and featuring energetic workouts inspired by the moves of creatures large and small.
All of Andy's shows deal with animals, whether alive or extinct – our favourite is Andy's Dinosaur Adventures because it offers natural history lessons through time travel.
Dirtgirl encourages kids to get outdoors to engage with nature. It offers a touch of country life for city kids watching TV ABC Kids.
I like that she wears gumboots and drives a big orange tractor!
Also from the Emmy Award-winning creators of dirtgirlworld is Get Grubby TV, a 30-minute live action garden-loving celebration of all things outside as well as Go Wild for Maths, short episodes with dirtgirlworld teaching kids to find numeracy in nature. Its also one of the ABC Kids shows 2000s kids will surely remember.
5. Go Jetters
Thanks to Go Jetters my kids know more about some world cities than I do. It's a kids show ABC broadcasts that is just as educational for adults! No doubt all that geography and history in the show will hold my kids in good stead for future Trivial Pursuit games and trivia nights.
To be honest I have no idea who's who in the show (the four of them look exactly alike in my view), but I do like how they visit cities that we've been to before, including New York City and London.
I have a lot of nostalgia for Sesame Street and love how they tackle current affairs and real-world issues in a fun and accessible way for kids. It's been one of the top shows ABC has shown for many years running.
One of my favourite episodes is Supreme Court Justice Sonia Sotomayor telling Abby Cadabby that a princess is NOT a career.
Everyone's favourite Bear from Peru now has his own TV show. The CGI production covers a different adventure (or mishap) each episode and includes all the characters we know, plus some new ones.
Numberblocks is a step-by-step learning journey grouped neatly into five colour-coded levels for numeracy early learning (though my school-aged son still enjoys watching it!).
Follow the adventures of the Numbers and learn through animation, fun songs and games!
The Wonder Gang introduces preschoolers to the powerful art of finding facts through inquiry, observation and experimentation. Willow, Whyla and Wes use their flexible thinking, persistence and teamwork to help them find answers to kids' questions about Australian animals and nature.
I hope this post has helped or inspired you! Get my awesome weekly newsletter in your inbox every week to find out more ways for your family to have fun together!